By  on April 2, 2010

LONDON — L’Occitane aims to bring a bloom to its customers’ cheeks with a new makeup collection.

The French beauty brand will introduce a flower-inspired makeup line starting this month. It is to change regularly to reflect a different floral theme.

“We think it’s a fabulous complement to our skin care range, [which now represents] more than 20 percent of our business,” said Laure Masson, the brand’s U.K. marketing manager. “We’ve been asked for makeup, especially by our skin care customers.”

Peonies inspired the line’s debut products. Its outer packaging, for instance, resembles seed sachets, while an extract of the flower is incorporated into all formulations.

“[The peony] is a symbol of beauty and femininity in the Mediterranean,” said Masson, adding lore tells of a nymph named Paeonia who was transformed into a thousand-petal flower by a jealous goddess.

L’Occitane worked with peony expert Jean-Luc Rivière, whose family has worked with the flower for 160 years. Each product’s shade is inspired by a peony variety. The yellow-hued Mine d’Or (or Goldmine in English) peony inspired a bronzer dubbed Healthy Glow Face Powder. The peony of the same name is featured on its cardboard container, as well as its outer packaging.

The color line comprises 19 items, including lipstick; lip shine; tinted water, which can be used on lips and cheeks; lip balm, and illuminating powder. Makeup brushes and a fragrance, Paeonia, are also part of the collection. The eau de toilette, which includes notes of bergamot, grapefruit, peony, rose petals, sandalwood and white musk, and brushes will remain part of L’Occitane’s lineup permanently.

Prices in the U.K. will range from 8 pounds, or $12.23 at current exchange, for a 15-ml. tube of Baume de Paeon lip balm, to 19.50 pounds, or $29.80, for a 10-g. palette of Etoile des Neiges Illuminating Powder. The 75-ml. edt Paeonia spray will be priced at 28 pounds, or $42.79.

Masson, who noted that L’Occitane has dipped its toes into the color cosmetics segment in the past, said the new line will likely appeal to new consumers for the brand as well as a young demographic.

The makeup and fragrance lines will roll out to L’Occitane stores worldwide this and next month.

Industry sources estimate the collection will generate first-year sales in the U.K. of 650,000 pounds, or $993,330.

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