Interview By Starema Flood
Widely known for her Makeup Geek products and over 1.4 million followers on youtube Marlena Stell has taken a leap into the fashion world. Apparatus had the opportunity to sit down and chat with the entrepreneur on her newest fashion line “Marste” catered to the everyday woman.
From YouTube to now a clothing line talk to us about your journey
“I started on Youtube in 2008 just as a hobby. I was a music teacher, and I loved makeup and teaching. It started as just an outlet for me. As my audience grew I realized I really was passionate about helping women feel beautiful. I was always a chubby girl. Makeup made me feel better about myself and was a distraction to my weight and people talking about my weight.
Fast forward to now, I have the Makeup Geek line and I still struggle with my weight. So I began thinking there aren’t a lot of great clothes out there that are high quality for me and my friends. When I go shopping I don’t want to say “bye I’m going to the plus size section. I’ll see you later.” It just makes me feel bad. I feel like I’m suffering, and I’m divided off because I’m plus size. I really wanted to start a line that addressed those concerns. A line that was for everyone 0 to hopefully 26 soon. So my friends and I can go to the same shop, get the same clothes, and not feel bad because one of us is heavier.”
What was the inspiration behind this collection?
“I worked with a friend of mine on this collection. We’ve known each other since childhood so it was very much a dual effort. She did a lot of the designing. I helped with the overall aesthetic. I just wanted a collection that was full of staple basics that are high quality. I wanted something you could wear everyday but still have sex appeal. That’s the whole point of this line. Sexy everyday wear.”
Where do you see this brand in the next 5 years?
“I really want to see it going into other outlets. Shoes, handbags, accessories. I would love to see it in a major department store, at least a capsule collection at Nordstrom’s where the line is accessible to everyone. I would also like to see us have stores in different cities.”
Does this new line mean the end of Makeup Geek?
“I will do both. Makeup Geek will still keep going. It will be going more into retail stores. Like Target and other stores that are interested. I am also starting “Marste Beauty”. It will be another makeup line but more luxurious and high end. Makeup Geek will remain as an affordable collection and Marste will be the more luxurious brand.”
What can we expect from Marste Beauty?
“I’d like to start with really high quality foundations that have amazing ingredients and beautiful packaging. Marste will have eyeshadow palettes as well. The formulas will be Italian formulas because they are known for having incredible, very smooth and creamy, high quality formulas. It will be a complete line but focused more on skin and then some color cosmetics.
Why did you decide to create limited edition eyeshadow palettes for your clothing line?
The collaboration between Makeup Geek and Marste is to show that you can have ideas from head to toe. I wanted to take the guess work out of waking up and trying to figure out what am I going to wear, and what makeup am I going to do. I like for it to be all coordinated together. Each palette represents each color. There are 9 colors in the Marste collection, and each color has a palette that goes along with it.
What advice would you give someone looking to create their own makeup brand, clothing line, or starting a YouTube channel?
“Start with YouTube first, because the social media aspect is very important because that is where you will build your audience. Then focus on whatever aspect you think makes you different. Find your niche. Then start focusing on whatever businesses you want to start. Start small and grow big after that.”
You can shop Marste products online at @MarsteFashion and MakeupGeek products.