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Estée Lauder is Discontinuing Its Year-Old Millennial-Targeted Brand, The Estée Edit

Even Kendall Jenner couldn't save this one.
Kendall Jenner for The Estée Edit. Photo: @esteeedit/Instagram

Kendall Jenner for The Estée Edit. Photo: @esteeedit/Instagram

After less than a year, The Estée Edit is no more. Parent company Estée Lauder is retiring the cosmetics and skin-care brand, which launched in 2016 to target millennial consumers, reports WWD. Sales of the brand will conclude this September at Sephora (the remaining products are currently selling for a discounted price at the retailer), while the brand's own e-commerce site will continue through the end of 2017.

Despite tapping social media-savvy influencers (notably, Kendall Jenner and Irene Kim), a tried-and-true beauty marketing method of late, The Estée Edit struggled to deliver on its projected $60 million in first-year sales. Still, Estée Lauder representatives don't count this as a loss. Rather, they're quick to point out that this decision comes as a result of success other Lauder brands have experienced reaching millennials. 

Estée Lauder provided the following statement:

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Estée Lauder created The Estée Edit collection for Sephora to recruit millennial consumers. Simultaneous efforts by the core Estée Lauder brand have recruited millennials via digital and makeup at an unprecedented rate. Therefore, after a year of valuable insights and learnings, we have decided that a separate brand in North America dedicated to recruiting millennials is no longer necessary. We are committed to our partnership with Sephora and we are working closely to strengthen our business in Sephora and develop exciting new programs.

Over the past few years, Lauder has experimented with ways to reach younger consumers, both with the launch of The Estée Edit and through an increasing practice in investing in established millennial-targeted brands. In the past year alone, the company has acquired both Becca Cosmetics and Too Faced, each known for devoted millennial fan bases and impressive digital footprints. Meanwhile, Lauder's own legacy brands, like MAC, Clinique and Origins (all department store tentpoles), have struggled in a difficult retail market. 

Fabrizio Freda, Estée Lauder's CEO and president, has been candid about focusing on growing the company's digital presence and focusing on millennial consumers in recent interviews. In a February earnings report, he said the company would be prioritizing multichannel engagement: "The consumer can expect much more participation from our brands in social media engagement, digital marketing, paid social media and, most importantly, the aspect of unpaid [user-generated] social media," he said. "All our brands are interacting with the consumer now on multiple platforms."

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