How Trinny Woodall Built An Empire
From fashion guru to the founder of a multi-million-dollar beauty business.
There’s something diabolically fabulous about Trinny Woodall. Not only is she deeply passionate about her beauty brand, Trinny London – which she launched only four years ago with just three staff, and has now built into an empire worth US$330 million with over 50 staff – she’s raw and honest, about everything from her business mistakes and financial struggles to menopause, colonics and Botox.

It’s little wonder she has a dedicated legion of fans with one million followers on Instagram. They tune in to watch her bounce around her at-home dressing room, waxing lyrical about the merits of sequins, the many ways to combat thinning hair or how to fix crepey neck skin. It’s chaotic and zany, authentic and uplifting, just like Woodall, really.


The Change

Not that she’s always been so exuberant. Her struggle with addiction is well-documented, with Woodall starting cocaine as a teenager in the hope it would give her the confidence she so craved. It would take many trips to rehab over the course of a decade to recover from her addiction, and many more years to really feel comfortable in her own skin.

“The biggest change for me when I reached 50 was, in the politest way possible, that I didn’t really care what people thought any more. That allows you to be true to yourself, your ideals, and what you want to do,” she revealed to Forbes recently.


The Attitude

And what Woodall wants to do is make every woman feel fabulous. Inclusivity is very important at Trinny London – the lookbook features 120 non-professional models, while its target market is “more an attitude than an age thing”. It’s this ethos that has helped the company grow exponentially – 250% from March 2020 to January 2021, delivering US$62 million last financial year. Now, a Trinny London product is sold every 70 seconds somewhere in the world.


The Future

Against the odds, the company didn’t just survive, it thrived during the pandemic, but it was no happy accident. “The beauty industry has typically been slow to innovate, and the pandemic forced many well-established brands to build and deliver a full customer experience online for the very first time,” Woodall explained toThe Suite. “For a beauty brand to deliver on this effectively, it requires a huge amount of investment in R&D and tech innovation – and this year has essentially forced many brands to build the plane mid-air.

“At Trinny London, we’ve been a fully digital D2C brand from the very beginning, with 30% of our team dedicated to tech innovation, which enabled our business to grow by 250% last year. A huge part of being able to do this successfully is nailing personalisation, and the pandemic has only accelerated the development of online personalisation services in line with consumer demand.”

If there’s one thing Woodall excels at, it’s making things personal. And personally, we can’t wait to see where she takes her brand next.


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