In late April, on Manhattan’s West Side, Paula’s Choice opened the doors to its Beautypedia Bodega activation, for one day only. Shelves were stocked with a selection of Paula’s Choice’s latest products alongside the brand’s classics. Consider it a library of skincare, all in celebration of the new Beautypedia Skin Care Ingredient Checker, a new tool where consumers can upload a skincare product’s label to learn about each ingredient, and the brand’s latest product innovations.
Half of TikTok would have stormed the scene if they could, given that the hashtag #Paulaschoice racks up over 600 million views to date, with users boasting the marvels of what the skincare brand has done for their skin.
At the center of it all is Paula’s Choice Senior Director of Innovation and Formula Development, Julio Lamberty, a cosmetic chemist, who has been with the brand formally for nearly three years, but had already worked on product development with Paula’s Choice over a decade ago. Lamberty was enticed by Paula’s Choice’s skin education approach, which the brand pioneered and has delivered to consumers since the early 2000s.
Lamberty, born in Newark, New Jersey, and raised by Puerto Rican parents, landed in the cosmetic industry by chance. Lamberty tells LATINA that he first pursued the medical field as an undergraduate pre-med student. His first job after graduation from Saint Peter’s University was as a fragrance chemist at Dragoco Inc.; the company then eventually merged with Haarmann & Reimer to become Symrise in 2003, he notes. “Little did I know that I would be able to apply so much of the science I had [learned] in school to develop skincare products in the cosmetic industry.”
In his 33 years of experience as an innovator in cosmetics, Lamberty has held multiple senior and executive positions in research, business development, operations, procurement, and more. He has worked with beauty companies including Avon, Peter Thomas Roth Clinical Skin Care, Elizabeth Arden, and Sephora throughout his career. He also helped launch First Aid Beauty and Farmacy.
And his path continues to evolve; you can consider Lamberty a skincare formulation connoisseur whose Latin American upbringing has played a pivotal part in his success and motivation. The chemist has developed products that may already play an important role in your current skincare routine. Hint: Remember the Avon brochures that made their rounds across the table during a coffee nightcap con las tias?
“I was excited to join a company with such a focus on efficacious, science-backed products,” he says. Lamberty took along with him all the milestones he had already accomplished to begin leading the Innovation and Formulation team at Paula’s Choice three years ago, joining the brand at a time when it was flourishing. “Paula’s Choice was growing, creating effective products, utilizing proven skincare ingredients based on cited scientific research and clinical testing.”
We’re all well familiar that skincare products going viral can change a brand’s success overnight. But building a sustainable brand often requires more than that, and Paula’s Choice proves its worth with research-backed and education-driven resources for the user to understand their skin types and needs.
“At Paula’s Choice, we know skin and its physiology,” Lamberty says. “We do extensive research on every technology we use, based on skin type, color, demographics, and mechanism of action, before formulating. Once the formula is approved for aesthetics, we clinically and subjectively test the formula on all skin types.”
Lamberty has a clear vision of the state of skincare formulations now, and knows where they’re heading. “I see the state of skincare formulations continuing to focus on science-backed results using more complex manufacturing techniques and innovative ingredients through AI Technology that will provide nonsurgical alternatives to customers,” he says. In an era where healthy skin has become the ultimate trend, consumers from Generation Z to Baby Boomers can look to Paula’s Choice to protect, enhance, and champion their skin’s health.
If you ask the cosmetic chemist the advice he has for beauty consumers, Lamberty says: one, educate yourself on ingredients. Two, don’t fall for the belief that expensive is better. Three, always use sunscreen. Four, choose a career that you are passionate about, and lastly, don’t ever compromise your beliefs and morals.
Chelsea Avila is a freelance contributor for LATINA based in Queens, New York. She covers fashion and beauty editorial.