Santa Monica-based Beautycounter, a strong advocate for “safer skin care and cleaner cosmetics,” is bringing its message directly to New York City consumers, with the opening of its first brick-and-mortar store at 51 Prince Street. Beautycounter develops and distributes its own “high-performing products” — including skin care, color cosmetics, advanced anti-aging, kids, baby, and personal care collections — all while driving a growing national movement to demand better regulations of the beauty industry.
Beautycounter’s founder and CEO Gregg Renfrew, explains, "If our mission is to get safer products into the hands of everyone, we have to be able to meet customers wherever they are shopping. We know that our story is best told person-to-person, and we are thrilled to add a physical retail store to the progress we've made in educating consumers and advocating for better beauty."
Last month, Renfrew was honored by Goldman Sachs as one of the “100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs.”
Since its launch in 2013, Beautycounter has attracted national attention as the first brand to take a meaningful position on cosmetic reform. Through its trademarked The Never List™, Beautycounter has prohibited the use of more than 1,500 questionable or harmful ingredients, well beyond the 30 banned by U.S. law. Beautycounter also works extensively at the Federal level to improve transparency and accountability of the beauty industry, and advocates for stronger cosmetic safety laws which have stood largely unchanged since 1938.
The 540-square-foot store will stock Beautycounter's full collection of skin-care regimens and the brand's most popular products, including Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion ($49), Cleansing Balm ($80), Countersun Mineral Sunscreen ($20-$39), Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer ($45), and Sheer Lipstick ($32).
In addition to product, the store will provide a hub of community engagement for advocacy and education. Design elements are borrowed from the brand's modern California headquarters, mixed with references to vintage New York. Visitors will have the opportunity to converse and sample brand favorites while seated at an old-school beauty counter (a nod to the brand's name and reminiscent of stores past). Also, customers are invited to join in Beautycounter's advocacy efforts. A neon sign that reads "It's Your Call" will point to a custom New York phone booth, complete with a branded "blue pages" phone book with the names and numbers of every member of Congress. In under a minute, customers are automatically connected and can read a provided script to lend their voices in support of better beauty laws.
Beautycounter will offer multiple points of education to guide visitors in making safer and more-informed choices in their lives beyond the store. iPads will highlight facts on the clean beauty industry and give a deeper dive into Beautycounter's rigorous ingredient selection process, product reviews, FAQs, and new launches. Wallet-sized cards with the top 30 most harmful, common ingredients on The Never List™ will be available for customers looking to make safer swaps with the products they already own. To help customers establish a cleaner routine in their own homes, Beautycounter staged a museum-like washroom to see suggested replacements from like-minded personal-care product brands, and will supply takeaway "clean maps" to suggest similar businesses in the area.
The theme of "cleaning up the industry" will be brought to life in the store and in the brand's first full marketing campaign around New York City throughout the season. In addition to out-of-home marketing with bold phrases like "Beauty Should Be Good For You" and "Beauty Comes Clean", Beautycounter hosted a subway "cleanup" on October 27 and plans to do more cleanups throughout the neighborhood.
Beautycounter is currently sold at beautycounter.com, in seasonal pop-up shops on Nantucket and in East Hampton, and through a network of approximately 35,000 Independent Consultants. Past and present strategic partnerships include Target, J.Crew, and goop.