To that end, WWD reports this morning that Sears introduced beauty departments in about 100 stores, and is hoping to increase that number. Right now the beauty centers stock brands traditionally found in the drugstore–like L’Oreal, Cover Girl, Maybelline, Revlon and Physicians Formula. Sears is also dabbling in higher end brands like Ahava, Dermalogica, and Burt’s Bees, and it hopes to expand its offerings.
Since drugstores aren’t really found in malls anymore, Sears is hoping to carve out a niche for itself by offering shoppers brands traditionally found in drugstores but that they can’t get at say, Macy’s.
The industry experts WWD interviewed for the story seem kind of lukewarm on the whole concept. One said, “They have done a nice job with what they have to work with.” Competition with e-commerce sites and discount stores is cutting into traditional stores’ business, and beauty is one way to add some revenue. Eventually Sears hopes to have multiple tiers of products, from mass to prestige, which would make them unique at the mall.
Would you pop into Sears to grab that new Maybelline lipstick? When I go into a drugstore for Kleenex or something, I often make spontaneous beauty purchases. Maybe this will work for Sears, too: go in for a toolbox and come out with some foundation.