Lauren Remington Platt wants to transform the way you get ready. She’s just launched her invite-only beauty website Vênsette, which lets members book in-home hair and makeup appointments from top artists.
The process is delightfully simple: pick a date and time, select hair and makeup looks from the site’s extensive menu and check out. (You can also add false lashes, fashion tape and other related items to your cart.) Appointments last no longer than 90 minutes (efficient!) and cost $250 for day looks and $325 for evening looks. While services are currently only available in New York, Vênsette is planning to expand to other areas (as well as expand its offerings) in the future.
Besides the streamlined appointment-booking process, the site’s most unique feature is its hair and makeup menu. Users can choose from a diverse range of options, mix and matching their favorite face and hair looks. Not only does this cut down on your appointment time, it also ensures a level of consistency — you always know what you’re paying for. Brilliant.
We were able to chat with Lauren about her exciting new venture, and learn about how she was inspired by Starbucks, what makes her team of artists so great and why you’ll never have to worry about looking like someone else. Check out our interview below! (And in case you were wondering, Vênsette is a portmanteau of Place Vendôme and Marie Antoinette.)
Styleite: What inspired you to start Vênsette?
Lauren Remington Platt: As a young professional female in finance, I was working long hours while also trying to keep a social life. I would often have to go from the office to dinner or a fundraiser, and I realized there was no easy and viable way to get ready. I knew that other women, whether full-time mothers or full-time professionals, were dealing with the same issue.
Styleite: How did you come up with your business plan and the concept of a visual hair and makeup menu?
LRP: I was inspired by the universal consistency of Starbucks. If you order a chai latte in New York or London, it is the same no matter who is behind the counter. Consistency is the most important element of building a client’s trust in beauty services, yet it is often overlooked.
Styleite: What do you see as the demand for this kind of service?
LRP: The demand for beauty services in the comfort of one’s desired location is strong. The concept of the salon is antiquated. Who has time to run around New York for a beauty appointment? Our clients are multitaskers and know the value of their time.
Styleite: How do you pick the artists? What kind of training do they have?
LRP: Establishing a hair and makeup team is the most important process at Vênsette. It is a requirement that potential candidates have attended top beauty schools and have extensive experience in all aspects of the hair and makeup industry, including editorial and commercial fashion, television, and movies, as well as a strong freelance clientele that includes celebrities and other high-profile figures. As our clients know, an artist that can do both hair and makeup and is also professional, reliable, and friendly is hard to find. As a result, our acceptance rate for new artists is about 10 percent. After reviewing a portfolio we like, we do three things. First, a one-on-one interview with the artist; then, a timed hair and makeup test; and finally, extensive training of the Vênsette menu with our in-house hair and makeup staff. This process enables us to guarantee the highest quality experience, no matter which team member arrives at your doorstep.
Styleite: What are some popular looks on the Vênsette hair and makeup menu?
LRP: The CEO in dunes (our version of a brown smokey eye) and the Siren (a 1920s curl set) are our best sellers. In fact, we have had multiple women attend the same fundraiser in the same look. However, unlike a dress, hair and makeup look differently on people due to skin tone and hair color, so our clients never have to worry about looking the same.
Styleite: What has been the response thus far?
LRP: Our clients have been blown away by the talent of our artists and the results they receive. We have dedicated a majority of our time to handpicking fashion and entertainment’s top artists, and putting them through an extensive training to perform consistency that our clients have come to appreciate and expect from us. Women from all professions and backgrounds, whether directors at investment banks, lawyers, fashion editors, CEOs visiting New York for work or full-time mothers, have been our biggest clients thus far. We commonly hear: “I can’t believe no one thought of this before.”
this is some kind of spaceship or something.