No I’m not talking about a magical potion that women consume to feel empowered. I’m talking about Urban Decay’s life-changing Eyeshadow Primer Potion of course!
What has an eyeshadow primer got to do with empowering women in Uganda you ask? Urban Decay has been supporting the Women’s Global Empowerment Fund since 2015 via their Ultraviolet Edge campaign, and has donated $1.28 million (100 percent of which are proceeds from sales of Urban Decay’s eyeshadow primer potion) to women’s empowerment nonprofits to date. This initiative gives underprivileged women in Uganda access to education, and the opportunity to break free of the vicious cycle of poverty and gender-biased violence.
Uganda is a society where reproductive health is scarce, teenage pregnancies are common, and AIDS is a major issue. The program aims to continuously educate and empower these women to ultimately put an end to domestic and regional violence, decrease child marriages, and increase reproductive responsibility and health.
Education is crucial to female empowerment the world over, but here in Uganda, it can be difficult to attain. A public school system exists, but many families are barely getting by. (The average Ugandan makes about $1.25 a day; and for women, even less.) During the war, few went to school, so another of WGEF’s programs, the Literacy Project, seeks to help close the gap.
THROUGH THE END OF MARCH, 100 PERCENT OF THE PROCEEDS FROM SALES OF URBAN DECAY’S EYESHADOW PRIMER POTION WILL BENEFIT WGEF.
In a recent exclusive interview with co-founder and Chief Creative Officer of Urban Decay, Wende Zomnir, Wende talks about what female empowerment means to her and what keeps her going in her fight for women’s rights.
What inspired you to launch the Urban Decay Ultraviolet Edge campaign?
Urban Decay has always stood for the empowerment of women – from the products we create to the causes we support. By supporting organizations that fight for the rights of women everywhere, we encourage all women to embrace their individuality in everything they do. Getting involved is as simple as buying something you probably use anyway. Each year we create a unique shade of Eyeshadow Primer Potion and 100% of the purchase price is donated to women’s empowerment non-profits selected by the Ultraviolet Edge.
Tell us a little about the new product for the upcoming campaign.
Eyeshadow Primer Potion is the number-one primer for indestructible, all-day eyeshadow. It delivers everything you could possibly want in a primer: No creasing, more vibrant colour, smoother application. We’ve created a new limited-edition shade Fix, a matte beige, this year.
As a beauty company how is UD uniquely poised to make a difference?
Supporting women’s rights has always been a personal mission of mine, but Urban Decay provides the unique platform to be able to raise widespread awareness for organizations doing such important and needed work around the world. Our footprint in 48 countries gives us the opportunity to shine a light on all the impact these organizations are having.
Of all the great organizations out there, why did you feel compelled to work with Women’s Global Empowerment Fund?
I was personally attracted to the WGEF’s efforts to foster entrepreneurial spirit – but the structure and the way they accomplish this is also very unique. Karen Sugar and WGEF empower the women they work with to find their voice, giving them the confidence to become leaders in their communities and fight for the rights of women everywhere. It was important to me that any organization we were going to partner with would go beyond a handout – WGEF’s work has helped to cultivate a sisterhood, building community support and helping women create their own path to success.
What does female empowerment mean to you?
Opportunity, equality, strength and standing together in sisterhood.
Who and what empowers you?
The women (and men!) I work with. Also, doing something for other women, having a strong body and health and independence.
What is one of your most memorable experiences working with the Women’s Global Empowerment Fund?
We had the opportunity to meet Grace, a woman we were able to support with a microloan. She came to California to visit UDHQ and share her story. It was incredibly inspiring to hear how our small donation has been so life changing for her and her family.
How can both men and women do their part in raising more awareness for female empowerment?
A feminist is any person, man or woman, who believes in equality. We need to hold each other to high standards. And pick up an Eyeshadow Primer Potion!
What is your personal approach to beauty?
Makeup is a means of self-expression It’s not about covering your flaws, but showing the world who you are. My beauty philosophy really took shape in high school when a male authority figure told me I was hiding behind a mask of makeup and I shouldn’t wear so much makeup. I thought to myself, “You don’t get it. I am not hiding – I am revealing myself to you. I’m telling you who I am.”
How would you describe the Urban Decay woman?
We always say that the Urban Decay woman is the coolest person in the room, and also the nicest.
Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion (RM85) is available at Sephora outlets nationwide.