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Glossier Sees Direct Customer Relationship As Best Way To Grow Business

June 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
US beauty brand Glossier is using digital technology to establish and maintain a direct relationship with its customers. Henry Davis, president and chief operating officer of the company, said his company strongly believes in the value of owning the relationship with the customer. After launching its online business in 2014, Glossier has gained a niche status in the global beauty market by selling its collection of 26 skincare and beauty products. It also operates a content division and physical stores across the country. [Image Credit: ©  PhotoMIX-Company @ Pixabay.com]
Charlotte Rogers, "Why direct-to-consumer beauty brand Glossier is ripping up the marketing playbook ", Marketing Week , June 25, 2018, © Centaur Communications Ltd.
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Morphe Says To Open Retail Location At Mall Of America

June 22, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Beauty brand Morphe, based in Los Angeles, said it plans to open a retail store at the Mall of America in fall 2018. Established by brother and sister Linda and Chris Tawil, the company makes and sells budget-friendly, professional-quality beauty products and tools. For example, its Jaclyn Hill Eyeshadow Palette includes 35 unique colors for only $38. Its founders started the company by selling directly to consumers through it online store morphe.com. It has achieved a cult-like status on social media, with 6.4 million followers on Instagram.[Image Credit: © Morphe Brushes]
Madeline Nachbar, "Beauty Brand Morphe to Open Retail Store in Mall of America ", Mpls St. Paul, June 22, 2018, © MSP Communications Inc.
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More Beauty Brands Opening Stores For Better Customer Interaction

June 20, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Beauty brands are increasingly trying a more direct approach to reach their consumers rather than relying solely on traditional retailer relationships. In an attempt to gain a better understanding of consumer preferences, many are opening stores, using digital technology and offering a more experiential destination, including classes and treatments. Eyelash extension business Glad Lash recently opened its first retail location in California, and skin-care brand Osea, once only available in spas, is planning to open a store. CoverGirl is aiming to launch a tech-focused store in New York’s Times Square later this year. [Image Credit: © Glad Lash Inc.]
Emma Sandler, "Beauty brands are launching independent stores centered on experiences", Glossy, June 20, 2018, © Digiday Media
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L’Oréal To Roll Out AR And Livestreaming Platform To All Of Its Brands

June 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Beauty company L’Oréal unveiled a new service to be rolled out later this year for its NYX Professional brand. The digital beauty assistant uses augmented reality and livestreaming to bring a personalized makeup counter experience to consumers’ homes. The company plans to roll out the solution, based on its March 2018 Modiface acquisition, for all of its brands across 65 markets. L’Oréal chose NYX as the first brand to offer the service because it is a “very social brand, a pro brand and a retail brand,” according to L’Oréal’s chief digital officer, Lubomira Rochet.[Image Credit: © NYX Professional Makeup]
Kristina Monllos, "L’Oreal Is Bringing the Makeup Counter Experience Into Your Home With AR and Livestreaming", Adweek, June 18, 2018, © Adweek
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Amazon Seeks To Lure Brazilian Brands Grupo Boticario and Natura Cosmeticos Into Its Online Fold

June 15, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Online retailer Amazon is reportedly wooing Brazil-based beauty and wellness brands Grupo Boticario and Natura Cosmeticos as part of its efforts to expand its online beauty business in the country. Brazil’s market for cosmetics, hair treatments, and other wellness products is worth about $30 billion as of 2018. Amazon has already been operating its online bookselling and video streaming business in the region. [Image Credit: © Simona Simonova from Pixabay.com]

"Amazon Looks To Brazil To Expand Its Hold On Beauty", PYMNTS.com, June 15, 2018, © What’s Next Media and Analytics
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Wunder2 Partners With YouCam Makeup For Virtual Try-On Website Feature

June 15, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Wunder2 Cosmetics signed up YouCam Makeup to add a virtual try-on component to its website. The partnership covers the company’s color cosmetics ranges, but other products will be added later. The products can also be accessed through the YouCam Makeup application, allowing the app’s existing users to “try on” makeup looks and 25 items from the range. Wunder2 is also considering offering the service through its retail partners.[Image Credit: © www.wunder2.eu]
Faye Brookman, "Wunder2 Partners With YouCam Makeup For Virtual Try-On Website Feature", WWD, June 15, 2018, © Penske Media Corp.
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Lush Tests New AI App In Package-Free Store

June 14, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Cosmetics company Lush is testing its Lush Lens mobile application, developed in-house. The app uses combines AI and product recognition, allowing users to scan products and access information, such as ingredient lists, even without packaging. It is being tested at Lush’s first ever “Naked” and package-free store in Milan, where visitors can use the app on the store’s Fairphone devices. Lush plans to roll out the app worldwide. It will also be available for consumers to download on to their smartphones.[Image Credit: © Lush Cosmetics]
Bia Bezamat, "Lush Tests New AI-Based App In Package-Free Store", The Current Daily, June 14, 2018, © THECURRENT
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Times Square To Host COVERGIRL’s First-Ever Physical Store

June 11, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Following the recent relaunch of the COVERGIRL brand, beauty company Coty is scheduled to open the brand's first ever physical outlet, a flagship store in New York City. Coty signed a 10-year leasing deal for the 10,000-square foot multi-level space at 30 Times Square. Scheduled to open its doors later this year, the store will be launched as part of COVERGIRL's "I Am What I Make Up" brand message, which replaces its "Easy, breezy, beautiful" tagline. To keep up with the tech-savvy consumers, the store will have experiential beauty playrooms equipped with interactive digital technologies and full-service makeup application. Coty also hinted of an "exclusive innovation" that will be available in the store.[Image Credit: © Coty, Inc.]

