Meet Shirley Tran, CoFounder of GlowinMe

Each week, Female CoFounder features a female founder in the community. Follow along each week and learn from different founders and their journeys.

FcF: Tell us about yourself?

Shirley: My name is Shirley Tran. I am passionate about skincare and makeup and I love playing with colours and coming up with different makeup looks. I am also someone who is guilty of having a forever growing  collection! I studied Industrial Design (think Product Design) during undergrad and worked as a User Experience Designer at a startup and a financial institution after graduating from Carleton University. A few years later, I quit my corporate job as I wanted to try something different, so I started GlowinMe with my boyfriend.  

FcF: What is GlowinMe?

Shirley: GlowinMe is a virtual beauty organizer that helps you keep track of your beauty products and experiences, so you can focus on being the best version of yourself. From skincare to makeup, swatches to product expiry dates, and everything in between, it has your beauty needs covered.

- Above: GlowinMe App -

FcF: How did you come up with GlowinMe?

Shirley: My boyfriend used to complain that I spent way too much time on researching what beauty products to buy, debating on what colours would suit my skintone, returning products that did not perform, figuring out the best way of using the beauty products etc. This led me to think about if there was a way to help people including myself look good and feel good without all the work!

FcF: What were the first 3 steps you took after you knew you wanted to pursue this idea?

Shirley: The first step was to find out that I was not the only one who had to spend so much time on my beauty needs. We wanted to know that there was a big enough demand for our potential solution. After all, having the best solution to a small problem was not viable for a business. The next step was to understand how people tackled the issue at the moment, so we could identify what the pain points and the problems were. Thirdly, we put our solutions into a simple prototype and started asking people to try it out and provide us feedback on it.

FcF: If you are CoFounder, how did you meet your CoFounder? What do you look for in finding your CoFounders?

Shirley: I got lucky in the sense that my CoFounder is my boyfriend and I did not really have to "look"for him. We met at a startup where we both worked on projects together (before we started dating). He was the lead developer and I was the chief UI/UX designer. I thought that if we had successfully worked together in the past, we could do it again! In my opinion, when it comes to looking for a CoFounder, it is important that your values are aligned and that the passion and commitment are there. It is also crucial that the skill sets of the founders complement one another. 

FcF: What advice do you have for other women who have a start-up idea or side project idea?

Shirley:  I think you need to figure out why you want to pursue your start-up idea and set clear goals that define your success. You want to make sure the problem you are going to tackle is big enough that there is a viable business to be built upon. Sometimes, a problem may not be significant enough for a business to grow. But it could be a good side project to carry out in your spare time. If you want to pursue it as a business, make sure you are passionate and committed that you will find a way to succeed no matter the difficulties and challenges you will face. You also need to be adaptable and open-minded to changes. Knowing when to pivot is the key to the survival of a business. If you are in it 100%, then find a quick and cheap way to validate your business idea before investing more into it. Last but not least, trust yourself that you can do it, just do it one step at a time!

FcF: How can the Female CoFounder community help you?

Shirley: We have recently launched our GlowinMe app on Apple's App Store. We would love it if you can help spread the word of our beauty app to your friends who are into beauty. Give our app a try and share with us your thoughts. 

At the moment, we need help growing our user base. If you or know somebody who has experience in marketing, I would like to learn about what worked well for you or the person and get ideas on how we should approach our marketing and how to put together effective marketing campaigns.

FcF: How can people contact you?

Shirley: Follow us on Instagram @glowinmebeauty to stay updated and get beauty and organizing tips!

Give the app a try and get GlowinMe on the App store.

Learn more about Glowinme at

Email me at to ask about beauty, startup life, GlowinMe, or anything you want!

Reach out to @Shirley Tran in our Slack!


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