LONDON — Estée Lauder is giving its beauty offer a tech spin for its first Estée Edit brick-and-mortar outpost, a 700-square-foot space on Carnaby Street in London’s Soho. Although the store will mostly stock products from its new Millennial-focused collection The Estée Edit, it will carry a selection of other products as well.
“London is a key city for the traveling consumer,” said Stephanie Sherman, vice president general manager, the U.K. and Ireland, at Estée Lauder. “It was important for us to open our first freestanding store in this travel corridor where we can showcase our brands to the world.
“The first market where Estée Edit opened after North America was the U.K. As we have different distribution here, it made sense for us to open a store to showcase the brand in its entirety — and to its maximum.”
She said Carnaby Street attracts around 44 million visitors a year and offers an interesting blend of Millennials, young professionals and multiethnic consumers and tourists, adding the brand sees the street as a “capsule area” of the consumers it’s trying to reach.
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“Consumers who shop there don’t necessarily shop in traditional channels, and they tend to be younger, versus those in Oxford Street or Covent Garden.” She added that the U.K. Estée Edit customer is “at the older end of the Millennial scale.”
Located at 46 Carnaby Street, in between Vans and Scalpers, the store will open its doors on Nov. 12.
The Estée Edit collection is aimed at selfie-obsessed young women — aiming to tap into the followers of Estée Lauder face Kendall Jenner. Bestsellers include the Pore Vanishing Stick, Flash Photo Powder, Flash Photo Gloss, Edgiest Mascara, Flash Illuminator and BeamTeam Hydrate and Glow. In addition, the store will carry pieces from the brand’s makeup and skin-care range. It will also stock U.K. exclusives such as a Carnaby Street-inspired makeup look and bag.
“The Estée Edit is a digital first brand so any space we go into, traditional or otherwise, has to be connected,” Sherman said. “The social-to-store consumer journey with the expert in the middle is at the heart of our plans. We are looking at locations across the country in addition to a variety of online retailers. This is the right moment for Estée Lauder to open a freestanding store. The brand is showing fantastic growth, and has been on a journey of modernization for the past few years, which is a success story in itself.”
The boutique has been enhanced with digital experiences and social activation points such as a selfie mirror where shoppers can take a picture of their beauty makeover and share the picture or print the image on-site. The company has designed “play areas” for shoppers to try products on. The store will also offer bespoke services and treatments, host beauty events and will offer shoppers expert advice.
Earlier this year, Jenner made an appearance at the Estée Edit launch in Selfridges where she greeted a crowd of about 200 journalists, friends of the brand and those who’d won tickets to the Oxford Street store event. Jenner has helped create a 14-shade eye palette with matte and shimmer finishes incorporating her signature shade of purple.
The company currently operates 50 Estée Lauder stores around the world.