Just two days ago the news was released that Coty had purchased a 51% share of Kylie Jenner’s beauty empire, Kylie Cosmetics making them the majority shareholder in the organisation. Definitely a shock to me, I never would have guessed Kylie Cosmetics would have been on Coty’s radar or a brand for the company.
In terms of colour brands, Coty owns Rimmel London, Bourjois, CoverGirl, Sally Hansen and Miss Sporty. More recently, Coty took a more luxury approach to makeup with Burberry and Gucci Beauty. So where does Kylie Cosmetics fit into the Coty structure of Professional, Consumer and Luxury?
There was a lot of discussion on Twitter yesterday surrounding the purchase and some topics came up that I had not even considered.
My initial reaction was shock, excitement and then a tinge of jealousy since I no longer work for the company and will be missing out on all of the launches, events and press interest when the acquisition finally comes in to play. But also excited for the company as Kylie Cosmetics is a huge beauty brand right now and very contemporary.
I had so many questions about how the UK are going to go ahead with the brand; Will it be launching in stores instead of just online? Will there be events in the UK with Kylie herself or maybe famous make-up artists? What about influencer activations, who will receive the products? And of course, will the PR team get to meet Kris Jenner?
But then I saw a tweet that made me rethink my excitement for the brand. It suggested that perhaps Kylie Cosmetics won’t be popular for much longer. This completely made me look at things from another angle and turn down my excitement just a notch. What does the future hold for Kylie Cosmetics and what is the longevity for the brand?
How long does Kylie Cosmetics have left?
At the beginning, Kylie chose the perfect time to launch her beauty brand. The Kardashians were front and center, she was arguably the most popular sister among teenage followers because she was the closest in age and probably most relatable. I remember when I was a few years younger that I would look to Kylie for fashion and hair inspiration as she would often change things up, dying her hair blue, blonde and pink.
She was a bit of a wildchild in the Kardashian clan and did things a little differently. Annoyingly she is actually younger than me by one year and is a billionaire – why wasn’t I born a Kardashian? I think she was definitely one of the pioneers of lip filler and making it mainstream in our generation. And then came her lip kit that would give her fans that plumped lip effect without having to go under the needle.
But that was a few years ago and Kylie Jenner was hugely popular at the time. Now that she is more settled down with a daughter and living more of a family life, I would guess that with a younger audience, she isn’t as relatable as she once was as she doesn’t create as much social media content as she used to.
I think perhaps the birth of Stormi followed by the huge fallout with her best friend Jordyn Woods took away from her beauty empire and a part of me thinks Jenner is being smart by selling half of her business before the brand becomes totally irrelevant.
What does Kylie Cosmetics have to offer?
When Kylie Skincare launched, it didn’t have the same effect as the lipkits. The products weren’t as good, they weren’t environmentally friendly and consumers know that there is better out there for a cheaper price.
When I think of Kylie Cosmetics I don’t think of brands such as YSL, Prada or Armani Beauty. Those brands have a longevity and products that consumers have a loyalty to. I just can’t see Kylie Cosmetics becoming a brand that lasts more than ten years.
The way I can see the brand working (in the UK) is through pop-up stores and experientials. Like Glossier, there was a lot of hype when it first started out and everyone wanted to get their hands on this brand. Then came the pop-up flagship in London which was an experience in itself and everyone wanted to visit. Now though? I haven’t heard a thing. (I’ve seen the flagship store in NYC and I will be visiting and finally purchasing the fragrance because it’s probably the best thing I’ve ever smelled).
Was it a wise move for Coty?
Is it an investment I ever imagined Coty to make? Definitely not. I can imagine the brand fitting into the Consumer division of Coty rather than the Luxury division as it seems that most of Jenner’s audience and consumer market is young girls in their early teens. I would pair this with the likes of Miss Sporty and Rimmel London rather than their Gucci and Burberry makeup brands.
But will Jenner’s brand still be relevant in a few years’ time? I just don’t know. I don’t know if it’s the money-maker Coty believe it to be.
I hope it is, believe me, I would give my right arm to work on the brand and make it a raging success but that all depends on how Kylie acts as the face of the brand and we all know how unpredictable the Kardashian family can be.