Press

 WWD
August 8, 2018
9 Tips For Mastering the In-Store Experience
Earlier this summer as I was packing - at midnight, predictably - for a 7 am flight the next morning to a sunny seaside getaway, I realised, with (a beauty editor 's) horror, that we were dangerously low on sunscreen. In a panic, in pajamas, I dashed out to the 24-hour drug store on the corner and stood in front of the wall of Neutrogena, Coppertone and Banana Boat, reading glasses on.

Options from pricier brands like La Roche-Posay, Vichy and Avene were tucked on shelves elsewhere, so I toggled back and fourth between the two sections , arms full, comparing ingredients, skin care benefits , SPF levels and price. It could have been easier. Had mini, travel-size essentials been displayed nearby, I would have spontaneously tossed a few of those in my basket for good measure, too, because - as anyone in Manhattan buying waterproof SPF 80 would be - I was going on a trip. Instead, it was money left on the table.

There is both an art and a science to merchandising. It's what leads us instincti vely th rough a store and helps us find what we need (or didn't realise we need), persuades us to purchase and, in the best cases, keeps us coming back. It requires studying the past while peering into the future , combining statistics and psychology with a dash of creative license.

Retail is certainly in a state of flux, and, in some cases, crisis, but the beauty customer is still buying in physical stores. In 2017, 80.7 percent of global beauty sales - $375 billion worth of purchases - were made in brick-and-mortar stores, while 7.9 percent - $36.6 billion - were mad e online, according to Euromonitor.

And while retail may indeed be in turmoil, "the shopper is not," said Wendy Liebmann, chief executive ofWSL Retail Strategy, a consulting firm. "To see the future ," said Liebmann, "follow the shopper. She, or he, is the true north."

Capturing and keeping today's consumer requires understanding not only where she is headed, but how - in ways both subtle and sweeping - she has changed. Here's what retailers need to know in order to optimise their merchandising strategies for the new consumer .

1. Purchasing decisions are made long before she steps into the store.

It used to be that, at mass especially, the majority of buying decisions were made at the shelf. P&G referred to this as "the first moment of tru th ," said Liebmann, and it was estimated that at least 70 percent of decisions were made this way.

Today, people do much of their research before even setting foot inside a store. According to Liebmann's annual How America Shops study, seven out of 10 people "do some kind of pre-shopping to inform their decisions." Monica Arnaudo, senior vice president of merchandising at Ulta, puts the number for beauty-obsessed millennials at over 90 percent.

This shopping pre-game consists of everything from looking up ingredients and reading product reviews online to watching TV commercials, searching out promotions, cruising Instagram and YouTube for ideas and trusted endorsements, and hearing about something from a friend .

As a result, custom ers are making decisions faster once they're in the store, and thus the nature of their trips are morphing from leisurely discovery and browsing expeditions to "quick, get it off the list trips," explained Liebmann. The merchandiser's first moment of truth is evolving into a "zero moment of tru th," and that , said Liebmann, "is changing everything."

2. To engage consumers in a physical space, reconsider its role.

While online platforms may be a retailer's most valuable back-up dancer, and have proven to play a role in bringing people to stores, what are the elements that only a store experience can provide?

Cos Bar, which started as a family run boutique in Aspen 42 years ago, and now operates 20 freestanding stores across the United States, has built a reputation for knowledgeable specialists who take luxury clients through the store as dedicated beauty tour guides. As chief executive David Olsen said, "You can go online and learn everything, but how do you learn what's best for you? That's the one thing the intern et hasn't cracked."

Less-intimate-by-nature stores are focused on personalising service too, creating elevated experiences previously found primarily in specialty and department stores. Target has installed beauty counters and now offers consultations with brand-agnostic beauty concierges during which consumers can try products, get colour-matched and receive advice - not to mention samples.

At Target, they 've paid close attention to lighting, added feature tables and consider ed how impactful presentation promotes the things that bring in their consumer in the first place: "replenishment - the items you know you want every day - and discovery," said Christina Hennington, the company's senior vice president of Beauty and Essentials

3. Designing in-store experiences for one type of person doesn't work.

Old assumptions about who is shopping your stores, and your brands, no longer hold. Understanding today's beauty customer is about understanding that she may be many differ e nt customers in one. For example, the same woman who buys a $6 Maybelline mascara may save up for a $60 Tom Ford lipstick, just like the woman who buys a designer jacket may couple it with a Uniqlo T-shirt. Ulta saw the potential back in 1990, when they pioneer ed the idea of a store that offered both mass and prestige under one roof. And, ind eed, nearly 80 percent of Ulta 's customers cross-pollinate, dipping across categories for their purchases , said Arnaudo.

"If you're not giving a nod to the fact that she shops high and she shops low," noted Liebmann , "There's a chance you will lose her, because you don't understand her."

4. Focus on how the customer wants to shop.

A good place to start, said Liebmann, is by figuring out what kind of trip she (or he) is on, which may change with every person who walks through the door. "Often," she said, "retailers are not good enough at recognising who she is at that moment and accommodating. Even if the trip is just about 'me,' it's a question of how much time do you have? Can we spoil you or do we have to get you in and out fast?"

