BAKEUP Beauty Co-Founder Jo Baker Shares Her Love For Cosmetics and the Brand's Artful Approach
If BAKEUP Beauty stands for anything, it's the idea of freely expressing yourself and telling your own authentic story through iconic and eye-catching looks.
When BAKEUP Beauty co-founder Jo Baker started the digital-first business with musician Grace Gaustad, the two set out to do things a little differently, with an aesthetic that's as playful as is artistic, creating boldly wearable looks inspired by everyday creativity. BAKEUP starts with hydrating and deeply cleansing skincare, paired with some of the most stunning and highly pigmented makeup palettes around, and topped with eye-catching gems for daily wear, festival-ready faces and everything in between. We had the pleasure of speaking with Jo herself to learn all about her history with makeup, her entrepreneurial work and what BAKEUP Beauty means to her, and she shared it all with us in the interview below.
Name: Jo Baker
IG handle: @missjobaker
Hometown: Born in London, England lives in Los Angeles, California
1. Jo's love for beauty and makeup all started with Michael Jackson.
"I went to a Michael Jackson concert at Wembley Area in the late '90s and I was so sad when the show ended. I imagined all the crew and team that got to do it night after night and be a part of this magic, and I wanted in! I must have been 17 at the time."
(Photo credit: BAKEUP Beauty)
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2. Her one must-have beauty product is the new mascara she's developed for BAKEUP Beauty.
"It's not out for a couple of months, but I am so happy with it, and I'm so excited and ready to share it with the world."
3. BAKEUP Beauty merges Jo's surname with makeup.
"It's a fun play on both words, and to me, it's how I approach beauty in a BAKEUP way—unique, fun, creative, playful and heavily inspired by art and other artists around the world!"
4. BAKEUP's core statement is that they play where we play.
"Launching as a digital-first beauty brand, we started building community in the digital tech space before we had physical product. We did this to reach people who are gaming, on social media, who love a filter of customizing their avatars, etc. 'We Play Where You Play' is based on this starting point—wherever you like to be, BAKEUP is there giving you fun things to play with, even though for most of us, IRL is our favorite realm!"
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5. Her father passed away in 2018, but left her with the message that "the truth should be adequate."
"I think about this all the time. Living your most authentic self in your own truths should be good enough for anyone, and I always find comfort in this statement!"
6. She thanks her whiteboarding habit for getting her where she is today.
"I would be nothing without a large whiteboard. Being such a visual person, small, formatted emails and texts are great, but seeing information on a wall, large and clear like an image, really helps me stay on target. Find out what works for you. It's amazing to understand what helps you with daily tasks—making your time work better for you and your coworkers!"
7. Her biggest makeup tip is not to try to keep your mascara neat and tidy.
"Just hack it on and layer it up. Don't worry it will splatter and get imprinted on your eye area. Just wait a few mins for it to dry, and then take a Q-tip and remove the mess. I shove on my mascara at lightning speed in the mornings and always keep Q-tips in my car so when I'm stuck in traffic or get to my destination, I just clean up the edges. It's a real time saver and gives you a full spidery lash without being precious!"
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8. The most rewarding thing about the work she does is getting to connect with people.
"It's a very intimate thing doing someone's makeup. I love to see the healing and emotional confidence it gives my clients. There's nothing like being able to make people look and feel great while laughing and having fun while we share that space!"
9. Over the course of her career, the definition of "beauty" has changed quite a lot for her.
"I have learned confidence. I have learned to like what I see in the mirror. I have learned and worked on feeling great in my skin. Having worked in the beauty industry for 20 years, I can genuinely say it started off as a hard space to be in. I felt insecure and not good enough often—but I worked on that. I got okay with myself and realized there is more to life than surface-level beauty. It's how you make others feel and how good you can feel in your own skin. At the end of the day, if you are healthy and the people you love are well, you are rich and fortunate, and that's what is beautiful to me!"
Love learning the stories behind your favorite beauty brands? Click HERE to read our interview with Nakery Beauty founder Liz Folce.