Buyers visit a booth at the Intercharm Beauty Expo Korea show in Seoul.
SEOUL — Last week, Intercharm Beauty Expo, a major South Korean beauty trade show, took place in Seoul, at Coex Convention and Exhibition Centre in Seoul’s major commercial district, Gangnam. The three-day event featured a diverse array of Korean skin care, with more than 100 local brands exhibiting products. A major addition to this year’s event was the Russian pavilion showcasing major Russian skin-care brands, as well as the noticeable numbers of Russian buyers. The event also marked the 15th edition of the fair, and more importantly, the rebranding and relaunch of Intercharm Beauty Expo Korea, formerly known as Beauty Expo Korea, and its new partnership with Russian cosmetics trade show organizer, Intercharm Professionals. The South Korean organizer of the event, Reed K. Fairs Exhibitions, who also partnered with local exhibition and convention company Seoul Messe International, said the key reason for linking with Russia was the Korean cosmetics industry’s need to diversify, especially in the aftermath of South Korea’s tensions with China over its deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense antiballistic missile system. South Korea saw a huge fall in Chinese tourism, Chinese tourist-related domestic retail sales, and experienced issues in exporting its cultural content to China much of this year, due to an unofficial boycott by China over its disapproval over THAAD. South Korea is expected to experience a devastating $15 billion deficit this year, due to the drop in Chinese tourism and retail sales alone. Along with tourism and entertainment, Kbeauty is one of the sectors that has been hit the hardest, as profits fell for the nation’s major beauty producers. One of the nation’s largest cosmetics producers, AmorePacific, reported net income between July and September this year dropped to 79.8 billion won (or $73.4 million), compared with 117 billion won (or $107.6 million) during the same period in 2016, according to Yonhap. Other brands have experienced similar plunges in sales. “The South Korean beauty market was quite affected by the drop in Chinese consumers,” said Hadley Hong, project director at Reed K. Fairs Exhibitions. “Our industry, they realized — we cannot depend on the Chinese market so much. We need to aggressively find a new market which is not so risky, or changeable.” Despite reassurance from both sides — China and South Korea have promised to resume good relations, and local press cite Chinese consumption will go back to normal by February — THAAD tensions has left the K beauty industry shaken. “Last year, our major visitors were Chinese, but because of this kind of conflict, we could lose our biggest customers [if it were to happen again],” said Hong. “In Korea, we think that Southeast Asia, the Middle East, or the Russian and Central Eastern European markets have great potential. This is the kind of discussion that [the K beauty industry] had while we were in the middle of THAAD,” he added.Last year, K beauty exports to Russia totaled more than $48 million, according to the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency. While makeup and skin-care products saw a 69 percent increase in sales year-over-year, and are expected to continue to grow.“Yesterday, we had a conference held by the Russian embassy in Korea. They came here to give visitors information about what’s going on in the Russian market and how to sell well in the Russian market. More than 150 people from local Korean companies came," said Hong, adding that many Korean firms are eager to gain entry into the market. Russian buyers at the event included PJSC 36.6, the nation’s largest pharmacy chain with more than 1,740 pharmacies. As well as beauty anthology retailer L’Etoile, who can be likened to Sephora, with 1000 stores in 200 Russian cities. Besides the Russia-centric focus, the event also saw many South Korean brands touting Kbeauty’s latest big trends including organic baby skin-care brands, "cosmedicals" or medical cosmetics, Jeju Island-branded products, and a vast aray of oral care products -including toothpaste in chewable tablet form, and Korean color cosmetics.
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)