""I Am What I Make Up" Comes to Life in New Experiential Space", Coty.com, June 11, 2018, © Coty, Inc.
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Coty Chooses Three AI Startups To Help It Improve Customer Experience

June 11, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Multinational beauty company Coty unveiled the three winners of its digital accelerator program and tasked the technology startups to help the group develop artificial intelligence tools that will drive “more seamless shopper experiences.” First-prize winner Nudest presented an algorithm that matches skin tone to products for personalized recommendations. Other winners included Skingenie’s skincare advisor, which analyzes the customer’s DNA and lifestyle using AI for product recommendations, and Glamtech’s solution that analyzes skin in real time, tracks performance and provides product recommendations. Each received cash prizes and will have access to a range of Coty support and resources. [Image Credit: © My Nudest, Inc.]
Bennett Bennett, "Coty selects trio of startups to develop AI that will drive 'more seamless shopper experiences'", The Drum, June 11, 2018, © Carnyx Group Ltd
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Blend-It-Yourself Beauty Brands Are Adopting AI To Drive Personalization

June 11, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
More consumers are choosing personalized beauty products, and artificial intelligence is helping companies address this trend. Blend-it-yourself services, for example, provide customers with products tailored to meet their specific needs. Among the beauty brands using AI in this space to better understand their customers’ needs are Belle Bar, Prose, Skin Inc., and Function of Beauty. LOLI, launched in Spring 2018, also plans to use AI for its blend-it-yourself concept, allowing it to provide a more scalable solution.[Image Credit: © LOLI Beauty, Inc]
Emma Sandler, "How blend-it-yourself beauty is using technology to micro-personalize products", Glossy, June 11, 2018, © Digiday Media
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Japan’s SK-II Opens Pop-Up Smart Store in Tokyo

June 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Japanese beauty brand SK-II has opened a pop-up store in Tokyo’s Hajuku district. The Future X Smart Store is an experiential concept outlet that uses artificial intelligence and face recognition. As they enter, visitors see digital art generated by their own face and body motions. The store has cubicles with smart mirrors that scan and analyze customers’ skin. A smart beauty wall upstairs recognizes the customer, presents the analysis, recommends products, and displays how they would look. This pop-up run through June 28.[Image Credit: © Procter & Gamble]
Robert Stockdill, "SK-II experiential concept store incorporates face authentication", Inside Retail, June 07, 2018, © InsideRetail
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L’Oréal Acquires Tech Startup Modiface For Improves AI, AR Services

June 4, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
L’Oréal has acquired its first technology startup, Modiface, for an undisclosed sum to help the group improve how it incorporates advanced technology into its brand offerings. Lubomira Rochet, L’Oréal’s chief digital officer, underscored the importance of global brands adapting to digital developments in order to survive but also said that L’Oréal’s strategy is to determine the most appropriate technologies for its brands and scale them across the group’s websites and stores, but in a way that works for local conditions. It is looking to develop technologies via a number of routes, including acquisitions; Station-F, a startup campus in France; and the Founders Factory, a digital accelerator based in London.[Image Credit: © L’Oréal]
Kitty Knowles, "L'Oréal Snaps Up Startups: AR Beauty Is Just The Beginning Says CDO", Forbes.com, June 04, 2018, © Forbes Media LLC
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Chinese Companies Lure Aussie Consumers With Beauty Tech

June 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Chinese cosmetic conglomerate Jala Group is touring Australian cities, in partnership with Alibaba’s e-commerce arm Tmall, to promote its products, including a smart mirror. The augmented reality (AR) tool allows users to take a selfie using an in-built webcam and then shows them how they look with different make-up choices. Users can scan and buy their preferred choices through QR codes that appear onscreen. Jala has built four key brands (Maysu, Chando, Botanical Wisdom and Insea ) over the last 17 years to develop its presence in technology, innovation and design, in partnership with firms in Japan, France and the US.[Image Credit: © JALA Corporation]

Natasha Spencer , "Hi-tech Chinese cosmetics retailer hits Australia", Cosmetics Design Asia, June 01, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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NARS And Shiseido Look To Data And AI To Meet Rising Customer Expectations

