Kia J. Lowe

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Kia J. Lowe
Assistant Vice President, Sephora Trade Marketing
Lancôme LLC, Paris
New York, N.Y.
Age: 37

Kia J. Lowe enjoyed her eight-year tenure in investment banking, noting its opportunity to hone her analytical skills and build stamina from working long hours. Something was missing, however. “I enjoyed that finance was fast-paced and challenging, but there was no aesthetic creativity involved. I wanted a career that I was passionate about,” explains Lowe, who took art classes in her spare time. After business school, she made the leap into the beauty market and never looked back. “Working in marketing for the beauty industry allows me to be analytical yet still creative. It’s a perfect combination of using my left and right brain,” she asserts.

Assistant vice president of Sephora Trade Marketing for Lancôme Paris, Lowe leads the charge for accelerating growth for the brand. She and her team work closely with Sephora to launch the right products with the right positioning.  “We are marketers second but consumers first, so we are focused on keeping “her” needs at the core of everything we do,” she states.

Lowe earned a bachelor’s degree in economics at the University of Virginia and an   MBA in marketing and management from Columbia Business School. In 2010, she joined L’Oréal’s Management Development Program as an MBA intern, which launched her career at the company. Asked where she will be in 10 years, she responds, “If you told me ten years ago that I’d be living in Harlem and working in the beauty industry, I wouldn’t have believed you,” she admits. “Sometimes, if you’re too specific about your long-term goals, then you’re not as curious as to where your future may lead and you can miss a great detour.” Now a New Yorker, she served on the Young Leadership Board for America Needs You and contributes to the Innocence Project, which works to exonerate the wrongly convicted and prevent future injustices in the criminal system.