Kat Von D is leaving her iconic makeup brand, and it now has a new name
Beauty lovers, you’re about to see a major change in the Sephora aisles. After 12 years at the helm, Kat Von D announced that she’s leaving her eponymous makeup brand and has sold her remaining shares to Kendo, the brand’s parent company. In an official press release, Refinery29 reports, Kendo confirmed that Von D “will no longer be involved with the brand ‘in any capacity,’” and the brand will be renamed KVD Vegan Beauty. Kat Von D Beauty has already updated its website to reflect the shift in ownership.
The tattooist-turned-entrepreneur took to her Instagram to announce the news to her followers. She acknowledged that “this past year has been one of great change for me,” and ultimately decided to step away from her makeup brand to focus on new projects, including her vegan shoe line, her forthcoming album, and an international tour. She’s also prioritizing her son, Leafar, to whom she gave birth in November 2018.
“As much as I wish I could balance all of this, on top of continuing my makeup line, it has become clear to me that I just can’t do everything at the maximum capacity,” she wrote. “It’s hard to admit this, since I’ve always said “You can do everything and anything.” But I don’t think admitting one’s limits is a bad thing.”
During her tenure as Kat Von D Beauty’s founder, Von D turned her company into one of Sephora’s most successful brands—a huge win for both women entrepreneurs and for vegan and cruelty-free beauty.
Kat Von D wasn’t just extremely involved in creating and promoting her makeup products, the entire brand identity was inspired by her personal style. According to LVMH’s website, a “Sephora beauty authority” approached Von D about creating a makeup line after she saw beauty lovers imitating Von D’s iconic red lip and winged eyeliner. Her now-iconic Studded Kiss Creme lipstick (which our editors adore) was designed to mimic the tattoo artist’s favorite studded cuff bracelet. Von D has always been both a savvy entrepreneur and ultimately her own brand’s number one muse.
But Von D has also drawn her fair share of controversy, most notably allegations that she’s anti-Semitic and an anti-vaxxer. She released a YouTube video denying those allegations, but a wave of Von D’s former fans boycotted her products in response.
In her announcement, Von D only expressed gratitude for her fans, without whom “I just couldn’t have done any of this.”
“I’d like to thank my beloved fans+followers who supported my vision to create a brand that stood for compassion, true artistry, and challenged modern ideals of beauty—most of which I never could relate to. I was able to create a makeup line that made outsiders like me feel like we have a place in this “beauty” world, and gave myself and others the tools to express ourselves in our own unique way, whether it was embraced by the majority or not.”
As KVD Vegan Beauty, the brand will continue Von D’s commitment to producing vegan, cruelty-free, high-performing beauty products. It’ll keep manufacturing Kat Von D’s existing range—including cult-favorites Tattoo Liner and Lock-It Tattoo Foundation—and, starting this year, to develop and release brand-new products, as well. We’ll be keeping tabs on KVD Vegan Beauty’s growth and evolution.
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