May 30, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
NARS, and its Japan-based parent company Shiseido, see data and AI-driven personalization as key in their efforts to cater to the needs of an increasingly digital customer base. Benjamin Lord, NARS executive director of omnichannel of global eCommerce, sees the use of data and AI and critical to stand out in an "oversaturated" beauty market that is cluttered with new players (Glossier, Beautycounter) and established brands (Clinique, Estee Lauder). In 2017, Shiseido acquired AI and AR developer Giran, and more recently, artificial skin tech startup Olivo Labs, and personalization solution provider MATCHCo, in order to help NARS and its other brands (bareMinerals, Dolce & Gabbana…) create new personalized products and seamless experiences for their customers. Shiseido looks to be ahead of most companies: mobile and online sales account for 25 percent of its revenue compared to just over 6 percent for the entire beauty industry as a whole. [Image Credit: © NARS Cosmetics]
"NARS Cosmetics Puts Its Best Face Forward With AI, Data", PYMNTS, May 30, 2018, © What’s Next Media and Analytics
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Beauty Brands Should Consider AI, Personalization, To Adapt To Industry Changes

May 29, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Beauty brands should take advantage of developments such as artificial intelligence, personalization, and the rise of indie brands in order to adapt to a changing market. According to Terry Young of Sparks & Honey, beauty brands should try to emulate the success of Instagram, Amazon, and Netflix by thinking “exponentially" rather than incrementally to create a competitive edge in the industry. Young, who is the CEO of the cultural consultancy company, said brands can achieve a 10X status by offering more personalized experiences, customized products, and actively engaging smaller brands in the fragmented, yet rapidly growing, marketplace. [Image Credit: © Sparks & Honey]
Faye Brookman, "Beauty Needs to Keep Up With the Speed of Change", Women’s Wear Daily, May 29, 2018, © Penske Media Corporation
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Saks Fifth Avenue Uses Magic Mirrors To Attract Instore Customers

May 29, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
As part of its efforts to lure buyers into its physical stores and compete with other retailers like Ulta and Sephora, Saks Fifth Avenue overhauled its beauty department and installed "magic mirrors”. Customers can opt to have the virtual look emailed to them. Magic mirrors are just one part of the store’s efforts to upgrade its beauty customer experience, which now includes a concierge to assist shoppers and space for treatment rooms and events, such as tutorials and presentations. A move to the second floor has allowed more space for the cosmetics department.[Image Credit: © Saks Fifth Avenue]
Charisse Jones, "Saks Fifth Avenue bets 'magic mirrors,' face workouts to beat Sephora and Ulta", USA TODAY , May 29, 2018, © USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, LLC.
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Facebook, Instagram Invest To Help Beauty Companies Reach Consumers

May 29, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Facebook and Instagram are emerging as powerful platforms for sellers of beauty products. Both platforms are rich with beauty content and Facebook (which owns Instagram) is investing to help beauty companies reach beauty consumers. AI, and especially its face recognition software, is enabling Facebook to better target user interests. It is also letting businesses have “real-time, one-to-one conversations with their customers over Messenger” (Karin Tracy, head of industry for beauty, fashion, luxury and retail, Facebook). Instagram Stories proved an effective way to deliver fun and behind-the-scenes content to young, mobile users. The number of followers on IS has grown rapidly, now standing at 300 million with more than a third of the most viewed stories provided by businesses. Facebook is also beta testing and trialing with Sephora an AR-enabled camera effects for use in Messenger. [Image Credit: © Facebook, Inc.]
Faye Brookman , "Facebook Builds Beauty Without Boundaries", Women’s Wear Daily, May 29, 2018, © Penske Media Corporation
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L'Oréal Showcases Beauty Technology Innovations At Industry Event

May 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
L'Oréal exhibited a number of its latest digital services and products at the Viva Technology Paris 2018 in May. The ‘New Beauty Experience’ highlighted how the beauty company is incorporating new technology, such as artificial intelligence and augmented reality, for personalization, new services and connected devices. Examples include try-on beauty using its recently-acquired Modiface AR platform; a smart mirror; virtual hair color try-on technology using 3D AI, for the Professionnel Division; a digital voice-based butler for the L’Oréal Paris Men Expert brand; a virtual mirror with a direct link to Alibaba’s Tmall platform in China; customized skin care for SkinCeuticals called Custom D.O.S.E; a new shower concept from La Roche-Posay; and a salon-based scalp and hair diagnostic test for the Kérastase brand.[Image Credit: © SkinCeuticals]
Lucy Whitehouse, "8 leading augmented reality innovations for beauty: L’Oréal’s latest efforts", Cosmetics Design Europe, May 25, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Bourjois' Magic Mirror May Turn Facebook Into A Shopping Experience

May 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
British technology agency Holition is working on a new Facebook mobile app feature that will allow beauty enthusiasts to try on makeup products virtually with special camera filters. For this project, Holition will utilize the technology behind the magic mirror of French beauty brand Bourjois in its Paris flagship store. Bourjois's magic mirror uses 3D sensing smart camera technology to show shoppers how cosmetics would look like on their faces when they touch select a product in the store. The mirror can also suggest makeup products applicable to the shoppers’ skin tones. Holition plans to produce similar results with its Facebook filter which will take advantage of the social media app's AR mesh software. The filter will eventually be connected to Facebook's deep linking feature that will help users know where to buy the makeup products.[Image Credit: © Coty Inc]
Katie Baron, "Bourjois' AR Magic Mirror Eyes An Extra Prize: Facebook's Deep Links Tool", Forbes.com, May 25, 2018, © Forbes Media LLC
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Digital Technologies Shape New Business Models Of Cosmetic Firms

