From Start-Up to Storefront in Rondo

After decades as a makeup artist, Tameka Jones used her downtime during the pandemic to rethink her path. The result? A line of her own, Lip Esteem, a Black woman–owned beauty start-up specializing in plant-based and gluten- and cruelty-free lip products. Jones’s line consists of lipsticks, glosses, and liners, with all 12 colors based off her own personal friend group—from her most porcelain-skinned friend to those with deeper skin tones. Plus, she’ll sell an assortment of lip care products fit for combating harsh winters—an exfoliator, vitamin E stick, and moisturizing lip balm. “My...

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Black Business Spotlight: Lip Esteem


St. Paul native Tameka Jones is the proud owner of Lip Esteem, an online business launched in July 2020. “It’s an esteem builder. That’s why it’s called Lip Esteem,” said Jones.

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Clean, quality lipstick

In many of your favorite brands of cosmetics there’s something called toxic forever chemicals. These chemicals are placed in the cosmetics so that they are long lasting, heat resistant and for a variety of other reasons.

The problem with these forever chemicals is that they don’t break down into our system well, which causes hormonal imbalances, infertility and thyroid issues and so much more.

At Lip Esteem we pride ourselves on creating clean cosmetics. Our ingredients are plant-based, gluten and cruelty free.

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Read the story behind our newest lipstick shade

In 1988 my mother and I planted rosebushes at our home. The roses bloomed for two years, but after 1990 they didn’t bloom anymore.
Fast forward to June 15, 2002 (today’s date) my newborn daughter Kamani Nevaeh (Nevaeh is one of our lipstick names) passed away in the hospital at two days old. This was the most horrific thing that ever happened to me and I’m sure that ever will happen to me.
After a few days in the hospital healing from my cesarean section,
I went back to my childhood home to continue to have help healing mentally and physically. When I walked in the gate I looked to the right and the rosebush that didn’t bloom since 1990 was in full bloom 12 years later!

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Esthetics Alum to be featured on HULU show

Tameka Jones, a 2003 Saint Paul College graduate, will be featured on the HULU television series The Small Business Revolution, Season 6. The show will follow Tameka on her journey as a small business owner who launched her lipstick line, ​Lip Esteem, and reemerged her girls’ group LADY amid the COVID pandemic and civil unrest in the Twin Cities. Her story of service to others truly goes from inner beauty to outer beauty in many remarkable ways.

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