Back in my high school years, I remember I was obsessed with bringing my father’s Gucci Guilty perfume. I was splashing that spicy-sweet fragrance onto my neck, wrist, anywhere on my body. Just like the rom-com movies and YouTube advertisements. It just felt so luxurious to wear a Gucci. After all, it was the one and the only high-end fashion brand fragrance I could wrap my fingers around.
I wasn’t sure what my obsession was with this cool silver bottle. But, now, I am a grown person with a bit more knowledge regarding marketing. Therefore, I may be able to explain my shiny object syndrome that is the grand scheme of high-end fashion marketing.
Read this article to understand how fashion houses successfully capitalize on beauty lines!
The Booming High-End Apparel and their Beauty Line
We are accustomed to seeing high fashion brands like Chanel, Dior, and Yves Saint Laurent having their iconic cosmetic products like Chanel No. 5, Miss Dior, and Rouge Pur Couture Lipsticks. Even though these fashion houses have made their marks on the beauty world, they still continue to create new makeup collections.
Harper’s Bazaar reports that brands such as Gucci, Hermes, Jimmy Choo, and Carolina Herrera are jumping on the trend of releasing makeup collections in the past 2-4 years. It just seems like fashion and cosmetics are so intertwined as if they were always meant for each other. But do high fashion and cosmetics always go hand in hand?
Fashion House only Capitalize in certain Makeup Collections
Let’s analyze how categories of luxury cosmetic lines could differ.
Let’s take a look at the lists of makeup, fragrance, and skincare brands that the market considers high-end and popular. Makeup collections and fragrances are oftentimes from beauty lines that high fashion brands created. Popular high-end skincare lists, on the other hand, are mostly taken up by brands that are specialized in creating only skincare products like Tatcha and La Mer. This difference may be an indication that the consumers are using cosmetics produced by fashion houses as accessories. This will be explained in the next section.
Makeup and Fragrance as Accessories: A Value Beyond their Use
We speculate that buyers of makeup and fragrance from fashion houses do not only purchase these cosmetics for their core functions. After all, makeup and fragrance don’t differ too much whether they are from luxurious or drug store brands. The quality is almost always the same. There isn’t a set of colors and fragrances that is unique to a specific brand. Of course, some brands have iconic fragrances. But honestly, you can find something – at least – similar in other brands. And, even more, with much more affordable prices.
Consumers are more interested in the brand itself rather than the function of the product that they are purchasing. They are infatuated by the Chanel, Dior, and YSL monograms engraved on their lipsticks and perfume bottles.
There are two important aspects we need to highlight. First, there is the expensive process to create a quality formula. Secondly, the phenomenon might also explain why high-end fashion brands are not excelling in skincare lines. A consumer can bring their lipsticks and perfume everywhere, reapplying them out and about. On the contrary, skincare is limited to morning and night routines.
To elaborate, consumers can use makeup and fragrance in a social setting. But, on the other hand, skincare is only for private settings. By applying the high-end manufactured makeup collection in public, consumers can signal their social status to their friends, colleagues, and acquaintances.
An Appeal to the Middle and Lower Economic Class
There is a clear appeal in purchasing luxury items in the general market. That’s because luxury goods can allow consumers to feel a sense of belonging and high self-esteem.
The purchase of high-end makeup collections and perfumes by the middle class is no longer something rare. Cosmetic lines from luxury clothing brands are way cheaper when we compare to the apparel that the same brads produce. Thereby, the buyers from the middle and lower class can spend some money on luxury makeup and perfumes which ultimately make them experience the life of the higher class.
From the StandPoint of a Luxury Brands
From the perspective of high fashion brands, we believe that they are fully aware of the appeals that they hold for consumers of different economic segments. In a way, high fashion brands are legally and lowkey taking part in price discrimination, a practice where a company charges different prices to different buyers. In this case, the luxury brands may be advertising their more affordable makeup collections to their middle-class consumers, while marketing their expensive bags and jewelry to higher-class consumers. By reaching out to as many buyer segments, these brands can maximize their revenues.
On top of that, makeup and fragrance are easier industries for luxury fashion brands to break into. As mentioned before, both makeup collections are used in the outward setting, just like the way that apparel, bags, and jewelry are. They are interrelated products in that sense, that is why the brand will not lose its name value when they extend into these industries.
How to Go About Purchasing Makeup Collections?
By publishing this article, we are in no way telling you to stop purchasing makeup collections from luxury clothing companies. If these products make you feel satisfied and their quality is something that you believe in (the way that I believed in my Gucci Guilty perfume), go on ahead and purchase them! However, we just wanted to let you in on the unspoken marketing tactics. They are obvious yet not talked about enough. And, that may assist you in making conscious and rational buying choices.
There are many values aside from the luxury status and functionality that could inspire your buying decisions.
At Fashinnovation, we consider sustainability and diversity as important values. By ascribing to and supporting companies that consider the same value as us, we believe that we can make a better change for the climate and underrepresented people. You can check out our sustainability and diversity blog posts which might inspire you to adjust your purchasing decisions!