Glam Chat: Lip Gloss and Lucille Ball With Armour Beauty Founder Theo Kogan

By  February 26, 2013

Rocker. Mom. Beauty maven. If you’re unfamiliar with entrepreneur and Lunachicks lead singer Theo Kogan, then those three titles are a good start in getting to know the brains behind Armour Beauty. Based on the desire to craft a long-lasting lipgloss that was natural and committed to no animal testing, Kogan whipped up 20 shimmery and opaque shades named after iconic songs and powerful women in pop culture from Princess Diana to Marilyn Monroe. Years after their reigns, Armour Beauty has become a staple for stars like Rachel Zoe, Eva Mendes, and Mother Monster herself, Lady Gaga. After winding down from New York Fashion Week, working backstage for designers like Donna Karan at DKNY, Richard Chai, Mara Hoffman, and Michael Bastian, Glam was able to sit down with the professional makeup artist who schooled us on just how she manages to balance her many roles.

Q: How did you come up with the concept of Armour Beauty and actually get it up and running?
A: It was a light bulb idea — this sort of flash I had that I like to wear lipgloss all the time. I don’t like any other [lipgloss brands], I want to have something that stays on when I’m performing or doing anything, whether it’s performing or going to yoga or meeting somebody for coffee — and that has really gorgeous and runway-worthy shades. I initially called a friend in L.A. who has some knowledge about the business because I really didn’t know anything about it besides being a makeup fiend. I flew out to L.A. and got lots and lots of help starting it… it took a year to actually get it out.
Q: Do you see your self expanding Armour Beauty into a full cosmetics line?
A: I don’t know if I would do full [line of cosmetics]… but I do want to do a really amazing lip balm. But I don’t necessary see going into skin shades and all of that, but who knows?
Q: You worked with a lot of our favorites during New York Fashion Week, including DKNY. How was it working on that show’s look with Maybelline?
A: The key artist was Charlotte Willer, who’s amazing and amazing to work with. She does all their ads — she’s incredible. We did [DKNY] last season too, and I worked with her. And it’s usually pretty natural: a really strong eyebrow and very beautiful. There wasn’t even a color on the eyelash — it was all clear mascara. But it was beautiful! Sometimes, you’re like, ‘Is this boring?’ but then it looks gorgeous. It worked.
Q: Between Armour Beauty, fashion week, and fronting punk band Lunachicks, you’re also mom to a two year old. How do you find time for yourself?
A: I haven’t been playing music all that much which sort of makes sense [that] I took a little break. But it’s all about balancing everything. Having a kid, I don’t want to be completely absent — I want to be there, I want to see what’s happening, but I also have a lot of work to do. It’s about a lot of balance and taking time for all the work, and taking time for myself, and taking a lot of deep breaths!
Q: Do you find your personal and professional worlds colliding much?
A: There’s a lipgloss shade that we have called ‘Lucy‘ that’s named after my daughter as well as Lucille Ball. It’s bright orange, for Lucille Ball’s hair, which was also the inspiration for our daughter’s name because I’ve loved Lucy my whole life!
Q: Speaking of Lucy — who we love too — are there any other iconic women who inspire your own look and line?
A: We have a lip gloss named ‘Grace‘ for Grace Jones. Nina Hagen, Deborah Harry — we have a gloss named after a Blondie song. There’s ‘Diana‘ which is an ode to Diana Ross and to Lady Di. It’s all sort of an homage to everything that’s helped me along the way. Strong women, and bands, and icons, and pop!