Brandi Halls wanted to be a vet when she first saw Free Willy at age 12. Two decades later, she’s held onto her dream of dedicating herself to animals—albeit in a less conventional way.
Now the director of brand communications at Lush, Halls spearheads national campaigns centering around causes the cosmetics company has championed for years through its ethically sourced ingredients, cruelty-free product testing and continuous donations to grassroots organizations dedicated to animal welfare and environmental conservation. A self-proclaimed “beauty lover,” Halls stumbled upon a job posting for a public relations assistant for Lush North America in Vancouver after graduating in 2003, and she was certain it was her dream job.
Though Lush was already well established in Canada, Halls—a First Nations woman and the brand’s youngest female executive—joined the team when the company was on the brink of expanding into the U.S. By 2005, she had been promoted twice, and she spent the next three years visiting about 60 Lush locations around America, working the shop floors “to get to really know the audience in those markets and to get to the roots of the brand,” she said.
In 2008, Halls moved to New York as the brand’s public relations manager. That was right around the time the company started ramping up its now-famed ethical campaigning efforts.
“I went from pitching Bath Bombs to discussing controversial topics,” she joked.
Halls eventually moved back to Vancouver to oversee all branding in North America. She now manages nine teams responsible for all integrated messaging, national campaigns and customer engagement, from shop windows to direct social media channels to store catalogs.
Staying true to her animal-loving nature, Halls especially takes pride in her work with Lush’s grassroots ethical campaigning. She delves into all of Lush’s causes headfirst, and her work even inspired her to go vegan for a decade. “I believe skills can be taught, but passion and drive can’t be,” she said.
Halls has worked to carefully cultivate the brand’s authentic marketing—like its viral #BetterTogether Valentine’s Day campaign in 2017, which focused on universal love and featured same-sex couples. “We’ve always stayed true to who we set out to be from the very beginning,” she said. “[We] stand for something, and that’s not something we picked up halfway down our 25-year history.”
Director of brand communications, North America, Lush
Public relations manager, North America, Lush
U.S. public relations team member, North America, Lush
Public relations assistant, North America, Lush
Halls is Lush North America’s director of brand communications. She oversees the strategy and execution of communication efforts across print, digital, social and experiential, and she serves as the brand’s spokesperson.
“If you want to build a career in branding and communications, you need to seek out a brand that aligns with your personal values,” Halls said. “You’ll be a much more effective brand advocate and communicator if you’re communicating something you genuinely believe in.”