Successful women entrepreneurs do one thing that others don’t. Wondering what that is? They make smart moves. Meet Khushboo Giri, one such entrepreneur. She is the founder of  UrbanGlamour, a fashion startup based out of Delhi-NCR, catering to makeup and hair styling services to clients across India. Starting out as a freelance makeup artist, in a short span of 1 year, Khushboo has established herself as a leading player in the segment. HerMoneyTalks sat down with this smart lady to unravel her moves, and her entrepreneurial experience.

A fan of popular makeup brands like M.A.C., Bobbi Brown, NARS, Europe Girl, Makeup Forever, Forever52India, and others, Khushboo is making her mark in the makeup industry with her talent and portfolio. She believes that learning is a never-ending process. Being faithful to yourself and towards work is a key part of achieving your goals, putting your inferiority in the shade, and growing in your field. 

Starting off with a safe base

“Starting out on my own as an entrepreneur in the beauty and makeup industry, I relied on my own financial resources at first. I started out cautiously and prudently. I used only the money in my savings account and was careful with personal credit cards,” discloses Khushboo as her eyes dart to her fingernails.

As she was new to the industry and to entrepreneurship, she decided to learn a little more about starting a business and not invest all money initially.

I started out cautiously and prudently. I used only the money in my savings account and was careful with personal credit cards.

Khushboo then did something that all successful women entrepreneurs do early on – upskill. She decided to improve her makeup skills to an advanced level through online tutorials. She also obtained certification in Professional makeup and Hairstyling from a Delhi-based makeup academy. Khushboo became certified from TEMPTU, which is globally renowned for providing certification in Airbrush makeup.

“This upgrade of my skills helped me diversify the portfolio of services I would offer through my venture and gain a wider client base,” says Khushboo confidently, caressing her manicured nails.

Brushing off startup challenges without a blush

Khushboo says starting the makeup venture cost her relatively low in terms of initial investment. This was because she saved on the costly overheads and utilities charges on a business lease. Instead, she travelled to clients’ homes or businesses and offered them services from her own home.

I decided then to invest 50% of my overall budget in buying makeup products. This was the fundamental aspect of my business.

However, when it came to setting up her makeup vanity, initially, it was tricky. She wanted to give clients the best makeup products but she had to buy these with her limited budget. This was her first real challenge.

Khusboo explains how she solved the puzzle. “I decided then to invest 50% of my overall budget in buying makeup products. This was the fundamental aspect of my business. It required maximum investment to give clients the most unique look with top drawer products.

Then, 40% went into advertising and networking with the public on social media. The remaining 10% I chose to invest in the creation of my official website and its launch. This would spread the word among potential clients.”

Adding each layer with some smart thinking

Eventually, as she was able to generate more revenue, she again did what most successful women entrepreneurs do. She started working on other crucial aspects and included new things in her budget.

“Setting up your makeup vanity is an on-going process since you always have to keep upgrading as per clients’ new requirements. And new product launches at the drop of a hat,” confides the founder of UrbanGlamour as she checks a new makeup kit that had arrived.

Investing in a good camera was totally out of the question. It would have taken a huge chunk out of my budget.

This takes a significant chunk of any makeup artist’s budget. Khushboo’s strategy is clear. “The more makeup supplies I have, the more services I can offer my clients,” she reveals. So, she also made room for asset creation. She invested in arranging for rental jewelry, training classes, rental outfits, and portfolio creation by providing professional photo shoots.

One of the smartest money moves Khushboo made early in her career was her portfolio. “Investing in a good camera was totally out of the question. It would have taken a huge chunk out of my budget. So I started networking with fashion stylists, photographers, and set designers who were in the early stages of their careers. They were willing to trade their skills for professional photos. This collaboration helped me save a lot of money while also helping me develop an attractive portfolio,” beams Khushboo.

Finishing touches: women and money management

Khushboo believes that it is extremely important for women to take charge of their finances. “There has long been a preconceived notion that women don’t handle money (well). But the stories of successful women entrepreneurs only proves this wrong.

Women are at par with men at everything in the present times. All it takes is a little confidence and some financial knowledge for women to be successful money managers!”

Khushboo flashes a 1000-watt smile as she bids adieu.