Carisa Janes approaches her job with the rigor of a scientist, the eyes of an artist and the awareness of a consumer. Juggling these disparate points of view comes naturally to this industry veteran with almost 20 years experience in the field. Janes launched Hourglass in 2004 as an advanced beauty brand that fused skincare technology with high-quality makeup, and elevated color cosmetics to an irresistibly stylish realm. Every item in the Hourglass collection reaffirms Janes’ ability for fashioning unique, practical and covetable products: Foundations that make the wearer appear younger, primers that treat the complexion, and vivid lip colors with staying power for an entire day. Janes’ penchant for luxurious packaging also means that Hourglass products are akin to precious jewels.

Janes transitioned to beauty soon after attending the Parsons School of Design. As an original member of Urban Decay’s creative team, she helped cultivate the now iconic Gen-X line. In the late nineties she launched several  successful beauty brands, and, in the early noughties, she formed a consulting firm, with clients that included well-known global beauty brands. All of this industry experience and exposure informed the genesis of Hourglass. “My intention was to do something that hadn’t been done before,” Janes says. “Hourglass was designed as a new spin on modern luxury, as a brand that was light years ahead.”

“I didn’t want to compromise anything in terms of the formulations, the ingredients or the packaging—it also had to look appealing on my bathroom counter,” Janes adds. Hourglass launched at Barneys New York  in 2004, and expanded to Sephora in 2007. Hailed as “the world’s youngest beauty-biz veteran” by Glamour magazine in 1999, venerated by Women’s Wear Daily in 2012 as one of the industry’s leading indie entrepreneurs, Janes is highly regarded for her uncompromising approach. “Over the years my look has remained pretty natural,” says Janes, of her own beauty aesthetic which continues to inform the line. “I just want to look like me—only better.”