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Brief Published: 7 May 2014

Selfridges Sparks Beauty Debate


Following the Festival of the Imagination earlier this year, UK department store Selfridges’ latest initiative celebrates changing attitudes to beauty. 

Dubbed ‘The Beauty Project’, the six-week, storewide enterprise is Selfridges’ biggest beauty campaign to date. It includes a series of workshops, live talks (which will also be aired online via Google+ Hangouts) and immersive retail experiences conceived to “celebrate the individualism and diversity of beauty”. 

Key highlights include:

  • A photo booth devised in partnership with Google+ (London store only). Digitally savvy and selfie-obsessed shoppers can take photos of themselves which can then be transmitted directly to the store’s window display, the brand’s website, and social media platforms including Instagram or Twitter. 

For more examples of retailers tapping into the selfie trend, see FCUK’s #canthelpmyselfie campaign and the Celebration of Self section in our report Online Luxury for Millennials, publishing Friday May 9. 

  • ‘The Fragrance Lab’ – a 15-minute scent-profiling experience. Scent assistants analyse shoppers’ responses to olfactory experiences in order to create customised fragrances accompanied by detailed personality profiles. The lab has been created in collaboration with London-based design agency Campaign.
  • Other activities across all Selfridges stores include yoga sessions; ‘FaceGym’ masterclasses (an anti-ageing treatment that uses massage techniques to strengthen facial muscles); and workshops exploring the connection between self-esteem and beauty, hosted by skincare brand Dove – part of Anglo-Dutch consumer goods brand, Unilever. 

For more on using learning-based initiatives to strengthen and add value to the brand-consumer connection, see Edutainment Retailing

For more on Selfridges’ creative approach to commercial strategy, see The Selfridges Effect and Quiet Branding. For more on the latest beauty trends, see Celebrating the Imperfect and Beauty Retail Trends 2014.