May 23, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Digital technologies and applications, including social media, continue to shape new business models for cosmetic firms, challenging established brands to adapt to changing consumer behavior. There is a growing need for cosmetic brands to shift from a product-based to an experience-based model. L’Oréal, for instance, is using artificial intelligence to map out market trends and personalize its service for consumers while Elizabeth Arden partnered with YouCam Makeup app to let customers try products virtually using their phones' cameras. Other brands, like Fenty Beauty by pop star Rihanna, bank on the inclusivity of their products: Its ProFilter Foundation line aims to cater to every skin color with its 40 shades. Social media influencers also present opportunities for brands to reach out to new markets. In 2017, beauty-related YouTube videos recorded 88 billion views, a 60% increase from the preceding year. Consumers won’t accept a one-size-fits all approach from brands, which can leverage consumer data to offer a more targeted service. A recent Accenture Interactive study found that consumers prefer to buy online from retailers that know their previous purchases and can recommend products based on them.[Image Credit: © Kendo Holdings]
Georganna Simpson and Edward Craig, "How digital has changed cosmetics and what this means for consumers", Campaign UK, May 23, 2018, © Haymarket Media Group Ltd
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Meitu Working On Selfie App That Addresses Skin Concerns

May 21, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

After going viral, an app developed by Chinese software firm Meitu that altered the user’s selfie image hit up against privacy concerns. The company is now trying to commercialize its software by employing its various selfie apps and virtual reality to offer real-world benefits.  Meitu is partnering with a hospital to develop MeituBeauty, an app that assesses skin condition through a selfie to recommend products. It also allows users to try virtual makeup and then buy it.[Image Credit: © Meitu]

Xinmei Shen , "Selfie app Meitu wants to build an empire around beauty", Abacus News, May 21, 2018, © South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd
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AI Reshaping And Redefining Beauty Marketing

May 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

AI is redefining how beauty brands can engage and interact with consumers. According to Automat CEO and co-founder Andy Muaro, concern over online monitoring means brands must invest in new methods of customer engagement that allow them to reach consumers in a more transparent and direct way. Companies such as Estée Lauder, Coty, and L’Oréal are investing in new marketing and AI technologies such as bots and digital "consultants" capable of analyzing face shape and complexion to make personalized product recommendations and offering consumers virtual try-ons. Automat helps companies use AI to better engage customers, and revealed its own bot, modeled after American TV personality Kalani Hilliker, generated 1400% more conversions than the real Kalani's posts. Mauro will be talking about the subject in-depth in the upcoming Innocos 2018 event in Flore, Italy on June 13-15.

Lucy Whitehouse , "Conversational marketing & AI: the new way to talk directly to beauty consumers", Cosmetics Design Europe, May 18, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Miller Harris To Offer Fragrance Samples Through Vending Machines

May 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Luxury perfume brand Miller Harris has partnered with sampling solutions provider Odore to provide consumers in London with fragrance samples through vending machines. Consumers will be able to get a free sample of their preferred scent from Miller Harris's range of perfumes by answering a short survey. The data collected will be used by Miller Harris to gain consumer insights which will help the brand improve its sales and marketing strategies. Odore's smart vending machines will be installed in several fine dining venues owned by M Restaurants group. The solutions provider plans to expand beyond the United Kingdom and to partner with other brands and venues. [Image Credit: © Miller Harris]

Austyn King , "Miller Harris partners with smart fragrance sampling solution Odore", Cosmetics Business, May 18, 2018, © HPCi Media
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Scentbird Raises $18.6m Funding for Market and Talent Expansion

May 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Subscription-based fragrance firm SCENTBIRD successfully concluded a financing round which raised $18.6 million, the biggest Series A funding received by a direct-to-consumer brand led by a female CEO. Consumer technology firm Goodwater Capital and other venture companies including Y Combinator, Rainfall Ventures, FundersClub, Soma Capital, Scrum Ventures, ERA led SCENTBIRD's latest funding round. The company will use the proceeds for market expansion, product development, and talent acquisition. The firm currently has over 250,000 subscriptions across the United States. They contribute 95% of its total revenue. In the past year, SCENTBIRD established its own personal care and home fragrance products, expanding the range of its sampling service, which already offers over 500 male, female and unisex fragrances.[Image Credit: © SCENTBIRD ]

"SCENTBIRD Makes Their Mark with a $18.6 MM Series A Funding Round", PRNewswire , May 17, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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Glossier Is Expanding In Europe This Year

May 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

US direct-to-consumer cosmetics brand Glossier is set to expand internationally, with shipments to Ireland under way and plans for Sweden in June, and Denmark and France later in the year. The brand launched in the US four years ago and reached both Canada and the UK in 2017. It has been using social media, including Instagram, to create a community of followers, with some becoming brand ambassadors, some paid and some not. The brand seeks people in the new markets that are highly engaged, meets them, and treats them as influencers. The approach worked for the UK launch, and helped attract 10,000 people to its London pop-up in October last year. Estimates put the brand’s sales at around $50 million in 2017, and it has so far raised $86 million in financing. Although the brand expects expansion to bring unique challenges in the different markets, it has chosen not to adapt its products and strategy for each.[Image Credit: © Glossier]

