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Liberty egality, Glossier : powder in the eyes or political brand?

31 October 2018

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New trendy Americans beauty brand, Glossier arrives in France with a goal: conquer the Old Continent. But is the brand an umpteenth obsession or a serious challenger in a market looking for alternatives? - Damien Testu.

The pyramid of the Louvre tinged with pink. A post on Instagram with a slogan diverted from a motto, because everything is political. " Liberty egality, Glossier. »More effective than a spot broadcast in prime-time on a private TV channel, the launch of Glossier on the French market was smooth, fully in line with the values ​​of the American brand.

Glossier is first and foremost a name that slips, a particular sound, cool and effortless as could be the style of Phoebe Philo at Céline. Minimal packaging because superfluity is a task. Bright colours but not loud and a marketing strategy well calibrated, based on digital content creation, wild signage in the streets of Paris and a launch at a historic restaurant Lapérouse in the heart of the capital - this aesthetic recipe seems perfect for Instagram.

The question then arises quickly: is it just a nice brand with a good marketing team or a real proposal to disrupt the market of the sector? Created in 2014 by Emily Weiss, the "super intern" seen in reality TV shows The Hills and creator of the beauty bible, Into The Gloss, the brand offers both cosmetics and makeup with a credo: skin first, makeup second. Understanding, taking first care of your skin before beautifying yourself with makeup. Tired of the diktats of the industry, Emily Weiss wishes to highlight products with natural finishes. Wide ranges make it possible to create a tailor-made beauty routine with creams, serums and mists for the face and body.

Faced with more and more demanding consumers, Glossier is attentive and explains its positioning: products in the bathroom of consumers must not only be pure concentrates manufactured in the laboratory but real daily partners, adapted to the needs of its users. Farewell the vertical model, here the brand and the consumer are on an equal footing, as a reminder to the French slogan that sounds like a desire to gather. In short, Glossier is not only accessible, it is democratic.

Resolutely current and benevolent, both in terms of its image and its proximity to its consumers, Glossier seems to tick all the boxes. It is therefore logical to ask oneself, in our current context obsessed (and rightly so) with more ethical practices, how its products are created. Without being all XNUMX% vegan, the products are cruelty-free and the brand does not sell in China, where animal testing is mandatory. Yet, instead of making it a commercial argument, Glossier does not position itself as an environmental activist and committed to the defense of animal rights. Added value rather than a real claim: is this he new step for beauty brands? Far from doing greenwashing, it's more about integrating these values ​​as soon as the brand is created. All this is in connection with a friendly spirit accessible from Glossier.

Farewell skeletal models, Caucasian muses with shovels and posters retouched to excess. In September 2017, with its soberly titled Body Hero campaign, Glossier highlights different types of women: plus-size models alongside women of everyday life and a sportswoman, Swin Cash Canal, pregnant at the time. Of course, skeptics will say that diversity is fashionable. But the difference here is that the brand does not have to explain this approach: the plethora of profiles represented is only the reflection of the clientele of Glossier: businesswomen, women with a minimalist look or dilettante artists ... Also a reflection of a generation that is tired of seeing the same beauty criteria celebrated and uses social networks to affirm its difference.

After 2.0 beauty ultra connected, would it be time to make way for beauty 3.0, inspired by real people for real people? Like fashion, with the hegemonic model over, the cosmetics industry must give more space to those who will make the reputation of brands at a time when social networks can make and break trends. Symbol of a collective awareness, Glossier makes it a point of honour to represent all women by talking to them directly. In a market where department stores are losing ground, Glossier stands out as an enticing alternative with a mission: to democratise beauty and to evolve its too reductive codes. Redefining the rules yes but also for a commercial purpose. Because the desirability of Glossier lies above all in its accessibility. Politics certainly but modern above all.