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Brief Published: 2 May 2017

Deck of Scarlet Taps into Fandom & Cult Appeal

Deck of Scarlet

US make-up palette subscription service Deck of Scarlet has launched in the UK, bringing its influencer-as-creator concept to a market dominated by outspoken young fans and fast-moving trends.

The start-up positions itself as flexible and adaptive in a world “where make-up trends change at the drop of a hashtag”. Every other month, subscribers pay $29.95 for a new palette created in collaboration with a top YouTube beauty guru, which is accompanied by step-by-step tutorials on how to use the colours in different looks for day and night.   

Co-founder Rachel ten Brink was inspired to launch Deck of Scarlet (sister brand of perfume subscription service Scentbird) after being frustrated by the amount of time it took to source all the different products used in YouTube tutorials. 

The eclectic palettes cater to catwalk make-up trends and colour charts. For example, the palette designed by US beauty YouTuber and Instagram star Evon Wahab (1m+ subscribers and 1.7m followers respectively) pairs vivid orange and teal eye colours with a rich chocolate lip colour. These unexpected combinations tap into the experimental, expressive nature of Gen Z consumers (see Teen-Targeted Beauty).  

While beauty subscriptions are mostly associated with monthly beauty boxes, new brands like Deck of Scarlet are adopting the model in more interesting, contemporary ways. See Beauty Pie, where subscribers gain access to factory-price products.