Summer Fridays -
The Influencer
Becomes The Innovator

6 min, 16 sec

Social media has become a fact in today’s cosmetics world, and innovative brands everywhere are collaborating with influencers to strengthen their consumer loyalty and broaden their horizons. But what happens when the roles are switched up, and two influencers decide to launch their own cosmetics company? Summer Fridays’ Marianna Hewitt and Lauren Gores-Ireland are the youngest Female Founder awards honorees, but that hasn’t stopped their brand from succeeding with incredible growth, using a soothing, down-to-earth and honest visual approach.

Creating heavenly, attainable beauty

If you want to create an honest, trusting relationship with a cosmetics consumer, show them that the beauty you’re selling is both seraphic and realistic for them. Summer Fridays’ founders are both, unarguably, gorgeous women, who have built their influencer brands accordingly, but in creating their own beauty business, their creative strategy has more to it than just simple aspirational tricks. Fans may certainly want to be like the Summer Fridays’ women - whether it’s the models or the founders themselves - but these visuals are layered beyond the obvious.

A marriage of the classic cosmetics advertisement format and the typical influencer recipe for good content, the Summer Fridays’ video for their R&R mask is a perfect example of just how innovative this honoree is. Shot with a ring light, matter-of-fact language and authentic openness, Lauren Gores-Ireland and Marianna Hewitt speak directly to their audience, who already knows them for their YouTube content. These snippets intertwine with a beautiful model using the product, thus instilling a confident aspiration in the viewer. While the founders speak directly to me, as if they were my friends across the table, the model with the gorgeous eyelashes shows me that my skin could look just as good.

R&R Mask Campaign by Summer Fridays for Sephora

Summer Fridays has made the luxurious an everyday product with campaigns like these; their customers are worth that, whether they’re just coming off of NYC-LAX coach or having a terrible mid-week day at work. The visuals speak directly to the consumer, literally, and tells them that whomever they are, wherever they are, Summer Fridays is attainable beauty for them.

Aesthetic, clean and soothingly simplistic

Effective visual campaigns will always be an extension of the brand value pillars, and Summer Fridays launched with a very special cosmetics concept: a single product. In her CEW panel interview, Hewitt mentions that as influencers and consumers, both founders were overwhelmed with how many products the market actually contained. Their first face mask came with a make it or break it kind of pressure, but ultimately strengthened their brand identity, and this idea of simplicity shines through in the Summer Fridays campaigns.

Featuring the founders themselves, the Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask launch video is the perfect example of this exact visual format. Gores-Ireland and Hewitt, both in white, open the clip while seated on a white couch with a grey/white backdrop. The lighting is warm and inviting, and the viewer’s shoulders are immediately lowered - the feeling is one of slowing down; allowing your pulse and mind to take a step back and exhale. It’s the frame of mind you should be in, seeing as this facial mask is all about giving your skin some extra love when it needs it.

Jet Lag Campaign by Summer Fridays featured on their Youtube Channel

As the How-to aspect of the video begins, the explanatory, conversational clips of the Summer Fridays founders is interwoven with shots of beautiful, naturelle women using the mask. Everything is calm, white and simplistic, which strengthens the feeling that whomever uses the product is beautiful; and that anyone deserves to use it. By implementing this approach, the founders succeed in breaking down the traditional wall between brand and consumer - just as Gores-Ireland underlines in her panel interview with CEW.

The result becomes the product

Texture is a fundamental aspect of all Summer Fridays visuals, both literally and figuratively. Skin - the founders’, the models’, the customers’ - is the main focus of these campaigns. It may seem obvious, but as a creative approach, it means that instead of highlighting the product, this brand highlights the result. In effect, this ensures that both existing and potential customers are invited to be part of the Summer Fridays brand, which is crucial for cultivating consumer loyalty.

It also adds an extra layer of that figurative texture to the clips. Although the skin in all their visuals is radiant and beautiful; soft and buttery, that’s not all it is. It’s also real. It’s clean. It’s confident. Summer Fridays is all about being a beauty brand with substance, and that’s the exact message it manages to communicate with its campaigns.

It’s also an approach we recognize from the influencer world, and clearly a format the brand founders feel comfortable with. They connect with their audience, teach them how to use a product (which, in this case, happens to be theirs), and create an entire visual atmosphere that’s lush, inviting and luxurious. Summer Fridays levels with you, and instills that feeling of ‘I deserve the best’ in the viewer - a creative strategy that’s clearly helped this honoree’s impressive growth.


Next week, we’ll explore Beautycounter - a true pioneer in the field of clean cosmetics - and how visuals and creative can be so much more than just advertising.


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