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Friends who started million dollar business in a basement

Two best friends have found global success in less than 12 months after breaking into the competitive beauty industry.   

Elliot Barton, 26, and Charlotte Tiplady, 28, from England, met in high school and launched Tatti Lashes, which is now available in Australia, because they wanted to conquer the beauty market.

‘Tatti Lashes started in a basement of a beauty salon and has grown into a million dollar business within its first year,’ Elliot told FEMAIL.

‘It is something that we could have only ever dreamed about.’

Elliot Barton, 26, and Charlotte Tiplady, 28, met in high school and launched Tatti Lashes because they wanted to conquer the beauty market (pictured)

Since their launch in April 2017, they’ve turned over AUD $1.7 million dollars in revenue and they’ve seen a 70 per cent increase in sales over the past three months.

‘Having eight years of salon experience gave us an advantage as our knowledge of the eyelash industry was already advanced,’ Charlotte explained.

‘Tatti Lashes took six months of planning, testing, creating and implementation before launching.

‘A turning point for us was July 2017 – Khloe Kardashian was seen wearing lashes TL6 and since then she has been seen wearing Tatti Lashes numerous times since.’

Since their launch in April 2017, they’ve had over just under two million dollars in revenue

Since their launch in April 2017, they’ve had over just under two million dollars in revenue

‘Kris Jenner was also seen wearing pairs TL4 and TL19. As a consequence of this we sold over 20,000 units in July – our best month at the time,’ she continued.

The celebrity support doesn’t end there, with Nicki Minaj having worn a pair for her music video to the song No Frauds.

Christina Aguilera and Paris Hilton are also both fans and YouTube sensation Nikkie Tutorials is a frequent customer of theirs.

The effect of these endorsements has helped increase brand awareness as well as sales.

‘As a consequence of this, we have seen a significant spike in traffic from new markets, especially in the US,’ Ryan Baron, their Digital Director explained.

‘A larger proportion of our customers are based in California. Our longer term goal, albeit ambitious, is to be an industry leader within the US market.’

'A turning point for us was July 2017 - Khloe Kardashian was seen wearing lashes TL6 and since then she has been seen wearing Tatti Lashes numerous times,' Charlotte explained

‘A turning point for us was July 2017 – Khloe Kardashian was seen wearing lashes TL6 and since then she has been seen wearing Tatti Lashes numerous times,’ Charlotte explained

Both Charlotte and Elliot had previously been salon owners which meant they had the confidence to start a brand of their own.

In the past they had worked with a variety of eyelash brands which meant they were also able to identify the pros and cons of existing brands.

They wanted to offer a high quality lash that was more accessible for people

They wanted to offer a high quality lash that was more accessible for people

‘Being in the beauty industry for such a long time, we really noticed a gap in the market with regards to affordability and quality and we wanted to create the perfect pre-fanned Russian lash that enabled Lash Technicians to half the treatment time,’ they said.

‘We also wanted to offer a higher quality lash that was more accessible and saved both time and money. 

‘The key to sourcing the product range was to ensure the eyelashes were reusable for the everyday person.’

In the beginning they tested various materials, eliminating styles and designs that didn’t work and began to move forward with production.

‘We produced 50 pairs of each style initially and were worried that they weren’t going to sell!’ Charlotte said. 

YouTube sensation Nikkie Tutorials is also a frequent customer of theirs (pictured)

YouTube sensation Nikkie Tutorials is also a frequent customer of theirs (pictured)

Olivia Jade Atwood from season three of Love Island has also expressed her support of the lashes

Olivia Jade Atwood from season three of Love Island has also expressed her support of the lashes

Olivia Jade Atwood from season three of Love Island has also expressed her support of the lashes (pictured left and right)

‘We now have an integrated operations team in our new warehouse. This has definitely helped with being able to leverage business growth through order demand,’ she continued. 

Having been best friends for ten years the duo knew that there could be risks with mixing business with pleasure. 

‘Two best friends being business partners can be difficult at times, but we feel that we are able to find a balance between friendship and business,’ Charlotte said.

‘Having a clear understanding of each others roles has helped the business grow.

‘We never imagined that Tatti Lashes would grow so fast. At first we struggled to adapt to such a high demand for our products.’ 

The brands success can be partly put down to the fact that both Elliot and Charlotte were determined to ensure the brand succeeded. 

Having been best friends for ten years the duo knew that there could be risks with mixing business with pleasure

Having been best friends for ten years the duo knew that there could be risks with mixing business with pleasure

‘Working around the clock with little resource was part of the initial sacrifices that we made. We then learnt that we couldn’t do everything ourselves,’ Elliot said.

‘One thing we lacked was digital strategy. Ryan Barton heads this department up; since he came on board, we have seen almost a 70 per cent increase in sales over the past three months.’ 

Although the past few months have been an absolute whirlwind they have learnt a lot from their experiences along the way that has helped their business.

'Working around the clock with little resource was part of the initial sacrifices that we made. We then learnt that we couldn't do everything ourselves,' Elliot said

‘Working around the clock with little resource was part of the initial sacrifices that we made. We then learnt that we couldn’t do everything ourselves,’ Elliot said

‘Customers are the focal point of your business. If you treat them right, they will always come back to you. You are only as strong as the team you have around you,’ Elliot said.

‘We feel that this is just the beginning for us. We have been working hard behind the scenes to launch new, exciting products that we know our loyal customers will love.’

Although the duo has seen a lot of success in the past year it’s clear that they’re not taking any of it for granted.

‘We never in a million years imagined that our business would grow as much as it has over such a short period of time,’ they said.

‘We try to not take anything for granted and keep moving forward. We understand that there is still a lot of hard work to be done.

‘It is a dream to us to see the success of something that we are so passionate about.’ 



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