Melbourne mum’s $15 million beauty empire spurs self-tanning industry

Liz Agresta, Founder of Australian Glow

A young mum who had a lightbulb moment to change the self-tanning industry in 2018 and saw her startup company blossom in to a $15 million empire, is set to take her company public – allowing her loyal customers to buy shares in Australian Glow for the very first time.

When was the lightbulb moment?

Liz Agresta also announced she will transform the industry by being the first self-tanning range to have a transparent ingredient list – so you know exactly what you are putting on your body. Liz Agresta had always been a religious self-tanner but as she turned 30, her skin started to suffer with reactions to her face from the harsh chemicals other tanning products contained. “I was doing this to look great, and it had the opposite effect,” she said.

This sensitive skin reaction spurred her on to create an organic and nourishing self-tanning lotion with a commitment to sustainable packaging, which is now lauded around the world.

A bottle of her best-selling and top-rated Dark 1 Hour Express Self-Tanning Mousse now sells every 70 seconds worldwide. It was this ethos to change the industry for good that has now driven the 35 year old Melbourne mum to further innovate with a completely transparent ingredient list (see below for a back label example). This world first initiative is aimed at empowering customers to make informed choices when it comes to choosing skin products.

How is Liz shaking up the industry?

Every ingredient is listed and explained in detail why it has been used. “Being innovative is what drives me – I was also the first tanning brand with sustainable packaging,” she said.

“Once you finished your bottle you could buy a refill sachet that was made from recycled plastic rescued from the ocean. We use 80% less plastic on those refill pouches than an actual bottle. It was this attribute that blew the minds of buyers at the first trade show we presented at, which was actually the world’s largest beauty tradeshow – Cosmoprof in Italy.”

Australian Glow’s success was instant, due in part to her strategy of focusing on overseas markets because Australia was already saturated with so many fake tan products.

What is Australian Glow’s market reach?

Her success at Cosmoprof scored her major deals with department stores in Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark. The following year saw Australian Glow expand into the US, which now accounts for over 75% of sales. Major retailers worldwide include Superdrug, Priceline, Ulta beauty, Macys, Revolve, Douglas, Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie.

Liz and her team are also in the final stages of locking in major USA pharmacy with over 8,000 locations. This deal alone will be worth $7m per year to Australian Glow’s bottom line.

She is now calling on her customers and fellow self-tan lovers to be a part of her success by buying shares in Australian Glow via Birchal Equity Crowdfunding so she can take her business to the next level. Shares can be bought for as little as $250. Starting from a $25,000 investment in 2019, Liz’s company is now valued at a rumoured $15 million. With 15 more products in line to be launched by the end of 2022, we can only imagine what’s next!