CO BIGELOW REDUX: Courtney Baber, general manager for CO Bigelow, was let go from her post earlier in the month as part of the corporate-wide 10 percent employee reduction from the retailer’s parent, The Limited Brands. Baber had been charged with overseeing the expansion of CO Bigelow into 100 stores nationwide over the next several years, with 10 new units planned for this year. Bigelow remains at nine units, the same number it had last July, and expansion is being reassessed.
This story first appeared in the March 20, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
MARCH FLOWERS: DKNY Fragrances is feting the first day of spring by handing out pink roses and scented pieces from flower carts located outside Bloomingdale’s 59th Street flagship and Donna Karan’s boutique on 60th Street and Madison Avenue. The aim, executives said, is to make an emotional connection between consumers and the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc.-owned brand’s new Be Delicious Fresh Blossom fragrance, which has a pink hue and features heart notes of sheer muguet, rose and jasmine. “We are encouraging consumers to embrace the spring season with a sense of renewal and hope after such a long winter,” said Carol Russo, senior vice president and general manager of Aramis and Designer Fragrances for North America. “We just launched the fragrance in the beginning of March, and in three weeks we are overachieving plan with double-digit growth for the Be Delicious franchise.” While she wouldn’t comment on numbers, the new scent is seen adding to sales of the entire DKNY franchise on a global basis, which amounts to more than $250 million, according to industry sources.
DAKAR’S NEW ADDITION: Famed facialist Sonya Dakar has new weapons in her beauty and health arsenal: a vitamin and supplement lineup that will hit stores in June. “It’s not for skin per se, but for overall general health,” said Dakar at a Manhattan event earlier this week. The line includes two vitamin cocktails — Perfect Men and Perfect Women, formulated specifically for each gender — as well as a patented acidophilus flora supplement and Ultima Power, a protein shake available in three flavors, which Dakar explains is “medical food, which provides complete protein, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, healthy fat and 35 percent or more of the recommended daily allowance for most vitamins and minerals.” The gender-specific vitamin kits each retail for $98, while the acidophilus is $44 and the Ultima Power flavors are each $55.
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ECO-FRIENDLY FRAGRANCES: French Canadian company Fruits & Passion will launch in April its Imagine series of three new fragrances — Apple Illusion, Peach Obsession and Mango Evasion. The Imagine line is available in an eau de toilette, hand soap, hand cream, foaming bath wash, shower gel and quenching butter. All formulations, priced from $12 to $30, are biodegradable and contain 85 to 95 percent natural and plant-derived ingredients. Industry sources estimate Fruits & Passion will generate $130 million in retail sales this year, with Imagine expected to account for 45 percent of the brand’s fine fragrance and body care sales.
HONOR ROLL: Nicky Kinnaird has been named a Member of the Order of the British Empire, or MBE, for her services to the beauty industry. The founder of cosmetics store chain Space NK received her appointment Thursday at Buckingham Palace. “I am honored to receive this award,” said Kinnaird. “The journey, from opening my first store some 15 years ago to this achievement today, has been fantastic, although not without a lot of hard graft en route. I am still so passionate about the future of Space NK. The journey has only just begun.”
PHILOSOPHY OF LOVE: Beauty lifestyle brand Philosophy is launching a fragrance for spring, Unconditional Love, and has created a Web site, philosophygiveslove.com, to promote the new scent. Unconditional Love debuted at Philosophy stores and on Philosophy’s Web site March 15, and is scheduled to launch April 1 at retailers nationwide, including Sephora and Nordstrom. Unconditional love includes a 1.7-oz. fragrance, retailing for $40, a Firming Body Emulsion retailing for $34, as well as a 3-in-1 shampoo, shower gel and bubble bath, all available for $22.
SHOW BIZ: The Makeup Show held its inaugural Los Angeles edition March 15-16 at the California Market Center, and more than 2,100 people attended, topping the first show in New York four years ago. The show featured some 55 exhibitors, including Temptu, Youngblood Mineral Cosmetics, Korres Natural Products, Becca, Lash Control, Jane Iredale and Make Up For Ever. A few key lip products were the talk of the show. Obsessively Compulsive Cosmetics’ lip tar, a $15 cross between lipstick and lip gloss, was a brisk seller, as was Kissable Couture’s $22 First Lady pink-brown lip gloss shade that’s being worn by Michelle Obama. In May, Kissable Couture will launch a warm pink $22 lip gloss called Lady Love developed in collaboration with singer LeToya Luckett, who is releasing an album of the same name that month.