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Archive for the ‘beauty’ Category

I saw several blog posts about Chanel’s “Le Vernis Black Velvet” nail polish. It is a gorgeous color, and if you go to Chanel’s Makeup page, the model is wearing the nail polish. It is PERFECT for Fall!! It looks absolutely gorgeous, and Chanel is minting money off of it. It costs $25!! Essie bottles usually do not cost more than $6, and this is $25 for a small bottle of nail polish! No wonder Chanel’s PR team is on it – they can clearly pay for the team!

I first came across the color on nymag.com. Blogdorf Goodman has also written about it, but the nail polish in their photos is messy and looks terrible.

Recent studies show an increase in the sale of nail polishes. Due to recession, people did not go to mani-pedi places as frequently and preferred to do it at home, which increased the sale of nail polishes. Essie and Opi are the most commonly seen nail polishes in salons. A few months back, Essie was acquired by L’Oreal. Sephora has come out with its own collection in partnership with Opi, and you can get very tiny bottles from Sephora.

In Spring, Chanel came out with the Jade nail polish which became a top seller. Its insane because people were selling it on eBay for $100!! It’s so contradictory! Sales of nail polishes increased because people cut down on salon visits, and there were some who were willing to pay $100 for a small bottle of nail polish! Really, Jade was not that good. You could easily replace it with MAC’s green color with 3 coats.

Anyway, I am off to buy the Chanel Black Velvet nail polish because I really really like it. This will be the most expensive nail polish I have ever owned. It better stay fresh for at least one year or so.

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Every year I review top fashion blogs to understand the inns and outs of the industry, and which bloggers we should partner with. Here is a comprehensive list. I think the list is by Imran Ahmed, although it does not specify. Imran Ahmen is the Editor of an influential fashion blog the Business of Fashion and Luxury Society. He gave a session at the WWD Social Media summit in NY that I attended. A smart guy who graduated from Harvard Uni. He gave some key insights into how to reach bloggers, the challenges they face with the volume of communication they receive, and the best way to catch bloggers’ attention.

On a regular basis it is very difficult to read all key fashion blogs. Go Fug Yourself is my favorite blog – it used to be #1, but it is #6 on this list. The Budget Fashionista is a good blog for best deals. So many blogs write about “seen in the city”, celebrities, and high fashion, but this one focuses on budget styles and deals. Fab Sugar focuses primarily on celebrities, and its sister-site ShopStyle is an affiliate and performs extremely well. The site is well geared for SEO and shows up on the first page of Google for most fashion categories.

I met bloggers from The Budget Fashionista, Coutorture, and Nitrolicious, among others, when they came for our “sneak peek” event. I have seen key blogs link to Nitrolicious, and the blogger left her full-time job sometime in 2008 to attend events and blog full-time.

I love the name “Blogdorf Goodman” – its just so clever! Bergdorf Goodman should pay that blogger a lot of money and take ownership of the blog – or better still hire the blogger – its just too perfect a name to pass up. BTW if you type in http://www.blogdorfgoodman.com, it redirects to Bergdorf Goodman – again clever on BG’s part.

My favorite source of fashion news is Nymag.com. I subscribe to their emails and read them religiously. I don’t visit the site, just click through emails. It is a great source of information on the fashion industry, models, magazine gossip, and all the ins and outs.

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In these trying times, it is more important for companies to hold on to their loyal customers, and what better way to do that than good customer service. Why don’t companies get this simple fact straight? Why will I part with my hard-earned money to someone who is unfriendly?

Yesterday I went to the MAC counter at Macy’s. I LOVE Mac beauty products, and have been using them for years. The only things I don’t buy from MAC are pencil eye liner and Mascara – I prefer Lancome. I went there to buy eyeliner brush, and thought of buying an eye liner as well.

Me: A liquid eye liner brush is key to applying liner. How will I know that MAC brush is good if you remove brushes from testers?

Salesguy (giving me 3-4 tester versions): Take these tester versions and don’t double dip.

The tester brushes are crappy and ruin my eye. I ask another salesguy to give me eye makeup remover. The remover does not remove the liner – has MAC gone cheap on its materials due to recession? Damn.

Me: I would like to buy this liner brush. Is it good for liquid? How will I know that the liner brush is good if I cannot test it? Is the liquid always this thick?

Salesgirl looks at me like I am crazy and she did not know how to answer the question.

Salesgirl: Sorry I was attending another customer so bye.

No “can you ask someone else” or calling out to someone else to attend. She walked away WITH THE BRUSH I WANTED TO BUY. That was all I needed to change my mind about spending my money and I left.

Beauty companies negotiate square footage allotted to the brand and number of salespeople per square foot, so the salespeople really don’t care. I am sure beauty companies have contracts lasting a number of years with department stores. The stores are willing to negotiate based on sales driven per square foot per salesperson. Clearly, MAC “pulls” the customer and Macy’s has to allocate a decent amount of space and body for their counter. There were way too many people at the counter – 8-10 people with one at the cash register and one more attending to a customer – the remaining were just chattering away and cleaning up. Do they really need so many people? I expected more from MAC, and they need to revisit their contracts.

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