It’s official, beauty retailer Sephora is breaking the UK market – again – this October. Here’s everything we know about the expansion
As soon as we heard about Sephora’s acquisition of beauty e-tailer FeelUnique for a whopping £132 million, we knew something was going on. And rumours are true, Sephora will be re-entering the UK market after closing stores in 2005.
The expansion roll-out begins with the switch of domains from FeelUnique to Sephora.co.uk on 17th October. Then, the retailer is set to open its London flagship store in spring 2023.
Chief Executive and Chair of Sephora, Chris de Lapuente, says: ‘We are delighted to bring Sephora to the UK, responding to Britain’s strong demand for our unique prestige beauty experience… The UK is home to a dynamic beauty and wellbeing market that Sephora will aim to surprise and delight through our trademark know how and creativity. Our passionate team cannot wait to serve and inspire UK customers under the Sephora brand.’
The LVMH-owned beauty concept store originally launched in the UK in 2000 with six stores, but withdrew within five years due to soaring rents and its inability to compete with the likes of Superdrug and Boots. Then, in 2014 the company announced UK shipping which was then halted in 2018 due to GDPR rules.
Speaking to WWD Sylvie Moreau, president for Europe and the Middle East, explains: ‘Sephora is a brand that can thrive on different continents (and) stores will always remain the purest expression of our brand.’
So, how will Sephora carve out its on space on the UK high-street 18 years later? The answer is bringing missing, cult brands to the UK. From its eponymous line Sephora Collection to brands including Tarte Cosmetics and One/Size, British beauty consumers will gain access to Sephora’s diverse range of makeup, fragrance, wellness and skincare brands that have previously been unavailable.