Emily Rudman, founder of clean and sustainable beauty brand, Emilie Heathe

This native New Yorker launched an incredible art-driven beauty brand (whose nail polishes have been spotted on numerous red carpets).
Discover Emily's Lists in Compell'd

Emily Rudman has built an incredible movement around beauty - art-driven, and as she says, “for creatives, by creatives.” We love the incredibly luxe products that she’s created (that are also clean and sustainable, by the way), and it’s not just us: you may have seen her nail polish on various red carpets or on the runways at NYFW. Emilie Heathe aside, Emily Rudman is also an explorer at heart; you’ll see once you dig into her amazing lists. Get to know her a bit more, below.

You have wanted to launch your own cosmetic brand from a young age. Tell us a bit about that and why?

I guess I was lucky in that I had incredibly hard-working and ambitious parents. Watching them work so hard to achieve success motivated me at a young age to want to do the same. They were both incredibly passionate about what they did, and I wanted to find that similar passion and really make it my own. Art was my passion all through childhood, and as a teenager, that art became the art of makeup and beauty. At the time, there were not nearly as many brands as there are today, and the only place you could really buy makeup was at the department store or in the pharmacy. I wanted to create something different, something that suited me, and had representation I could see myself in, because--while NYC is a melting pot--I was not surrounded by many Asians growing up or in mainstream media. This lack of diversity created a bit of an identity crisis for me, having been adopted from South Korea, but having Caucasian and Jewish parents. For a long time I wanted to look on the outside how I felt on the inside: white. And, what I deemed to be an “American” standard of beauty which was still very much the California, tan, blonde beach girl. I also would buy and try products from brands, and felt at times the products were subpar and could be vastly improved. Everything felt the same and not creative or innovative. 

"I wanted to create something different, something that suited me, and had representation I could see myself in."

Wow - that’s amazing. Let’s get into the story behind Emilie Heathe. What was the inspiration and how did you decide it was the right time to build your company?

How much time do you have? :) I guess for me, I am an outlier in that I always knew I wanted to have a beauty brand, like I said above. And once I decided that, I made life choices to get me to that point; it was a path I put myself on. After going to makeup school, cosmetology school, getting my MBA, working for several beauty brands and a luxury start-up, I felt like it was time. That being said, none of that preparation fully prepared me for launching my own company. Many of what I have learned has been on the job, education and other beauty experience aside. I also think it was a great time for beauty where the customer was open to experimenting with new brands. I wanted to carve out a niche for myself. I don’t want to be just a beauty brand but a beauty lifestyle brand. A brand house powered by beauty and color cosmetics first but that also goes into lifestyle items such as jewelry, leather goods, collaboration products with artists, immersive retail. I very much admire brands like Chrome Hearts and Byredo that have gone beyond their product mold.

People often come to you for NYC recommendations. Where do you go to learn about new things to try in this city or any others?

Friends are the best resource, I always ask friends for recommendations. I still love nymag.com for restaurant picks. NYC.go is still great for activities. And then I’ll do google searches for “best of” lists and read Guest of a Guest and the like, depending on what I am looking for. These days, I also discover things via instagram from friends or influencers I follow. And of course, Compell’d is fast becoming my favorite place for curated lists. 

"Friends are the best resource for discovering new things to try."

You’re a new mom (congrats!). How has your city exploration changed? What is next on your list of places to visit?

Ha! I love this question. I guess I look for kid stores and kid friendly restaurants and places that will fit strollers easily. 

What and where is the best thing you ever ate?

Outside of NYC, I tried truffles for the first time in Siena, Italy when I was 10. I had no idea what they were but it opened up worlds to me when it came to food.

Which city do you wish you could spend more time in, if any? Why?

Madrid. I love the food and the culture. My husband is from Spain and eventually we see ourselves moving there.

Thanks so much for sharing part of your story with us, Emily! Your Top Beauty Products list is an instant favorite of the Compell'd team.

Discover Emily's Lists in Compell'd
February 12, 2020

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