Brandi O’Brien is the brains behind Prickly Pear, a cosmetics brand that is vegan friendly and paving the way in the industry. Launched back in 2018, the brand has been going from strength to strength and, despite the turbulence of 2020, things are looking very exciting for the future of the brand.

We spent some time with Brandi to find out more…

Tell us the story that lead you to launching Prickly Pear Cosmetics…

Well I’ve always been a makeup enthusiast, I love creating makeup looks and trying out different products and formulas. One day I thought to myself, why can’t I offer something to the beauty community? What if I created my own cosmetics line? Thus leading me to the development of Prickly Pear!

You’re a vegan, cruelty free brand. Why was this important to you?

This was actually the most important thing to me when researching what lab to work with. I feel animals should have no part in cosmetics, and no animals should be harmed in the making of cosmetics. I also think that offering a vegan, natural formula is all around better for my customers.

How do you want people to feel when they use your products?

I want them to feel happy of course! Like they’ve gotten their monies worth, like they’ve found a formula they can trust and a company they can stand by. I’m always happy to hear feedback from customers on how to improve.

To date, what has been your proudest moment since launching the company?

My proudest moment was having Prickly Pear featured in Vogue UK! Such a surreal moment for me.

When lacking motivation, what quote do you like to read?

It’s not necessarily a quote that I read, but something I always remember that was told to me. Someone at a small company I used to work for told me that the owner didn’t turn a profit for two years when starting up their business, and now it’s booming (25+ years strong). Prickly Pear Cosmetics will turn two this December, so I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

For any aspiring beauty entrepreneurs just starting out, what one piece of advice would you offer them?

A piece of advice I would offer is to not let failures or bumps in the roads get you down, and don’t quit just because things aren’t working like you planned they would. Keep trying!

Talk us through an average day in your life…

So apart from Prickly Pear Cosmetics, I am also a Registered Dental Assistant. When I’m not at work, I love to travel (I take quite a few camping trips), spend time outdoors, and of course play with makeup! An average day for me though is typically spent at the dental office, then when I get home I spend time working on Prickly Pear and running the social media accounts.

What does self care mean to you?

Self care to me means doing things that keep you happy and healthy (whether that be emotionally or mentally). A relaxing bath, following a skin care routine, or keeping your living space clean are all acts of self care!

Our readers love to travel, what destination is at the top of your bucket list?

Hawaii would definitely be at the top of my bucket list! I also would really like to see the Redwoods in California, and visit NYC.

How have you had to pivot during Covid19?

COVID19 definitely threw a wrench in things, I had to push back a few releases and production wait times as well as shipping times increased. Thankfully customers were understanding and now things are speeding back up!

Where can people find out more?

People can find out more at or on social media @pricklypearcos on Instagram and Twitter, and Prickly Pear Cosmetics on Facebook.


Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.

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