Breakthrough startups and influencer-led campaigns shine at the Glossy Awards

This year’s Glossy Awards were hosted by IMG model Candice Huffine, who has graced the cover of Vogue Italia and the pages of Elle, Glamour and W Magazine. She also recently launched her own size-inclusive athleisure brand, DAY/WON. Led by Huffine, Wednesday night’s gala, held at Current at Chelsea Piers, honored standout work by fashion and beauty brands that are setting the pace for the changing industries.

DTC fine jewelry brand Mejuri, which just secured $23 million in Series B round funding, is combating the idea that fine jewelry is purchased only occasionally by consistently refreshing its lineup of high-quality, responsibly sourced pieces. The 5-year-old company, which was awarded Best Breakthrough Startup, Fashion, is navigating a crowded space and focusing on building an offline presence — they currently have permanent showrooms in Toronto and NYC. 

Hatch Mama Beauty, the new skin-care-focused offshoot of Hatch Collection, which launched in 2011 with style-savvy moms-to-be in mind, took home Best Breakthrough Startup, Beauty x Wellness. The feel-good maternity skin-care brand is focused on pre- and postnatal needs, selling products including belly masks, soothing creams and stretch mark reduction oils. The 1-year-old line is already profitable, and is loved by celebrity moms including Lily Aldridge and Kate Hudson.

Also taking top spots were Coty Luxury and Aerie, which both nabbed influencer-focused awards. Legacy fragrance Daisy by Marc Jacobs, owned by Coty, won Best Influencer Campaign, Beauty for a holiday pop-up that took the form of a classic NYC newsstand and launched with a roll-out of influencers’ #sponsored posts and appearances. Body-positive Aerie took home Best Influencer Campaign, Fashion for #AerieREAL just five years after being the first-ever brand to forgo retouching back in 2014. This year’s campaign, which sought to connect the customer with the voices she looks up to, featured Aly Raisman, Rachel Platten, Yara Shahidi and Iskra Lawrence.

On the process behind choosing the women to feature, Aerie’s svp of marketing, Stacey McCormick, said, “We’re always keeping an eye out for these influential voices who create change by sharing their real stories and taking real action within their communities. Beyond our commitment to being one of the first brands to stop retouching, we believe in the power of community and engagement through a holistic approach. It’s more than showing up real; we have to live it.”

This year, Best Brand/Agency Collaboration, which was awarded to Ouai Haircare and Métier Creative in 2018, went to Stella Rising and clean beauty essentials destination First Aid Beauty. The two teamed up for a Procter & Gamble-run YouTube challenge that gave P&G-owned brands a chance to show their long-form chops. Digital media strategy-focused Stella Rising was also up for other awards, including, interestingly, Best Non-Digital Marketing Campaign for its work with Wet N’ Wild.

See the full list of this year’s winners below.

Best Influencer Campaign, Beauty
Coty Luxury – Daisy Marc Jacobs Fragrances x Holiday NYC Pop-Up

Best Influencer Campaign, Fashion
Aerie – 2018 #AerieREAL Role Model Campaign

Best Brand Collaboration
Rent the Runway – WeWork Drop-Off Network
Return the runway as easily as you rented it. WeWork and Rent the Runway teamed up to make drop-offs easier for subscribers, which would ultimately allow for more items to be pulled and worn. The larger goal is for women to be able to access their rotating closet within a matter of hours — a process that hinges on an easy return process. Right now, RTR subscribers in six cities can locate drop-off locations within their app, drop off their last picks and unlock the next batch in moments.

Best Brand/Agency Collaboration
Stella Rising – First Aid Beauty

Best Sustainability Initiative
Rothy’s has sustainability in its DNA. The proof: The 4-year-old company, which sells shoes made from 100% post-consumer plastic, has already repurposed 25 million plastic water bottles in the span of its time on the market. Furthering the reach of its efforts, the company has partnered with PLUSfoam to ensure that worn-out shows can be recycled and the materials reused.

Best Product Launch Campaign
DTC cashmere company Naadam sources its cashmere from Mongolia at fair prices. In 2018, the company set out to launch a cashmere sweater that would be one of the most cost-effective, high-quality, sustainably sourced options in the market. The resulting product, which comes in nine colors and is unisex, was launched in conjunction with a video called “The Next Story of Naadam: The Democratization of Cashmere.” It showed buyers exactly how their purchase was made and furthered the company’s efforts to prove that cashmere can be accessible and ethical.

