Dubai is emerging as a major market for beauty innovations coming to the U.S. The latest to come ashore is a fast-growing vegan brand with value pricing.Luscious was developed 10 years ago by Founder Mehrbano Sethi as a cruelty-free, vegan and long-lasting collection highlighted by vibrant colors. Prices range from $8 for a brow pencil to $24 for a contour kit. Although developed in Dubai with formulas to withstand any climate, the inspiration for the line came while Sethi was a student in the U.S. The brand is now sold in six markets including the U.S., Pakistan, United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.“I’ve had my eye on the North American market for some time, considering the idea for my brand stems from my time as a student in Boston,” Sethi explained. When she couldn’t find shades to suit her South Asian complexion at drugstores, she set out to create a richly pigmented line that could be sold at an affordable price.[caption id="attachment_10960103" align="alignnone" width="200"] Mehrbano Sethi[/caption]“Our pricing philosophy is also an important asset. While not cheap, our products are extremely affordable taking into consideration our cruelty-free, vegan and paraben-free claims as well as eye-catching packaging and innovative product concepts,” Sethi said. She added the markets where Luscious has grown are very price-sensitive. “A $9 lipstick is expected to perform and feel like a $30 lipstick without cutting any slack for the lower price point,” she added.Sethi also decided to forge into the U.S. as the market opens up to global brands. “The recent rise of independent beauty brands including K-beauty brands, and the way American customers are engaging with them, was a sign that the time is right to introduce Luscious Cosmetics to a new audience that is open to discovering new products and brand stories,” she said.Luscious, by design, will debut online only from the company’s web site. “We want to find our customers, create a connection with them and grow our presence before partnering with other online retailers, followed by brick-and-mortar retail,” she said. “Another factor that gives me pause before seeking retail partners is the rapid launch and disappearance of in-house beauty brands that is taking place in a bid to cash in on what is perceived as the beauty ‘bubble.’ I believe we need to establish credibility before we open more sales channels,” she explained.[caption id="attachment_10960105" align="alignnone" width="300"] Camera Powder[/caption]That said, she does have an eye on pop-up stores and visibility at makeup trade shows along with influencer collaborations.Her vegan positioning is key as that demand expands in the U.S. “The vegan aspect of our products came through in the early development stage when I was creating our first formulas. Our target customers in South Asia and the Middle East had a pronounced sensitivity to animal-derived ingredients whether it was because they wanted halal products or because they were vegetarian,” she said.It was also a personal motivation, but it made product development a challenge. “I had to dodge many ingredients, including beeswax — which most manufacturers don't even consider as a non-vegan ingredient — carmine and lanolin, leading to unusually long development times for new product formulas,” Sethi noted. “Being vegan paid off in the long run as more and more customers demand it.”Changes in the beauty business also paved the way for Luscious. “When I was researching the possibility of starting a beauty brand almost straight out of college in 2004, contract manufacturing was not easy for small, independent businesses — unlike the extreme ease today of creating an eponymous or private beauty brand,” she said. The rise of small quantity fillers and private labeling options has eased the process.
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For @laperlalingerie's spring 2018 show, the brand chose to host their event at @thevenetianmacao. With Chinese megastars @bingbing_fan and @hubing in attendance, La Perla debuted a rock ‘n’ roll-inspired collection. The show marked the start of Sands Macao Fashion Week, which runs from October 19 to 24 — the city’s first such event. Pictured here are models backstage with glimmering eyes. #wwdfashion (📷: Cheuk-Yin To)
Trending for spring 2018: top stitch design. Gone are the days of stitch just for seams — designers are using the once-minimal detail to create strong decorative elements. (📷: Paola Testa; Styled by @andrew_shang) #wwdfashion
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)