Origins' pop-up cafe at Style Dimension. Photo Credit: Patrick MacLeod

Brand-tailored pop-ups and industry expert panelists led the “WWD x Samsung Style Dimension,” a two-day event underscoring immersive consumer experiences and the blending of beauty, fashion and technology. The event took place at Samsung 837 in New York on Sept. 6 and Sept. 7. Style Dimension was held in partnership with Samsung 837 and The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc.

For the first time, Style Dimension was shoppable: Attendees could purchase products across all featured beauty brands and interact with pop-ups powered by Samsung’s technologies. Inspired by the “experience economy” that drives consumers to try before they buy and connect with brands digitally and socially, Style Dimension amalgamated personalization and technology to breathe new life into the beauty category.

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The event saw the launch of two new products from The Estée Lauder Cos.’ brand portfolio: Becca Cosmetics’ “Volcano Goddess Collection”; MAC x The Blonds “Bombshell Essentials,” MAC Cosmetics’ makeup collection collaboration with design team David and Phillipe Blond, and an exclusive preview of Origins’ “Hello Calm” mask, which officially launches Sept. 18. In addition, hair-care company Bumble and bumble introduced the newest products to its Thickening Range (Bb.Thickening Go BigTreatment and Bb. Thickening Great Body Blow Dry Crème) and offered complimentary styling services for attendees, while skin-care firm GlamGlow showcased its entire collection of masks that event-goers could test from its “Mud Bar.”

Bumble and bumble’s on-site hairstyling services. Photo by Patrick MacLeod  Patrick MacLeod

And Samsung 837 — an “experiential hub” and modular marketing center in the Meatpacking District — is designed to accommodate consumers’ increased interest in brand experiences. A representative for Samsung told WWD that by “merging technology and fashion together” the event offered a “culturally compelling series of programming.”

Samsung said through immersive experiences, “in collaboration with innovative brands, we are able to democratize the New York Fashion Week experience and educate consumers on the importance of the intersection of fashion and technology. We have some incredible programming coming up at Samsung 837 and encourage everyone to stop by to check out some of our newest experiences.”

Touted as “high touch” and “digital first,” The Estée Lauder Cos. and its brands are keenly focused on constructing authentic, one-of-a-kind experiences for consumers. Chris Good, president, North America, The Estée Lauder Companies, told WWD, “Our brands are known for transformative products and high-touch, immersive brand experiences that capture consumers when, where and how they like to shop. High-touch in today’s digital world includes leveraging technology, experiential retail and social media throughout the consumer journey, which makes the WWD x Samsung Style Dimension a natural fit for the company and our brands.”

Origins’ Amsterdam-inspired pop-up cafe. Photo Credit: Patrick MacLeod  Patrick MacLeod

Activations at the event included Samsung’s “Traces,” which allowed attendees to sketch on selfies taken in front of a customized GlamGlow background, and the MAC + The Blonds “MAC is Color” experience, which filled Samsung’s “Freeform” booth with music and imagery drawn and designed by guests on their phones through an “S-Pen” device. But perhaps most creative was the preview of Origins’ Hello Calm product, a soothing mask infused with natural, non-intoxicating cannabis sativa seed oil from hemp. Hello Calm is the first product to ever “capitalize on this ingredient trend” from The Estée Lauder Cos. brand portfolio, according to the firm. Origins introduced the product in a pop-up café, giving consumers the opportunity to sample the mask while indulging in decadent brownies, green gummies and tea, alongside a VR experience that transported event-goers to a classic “coffee shop” in Amsterdam through Samsung’s VR technology.

Julie Van Ongevalle, senior vice president, global general manager at Origins, told WWD, “For Origins we always look to nature for inspiration, and cannabis sativa seed oil has long been known as a high-performing plant, highly effective for calming and soothing skin. It’s known as a ‘super oil’ for skin, rich in omegas and essential fatty acids. We also follow the trends of nature, but also what’s trending in our industry.”

Van Ongevalle added that Samsung’s technology “played an integral part in getting our guests into the spirit of the cannabis sativa seed oil ingredient” and that its products are “highly sensorial,” noting that “[Samsung’s] technology helped us add that sensory dimension in the VR alley, highlighting the beauty of the cannabis sativa seed oil ingredient to our guests.”

Cynde Watson of Becca Cosmetics. Photo by Patrick MacLeod  Patrick MacLeod

And Becca Cosmetics makeup artists were on-site to offer services for event-goers via its newly launched product, the gorgeously formulated Volcano Goddess Collection, which features 12 creamy eyeshadows in three finishes: ultra-matte, shimmer and molten metallic. Each shade is richly pigmented — “Gilded,” in particular — and plays off a gem theme (additional colors include “Diamond Dust,” “Hematite” and “Midnight Sapphire”.) The shades were “energized” with black tourmaline, a natural mineral crystal used for protection and grounding stone formed in volcanoes, according to the brand. Devon Bartley, brand marketing director at Becca Cosmetics, told WWD, “We were inspired by molten, metallic gemstones for the Volcano Goddess Collection. We loved seeing trends of high-impact color on the eye, luxe, foil-like textures and sparkles — we incorporated these trends into our collection by using liquid-metal like formula and infusing flecks of micro-fine, twinkling sparkles into our bold eye shadows and lip glosses.”

As the event pointedly aligned with New York Fashion Week, both Samsung and The Estée Lauder Cos. sought to make the inaccessible, accessible. Good explained, “The Style Dimension is a perfect union of fashion, beauty and technology. The event’s accessibility for consumers to New York Fashion Week allows us to reach both loyal and new consumers through brand-tailored activations that are high-touch, high-tech, shoppable and sharable through social media.”

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