Chantal Fernandez , "Inside Glossier’s International Expansion Strategy", The Business of Fashion, May 17, 2018, © The Business of Fashion
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eSalon Expands Distribution Beyond The Direct Channel

May 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Hair color brand eSalon is expanding beyond the direct-to-consumer channel by introducing its products on the QVC home shopping channel and in 1,500 CVS stores. The rationale is new customer acquisition, according to CEO and co-founder, Francisco Giminez. The brand used to rely on paid promotion on social media, but Giminez believes that a move into mass retail could double the 15,000 new customers it currently acquires each month. The company has been growing fast and recently relocated to a new and larger headquarters in in El Segundo, Calif., which includes office space and production facilities.[Image Credit: © eSalon ] 
Ellen Thomas , "D2C Hair Color Brand eSalon Moves Into Retail", Women’s Wear Daily, May 17, 2018, © Penske Media Corporation
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Beauty Brands Are Failing to Reach Out To Casual Consumers

May 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Jamie Johns, the Director of Merchandising at Birchbox, the direct-to-consumer subscription beauty platform, believes many brands are missing opportunities to engage with the more casual beauty consumer, and are focusing too much on what she calls the beauty “junkies”. Johns, who will be speaking at the Innocos beauty networking event in Florence Italy in June, said most women are casual consumers who tend to focus on the purpose and effectiveness of the products they are buying. For these consumers, Johns believes existing strategies of massive launches and big influencer campaigns aren’t effective. Birchbox has been able to reach them through sampling. Johns admires certain direct-to-consumer brands, such as Glossier and Kylie, that are forcing the rest of the industry to rethink how it engages with consumers.

Lucy Whitehouse , "Birchbox on ‘Beauty Buff’ or ‘Beauty Casual’: Are you talking to the right consumer?", Cosmetics Design Europe, May 17, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Cosmania Turns To AI, Machine Learning In Personalized Beauty Shopping Initiative

May 16, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Dutch beauty online retailer Cosmania now offers customers a more personalized shopping experience through a new digital consultant. It has partnered with Finnish startup Revieve and its Digital Beauty Advisor platform to provide users with personalized skincare advice, skin analysis and product recommendations, using a selfie. Cosmania said the partnership is a response to growing consumer demand for a more interactive, personalized shopping experience. Revieve's technology is just one of many applications trying to replicate the work of in-store consultants by machine-learning and AI. [Image Credit: © COSMANIA BV.]
Lucy Whitehouse , "Netherlands beauty retailer offers personalized beauty experience", Cosmetics Design Europe, May 16, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Hyundai Launches AR Virtual Make Up Try-On Service

May 14, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Hyundai Department Store launched an upgrade to its online mall in the form of a virtual make up try-on service powered by augmented reality (AR). The virtual service, offered via Meitu's Makeup Plus app, allows customers to try on more than 20 products across eight beauty brands without visiting a physical store, with plans to extend it to 20 brands. Hyundai said the AR approach is their way of differentiating themselves from other online retailers, which they said still focus on prices and delivery speed. Meitu's app has been downloaded more than 200-million times since its 2015 launch. 

"Beauty shopping gets AR upgrade", Korea JoongAng Daily, May 14, 2018, © Korea JoongAng Daily
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Guerlain Unveils Pop-Up Store At Le Bon Marché In Celebration Of 190th Anniversary

May 14, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

In celebration of its 190th anniversary, French perfume house Guerlain has set up a pop-up shop in one of Paris’s prized department stores, Le Bon Marché. The pop-up serves to honour Guerlain's legacy as the oldest French perfume house and is showcasing 110 fragrances, categorized according to Guerlain's 14 favourite natural ingredients. Store visitors will be able to identify the scent best suited to them by using the digital “perfume organ”, a program that uses an algorithm to match users' personal olfactory profile with the perfect fragrance. Guerlain also allows customers to personalize the perfume bottle, including its shape, color and engraving.[Image Credit: © Guerlain SAS] 

"Guerlain opens pop-up store dedicated exclusively to fragrances at Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche", LVMH, May 14, 2018, © LVMH Moët Hennessy – Louis Vuitton
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Diptyque Goes Direct To Consumer

May 11, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Diptyque CEO Fabienne Mauny recently disclosed on its 50th anniversary the unisex fragrance and skincare brand is focusing on direct-to-consumer selling, offline with pop-ups, and online on its website and social media aimed at younger buyers. The shift responds to increasing consumer preference for niche/indie brands with a strong identity and buying online. The focus will also allow Dipytyque to address varied consumer preferences in its main markets in the U.S., Europe, Asia and the Middle East, like younger buyers who prefer its gender-less fragrances and the 60-70 percent consumer demographic who surf before they buy.[Image Credit: © Diptyque]
Mickey Alam Khan, "Diptyque CEO on pop-ups, expansion and state of the fragrance market", Luxury Daily, May 11, 2018, © Napean LLC
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Amorepacific Opens New York Pop-Up

