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Why Laura Dern, Olivia Wilde, and Zazie Beetz are telling the truth for True Botanicals

The natural beauty brand embraces transparency as a marketing strategy.

Why Laura Dern, Olivia Wilde, and Zazie Beetz are telling the truth for True Botanicals
Laura Dern [Photo: courtesy of True Botanicals]

You really couldn’t ask for a better celebrity endorsement than the one True Botanicals is getting from Laura Dern. The award-winning film and TV star was already advocating for the brand unofficially before she ever talked to founder and CEO Hillary Peterson. It all started when a makeup artist on Big Little Lies introduced her to the company’s products. Soon people were commenting on her skin, asking what she’d done, and Dern would tell them loudly and proudly. Her daughter started borrowing the products, and she got her son hooked.

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But for someone who works regularly with organizations like Oceana and the Natural Resources Defense Council, it was the combination of the brand’s product quality and its commitment to natural ingredients and sustainability that made her a full convert.

(Left to right) Laura Dern, True Botanicals CEO Hillary Peterson, and Zazie Beetz [Photo: courtesy of True Botanicals]
“To find a company that takes care of the planet, care of the body, [and believes in] transparency is amazing,” says Dern. “I finally was like, I gotta reach out to these people. And so I reached out to write Hillary a love letter and started kind of posting about it and saying how much I loved it, because I just loved them and wanted to support them. The relationship grew from there.”

Now Dern has joined True Botanicals’ “band of activists”—with Olivia Wilde and Zazie Beetz—in a new brand campaign called “Truth Revealed.”

Like the brand’s approach to its products and packaging, the new campaign itself feels all-natural and free of artificial ingredients. In the videos, Dern and Beetz talk simply about why they like the brand and its products. Straightforward, no BS.

Which has been Peterson’s brand strategy all along.

“Consumers have felt like they needed to choose between luxurious and effective products versus natural and nontoxic products,” says Peterson, who started the company in 2015, after a health scare. “As somebody who came out of a thyroid cancer experience and was trying to figure out what my path forward would be relative to my personal care products, I thought, well, this is really an insane situation.”

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Zazie Beetz [Photo: courtesy of True Botanicals]
Peterson wondered why she knew you could eat a beautiful organic meal, know it’s good for you and it’s still delicious, but she couldn’t find an equivalent experience in the skincare industry. “To me all the products looked like the equivalent of Twinkies and Pop Tarts,” she says. “I thought there’s just got to be another way to do this. So it is really exciting that our focus, first and foremost, is knowing that we will just never compromise on safety for people and the planet. You know, it feels like it’s picking up momentum and that is resonating and exciting.”

Further emphasizing the brand’s approach to transparency, Dern, Wilde, and Beetz aren’t just spokeswomen, but equity partners with the brand. “I think that the transparency and the authenticity is essential,” says Peterson. “Because otherwise, you know, this whole thing could fizzle. By this whole thing, I mean the natural beauty industry, not just True Botanicals. I just feel like it’s a critical moment in time where people need to be able to believe, because look at all the places where they can’t.”

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About the author

Jeff Beer is a staff editor at Fast Company, covering advertising, marketing, and brand creativity. He lives in Toronto.

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