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Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz and Liquid Lipsticks show up on so many desert-island beauty-product lists that you'd think we know everything there is to know about the line. But fortunately the world still has the capacity to surprise. Here's what you probably already know: The brand is named after an actual woman, Romanian-born Anastasia Soare, who gained a notice as a brow wiz in Beverly Hills salons. She eventually struck out on her own and has earned an international reputation for her brow-shaping skills and products. Here are five other fascinating facts about Soare and her company.
1. Soare studied art history in Romania, and she uses that training all the time. Soare told Into the Gloss that when she worked in salons in Beverly Hills, she would often try to convince her bosses of the importance of properly shaped brows by saying, "Look, in art school, I studied the golden ratio and Leonardo da Vinci's theory of how our body is one great proportion.'' She also explained to them that when a Renaissance painter wanted to change the emotion on his subject's face, he would change the eyebrows. In a piece published on the Huffington Post, Soare writes about her frequent trips to the public library to study Da Vinci's principles. "I [was] researching books on aesthetics, Da Vinci's drawings, the golden ratio and the Fibonacci sequence, trying to figure out how proportions determine the way people perceive 'beauty,'" she writes. She explains her golden ratio technique this way: "[It] involves establishing three precise points (on the brow): one that lies on an imaginary line running vertically through the middle of the nostril; the high point on the eyebrow arch, which can be found on a line connecting the tip of the nose to the center of the iris; and finally, the point that lies on a line running through the edge of the corresponding nostril through the outer edge of the eye."
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2. The first celebrity eyebrows Soare did belonged to Cindy Crawford. "My first client was Cindy Crawford! I swear. I didn't know even who she was, but she was the most beautiful woman I have ever seen," Soare told Into the Gloss. Her next client was Naomi Campbell.
3. Anastasia's daughter, Claudia Soare, also has a heavy hand in creating some of the products.
Most people don't know this, but Anastasia works with her daughter Claudia to help create the makeup products, from the contouring kits to the liquid lipsticks. "I always kind of been a behind-the-scenes person," says Claudia. "I'm the president of the company. I started at the front desk of the salon. I make all the makeup. Obviously, I run everything by my mom first. She has to love it and approve it. But I make the makeup, and she makes the brow."
4. Anastasia Beverly Hills has the most popular Instagram page in the beauty industry.
Digiday reports that Anastasia Beverly Hills' Instagram page has 7.5 million followers (the beauty-industry average is 1.4 million). And Anastasia can also thank Claudia for her social-media influence. "My daughter was the one actually who believed in social media—she pushed me to get into Instagram, Snapchat, and everything else," she told Into the Gloss. Women's Wear Daily reports that Anastasia Beverly Hills' earned media value on Instagram is $46.5 million. (For comparison, M.A.C.'s value is $26.4 million.)
5. That Instagram page gave rise to the Liquid Lipsticks. In an interview with Macy's, Soare said that listening to what her customers wanted on social media is what inspired the Liquid Lipsticks. "We are so in tune with our customers because of our social media," says Soare. "Me and my daughter, we are obsessed with makeup and so are our followers, and we communicate, we want to know what they like, what they want, what is their perfect, ideal product that's missing on the market? So everything we create, we share and we give credit to our followers. We are so picky, so if we could not live without it, we believed our friends, our followers, would be the same, and that's what happened with the Liquid Lipstick."