May 11, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
South Korea’s beauty company Amorepacific is running a pop-up shop in New York City through May 25 to showcase all of its 20-plus brands, including fragrances, skin care lines and cosmetics. It’s the first time the company has brought all of its brands under one roof. It is partnering with Marie Claire for the popup, timed to coincide with the magazine’s May Global Beauty issue.[Image Credit: © AMOREPACIFIC CORPORATION]
Becky Bargh, "Amorepacific debuts first-ever global multi-brand pop-up shop in NYC", Cosmetics Business, May 11, 2018, © HPCi Media Limited
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Virtue Labs Expands Its Multichannel Distribution Model

May 10, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Just over a year since its launch, hair care brand Virtue Labs continues to expand its multichannel distribution model. It has extended its direct-to-consumer reach beyond its website by debuting on HSN at the end of last year. Offline, it aims to quadruple the number of salons it’s in, from 100 today, and expects to launch in 30 Bluemercury locations by the end of May, with more planned for the rest of the year. Virtue Labs founder and CEO, Melisse Shaban, said that DTC was perfect for first communicating the hair care benefits of its key technology, Alpha Keratin 60ku.[Image Credit: © Virtue Labs]
Faye Brookman, "Virtue Labs Expands on Strength of Its Brand Story", Women’s Wear Daily, May 10, 2018, © Penske Media Corporation
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New Dior Backstage Line Gives Glimpse Into Makeup Secrets

May 10, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Dior claims its new line, Backstage, is easy-to-use and basic cosmetics, and gives women, particularly Millennials, a glimpse into professional makeup secrets. It is to be launched in late May on Dior.com in France and the Middle East, before a rollout in those markets in stores. It will be available on the Dior site in other European markets from June 1, with a broader online rollout, including Asia, the US and Canada, from mid-June. It is a 40-product range of face and body products that appear to be in the same space as Kylie Cosmetics and Fenty Beauty, which are also positioned to appeal to Millennials.[Image Credit: © Christian Dior Couture S.A.]
Jennifer Weil , "EXCLUSIVE: Dior Backstage Makeup Line Set to Launch", Women’s Wear Daily, May 10, 2018, © Penske Media Corporation
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MONAT Global Collects Bravo Growth Award from DSN

May 9, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Direct-to-consumer premium haircare brand, MONAT has been awarded the Direct Selling Network's BRAVO Growth Award for topping the growth charts of all direct sales companies between fiscal years 2016 and 2017. It was also ranked 52nd on the DSN Global 100, its first appearance on the list. The brand is owned by Alcora Corp., a direct sales company focused on the US and Latin America.[Image Credit: © MONAT GLOBAL CORP]
"MONAT Global Receives BRAVO Growth Award from Direct Selling News", Business Wire , May 09, 2018, © Business Wire Inc
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Birchbox Revolutionizes Online Beauty Shopping With Personalized Subscription Boxes

May 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Personalization is the name of the game for beauty startup Birchbox, which offers curated subscription boxes that suit the customers' beauty profile. Customers sign up on Birchbox’s online platform and complete their beauty profile by answering questions about their skin and hair type and other beauty preferences. Birchbox uses the customers' profile to personalize monthly subscription boxes, which contain five cosmetic sample products from 800 brands. Customers can buy the full-sized products on Birchbox's website if they liked the samples sent to them. Roughly 65% of Birchbox's revenue comes from monthly customer subscriptions.[Image Credit: © Birchbox, Inc.]
Stephanie Crets , "How Birchbox personalizes beyond its subscription boxes", Digital Commerce 360, May 08, 2018, © Vertical Web Media LLC
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Revieve Launches White-Label AR Personalized Cosmetics Tool

May 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Finnish beauty tech firm Revieve is introducing a tool for brands and retailers to allow their customers to try on the full range of their products. Revieve AR Virtual Try-on is part of the company’s Digital Beauty Advisor integrated suite of white-label tools. It uses selfies to analyze faces to provide personalized product recommendations and advice. It will be available in e-commerce, in-store and social media channels. [Image Credit: © Revieve Inc.]

Natasha Spencer, "Seamless Asia eCommerce features AR beauty solution", Cosmetics Design Asia, May 07, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Clairol, Snapchat Makes Hair Color Try-On Tech For Shoppers

May 2, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Clairol is using Snapchat’s shoppable augmented reality platform, Lens, to allow users to “try-on” the brand’s Color Crave hair color products. The lenses will run through June 30, and users can also share and buy the products from the app. Clairol, a Coty brand, said the initiative is part of its effort to merge beauty and technology by creating a seamless shopping experience that bridges the gap between content and commerce.[Image Credit: © Coty, Inc.]

