‘Willy Wonka of lip gloss’: 10-year-old girl starts own local cosmetics business


RIDGELAND, S.C. (WSAV) — A 10-year-old South Carolina entrepreneur says she has just one question for her customers: “Are your lips popping yet?”

Kalimah Moss started her very own lip gloss business, called Lizzie’s Lip Pop LLC, in June.

She and her mother, Lasheena Moss, say the company’s name comes from the nickname Kalimah’s grandmother gave her as a child.

Kalimah got the idea for creating her brand of handmade glosses based on her negative experiences with wearing the store-bought variety.

“It’s like the lip gloss hurts my lip and I have scars and little scratches on my lips,” the business owner said about her chapped lips. “So I decided to make my own business.”

Lasheena says Kalimah first approached her with the idea of starting her own lip gloss business last year, but Lasheena shared she had her own reasons for hesitating.

“On June 14, she just had the saddest little face ever and said, ‘Mommy, when am I going to start my business?’” she said.

After asking her daughter if she was ready for the work that running a business entails, she let Kalimah get started on her dream project.

Lasheena calls her daughter the “Willy Wonka of lip gloss.”

From Cotton Candy Swirl to Lime Berry and Bubble Gum Pop, the proud mom says Kalimah comes up with her own ideas for lip gloss recipes and flavors.

“I have never seen other lip glosses compared to hers, and it’s not because she’s my daughter, but it’s just hers, which is unique and I love it,” Lasheena told WSAV NOW.

Kalimah says to help others avoid having similar lip issues that she once had, her formula is vegan and hypoallergenic.

“It helps your lips if they’re sore, chapped or anything,” she said.

The ambitious 10-year-old, who wants to pursue a career in cosmetics and continue selling lip glosses when she’s older, tells WSAV NOW that she found out other girls have been inspired by her.

“There was a girl who made lip gloss for me and I also have a cousin that’s also doing lip gloss,” Kalimah said.

She shares the steps she follows to create her products.

“First, we stir up the base and you add your glitter and wherever you want to add, then you get the oil and you just pour a little bit inside [the container], then you get your scent and you pour it inside, too,” Kalimah said.

“You just stir it all together until it looks like actual lip gloss,” she added.

Her mom says that Kalimah also adds a secret formula to her lip gloss recipes.

After four months of being in business, Lizzie’s Lip Pop has sold around 300 glosses, with one customer from as far away as Africa placing an order.

“When I heard that, I just kept asking my mom if it was true because I never had someone really far away that wanted lip gloss,” Kalimah said. “That was my first experience.”

She adds that it felt good to start her own business and to have her family supporting her every step of the way.

The entrepreneur offers some advice to others wanting to start making their own lip glosses.

“Make sure you put the right things inside your base because you don’t want to put, like, other stuff in your base and have somebody like have [an] allergic [reaction] to it,” Kalimah suggested.

In addition to her lip glosses, Kalimah also plans to release her own vegan and toxic-free nail polishes for little girls.

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