The Realist Spotlight: The Talented Florence Adepoju of MDMflow
Interviewed by Danasia Fantastic
I recently sat down with Florence, the creator of MDMflow lipsticks. Florence cosmetics have garnered international acclaim. At the young age of 23, she’s managed to create a brand powerhouse! Check out her interview below.
I’m currently OBSESSED with MDMflow! How did you come up with the brand?
Thank you! I’m glad MDMflow is effecting people in the way I want it to. I’ve worked in the beauty industry for over 5 years now and I’ve always thought people form a very powerful emotional connection to colour cosmetics. Lipstick can be very personal and used as a form of self expression. You match your lipstick to your outfit sometimes, but mostly you match it to how you feel. I studied BSc Cosmetics Science at the London College of Fashion and decided upon graduation to create a brand that represented all my influences – 90s Hip hop, street style, colour and science. I think there is a big disconnect between the beauty industry and youth culture, and I think MDMflow fixes that.
How would you describe your personal sense of style?
Erratic! I guess the fashion term to use would be something like Urban Chic. My personal style is very Hip Hop influenced. I love jerseys, bomber jackets, baggy T shirts, oversized jumpers, sneakers, beanies etc. but in terms of colour and texture I think I am very European, I love silks, leathers, furs but also less luxe textures like rubber, nylon even a cheeky bit of polyester. I think I have synthesia (phenomenon that influenced N.E.R.D – Seeing Sounds) my whole sensory experience is interlinked with music at the centre of it all.
Can you name one of your fashion icons and why?
Mary Katrantzou – her garments are a visual experience, personal to her and beautiful. I’ve watched and read her interviews and she is very expressive and hard working. When it comes to people that inspire me I am quite aspirational, I’m always looking for people who are way up there in “the industry” and in life.
Do you plan on expanding to more than just lipsticks?
Yes definitely. I am currently developing lip glosses and mascara’s, but I don’t have a release date though because I will just launch them as soon as they are ready. I’m developing products based on what I use and what MDMflow girls request. I don’t think I will ever have a full product line- MDMflow is not aimed at makeup professionals, so I will only have products downtown girls use daily.
From where do you draw your inspiration?
Tumblr! I am a social media baby! I spend hours and hours on Tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter. I’m also always online reading articles, watching reality tv shows and just being submerged in the Internet. I can be very obsessive when it comes to researching things that wow me. I’ll google all my female creative superheroes Sophia Amoruso (Nasty Gal), Sharmadean Reid (WAH), Leah McSweeney (Married to the Mob)and read their interviews and watch all their youtube videos for hours and hours. I guess street culture and feminism are two main themes that carry across all my inspiration. The sources from which I gather content varies, one minute I’m checking out Forbes , WSJ and INC, the next I’m on Necole Bitchie whilst going crazy at Rich and Erica Mena on LAHH (messy!).
Have you experienced the quarter-life crisis?
Not so much. It does get difficult sometimes though; I have the coolest most inspiring friends, some who have been in creative industries for over 10 years and are extremely successful at what they do. I also have friends who work for top firms and are killing it in the corporate world. I sometimes can get very obsessed making comparisons and I really have to shake the feeling off. It’s a very silly and distructive thing to do especially when more often than not our life journeys aren’t even relative.
What are 5 Things You’d Tell Your 20 Year Old Self?
– Learn the dutch language properly, and immerse yourself in the culture
– Start working on your ideas now
– Travel to Asia (really sucks that I haven’t done that already)
– Confidently talk to strangers (at trade shows, exhibitions, parties)
– Stop caring so much about what others think of you!
What words do you live by?
“Always keep your head above water because drowning aint pimpin playa”
Name 3 places you must check out while in London.
– Shoreditch Boxpark
– The Saatchi gallery
– Mother Clucker – Bricklane
I refuse to give an explanation to try to sell these places, just come to London and check them out!