One of the big topics in beauty world is whether the department store will survive so it’s crushing news that Macys in the US is closing 100 of its stores. I’ve talked about stand-alone stores before – if you look at the landscape of London’s Covent Garden area, it’s swamped with beauty stand-alones and this has happened only in the past couple of years. Chanel, Burberry, Charlotte Tilbury, MAC and more are investing in single brand retail spaces. SpaceNK has just announced a flagship store on Regent Street and although they’re obviously multi-brand, it’s following the shape of things to come for how we buy beauty. I just have a little thought in my head that Space holds some very well located properties and with a central London flagship now, this does make it more attractive for potential buyers should it come up for sale. Perhaps from the USA.

I get a weekly report through from a company called My Market Monitor that shows media results (mentions in magazines/newspapers/online) for various categories. This week it’s perfume. What’s shocking is that 96% of all ad revenue in print comes from 10 fragrance brands (including P&G and Coty). So, print is relying so heavily on so few advertisers in the fragrance sector and it doesn’t need explaining that if even one of the top ten decides to dedicate their ad spend on-line instead, how devastating this could potentially be for print. Many of the major beauty brands have pulled out of print and focus all their ad spend on-line instead. Interestingly, P&G invested hugely in Facebook advertising last year and yet this year are pulling their spend significantly due to ‘lack of response’. Fragrance sales in the UK are marginally down this year.

Over in the US, the FDA is all over the beauty industry – recently hauling up Peter Thomas Roth and Freeze 24-7 to name a couple. In the case of Freeze, the FDA maintain that what they’re claiming on a specific product goes beyond the realm of beauty and puts it in a medical category because it is intended to ‘affect the structure or function of the human body’ (source: There are literally thousands of products that skirt the blurry line between beauty and medical which means that brands have to be very careful how they phrase their claims. If a product is put in a medical category, it can only then be sold through professional or dermatological outlets which significantly reduces its sales potential. Despite the barrage of claims that we see, I believe that many under-declare so they don’t get forced into a medical category.

Suqqu Blush
Suqqu Blush

I’ll leave this on something pretty and flag up that the gorgeous Suqqu ombre blushes that I blogged a few weeks back have now launched. They’re £30 HERE. 

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