Mrs Chen, who only gives her surname, is delighted that she can buy her favourite cosmetics in her provincial town of Zhenjiang, some km inland from Shanghai and close to the Yangtze River. They make my skin feel softer. The drive into new cities is key for that battle.
Until, that is, one steps into the hushed confines of the first Lancome concept store to open anywhere in the world - at which point you might just feel as if you have stepped onto the set of A Space Odyssey, assuming your idea of a space station features sculpted sofas and ever-so-slightly pink walls.
It is not only the size of the Chinese market million women between the ages of 15 and 64 that attracts manufacturers - it is also the unusually large chunks of their income individual Chinese women seem willing to spend on beauty products.
On one level, spending patterns reflect current living arrangements in Chinese cities - unmarried urban young women, for example, most likely live with their parents, perhaps in state-subsidized housing; with mother and father paying the bills, so almost all of the single child's salary counts as disposable income.
At the same time, Chinese society has always placed a premium on female appearance, with the meinu the beauty featuring as a stock character in poetry and art; even 2, years ago Han dynasty princesses were buried with a bewildering array of makeup dishes, mirrors and combs, carefully laid out for the use of the departed soul.
During the Cultural Revolution the Red Guards were hostile to makeup precisely because it was so deeply rooted in Chinese culture. Anthropologists may debate the origins of the bulging makeup bags of the contemporary Middle Kingdom. But where everyone agrees is that the dowdy days of Maoism are long gone - looking good is once again big business in China, and the major brands have been quick to grab a piece of the action.
The two most successful international companies in China currently are Tokyo-based Shiseido and L'Oreal, which recently purchased Yue-Sai, a strongly branded domestic manufacturer based in Shenzhen. Together Shiseido and Yue-Sai count for a So is the conquest a fait accompli?
Not necessarily, said Lily Xu of homegrown Chinese brand Herborist. With boutiques in 40 cities, her company plans to open a further outlets during this year. It's a division of a state-owned company - but you'd never know it. The brand emphasizes its connections to traditional Chinese medicine and seems to strike a chord with a seam of consumer keen to look beyond the Hollywood pose.
One possibility is that a major Chinese player will emerge with the right combination of capitalization, marketing savvy and local sensitivity - or that Chinese medicine will throw up the next big thing, blowing the game wide open.
With such a lucrative market at stake, the major brands are understandably keen not to be caught napping. This is the first phase, says L'Oreal - a second phase at Jinqiao will focus on possible applications of Chinese medicine in beauty products.
Meanwhile, the other brands are taking similar steps.LANCÔME Travel Retail Asia Pacific, leading French luxury beauty brand, unveiled the brand’s latest retail concept at its newly revamped No.1 Point-of-sale (POS) at Haitang Bay, China. The latest in line to celebrate the brand’s ‘Declaring Happiness’ global campaign across Asia, the.
While Lancome cited “possibly safety reasons” as the reason for the concert’s cancellation, it is clear that new rules for doing business with China are being established, business experts say. Although Lancome remains a major player in China’s traditional media market, it has created China-specific sites of its own as well.
Lancome’s e-community site, Lancome Rosebeauty, is now one of China’s top online beauty forums in terms of website traffic, according to CIC, a company that tracks the social media impact and gives strategic advice. » Top Sale Lancôme Hypnôse Buildable Volume Mascara by Best Selling Beauty Products, Find the best selection of sale wholesale women clothing here at timberdesignmag.com Source cheap and high quality products in hundreds of categories wholesale direct from China.
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