The term ‘research’ is often bandied about (sometimes as a derisive euphemism for ‘shopping’) when beauty business insiders venture into retail shops, salons, or spa. But, there is an infinite amount of data and insight to be gained in any one store or pop-up—if you know where to look, how to see, and when to listen.
Stephanie Flor brings a very experience-driven knowledge of the beauty world to her tour and shares a perspective that both curious consumers and inquisitive industry insiders enjoy. Flor is not only the founder of Around the World Beauty she's also a professional makeup artist, a blogger and digital content creator (with nearly 10k followers across platforms), and a Global Coulour Pro artist for Clinique.
The Beauty & Wellness NYC Walking Journey began on the Lower East Side of Manhattan at a shop called The Alchemists Kitchen that’s part personal care retailer, part herbal pharmacy, part wellness spa, part juice bar, and an impromptu co-working space too. The store also finds itself catering more and more to consumers interested in (or even passionate about) CBD.
Flor personally led the tour that Cosmetics Design joined late last month. And at The Alchemists Kitchen, she began by discussing a selection of products from the shop, linking each to its global region of origin, calling attention to interesting formats and ingredients, and explaining how they fit in with today’s consumer trends.
A store manager named Emma explained that the typical Alchemists Kitchen shopper is looking for wellness products that address “stress and anxiety, spirituality, longevity, vitality, or [are] immune boosting.”
Over the course of 3 hours and just one mile of walking, the Beauty & Wellness NYC Walking Journey led participants into 7+ stores and pop-up shops, where ingredients from essential oils, super foods, algae were highlighted. Participants heard from shop owners and brand representatives about wild crafted ingredients, new options made using biotech, and the move away from petroleum-derived inputs.
The tour even stopped to learn about and taste matcha, the powdered green tea that’s not only a popular coffee substitute but also a very on-trend ingredient in beauty and personal care products.
During the Beauty & Wellness NYC Walking Journey participants were introduced to various working definitions of clean, green, and natural beauty.
According to its own site, “Around the World Beauty reveals beauty rituals and traditions that are practiced by women all over the globe.” The company leads tours in Mexico, Morocco, India, and beyond; and The Beauty & Wellness NYC Walking Journey is no exception.
As promised, Flor takes her tour participants “deeper into the meaning of global beauty by visiting shops, inspired by herbal bathing, to fragrance houses and eco-chick pop-ups to learn about global beauty secrets, and indie brands making a big impact both socially, and in the way women see beauty.”
The stops and shops (both single and multi-brand) showcased an array of cultural personal care and beauty practices and featured an endless number of modern interpretations (both in product and branding) of time-honored rituals and ingredients from around the world.
Deanna Utroske, CosmeticsDesign.com Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.