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Brands Popping Up with Retail Innovation

Published October 20, 2022
Published October 20, 2022
YSL Beauty

Another day, another immersive beauty pop-up. This fall, several brands, from Kiehl’s to Augustinus Bader, are offering retail installations to connect with their consumers on a deeper level. With 66% of global retail companies surveyed reporting increased brand awareness as the reason they launched a pop-up, it makes sense that so many famous names are jumping on the bandwagon. Here's the best of what's to come, selected by BeautyMatter.

Drunk Elephant

Drunk Elephant's momentary pop-up, named House of Drunk, opened its doors to Parisians at Pavillon Rive Gauche, 6 Rue Frédéric Sauton. Running from 15-17 October, the event was the first in France for the brand, with previous events taking place in London, Singapore, and New York. The 4,500-square-foot pop-up spanned over two floors and offered immersive experiences to its visitors. Attendees had the opportunity to experiment with their skin, hair, and physique, participating in ''smoothie'' customization sessions, where products were catered to their self-care needs. The pop-up was part of Shiseido's ''progress model,'' which has been created to expand the cosmetic company's portfolio of brands, including Nars, Baum, and Haku. Days before opening to the general public, House of Drunk offered exclusive access to influencers and journalists and the chance to meet with founder and Chief Artistic Officer Tiffany Masterson.

Augustinus Bader

The science-backed brand launched its first pop-up retail experience at The Grove, LA, for the month of October. Those in attendance were offered the chance to try out products and receive complimentary offerings from onsite skincare professionals. Across the month, the brand hosted VIP appearances from brand ambassadors and industry leaders and offered limited-edition gifts with purchases. Guests were able to learn about their skin and hair health through scanning devices that analyze each individual's appearance. The 250-square-foot space visually embodied the science and technology at the heart of the brand, with clean and future-forward design elements, including chemistry tables. The installation was produced in partnership with Nordstrom and was open to the public seven days a week until the final event on October 29.


The Japanese cosmetics brand debuted its first UK-based pop-up in London's Covent Garden. Beauty fans were invited to participate in the temporary shop from October 1-9, with the opportunity to purchase a selection of the brand's hero products. Consumers could visit the site to swatch, test, and purchase products, as well as buy tickets to events such as makeup and skincare masterclasses, a talk on menopausal skin, and panel events with skincare experts and aestheticians Caroline Hirons and Dija Ayodele. Those attending events were given a deluxe goodie bag to take home, ensuring everyone got to sample the best from the brand. Events and talks were also live-streamed, with those who attended the physical store enjoying a mini spa experience and plenty of design-led Instagrammable features. The pop-up also housed non-beauty-related classes, such as the power of self-defense and the art of Japanese calligraphy.


The brand's first beauty pop-up took place in Canada’s Holt Renfrew Yorkdale Shopping Centre from September 11 to October 11, featuring themed weeks across the month that all took a red-carpet approach. On the pop-up's opening day, the first 100 customers in line were gifted an Armani lipstick as they took to the red-carpet-inspired event. Running from September 11-17 for the first themed week, “The Glow of The Stars,” attendees were walked through Armani skincare rituals by aestheticians and received a free private facial, as well as the opportunity to personalize their favorite Armani Beauty products during a bottle painting class hosted by a professional artist. “The Scent of the Stars” took place from September 18-24 and explored the scents of Armani Privé with a complimentary flower arrangement tutorial and a perfume masterclass. “The Color of the Stars” was next; from September 25-October 1, visitors were invited to receive a makeover inspired by Armani Beauty's past red-carpet looks. To close the event, October 1-11 was “Mindful Week,” and focused on the brand's ongoing commitment to sustainability. Visitors were able to take part in a skincare expert-guided walkthrough of the creation of the plant-based serum Crema Nera Reviscentalis Meta Concentrate.


The French beauty brand’s latest pop-up was an immersive experience created as an ode to plant science. The brand has conceptualized a laboratory-style environment at Marina Bay Sands, running until January 2023. Attendees are invited to go on a journey that showcases Clarins bestsellers and core botanical ingredients through themes such as an extraction lab, mixology rooms, and color zones. During these experiences, consumers can try products and purchase limited-edition bundle sets, as well as get involved in several photo opportunities. At the end of the experience, individuals are offered a free consultation with Clarins beauty coaches, and a free sample skincare set in order to test the products showcased throughout their visit.


Located in Barcelona Airport Terminal 1, YSL's Beauty Zone features a futuristic aesthetic, offering visitors the chance to connect with the brand through geo-targeted advertising. The pop-up is associated with the brand's latest initiative, "Push the Boundaries," that illustrates YSL's desire to go further and break the standard codes of beauty. Across the site, neon lights and transparent product displays create a clean and modernized look, as beauty advisors guide guests through the location. The temporary shop offers interactive games to create a hybrid of online and offline marketing to consumers to create a highly engaging experience combining digital and physical versions of YSL. The activation is supported by several big screens within the box-shaped creation that offer chances to win fragrance and makeup prizes. It seems airport delays many have been subjected to in recent times won't be a problem for those passing through Barcelona Airport.


To celebrate the “We Skincare About You Since 1851” campaign, Kiehl’s launched an NYC-themed skincare discovery pop-up in Singapore. The shop replicated the subway perfectly, with signposts and trains styled to suit the brand. As with most Kiehl's events, Mr Bones, the brand's mascot, was on the door to meet visitors before they entered the interactive experience. The experience features cult favorite formulas like the Calendula Herbal-Extract Alcohol Free Toner and the Vital Skin-Strengthening Hyaluronic Acid Super Serum. Those looking for personalized skincare solutions were directed to the Skin Analysis Station where skin experts analyzed the customers’ skin and suggested products that would benefit them through an in-depth skin diagnosis. A six-piece Kiehl’s sample kit was then given to visitors taking part in the skin diagnosis program.


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