Just a few years ago, Aishetu Dozie, founder of lipstick brand Bossy Cosmetics, received the “best bad news” of her life. Following a nearly 20-year career as a finance executive, the investment banker-turned-beauty entrepreneur was diagnosed with high blood pressure and advised by her doctor to get it under control. By making some drastic life changes, that’s exactly what she did. “It emboldened me to make some pretty tough decisions and the first was to quit my job and move to sunny California in the hopes of finally having the courage to live at the intersection of my purpose [igniting confidence in women] and passion [creativity through beauty],” Dozie tells TZR. Ultimately, whatever she was going to do next, Dozie knew it would involve working with and supporting ambitious women.
Dozie also wanted to be her own boss. “Or a better way to say that is that I wanted to design my own culture within a unique business from scratch,” she explains. “I really felt like the conversation about confidence-building for women in the workplace wasn’t really happening with the actual women who needed it at the most intimate and granular level.” From these thoughts, a lightbulb moment happened. “I had an idea that if someone trusted you enough to purchase a beauty product from you, you could begin to develop a relationship with her that goes far beyond her looks.” As it turns out, this belief is what drove Dozie to begin her career in the beauty industry and the subsequent creation of Bossy Cosmetics.
Officially launched in March 2019, the brand has become known over the past couple of years for its highly pigmented lip products (although it does have a sought-after eyeshadow palette, too!). The label’s lineup includes just about every lip formula you can think of: liquid lipsticks, matte lipsticks, lip liners, glosses, and the newest addition to the family, bullet lipsticks.
But it’s Bossy’s philosophy that’s really making waves. The label has committed itself to igniting confidence in ambitious women through high-quality cosmetics, topical social media content, as well as career-building services. “We empower her [Bossy’s clientele] to look, feel, and do good in the world,” Dozie says. “It’s vital to create a brand that is clearly differentiated so that the customer — we call her Boss — understands and feels the value that you bring to her makeup bag and her life.”
The aforementioned services at Bossy Cosmetics are just one way the labels aims to differentiate itself from the other major players in the beauty industry. “Last year, when we created the service offering called Beauty Meets Wisdom, we knew we were really leaning into our purpose,” Dozie explains. With this initiative, if you buy over $50 of products, you’re eligible to receive a complimentary hour of coaching from experienced experts in a variety of fields sourced through a partner company. “The areas of support can range from how to start a business, to public relations, to how to write a pitch, to how to write a resume, legal, and beyond,” the founder says. “We wanted to make our brand promise stronger and stronger, and that’s what Beauty Meets Wisdom does.”
On top of its Beauty Meets Wisdom service, Dozie adds, “as a brand, a percentage of our purchases go toward funding three global nonprofits [Girls Inc of St. Louis, Women at Risk Foundation in Nigeria, and Women's Link Worldwide] that drive critical advocacy work for the most vulnerable women and girls in our society.” This is an integral part of Bossy Cosmetics’ DNA, and the founder says it acts as an “Indulge and Give Back” handshake because she knows its customers are socially conscious about their spending.
If you follow Bossy Cosmetics on Instagram, you’ve probably noticed the brand tends to go live often. “We conduct myriad IG live discussions with women thought leaders across academia, design, entrepreneurship, motherhood, domestic violence, sex trafficking, and other topical issues for today’s modern woman,” Dozie explains. During these live sessions, the founder says the brand’s community comes together to engage, reflect, and grow.
And let’s not forget about the makeup. As for its ultra-popular lipsticks, Dozie says Bossy’s customers are drawn to the brand’s nude and ultra-bright hues. “Our most popular shades are our reds — Ruby, Faith, Unstoppable, and Ambitious,” she says. Once the weather gets warmer, the founder notices the brand’s brighter colors such as Bravery, Siren, Courage, and Inspiring to rise in popularity. “In terms of nudes, as you know, nude is not one color because we are all different hues,” Dozie says. “We have found Hustle, Sexy, Flirt, and Ritzy to be our best-selling nudes!”
When it comes to ingredients, its latest bullet lipsticks are made with vitamin E and African watermelon seed oil. “We were really focused on creating a matte lipstick that was emollient and hydrating so that it stayed on, but felt creamy,” Dozie explains. “It just launched and the feedback has been amazing so far!”
In addition to its lip category, the California-based label has its Style, Meet Substance eyeshadow palette, which Dozie says has outsold every single lipstick the brand has ever launched. “The first run sold out in two weeks and we had to wait a few months to restock it!” The palette contains nine shades that consist of a mixture of glitters and mattes. “The colors are resplendent, and they transition well from day to nightwear.”
Down the road, Dozie says she wants Bossy Cosmetics to have products across every category, and is already looking forward to the day when the brand ventures into the skin care and fragrance markets. “My goal is to build a global brand across a powerful omnichannel presence meeting our customer where she lives and shops easiest,” the founder explains.
Itching to try out the label for yourself? Below, shop some of the brand’s best-selling products as well as its beloved eyeshadow palette.
We only include products that have been independently selected by TZR's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.