Alex Irvin of Ecosmetics on Prioritizing Service and Selection in E-commerce

Even pre-pandemic, the digital revolution and the advent of the internet had long ago made online shopping the preferred means by which many customers sought their various purchasing needs.

Alex Irvin of Ecosmetics and his co-founder, Richard Kirsch, first understood how lucrative and brimming with potential the e-commerce space could be when they worked together at

A Template for Success

After taking that company from a net value of $20M to over $300M in just over seventeen years, Irvin and Kirsch developed a template for success that has made the most of their IT and marketing skills blend.

Applying that template to a new and burgeoning venture in the beauty space,, Irvin is quickly sweeping his sales space again. Despite the recession and everyone attempting to save as much money as possible, Ecosmetics showed 2022 Q4 sales with their strongest revenue growth to date.

The Lipstick Effect

Irvin explains the upward trajectory of his company’s success with an apt metaphor: “the lipstick effect.”

The lipstick effect is, as he describes it, “people spending a little bit of money to feel good, an emphasis on small pleasures,” It would appear that this is a bankable trend that eschews socio-economic divides.

The buzzwords behind Irvin’s bespoke business model for Ecosmetics are “lightweight, high margin, and reorderable.” Always primarily interested in growing a new and upcoming company over simply maintaining one that is established, Irvin took a highly committed team of three, including himself. He centered around the ideas of accessible customer service and a boundless horizon of products for customers to explore.

A Recipe for Scalability

Taking his first order at Ecosmetics in June of 2020, at the height of the world suddenly needing a great deal more everyday items shipped straight to front doors, Irvin was able to turn the needs of the pandemic into a recipe for scalability in the early days of his latest evergreen e-enterprise.

When asked for insights into what makes a site like Ecosmetics preferable to shopping for beauty products at one of the bigger distributors in the marketplace, like Amazon, Sephora, or Ulta, Irvin’s answer is swift and logical.

“We’re a lot smaller, and so we are more nimble. If you place an order with one of the big companies, it is highly unlikely that you are going to be able as a customer to get in touch with someone that can help answer a question. If you call us even with something you are just curious about with regard to our products, that call is going to be answered immediately. You are going to speak to somebody who is right here in this building, so we offer a distinctly personal touch in customer experience that you just can’t get elsewhere,” explains Irvin.

Over 60,000 Active Products

While the novel prospect of a real human connection would be enticing enough for many shoppers who are too familiar with the annoyingly blank void of how customer service is handled (or not handled!) within larger companies, Ecosmetics also boasts a much wider array of SKU allocations.

Because most retail places like Sephora experience restrictions on what they can stock and Ecosmetics does not, Irvin’s company can provide customers with easy accessibility to over 60,000 active products. That is twice the available stock that Ulta can offer and roughly 20,000 additional products beyond what Sephora has the means to sell.

Having already heavily researched any product his team brings on at Ecosmetics, Irvin hones the business toward already established customer buying trends, thereby streamlining the search process for prospective buyers. In addition, Irvin and his team explore potential markets constantly, discovering early on that products like SK-II might not be flying off the shelves in America but are intensely popular in Asia.

This willingness to hunt down and serve every kind of customer makes Ecosmetics a far more wide-ranging option for potential buyers. Irvin is excited to begin plans for the full international expansion of the company this year.

Rigorous Quality Control

Rigorous quality control is another factor Irvin and his team can heighten and tighten for their customers. Buying through a large entity like Amazon can raise valid questions about matters such as a product’s original origin, authenticity, and expiration date. But Ecosmetics removes all guesswork and wishful thinking on the part of the customer with a 100% money-back guarantee, coupled with products that come bonafide by their manufacturers, never secondhand or overstock.

He looks forward to expanding into the apparel space, setting up subscription options for repeat customers, and launching a private-label haircare and skincare line. Irvin is eager to expand options and buy simpler and cheaper for his ever-growing customer base.


With these tenets in place, Ecosmetics continues to build its brand on one central tenet: connection.

“We always want to be small enough that no customer ever gets lost in our system but large enough that you never have to go to multiple stores to find exactly what you want. Ecosmetics is where you can get it all in one place and talk to us about it as you do.”

This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.