An import cosmetics brand continues to thrive in Korea

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An import cosmetics brand continues to thrive in Korea

Attaining spotless, pure, light-colored skin has been at the top of many Asians’ beauty agenda for centuries, and it’s a desire that non-Korean cosmetics brands are eager to satisfy.
At Gallery Won in southern Seoul on a recent Tuesday afternoon, Aveda Korea ― the domestic branch of the Aveda cosmetics brand, owned by Estee Lauder ― held a launching event to introduce a new line of skin care products called “Nature White Brightening Skincare,” which is aimed at making skin lighter and reducing blemishes. The line consists of two products, Nature White Brightening Essence and Nature White Brightening Moisture Treatment, which are intended to help even out or minimize blemishes from aging, stress and exposure to the sun.
The multi-floored gallery space in southern Seoul was turned into a maze that offered a guided “Aveda tour” for the press. Displayed alongside the products themselves were aromatic rosemary and mint bushes, along with the products’ concept boards.
In one corner, Aveda staff demonstrated how the product, using Chinese shiatsu technique, could be incorporated into facials. Meanwhile, in keeping with the natural, healthful image intended for the product, a local food stylist was preparing a table of creative vegetarian dishes.
Aveda’s presence in Korea dates to 1997. Whereas most import cosmetics brands here have experienced a rush of initial interest and then gone on to take a beating from domestic competitors, Aveda has maintained a strong position in the high-end cosmetics market in Korea.
This is generally attributed to the brand’s positive image among consumers, based on its all-natural ingredients. Indeed, when Aveda launched in Korea, the company refused to give away samples at counters the way other brands did, apparently in the belief that the quality of its product precluded the need for such incentives.
The company now boasts 19 stores, not just in Seoul but across the peninsula; it also has eight concept salons and, in Seoul, its own spa.
Nature White Brightening Skincare, which the company says will dramatically improve dull skin after six to eight weeks of continuous use, is no exception to the brand’s all-natural image. Both essence and moisturizer contain extracts from 22 plants, including extracts of matricaria and chamomile, citrus peels, grapes and scullcap blossoms, green tea extracts and Egyptian jasmine.

by Ines Cho
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