Building a beauty brand: Insights from Caroline Renée Kroll, CEO and Co-Founder of Nø Cosmetics

In a recent episode of the EGN podcast, Caroline Kroll, CEO and co-founder of Nø Cosmetics, shared with us the journey and insights behind the rise of her conscious beauty brand. From the early days of launching the brand at just 22, our interviewee recounted the challenges and triumphs she faced in establishing Nø Cosmetics in a competitive industry. Read more to see what they were!

During our interview we found out that Caroline’s inspiration for Nø Cosmetics stemmed from her father, who worked in the cosmetics industry and was often critical of mainstream products’ ingredients and formulations. This familial background, coupled with her personal desire for affordable yet fun and effective skincare, laid the foundation for Nø Cosmetics. 

A little bit history

One of the most striking aspects of the company’s journey is how Caroline Kroll and her team ventured into the market without any significant backing, celebrity endorsements, or a robust social media following. Despite these initial hurdles, they managed to secure a spot on the shelves of major drugstores through cold pitching, driven by the uniqueness and quality of their products.

Nø Cosmetics initially launched with a few products, focusing on skincare that would allow users to feel comfortable in their skin without makeup. Over the years, the brand has expanded its range to include 22 regular products, with additional limited editions and online exclusives. The name of the brand reflects its ethos of encouraging natural beauty and reducing reliance on makeup.

Building a brand

Our guest told us that, in terms of marketing, Nø Cosmetics employs a diverse strategy that includes traditional methods like out-of-home advertising and PR, as well as a strong presence on social media platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook. 

But their strategy can clearly shock at times. Caroline Kroll shared with us Nø Cosmetics’ unconventional approach to major sales events like Black Friday. Rather than participating in the discount frenzy, for the last two years the brand chose to close their online store and physical locations, encouraging customers to donate to good causes instead. This stance not only set them apart but also resonated deeply with their community, highlighting the brand’s dedication to its ethical principles.

During our talk Caroline Kroll also touched on the importance of community and transparency in building a brand. She recounted how open communication about product delays or failures—such as a product launch that had to be canceled—garnered support and understanding from their followers. By sharing these challenges and the realities of running a small but growing business, our guest has cultivated a sense of authenticity and trust with Nø Cosmetics’ customers.

Interested in finding out more about building a beauty brand? Watch the full talk below:

Can’t watch? No problem. It is also available on Spotify and Apple Podcast.