Gisselle Gaitan, "Clairol, Snapchat join forces to make shopping easy", Drug Store News, May 02, 2018, © Drug Store News
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Walgreens Unveils Online Skin Care Advisor Tool For Acne-Prone People

May 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

To help customers determine the appropriate skin care regimen to treat acne, US beauty and personal care retailer Walgreens has launched an online skin care analysis tool called SkinID. The tool, hosted on Walgreens' website, utilizes Johnson & Johnson Consumer Inc.'s SkinID technology and evaluates customers' skincare needs through a series of questions about their skin types and acne breakout experiences. It then recommends a personalized, three-step daily routine of cleansing, treatment, and moisturizing using products from Walgreens' pool of skin care brands. Walgreens’ Beauty Enthusiast club members can save their results on their online profiles. The tool is also available in select Walgreens stores.[Image Credit: © Walgreen Co.]

"Walgreens Launches Online Skincare Advisor SkinID™ to Provide Acne Sufferers with Personalized Skincare Regimens", Business Wire, May 03, 2018, © Business Wire, Inc.
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L'Oréal Acquires Stylenanda, Korea's 1st Beauty Brand

May 2, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Global beauty company L'Oréal has announced the acquisition of its first Korean beauty company, Nanda Co. Ltd. Stylenanda, which started as a fashion brand, is now dominated by the 3CE cosmetic brand, which contributed over 70% of total 2017 turnover of 127 million euros. L’Oréal aims to expand the brand internationally. The company currently has operations in Korea and Japan, and also does business in overseas markets, such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. It uses multi-channel online and offline distribution, including its own flagship physical locations in Seoul and Tokyo. L’Oréal said the brand is well placed to address the growing demand for makeup by millennials, especially in Korea and China.[Image Credit: © NANDA]
"L'Oreal acquires Korean Stylenanda", L'Oréal, May 02, 2018, © L'Oréal
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Cosmetic Giants Turn To AR Tech To Lure Customers

May 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Some of the biggest names in the cosmetic industry are seeing the value of augmented reality (AR) to boost customer reach and improve sales. MAC Cosmetics used AR to develop a mirror to show customers how they would look with makeup. According to the firm, this will help avoid "buyer's remorse" when shopping for makeup. Benefit Cosmetics launched a mobile app called Brow Try-On, which helps customers visualize their face with different eyebrow shapes and sizes. The app also has a tutorial that features Benefit products.

Romany Reagan, "Why AR Access Is Important for Retailers", Exchange Wire, May 01, 2018, © RETAILTECHNEWS
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LG’s Household & Health Care Arm Acquires Avon Japan

April 30, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Ginza Stefany, a Japanese subsidiary of LG’s Household & Health Care (LG H&H) business, has agreed to acquire Avon’s Japanese operation, Avon Japan for 10.5 billion yen (approximately US$96 million). Direct-seller Avon Japan was established 50 years ago and is ranked 21st in the country in terms of retail sales. LG H&H, which has built its Japanese operation with two local acquisitions, Ginza Stefany Cosmetics in 2012 and Everlife in 2013, has been developing its business presence in Japan, which Euromonitor International estimates is the third largest beauty and personal care market in the world, with 2017 sales of US$ 36.1 billion.[Image Credit: © Stefany]
Natasha Spencer , "LG H&H acquires Avon Japan", Cosmetics Design Asia, April 30, 2018, © William Reed Business Media
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Beauty Brand Glossier Expands Offline But Remains Focused on Online DTC

April 23, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Glossier, a direct-to-consumer beauty brand, is to open its first physical outlet on the West Coast, in the hope of repeating the success of its pop-up store in San Francisco, which opened for a month in March, and what is described as a shoppable ‘showroom’ in New York. The brand has also tried one-week pop-up stores in both London and Toronto. The new 1,500 square foot store will be on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. The brand has proved popular among millennials in both the US and the UK, and the company attracted over $50 million in Series C finance earlier this year. Emily Weiss, founder and CEO, says that the new store doesn’t signal a change in the brand’s predominantly online focus, and also confirmed that the brand will continue to prioritize selling directly to the consumer. Online, it relies on social media and influencers to drive sales.[Image Credit: © Glossier] 
Sian Gardiner , "Glossier to open permanent store in Los Angeles ", Cosmetics Design, April 23, 2018, © William Reed Business Media
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Coty Magic Mirror Is World's First Blended Reality Makeup Try-On Service

April 20, 2018: 12:00 AM EST


Coty seeks to provide the "next generation" of personal consumer experience with its new Magic Mirror, which combines virtual reality and physical products in a blended reality makeup try-on service. The new technology was unveiled during the relaunch of Coty's Borjois Paris boutique. Shoppers can pick a makeup product and watch the Magic Mirror "apply" it to their reflection. Visitors can use the Magic Mirror with lipsticks, eye makeup, and brushes that the Mirror "matches" with their skin tones thanks to computer vision and augmented reality technology. Magic Mirror can also take selfies of customers with the virtual makeup, which it can then e-mail to its users or print in-store.[Image Credit: © Coty, Inc.]

