Senegal-born entrepreneur Mama Faye opened her Larchmont, NY fashion and cosmetics boutique, Taaru Majeure, just before COVID hit. After working for twenty-three years in retail management for powerhouse brands like Tom Ford and Estee Lauder, she decided to launch a solo endeavor. Beyond her elegant accessories and quality cosmetics, Mama Faye has distinguished her brand by developing her own ethical skincare line with fair trade organic ingredients sourced from Senegal.
How Did COVID Impact Mama Faye’s Business?
The shut-down was an early blow to Taaru Majeure, which did not yet have an online presence. Mama Faye was burdened by fixed expenses for her storefront, and needed to quickly pivot to cover them. While the economic environment was tumultuous, social support for minority-owned businesses grew with the Black Lives Matter movement. Mama Faye had a pool of prospective customers, but needed to figure out how to reach them.
How Did TAP Help?
TAP consultants Janice Hassenfeld and Justine Smith developed recommendations for a new e-commerce site including a “shop by skin type” tool, product review section, ingredient specifications, and other visual aids. The pair also worked with Mama Faye on her brand messaging, encouraging her to leverage her dynamic personality and celebrate Taaru Majeure as a black-owned business on social media. In addition, TAP helped stabilize Mama Faye’s financials by offering information on loan and grant support, cash flow tools, and rent negotiation.
Where is She Now?
The Larchmont storefront is now open, stocked, and bustling with holiday shoppers. Motivated by TAP’s support, Mama Faye has exceeded her monthly sales goals since August. With Taaru Majeure’s in-person business booming, she is also applying what she’s learned from TAP to help her social media and e-commerce venues thrive
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