Pamela Anderson — who kicked off a natural beauty revolution — has entered the world of skin care.
She has teamed with Sonsie, a vegan and cruelty-free brand created by German-born model and content creator Marie von Behrens-Felipe with husband Roberto A. Felipe. Anderson joins as cofounder and owner.
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“As soon as I kind of started peeling back the layers, the world just opened up, you know, and this chapter in my life is really exciting,” Anderson said.
A beauty icon since the ‘90s, known for an ultra-glam look during her “Baywatch” days, the actress showed a different side of herself in the 2023 Netflix documentary “Pamela, a Love Story,” with son Brandon Thomas Lee among producers. Vulnerable as she shared her life story, Anderson was barefaced in front of the camera for the first time. It’s what inspired WWD to embrace a natural look for her WWD cover profile in February, and Anderson continued making a splash with her natural beauty at fashion weeks and on red carpets worldwide.
“It’s been quite the journey. I’m so glad it’s finally here,” she said of unveiling her partnership with Sonsie.
“I mean, people have been asking me to do skin care and beauty products, since, you know, ‘Baywatch’ days, but I just was looking at it going, ‘Well, is it sustainable? Is it cruelty-free?’ And people used to think I was crazy back then,” she went on. A longtime activist, Anderson runs The Pamela Anderson Foundation, which supports organizations protecting human, animal and environmental rights.
“I’m glad I kind of held out this long and really found the right connection,” she continued. “The stars aligned.”
It’s through her younger son, Dylan Jagger Lee, that she met the Felipes. His girlfriend, Paula Bruss, is close with von Behrens-Felipe, who counts more than 1 million followers on Instagram. After her skin began reacting negatively to beauty products, von Behrens-Felipe set out to make her own, explained chief executive officer Felipe.
“She decided to stop everything and strip it all down to the basics,” Felipe said. “Marie, interestingly enough, she actually started as a blogger when she was 12 years old. And so, she’s had this arc as a creator, and people have followed along for her whole journey. So those people came in as customers. But what we’ve been seeing over time is that we actually have a really, really strong customer base of people that are over the age of 45, that are coming back. And our products have been able to fit into different people’s lives and regimens to suit the needs that they have.”
Sonsie — a Scottish term (with an alternative spelling) meaning to have a healthy inner and outer appearance — currently offers three products. Everything is manufactured in the U.S. and meets European ingredient standards.
“I found these work really well for me,” Anderson said of the goods, which she’s been using for six months.
There’s a $48 multipurpose moisture mask, made with 12 percent glycerin, hyaluronic acid and antioxidant-rich prickly pear extract; a $64 super serum, with 4 percent niacinamide, mountain pepper extract and a plant oil complex, and a $22 lip balm, with 34 percent squalane, sunflower seed wax and seed oils.
“It stays on,” Anderson said of the balm. “It’s not a lip balm that I have to keep on reapplying and reapplying. It actually stays, keeps its shine. And then the mask is something that I’m wearing all the time….I wear it as my makeup. And the serum is really luxurious. No scent, which I really love. It doesn’t conflict with my love potions that I like to pour all over myself, my own concoctions.”
The brand will soon introduce more products.
“My secret weapons will be coming out in spring,” Anderson said. “We’ll see where we go from here. There’s a couple of things that I’m working on right now that are really important to me, that I can’t live without.”
“First and foremost, she’s an amazing person and an amazing cofounder,” Felipe said of Anderson. “She’s challenging us to make sure that we’re adhering to actually the ethos that we’ve identified as a brand, which I think is really important. We want to do interesting things, but we also want to do good in the world. Pamela is really kind of holding us accountable, as this thing kind of ramped up and continues to build. But also informing our product strategy….We couldn’t imagine a better potential cofounder, partner, to be going down this journey with given everything that she’s gone through and her ability now to take control and really write her own story. And I think Sonsie is going to be a nice part of that.”
Of her approach to beauty, Anderson, now 56, said, “I don’t want to fit into any formula. I want to strip it back, peel it back….I know what it’s like being a mother, a single mom or working in the industry, or in a relationship that doesn’t work. It is so much life that I’m taking as the inspiration. So, it makes it much more fun for me. We don’t have to answer anybody.”
Beauty, to her, is honoring oneself, she added. “It’s about celebrating where you’re at, celebrating in your beauty journey, being OK with who you are right now. Really embracing where you’re at and making yourself feel the best and representing your highest self.”
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