When lockdown was first introduced in late March, we reluctantly bid adieu to all that we deemed normal. For many beauty enthusiasts that included monthly salon visits and regular browsing of extensive beauty halls or lavish make-up counters. In its place, a massive 47 per cent of us retreated to online retailers to continue our beauty buying habits, the NPD Group found, though the idea of investing in a new foundation or lipstick without physically trying it beforehand remained questionable.
Now, the way we once shopped for beauty buys is seeing a return. As part of an update to its safety measures in beauty halls, Boots is reintroducing testers among its premium beauty and fragrance brands, as well as in-store brow services. No7's Match Made service is also set to resume and select brands will begin offering make-up consultations once more.
Joanna Rogers, Trading Director and VP of beauty at Boots, says: “During lockdown, so many of our customers told us how much they missed the experience of browsing, testing and shopping beauty at Boots. We’ve worked meticulously over the past few months to re-introduce the right measures at the right time so everyone can get back to the fun and excitement of discovering new products and finding new brands, whilst feeling completely safe and reassured.”
The new measures will allow shoppers to test premium make-up on themselves with disposable applicators from a Boots beauty advisor or consultant. Perfume testers will be handled with strict hygiene and hand-washing protocols overseen by the Boots team.
While testers will not be available across all brands and may vary by store, the Boots Make-Up Exchange Promise, which allows customers to exchange make-up that turns out to be the wrong shade, will remain in effect. This will be especially handy for those who frequent the beauty aisles - home to brands such as Rimmel London, Barry M and Maybelline - where testers will remain unavailable for the time being.
For those after a more in depth, one-on-one look at products, touch make-up services will be available across some premium brands including Clinique, Dior, Urban Decay and IT Cosmetics. These appointments can be pre-booked in-store and consultants will follow updated safety plans, which include the use of strict PPE guidelines, tool sanitisation and the requirement for customers to wear their mask throughout, which will naturally limit the areas of the face where the services can be conducted.
Brow treatments, including waxing and tinting, will also be reinstated at Benefit counters in selected stores. While Boots Beauty Specialists will continue to offer advice and guidance across all brands through touch-free consultations.
The company's latest easing of covid safety measures is met with the upcoming arrival of new and exciting brands on offer at Boots, including MAC, Huda Beauty, Nars, Iconic London and Laura Mercier, which customers will now be able to explore and experience in person.