Four Things To Know About Estee Lauder

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.

five things to know about estee lauder

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! OjonOrigins, Jo MaloneMAC, 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 anTom 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 ArcigaEstée 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 JablonskiLiu WenJoan Smalls and Arizona Muse reflect the brand’s international diversity.

The Beauty Business | Veer Singh – Founder of Vana Malsi Estate

veer singh

These days India is abuzz with its growing urban landscapes and thriving cities, but tucked away near the border of Nepal is a little piece of quiet. Far, far away and over the mountains lies Vana, Malsi Estate a spa and wellness retreat in Dehradun, Uttarakhand province. The idyllic estate sits in the foothills of the Himalayas, sprawls across 21 acres and is surrounded by lychee and mango orchards. It boasts two restaurants, 69 rooms, 17 suites and 55 treatment rooms. The offerings include yoga, traditional Ayurvedic treatments, detoxes and Tibetan healing. 

The Vana, Malsi Estate has a specialist team of nutritionists, Ayurvedic doctors and fitness experts to help create your custom itinerary based around your needs. A world away from the tour guides beaten track and gap year explorers intending to find themselves, this is an authentic experience of traditional Indian healing. Travel is changing, and people want more like a deeper cultural experience with something tangible, and Vana meets that.

I recently got the chance to sit with Veer Singh, founder of the retreat over lunch at London’s Nopi restaurant ahead of Vana‘s opening on the 4th January 2014.

Where did the idea for Vana come from? Destiny beckoned! On my return from Spain where I had spent time working to become an organic farmer. On returning to India and not finding my feet in farming, I took over a family project to create a resort on this land. My past experiences and the land itself led me to then transform the vision to make it a place of wellness. This is how the idea for the retreat was born.

What was your vision for Vana been from inception? And what have you done to ensure you meet it? The vision statement of Vana Retreats, ‘our lives will be an expression of our core belief to be of service and enhance wellbeing’ is a reflection of my commitmentWe are the only retreat of its kind in the region, perhaps in the world if you take all the elements that make it into account. The sheer breadth of our wellness offering, and the obsession for quality are truly unique. Our sincerity towards every nuance of wellness, our commitment to ensure pure, holistic wellness makes us unique. Our design is a departure from anything in India. We have stayed away from the usual Indian clichés. And yet, we have showcased elements of India in a contemporary format that nobody else has done. Our USP is that we are a place of wellbeing, in every sense of the word, and all aspects of the experience at Vana matter to us.

Vana Retreat

One of the things that Vana is centred around is Ayurveda. How important is Ayurveda to Vana and why? At Vana we offer Ayurveda in its most complete and pure form under the guidance of our Ayurvedic doctors and therapists. Our treatments are completely authentic, and all products used are selected for their therapeutic value.

Ayurveda treatments and consults are offered in Vana, Malsi Estate’s spacious Ayurveda Centre, which has two consultation rooms with 12 treatment suites. The services offered include the full spectrum of Ayurveda, including consultations, therapies and supplements and the team of Ayurvedic practitioners and therapists are led by Dr Avilochan Singh. Dr Singh is a fourth generation Ayurvedic physician with 15 years’ experience.

What kind of treatments can we expect to see in Vana? The treatments offered encompass each of the seven modalities – Ayurveda, Tibetan healing, natural healing, fitness, aqua therapies and spa treatments including aromatherapy, classic Swedish massage, deep tissue massage, Vana signature massage, Lomi Lomi, scrubs, wraps, facials and a salon service.

Who is the ideal visitor to the retreat? Discerning travellers with a keen interest in wellness and wellbeing – anyone over the age of 16.

Introducing The Burberry Beauty Box

BURBERRY_COVENT_GARDEN_STORE_EXTERIOR BURBERRY_COVENT_GARDEN_STORE_INTERIORIt seems that Covent Garden has recently become home to the upper echelons of beauty. First Chanel, then Dior and now Burberry with the Burberry Beauty Box, their first standalone beauty store which recently opened its doors to the public. Just a couple of months ago I was swooning over Chanel‘s giant lipsticks and huge bottles of Coco Mademoiselle, but Burberry‘s unique concept housing their entire beauty line as well as fragrance and accessories trumps all.

In true Burberry tech-savvy style, the store incorporates technology into the beauty shopping experience with customers paying for items using their iPhone or iPad for convenience during the crazy Christmas time queues. Then there’s the Digital Runway Nail Bar which is a playful virtual experience where you can try on an array of Burberry nail polishes without ruining your manicure. But if virtual isn’t your thing then there’s an actual 20 minute mini manicure service for £15 and is also redeemable against a purchase.

Burberry Covent GardenAnd if iPads and manicures isn’t enough wait until you see the Beauty Box Bar, the gifting hub where you can mix, match and box your choice of makeup, accessories and fragrance. Pick any sized box and choose to fill it with anything from sunglasses to blush to then be beautifully gift wrapped. Forgetting anyone else due a present, I myself would create a season appropriate box with both Nail Polish and Lip Mist in Oxblood and Burberry Body Eau de Parfum Intense

Instabeauty | How Beauty Brands Are Using Instagram

beauty brands instagramLook around carefully in a restaurant, and I guarantee there’ll be at least one table where everyone is snapping away with their camera phones intent on getting the right photo to document whatever’s on their plate. I call it the Instagram Effect. But ever since becoming a fully fledged Instagram addict I’ve noticed something else on my feed aside from selfies, coffee cups and lunch – beauty brands. Like any other social platform such as Twitter or Facebook, many brands are now using Instagram to communicate with their customers, attract new ones and promote their product. However Instagram is unique in the sense that the message is entirely visual allowing us a more intimate look into a brand whether it be behind the scenes in the office or sneak peeks into upcoming product launches.

  • Charlotte Tilbury @ctilburymakeup - The key to a great start in business is building anticipation before launching, and Charlotte Tilbury did just that by giving us a sneak peek into her eponymous makeup collection with snapshots of what to expect. She had us counting the days until we could get our hands on the K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipstick and Colour Chameleon eye pencils, in awe of her work at shows backstage and wondering just what was in that Magic Cream of hers. Where magazines usually reveal what we should be looking forward to, Charlotte removed that medium and took advantage of her huge social media reach by giving us all an exclusive look into her upcoming line.
  • NARS @narsissist - One of the first accounts I followed when I joined Instagram last year, NARSissist is every bit a narcissist; it’s a NARS appreciation page with photos of their iconic, sleek black packaging, rows and rows of Sheer Glow Foundation bottles and lipstick swatches are aplenty. Also a reflection of their fashion forward identity, NARS uses Instagram to keep us up to date with backstage snapshots of the trends at New York Fashion Week.
  • WAH @wahnails - More than half a million followers, myself included love looking at photos of pretty nails all day long. The WAH team bring you completely unique nail designs on their customers’ talons multiple times a day, and it’s the skill and intricacy of their designs that speak for themselves essentially making us want to head out to have our own nails attended to at WAH.
  • Birchbox @birchbox - Not only do they deliver a carefully curated beauty box to our doors every month, Birchbox bring us daily snapshots of the products they’re loving, the ones they’re trying and testing for us and the odd cupcake. Their approach is really personal and friendly, almost like a group of friends sharing their favourite products and filling you in on what you need in your makeup bag. It’s also interesting seeing new products pop up on your feed making you wonder whether or not you’ll be seeing it next month’s Birchbox.
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