One of my first makeup memories is being a curious 14 year old, raiding my mother’s makeup stash and slapping on copious amounts of Estée Lauder Double Wear all over my face. It didn’t matter that the foundation was five shades lighter or that I was given a good telling off, but the glamorous packaging and luxurious feel of the Double Wear planted the seeds for a love of what is now one of my favourite cosmetics brands. Years later as a business student I’ve come to appreciate Estée Lauder as a whole – the brand, company and businesswoman who started it all. Born Josephine Esther Mentzer, Lauder’s interest went from creating Youth Dew, a perfumed bath oil at Saks Fifth Avenueto a multi-billion dollar conglomerate.
1. Being the first to introduce the gift-with-purchase, Estée Lauder was a marketing pioneer. Getting people to buy your product is one thing, but retaining customers is another and while many see gifting as a simple token of appreciation, it goes beyond that. Should the customer fall in love with the sample sized gifts, they’d return back to the counter for more. Clever!
2. Estée Lauder is parent to many of your favourite beauty brands and you probably didn’t even know it! Ojon, Origins, Jo Malone, MAC, Tom Ford, Bumble & Bumble and Darphin to name but a few. It’s genius how Estée Lauder has a wide portfolio of brands varying in price point, brand identity and product ranges. Clinique is the scientific skincare brand, MAC the fun and youthful cosmetics line with very loyal women of colour customers and Tom Ford is where we all go for super luxury.
3. Not one to miss out on an opportunity, Estée Lauder is expanding into Africa with its first MAC store in Nigeria and the intention to focus on countries including Kenya, Ghana and Angola. While some brands are struggling in the West due to the current economic downturn, many African nations are seeing a boom in their economies and a rising middle class so it makes perfect sense for Estée Lauder to enter. Maybe you’ll be seeing MAC in Mozambique, Clinique in Cairo or a Bobbi Brown counter in Bosaso!
4. After meeting Rodolfo Arciga, Estée Lauder‘s Global Makeup Artist from Mexico at Selfridges‘ Global Makeup Artist Event last November I realised just how global the brand was. The counter staff were also from all over the world, and Estée Lauder‘s faces Constance Jablonski, Liu Wen, Joan Smalls and Arizona Muse reflect the brand’s international diversity.