SLO Mayor Heidi Harmon talks about her first year in office
San Luis Obispo Mayor Heidi Harmon is using her signature style to raise money for survivors of sexual assault and abuse.
For every purchase of the Heidi is Mighty red matte lipstick, $1 will be donated to local nonprofit RISE.
Harmon, who is running for a second term as mayor in November, will not receive any money from the lipstick sales.
"There is a lot wrapped into the little lipstick," Harmon said. "It’s not just about me being mighty but (empowering) others to be mighty."
Ariel Shannon, who owns Bluebird Salon in San Luis Obispo, approached Harmon with the idea to produce the Heidi is Mighty lipstick in March, after she did the mayor's makeup for the Women’s Shelter Program Musical Revue & Fashion Show at the Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo.
"I love what a heart-centered, compassionate person (Harmon) is and I love how she allows her personality to shine through," Shannon said. "It shows you can embrace your whole person no matter your profession."
Harmon agreed to the idea, asking that a portion of the proceeds would go toward RISE.
“I felt like if I’m going to lend my face, so to speak, to something, I’d want it do something good for an organization I’m passionate about,” Harmon said. “Hopefully this can bring some money to an organization that really needs it and really deserves it.”
RISE has seen an increase in sexual and intimate partner violence survivors seeking therapists since start of the #MeToo movement. There are currently 165 people on a waiting list to receive counseling services, RISE Executive Director Jennifer Adams said.
The money raised by sales of Heidi Is Mighty cosmetics will go toward increasing staff therapists.
"What inspires us most about this community is their willingness to help with the problem and provide creative solutions," Adams said.
In addition to raising money and awareness for RISE, Harmon said the lipstick sends a message about femininity.
"I think this lipstick symbolizes something that I have always stood for: you can be a woman in politics or business and still embody the feminine unique expression of your true self," Harmon wrote in an Instagram caption.
“This is also about not shying away from things that are feminine,” she said. “It’s really important to bring that to the conversation about women in leadership.”
Shannon said Heidi is Mighty is the first lipstick she's produced. She is using a private label manufacturer in Los Angeles to create the makeup.
In the future, Shannon hopes to produce an entire lipstick line named after women in power.
She's ordered 250 Heidi is Mighty lipsticks so far, but will order more if there is a high demand. The lipstick will be sold at Bluebird Salon for $21, beginning in mid-July.
Customers can pre-order the lipstick online at mightylips.myshopify.com.