Linda Wells

Founding Editor in Chief, Allure; Founder, Flesh Beauty

Linda Wells has over 35 years of experience in beauty as a journalist, brand founder and brand builder. While serving as Revlon’s Chief Creative Officer, she created and launched Flesh, a prestige makeup brand. Prior to Revlon, she was the founding Editor in Chief of Allure, the beauty magazine, which she helmed for 25 years. New York Magazine called Wells “the most authoritative and crucial voice on beauty” and Refinery29 referred to her as “the guiding light in the industry.”

As Chief Creative Officer of Revlon, Inc. from 2017 to 2019, Wells had creative responsibility for Revlon, Elizabeth Arden, Almay, CND and Sinful Colors. For Revlon, Wells established Live Boldly as its new platform and identified a diverse group of ambassadors to represent the brand in advertising and social media. She oversaw new advertising, packaging, in-store displays, social media and the website relaunches for Revlon and Almay. Wells recruited internal creative teams and external advertising and creative agencies for all the company’s brands.

While serving as Chief Creative Officer of Revlon, Wells conceived, produced and launched Flesh, the first new brand incubated at Revlon. She created Flesh, with 96 skus, in less than one year and brought it to market exclusively at Ulta Beauty stores in 2018. The products, advertising and social media have been commended for excellence by Refinery29, Elle, InStyle, Allure, the Today show, and The Cut, among others. Google acknowledged Flesh’s YouTube videos as “best in class content” in 2018, and Tribe Dynamics named Flesh the number one new brand in earned media value that same year.

Before joining Revlon, Wells was the Contributing Beauty Editor at Large for New York Magazine’s The Cut, and the writer and producer of “The Linda Wells Report,” a beauty magazine within issues of Harper’s Bazaar, Elle, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan and Town & Country for Hearst publications. She also was a consultant on the formulation and branding of product lines for several private and public companies.

From 1990 until 2015, Wells was the founding Editor in Chief of Allure magazine, allure.com, and the Allure video channel. Wells created the magazine for Condé Nast and grew its circulation to 1.2 million.

As Editor in Chief of Allure, Wells created the Allure Best of Beauty awards in 1996 to help consumers find the most effective beauty products on the market. The awards generated a licensing business for the Best of Beauty seal, which cosmetics companies use in advertising and on packaging. Wells also brought e-commerce to Allure through partnerships with MasterCard and Quidsi. In 2012, Wells launched the Allure Beauty Box subscription service.

Prior to Allure, Wells was a reporter at The New York Times, ultimately becoming the Beauty Editor and the Food Editor of The New York Times Magazine. She began her career at Vogue as a writer and editor on beauty, fitness and wellness.

Wells received the Matrix Award from New York Women in Communications, The Phoenix House Fashion Award, The Fragrance Foundation Hall of Fame Award, the Cosmetic Executive Women Achiever Award and The Trinity College Alumni Achievement Award. Under Wells’s leadership, Allure won a National Magazine Award, an Editorial Excellence Award from Folio, multiple acknowledgements on Adweek’s Hot List and journalism awards from the American Academy of Dermatology, the Fragrance Foundation, the Skin Cancer Foundation and the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons.

Wells currently serves on the board of Cosmetic Executive Women and has held board positions at the American Society of Magazine Editors, Fashion Group International, Trinity College board of fellows, and Mary Institute Country Day School (St. Louis) board of visitors.

Wells contributes regularly to podcasts, television, radio and print media, including the Today show, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, CNN, Extra, E!, Sirius radio, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Women’s Wear Daily, Second Life, The Glossy Podcast, and the Fat Mascara podcast among others. She has been a featured speaker at the WWD Beauty Summit, the WWD Digital Summit, Procter & Gamble global marketing conference, Chanel US sales meeting, and others. She is the author of Confessions of a Beauty Editor (Bullfinch).

Wells graduated from Trinity College, Hartford CT, with a B.A. in English literature. She has two sons and lives in New York City.