"Coty Introduces Blended Reality Beauty Magic Mirror Powered by Physical Products", Coty, April 20, 2018, © Coty Inc.
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Macy's Beauty Launches New Services To Improve The Shopper Experience

April 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Macy's Beauty is aiming to provide customers with an enhanced shopping experience online and in physical stores. For example, customers in some stores can use the YouCam Makeup magic mirror kiosks to try on makeup virtually, using selfies. Other aspects of the retailer’s drive include Beauty Playground, a program to keep its beauty advisors up to date on tips and products, and Macy’s Beauty Box, a $15 per month subscription service that provides samples and freebies. This is complemented by Macy’s Beauty’s new online campaign, the “Deeper Beauty”, aimed at helping women feel empowered and more confident. [Image Credit: © Macys.com, LLC]

"Find Your Beautiful at Macy’s This Spring", Business Wire , April 17, 2018, © Business Wire, Inc.
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Unilever Saves 30% With Its In-House Creative Content Production Agency

March 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever, the world's second largest advertiser is reducing the number of its advertising agencies from 3,000 to 1,500, by handling content production with U-Studios, its in-house creative agency. The 17 U-Studios in 12 countries now creates content for some of its brands. Savings are reinvested in marketing and in-store spend. And with online sales increasing by 80% last year, Unilever is also investing heavily in digital, leveraging its in-house People Data Centers for real-time analytics of consumer relationships.
Gideon Spanier, "Unilever claims 30% saving from handling content production in-house", Campaign Live, March 08, 2018, © Haymarket Media Group Ltd.
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L'Oréal Group Closes Robust 2017, Posting Strong Sales, Profit, Solid Growth

March 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The L'Oréal Group closed out fiscal 2017 reporting strong sales for the year, totaling €26.02 billion ($32.3 billion), up 4.8 percent from 2016 based on a comparable scope of consolidation and constant exchange rates. Factors affecting revenue included consolidation (-2.8 percent); acquisitions (+0.9 percent); sale of The Body Shop (-3.7 percent); and currency fluctuations (-1.3 percent). Growth at constant exchange rates was 2.0 percent. Growth in the Active Cosmetics Division, which includes the CeraVe products, was 5.8 percent like-for-like (11.9 percent reported). Division sales surpassed €2 billion ($2.5 billion). The division continues to grow internationally, “thanks to the successful integration of CeraVe, which is growing strongly in the American market” at a rate of 20 percent annually. The company still posted growth of 1.7 percent like-for-like (3.5 percent reported). “The American market is continuing to grow, but is facing a slowdown,” the company said.
 
The profitability of Active Cosmetics slid 60 basis points at 22.6 percent but continues to be the most profitable division. The company noted that it invested significantly “to support skincare brand Vichy, to accelerate La Roche-Posay, and to prepare for the rollout of CeraVe.” The company saw acceleration in the overall skincare market, thanks to Baby Boomers and to Millennials, and to Asian consumers. Division President Brigitte Liberman said two major elements are driving the division’s success: first, a “powerful and sustainable trend for skincare you can trust,” and second, the acquisition of CeraVe, which has “transformed the worldwide footprint of the division and complemented our brand portfolio.”  [Image Credit: ©  L'Oréal]
"L'Oreal 2017 Annual Results", Earnings release, L'Oréal, March 08, 2018, © L'Oréal
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Avon To Exit Australia And New Zealand To Focus On Other Markets

March 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Avon plans to leave Australia and New Zealand by the end of 2018. The company reported a 3% decline in revenue in Asia-Pacific for fiscal year 2017 compared to a 2% fall overall. The company said it will focus on areas where there is “greater potential for future growth.”  The news will impact 220 staff and 21,400 representatives in the region.
"Avon to Exit Australia and NZ", Global Cosmetic Industry, March 07, 2018, © Allured Business Media
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Arrival Of CeraVe In U.K. Will Give French Competitors A Run For Their Money

February 27, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
British beauty writer Dominique Temple welcomed the arrival of L'Oréal’s CeraVe line of ceramide-based skincare products to the U.K., noting that they offer high-quality, affordable alternatives to French products – including Avene and Bioderma – with their “stalwart formulas and chic packaging.” She bestowed her stamp of approval on the popular American pharmacy brand: “CeraVe really is an affordable, accessible, cosmetically elegant range for all skin types.” Other affordable American products in the same category she recommended include Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Yogurt Vanilla Body Wash, and RoC, Max Resurfacing Facial Cleanser. [Image Credit: © Bioderma]
 
Dominique Temple, "The Affordable American Beauty Brand Set to Rival French Pharmacy Favourites", The Telegraph, February 27, 2018, © Telegraph Media Group Limited
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CeraVe Products Now Available In The U.K.

February 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
L'Oréal’s CeraVe skincare brand arrived in the U.K. on March 5. Seven products are being sold at Boots pharmacies and online. British beauty writer Caroline Hirons called the CeraVe product line “the kinder, gentler alternative to the harshness of Cetaphil” and worth investigating if you “can’t afford to spend too much on skincare” or just don’t want to. The company announced it has hired Blanket Consulting to work with Sarah Ashwick at L’Oréal for the U.K. launch  Blanket will work on the brand’s press and influencer relations. [Image Credit: © CeraVe]
"CeraVe Launches in the UK", CarolineHirons.com, February 07, 2018, © Caroline Hirons
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