Best Loyalty Program
Mack Weldon
Premium menswear brand Mack Weldon’s unique loyalty program, Weldon Blue, sets out to reward smaller, more frequent orders in a world where order volume is king. With a single purchase, customers are automatically enrolled in the program at Level One, which earns them free shipping on all future orders. The most benefit comes for those who, after spending $200, unlock Level Two and begin earning 20% off each order. The goal: retaining those Level Two customers who will spend year after year.

Best In-Store Tech, Beauty
Credo Beauty & Hero Technologies – Live Shopping
Credo houses over 115 clean beauty brands spanning skin care, makeup, fragrance and wellness — it’s one of the largest product suites of any clean beauty destination in the U.S. Known for its extremely informed, professional staff, the brand needed to ensure that its in-store product experts were able to provide the same experience to online clients. Enter Hero Technologies and “Live Shopping,” which allows those in-store experts to liaise with e-comm shoppers craving that same experience.

Best Physical Retail Launch
Mecca Brands – MECCALAND 2018
Mecca has brought exclusive global beauty brands to consumers in Australia and New Zealand since opening its first store in South Yarra in 1997. Just over 20 years later, the brand was brought to life via Meccaland, a beauty playground come to life, which took place over four days in April of last year. The sold-out event gave the retailer a new format through which to engage with its customers while driving sales and giving the brands they sell a physical presence.

Best E-Commerce Experience, Beauty
Since bringing the first-ever at-home color kit to market in 1956, Clairol has remained dedicated to eliminating the complexity associated with choosing hair coloring products and creating a clear path to the right options for each person. The Coty-owned brand worked with NYC-based Zoovu to develop a digital assistant built on millions of data points generated by a consultation quiz, which allows site visitors to build a personalized hair profile complete with product recommendations.

Best E-Commerce Experience, Fashion
Stitch Fix – Style Shuffle
If one thing is certain in today’s industry, it’s that personalization is key. The success of Stitch Fix is hinged on the service and quality of the products provided to clients, so an understanding of each buyer’s preferences is paramount. Style Shuffle allows buyers to give their Stylist a better understanding of what exactly their personal style is by giving a thumbs-up to items they would consider their style and thumbs-down to those they wouldn’t add to their rotation. The result? Less returns and a more robust profile per client.

Best Digital Experience
Sampler & CeraVe – Cleanser Week
L’Oréal-owned CeraVe teamed up with Sampler to deploy a digital product sampling program that would bring the dermatologist-developed brand to the hands of its target consumers. The result of the partnership was a diagnostic tool built with gathering customer data in mind — the data retrieved allowed CeraVe to target the right people with the right personalized product ranges.

Best Breakthrough Startup, Fashion

Best Breakthrough Startup, Beauty x Wellness
HATCH – Hatch Mama Beauty

Best Use of Video by a Brand
Neutrogena & VidMob – Neutrogena Skin360
The future of product recommendations has been realized via Neutrogena Skin360, a scanner that pairs with a mobile application to evaluate a user’s skin and make highly personalized routine and product suggestions. In order to get the word out about this very new-to-market technology, the Johnson & Johnson-owned skin giant teamed up with VidMob to test assets prior to a full ad roll-out. The results were highly specialized ads and ample buzz.

Best Non-Digital Marketing Campaign
Beekman 1802 – HSN Launch
Farm-to-skin beauty brand Beekman 1802 launched its goat milk-based products on HSN in July of last year, after bringing the farm to their audiences. The product line was introduced on TV for the first time via hours of footage from the 100-acre, upstate New York farm its goat milk is sourced from. It was wrapped up into commercials and played through a livestream on launch day.

Most Innovative Physical Retail Concept (Editorial’s Choice)
MatchesFashion – 5 Carlos Place opened the doors of 5 Carlos Place last September in London’s Mayfair neighborhood. The five-floor townhouse is broken up into accessible shopping floors, private shopping floors and a space for media, which is home to launch events for curated edits and conversations with industry heavyweights.

Get news and analysis about fashion, beauty and culture delivered to your inbox every morning.