You may just see a lipstick here. But for us, we see a whole lot of research and innovation that goes into the creation of that luscious gloss. From Product Performance Evaluation working hand in hand with labs to help to choose the right lipstick formula through innovative tests, to Instrumental Evaluation, executing research of skin properties. But have you ever wondered who guarantees that these products are efficient and risk free? If you have never heard about the role of a Product Safety Assessor, let us explain to you! Let’s meet Pauline, our Product Safety Assessor for Makeup at L’Oréal. She shares all about her daily life and how she is making sure that your favorite lipstick and all your make up products are always safe to use!
Pauline, tell us about Product Safety in Research and Innovation!
I am a safety assessor of makeup products here at L’Oréal. I work in a team with safety assessors and am in charge of ensuring that your favorite products are totally safe. I work with the labs in Chevilly Larue, France, and we are assessing different products of makeup, including lipsticks and foundations. First, we ensure the safety of the raw materials and second, the safety of the overall formula.
When I studied Pharmacy, and then toxicology, I could never imagine that I’d finally work in cosmetics. But almost 4 years ago, I applied to a very interesting offer from L’Oréal, and here I am! And I love it! Really fast, I dived into the world of safety and got to know all of these hidden métiers that allow us to make sure that all products here are as safe as they can be. It is really fascinating how widely spread the field of safety is and how much you can reach with it. The good part of working as a product safety assessor in a cosmetic company is, that you are able to work on products you know. And for me, it is really nice because I have been working with the lips labs since the beginning. We know each other so well now and they know all of my preferences, so it is really cool that I can always test the newest products on me. On top of that, it is really nice that you can work on a product together and change some products if you have to, just to see it on the market safe and sound a couple of months later.
How do you work with different entities inside L’Oréal?
We are basically the supporting team for the laboratories. So they develop a new product and they come to us to assess it. I started with the team of the internal laboratories and now I switched to Open Development, which basically consists of working with vendors for the development of products for L’Oréal brands but conceived and produced outside of L’Oréal. Same as for internal products, we assess if the formulas are safe to use for our products.
“It can be really challenging, but also very interesting to see how far you can go. I would say it is a good balance between Safety and Innovation.”
Did you always want to work as Product Safety Assessor?
Actually no! I always wanted to follow up on my dad’s career and become a photographer, but I changed my mind the last minute and now I am here at L’Oréal. I am a Pharmacist, specialized in toxicology, that got an amazing offer here that I followed. People say you either stay only a short time, 10 years or you stay forever. For now, I am definitely not planning to leave, so let’s see what happens next. But one of my biggest passions today is still photography in combination with traveling and sports.
Give us some fun facts about yourself!
My brain really works in mysterious ways. I have no idea what is going on, but I have the most selective memory of all times. For example, I am always referencing movie quotes, which can be a bit irritating for people that don’t know the movie. I don’t know why, but I can remember so many movie scenes, so I always do the race everyone around to me to watch these movies, as it is not funny to use these references otherwise!
What emojis would describe your time here the t L’Oréal best?
I am always in a good mood and I am always laughing so much! My old team in the US is missing my laughter so much, that I even recorded it for them.
I am not going to lie. I am a Nerd. I am working a lot and I am always striving for better results with my team.
The airplane symbolizes my traveling. Not only do I love to travel, but I also traveled for work and visit my old teams in the US.
We heard you had a project in Los Angeles for L’Oréal, can you tell us something about it?
I was supporting two brands in the US on the West coast because they really needed someone helping with the two newest acquisitions of L’Oréal at that time. I was supporting Urban Decay and NYX Professional Makeup in Los Angeles. They needed someone that hasn’t been at L’Oréal for too long and is still open-minded and able to adapt to their way of working, as Urban Decay and NYX Professional Makeup are operating more like a Start-Up. It was a super intense, but super nice time. An absolute new world for me that was extremely fast and intense, with a lot of challenges. The two projects in the US are the projects that I have been the proudest of so far in my career. This is the nice part of L’Oréal, you always have the chance of improving yourself and take on new challenges when you are ready for it.
What advice would you give to future applicants?
As we are always looking for true, motivated and passionate people, I can really only give you the advice of being yourself. Only if you stay true to yourself you will succeed in convincing us that you are ready for that challenge.
Inspired by Pauline’s story? Read more about our careers in Research & innovation here: