Top beauty influencer Huda Kattan may make her lifestyle look easy, but in actuality it’s far from it. In a newly released interview, she explains how she built a massive Instagram (FB) following and a makeup company, succeeding where many aspiring influencers have failed.
“A lot of people, from the outside looking in, assume it's easy,” says Huda Kattan, who has 39.6 million followers on Instagram. “They think that I'm just in this office, you know, creating content. And I'm making product, and I'm just having the time of my life.”
“They don't realize how much goes into running a company,” she told Yahoo Finance Editor-in-Chief Andy Serwer.
Huda Kattan’s Instagram presence has helped her build a net worth of $610 million, according to Forbes. Huda Beauty, a company launched in 2013 by Huda Kattan and her sisters Mona and Alya, generates revenue through the direct sale of products on its website as well as partnerships with brick-and-mortar retailers like Sephora and JC Penney (JCP).
In addition, the Kattan sisters are set to launch Huda Beauty Investments, which will mentor and fund entrepreneurs in the space.
“They don't realize how much goes into running a company, whether that is managing cash flows,” Huda Kattan says. “Which I think is one of the biggest problems when people are starting businesses.”
“Being a young founder, I think that's one of the things that really stops you from moving forward,” she adds.
Huda Kattan made the comments during a conversation that aired in an episode of Yahoo Finance’s “Influencers with Andy Serwer,” a weekly interview series with leaders in business, politics, and entertainment.
‘When we die, what’s going to exist?’
Huda Kattan says her personal tastes drive the business, which ultimately relies on setting trends.
“I feel like I'm craving this product, and you know, it will kind of start from there,” she says. “Sometimes that product won't necessarily make that much money. But I know it's going to create a movement. People will grab on to the trend. It's a very long-term focus.”
“Luckily, I've been right enough times where we've taken chances that the team trusts me now,” she adds.
Besides the early challenges of managing cash flow, Kattan said a lack of long-term vision can cause aspiring influencers and business owners to fail.
“A lot of times, too, they don't have the vision,” she says. “They're very short-sighted. I think they're not long-term focused. And I think that was one of the things that we've always been is very long-term greedy.”
“I don't want to be thinking about the business in the next five to 10 years,” she adds. “It's like, OK, when we die, what's going to exist?”
Max Zahn is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Find him on twitter @MaxZahn_.