Beauty. When young shoots jostle traditional retailers
In Europe, the young brands of skincare and beauty have decided to increase their brand exposure on the retailers’ shelves. “The Ordinary” (skincare) and “Aime” (dietary supplement) are now listed at the Galeries Lafayette department store (Champs Elysées flagship). “Mimitika” solar products are sold at Space NK in the U.K., Douglas in Germany, Monoprix and Sephora in France. The “Respire” deodorants are listed at Sephora and Monoprix.
These beauty brands have started challenging historical players. The latest have been able to historically manage operations by distribution network and channels (offline versus offline) but are slow to rejuvenate. However, new beauty brands adapt to customers’ expectations, offer radical approaches in terms of transparency (product composition, manufacturing processes), are able to create and federate communities of consumers around their values and have fully integrated into the digital world.
For the beauty box retailer Birchbox (400,000 subscribers in Europe in August 2019, range of 7,000 products), these brands are key to serve a promise of discovery and customisation. “Over the last 18 months, the cosmetics brand called “La Canopée” entered our “Top 15” of best-selling brands on Birchbox.fr via 2 sampling campaigns”, said Quentin Reygrobellet, General Manager of Birchbox-France. Within this “Top 15”, Birchbox ranks 7 “new brands” versus 8 so-called “historical ones”. The skincare brand Garancia, purchased by Unilever a few months ago for an undisclosed sum is one of its best-selling brands this year.
Audrey Delort-Laval, Founder of the brand Mimitika (sold in 1,500 European stores including 700 Sephora, 130 Monoprix and 20 Space NK) shares the same vision. “In the travel retail sector, retailers such as Lagardère have historically focused of discovery and novelty, but this is much more recent for retailers like Sephora or Space NK (turnover of €116 million in 2018 up by 6.7%, with 50% online). This is the case with Douglas, which has completely reviewed its beauty section. For them, offering niche brands has become a matter of attractivity”.
For Justine Hutteau, Founder of Respire (a young brand of deodorants created end of 2018), the current challenge for retailers is to “listen to consumers’ voices”. To date, Respire is listed in 300 Monoprix and 335 Sephora in France. “The head of the beauty section at Monoprix said that after 8 years in her role, she had never seen a 4-month brand selling so well”, said an anonymous expert. In a video totalling 3 million views on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram, Justine Hutteau tells her story and brand project. She created a natural deodorant after being diagnosed with a benign breast tumour. This virality has helped Respire reach amazing sales results: 1 month after launch, it reported 21,018 orders of deodorant units for total sales of nearly €210,000. In 9 months, she sold more than 200,000 units. Watch this space and stay tuned…