Apple-inspired Glossier opens ‘adult Disneyland’ flagship store
Glossier, which has become a cult beauty brand with Millennials despite foregoing department store distribution, opened its first flagship in New York City, and it’s all about discovery and community.
In an interview with The New York Times, Emily Weiss, who founded the business in 2014, said Apple has inspired the design of the brand’s physical spaces, which have included pop-ups and its first permanent store in Los Angeles. But she likened Glossier NYC to “adult Disneyland.”
Toward that end, visitors first encounter a red-quartz, winding staircase that leads upstairs to the main shopping area. On the second floor they’re greeted by associates wearing pink mechanic’s jumpsuits alongside a big floral arrangement. In view are over-the-top displays such as a red couch shaped like lips and the mirrored Boy Brow Room with supersized versions of Glossier’s popular “boy brow” product.
Elle described the space as “the thing Instagram dreams are made of.”
The spectacle supports discovery. For instance, Ms. Weiss told Architectural Digest that the curving staircase “makes you practically want to run up the stairs and see what’s waiting around the corner.”
To further encourage discovery, Glossier positions merchandise, not on shelves, but on communal tables with stand-up mirrors so shoppers can easily test products. A wet bar with sinks and cleansers is provided so customers can clean-up to try out more.
Ms. Weiss told Architectural Digest, “It’s not about selling things, it’s about making people feel things.”
The community aspect is supported by interactions with Glossier’s offline “editors” at display tables as well as the numerous elements encouraging social sharing.
Glossier’s success, including raising $86 million since its founding, has been credited to its accessible and affordable product line-up, messaging that foregoes heavily-caked supermodels in favor of showcasing everyday women, and its focus on consumer interactions that inspire products and supports 1.5 million Instagram users.
The direct-to-consumer brand has no plans to open a fleet of stores, just a few showcase locations. In her Times interview, Ms. Weiss said she envisions those heading to Glossier NYC should think, “I’m going to the Statue of Liberty, I’m going to Central Park, and I’m going to Glossier NYC.”
- Glossier Opens Its First Designer Flagship Store – Elle
- Glossier Will See You Now – The New York Times
- Glossier Sets NYC Flagship – Women’s Wear Daily
- Gachot Studios Devises a Pink Haven for Glossier – Architectural Digest
- Glossier, the wildly popular startup that’s raised $86 million in its mission to revolutionize makeup and skin-care, just opened its first flagship store. Here’s what it’s like to shop there. – Business Insider
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Does Glossier’s approach to physical retail sync into why it’s been so successful online? Does the direct-to-consumer brand’s unique approach to the beauty space have significant growth potential?