[affiliate used] The rumours that Marc Jacobs Beauty was quitting the UK had been rumbling about since the middle of last year but it turns out that Kendo (the brand owner) has not renewed its license with Marc Jacobs and the brand is gone completely. If you’re in the US, never released palettes are floating about in TJ Maxx (the US counterpart of TK Maxx in the UK). Bizarrely, Kendo has kept KVD beauty – I do not know anyone who actively seeks that brand out here in the UK – and has brought on Lip Lab which is an interesting development.
Lip Lab is Bite Beauty’s (also Kendo) customizable retail offering where you can choose your own finish, colour, texture and scent. Prescriptives all over again in other words and how ELC must be kicking themselves. I suppose they have the power to bring it back. I predict a rise in customizable beauty but gaining traction at community levels such as ‘make your own lipstick’ parties and courses. In fact, I’m going on a course next week. YSL’s Rouge Sur Mesure is the new at home lipstick shade creator HERE.
HoF on Oxford Street is in its last week before shuttering completely. The sight is upsetting – brands who haven’t taken back their stock (for whatever reason) are jumbled together (Shiseido, Clarins and Clinique mostly) on the ground floor in messy piles with hand drawn 50% off signs. If you are going to close a store, do it with dignity and respect. Everybody understands closing discounts but this was more picking the dirty bones. Further closures are scheduled around the country – one heritage building is (physically) disintegrating due to what looks strongly like poor maintenance management so it will be interesting to see what exact reasons are given for the inevitable shuttering.
Everybody remember Jeanine Lobell? Founder of Stila (1994) when it was fun and exciting before selling to Lauder who then sold it on? Well, she’s back with a new brand, Neen (her nickname). Before we get excited, it’s working on a subscription model (like Beauty Pie) and beginning in the US in February.
E45 has been sold by Reckitt Benckiser for £200m to Swedish corporation, Karo Pharma. They own Footner and Nailner (plus the intriguingly sounding Fungobase, Poxlciin and Wortie amongst others) and they picked up Scholl foot care last year.
It’s not yet beauty, but is so easily transferrable from fashion that I think it soon will be, but keep an eye out for UK brand Heat Mystery Boxes HERE, with funding from LVMH start-ups. There are monthly fashion curations with boxes sent out across the US, EU and UK – the ‘mystery’ is that you get what they send, not what you choose, although there are choice parameters within that. It’s so easily transferrable to beauty (see MAC’s offer of a Mystery Box for £35 HERE) that start ups must be stampeding to compete. Basically, mystery boxes are the new beauty boxes.
P&G is shopping again. Having recently acquired Ouai Hair Care, they’re rumoured to be on the cusp of snapping up NYC brand Tula Beauty that focuses on skin biome. P&G also own SK-II and I’d forgotten that brand even existed.
Of all the surprise news I wasn’t expecting, the fact that L’Occitane has invested in lingerie ranks quite highly. L’Occitane is so much more than pretty French skin care these days – they opened their start up studio (venture capital) Obratori in 2018. From looking at previous investments, they’re very excitable about algae. Lolo Paris is lingerie for ‘digital natives’ at which point I would switch off but it looks absolutely lovely (HERE) with a thorough ‘morphology’ questionnaire to help you choose .
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