Sophie Hill

LONDON — Social shopping platform Threads Styling is venturing into the beauty space as its high-end clientele continues to spend.

Given global lockdowns and travel restrictions, Threads said its customers have been increasingly turning to the platform’s personal stylists on WhatsApp, asking them to add beauty products to their usual fashion and accessories orders.

As a result, the company has anticipated its planned launch into the beauty space by six months given the increased demand from shoppers, who are becoming much more focused on their self-care regimens.

“Beauty has been a natural extension of purchases made across fashion, jewelry and home. For example, clients in London who usually pick up their favorite face lotion in Paris couldn’t make that trip during lockdown, so they turned to their Threads stylist,” said the platform’s founder and chief executive officer Sophie Hill.

“We noted an organic increase in interest in this category, and therefore saw an increase in sales, especially during lockdown. The quarantine period has taught us a lot about self care, so we believe that skin care will continue to be a focus for our clients. Because we’ve already worked with them to source beauty products, we anticipate the momentum will continue in this category.”

She noted that customers tend to add multiple beauty products to their fashion and accessories orders. They’re spending on everything from repeat purchases to entire new ranges they’re interested in trying. She said science-based brands have proven particularly popular and social media remains the discovery tool of choice.

“We recently had a client who came across Biologique Recherche on Instagram, and came to us as she wanted to purchase the full collection to test. Her order totaled over $8,000 and our team was able to send it to her within two days,” said Hill, adding that order values for the brand tend to average $3,500.

Other popular brands on Threads include La Mer, La Prairie, Dr. Barbara Sturm, Augustinus Bader and Sisley, as well as makeup such as Hourglass, Chantecaille and Tom Ford.

Keeping a close eye on its customers’ evolving lifestyle needs via one-on-one conversations with personal shoppers is what originally prompted Threads to look to expanding its universe. It created Threads Interiors, which sells homeware, and Threads Gen, which focuses on the sneaker and athleisure categories.

“Threads Interiors is similar to the beauty category: It launched as a result of organic relationships and interest. We were helping women find their couture wedding gown, sourcing their honeymoon wardrobe, and then we were helping them decorate their first home with their husband. As sales in the category grew, we pulled together the right team to launch it,” Hill said.

Hill said interior sales have reflected the same success as Threads Styling, growing more than 80 percent in the second quarter, compared with the first. Growth has continued to be robust in the third quarter.

After the success of an Instagram feature with the American artist, model and actress Beau Dunn, art sales have also grown during the lockdown period.

Threads’ most recent sales include works by Tracey Emin, Pablo Picasso and Damien Hirst costing more than 100,000 pounds each.

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