Service is the name of the game - whether you're a drug store or a specialty store, where people tend to linger longer. But the key is knowin g when to give it, and how much. "If you don't have tim e - if you've got the kids with you and all you want is your Sonia Kashuk lip gloss - you don't care that there's a beauty concierge in Target," said Liebmann.

And what is the most comfortable way for consumers to find the things they are seeking? "We look at the order in which th e customer makes decisions - is it by brand, or by category- and merchandise accordingly," said Hennington. Most of the time, she noted, customers seek out a brand first and then look within that brand of choice for options. The same holds true at Cos Bar's niche boutiques. "People are still loyal to brands and want to learn about brands even though everything in that brand isn't right for them," said Olsen. "Combing through 20 different moisturisers is not the way people shop today. They'd rather say, 'I know La Mer; tell me about their three best moisturisers."'

Target recognised that guys - historically a somewhat shier beauty customer - might benefit from a separate moment of their own, and when they gave it to them, it immediat ely started paying dividends. Hennington described the men's section as "a world designed for them," a shop-in­ shop with special fixtures and lighting, where men can find everything from skin care and fragrance to shave products, minis to encourag e experimentation and zones where they can interact with grooming devices. "We're trying to see how likely men are to browse and spend time investigating categories they might not have before," said Hennington. "We're on our third version now, and each one is a bigger version of th e prior and delivering better results."

5. Recognise that no matter how brand-loyal a shopper is, she's still shopping multi-brand.

Olsen attributes part of Cos Bar's recent success - th eir sales are up 27 percent this year - to the fact that one salesperson learns the customer's concerns and preferences and leads her through the store to cherry-pick a regimen. Conversely, the department store's Achilles heel continues to be the fact that to learn about five different brands, a customer must visit five different (hard-selling, commission-based) advisors at five different counters and start her story over each tim e. These days, who has the time, or the inclination , to shop like that?

At Target, Hennington understood that people with an affinity for products with natural ingredi ents wanted to shop for them in a dedicated Naturals section, separate from the traditional skin care, cosmetics and bath & body aisles. Merchandising these products within a "lifestyle section" has been a hit with virtually everything - except hair, which Hennington quickly learned customers want to see in one overarching section, regardless of ingredients and positioning.

6. Pay attention to traffic.

Traffic is all about considering how you want a customer to move through a space, studying what she does when she gets there and making adjustments based on those learnings.

When designing store layouts and imagining flow, a certain number oflogistical considerations come in to play: not only do you want to create a logical roadmap - sort oflike a life-size Chutes & Ladders board where customers instinctively follow a path, encounter different experiences, and hopefully end up at the cash register feeling like winners - but you need to account for seemingly meaningl ess trivia like the fact that most people are right-handed. This means that people tend to look, and move, instinctively to the right (important when designing the entrance) and grab things that are on the right (important when creating prominence on a tabl e or wall). And remember that, in 2018, most of us have a phone permanently glued to one hand. "If I only have one hand free, I'm only picking up one or two things ," said Liebm ann. Her solution: remind people to take a basket or cart, or find some other way to "crea te a space for the phone."

Ulta begins storytelling at the entrance - trending brands and exclusives up front - and leads the customer all the way to the back (so she is effectively traversing the entire store twice with the lure of salon services and the accompanying hair product assortment.

Cos Bar engaged Retail Next, a firm that counts its traffic, studies where people go, and dwell, and looks at which windows are bringing them in. "Understanding traffic patterns has been huge and we're seeing traffic increase as a result," said Olsen. He learned that where you put the cash register matters, as it creates the flow and closes the loop on the journey. "Looking at the data from different stores, I think the middle of the store has been our best bet to date, but I don't think we've cracked it yet," he added. The wall behind the register is often a "dead zone" - "so we have nothing there now, just a Cos Bar sign," he said - but the area surrounding the register, populated by the "candy" - KNC lip masks, 8Greens tablets, Beautyblenders - where one impulsively adds on an extra, inexpensive item while waiting in line, is retail gold.

7. Embrace agility.

At Cos Bar, evaluating traffic has allowed th em to quickly asses what's moving and what's not; their flexible new store designs facilitate moving segments and making strategic tweaks "on the fly," said Olsen. "If products aren't moving, there's a reason for that, and you need to find a new home for them." Even if a floor plan is working, "you've got to constantly change th e stores, too, for customer experience," he adds.

Refreshing customer experience includes merchandising according to what's new and what she's interested in, now. That requires keeping up with her life (what is everyone suddenly talking, and posting, about?) and reacting with speed. Ideally, a store's feature tables, end -caps, product and brand spotlights should be a mirror of her thoughts, questions and desires . Consider it retail ESP.

8. Be a storyteller.

Merchandising is storytelling. Tell stories with your product assortment. Whether you are big or small, luxury or mass, edit, curate and organise in ways that tell the stories of your brands, your products, their ingredients and benefits, buzzy trends, seasonal spotlights and need-spaces.

Ulta merchandises products by brand (and by category within brands,) but when Arnaudo sees an opportunity to bring products from multiple lines together in one spot to tell a story she knows may interest her customer, she jumps on it.

It's about laser-focusing a customer's attention, and it works. Her team pulled out "new & notable" hero products in prestige skin (where she knows her client is lookin g for innovation ,) and created a dry shampoo end-cap once she noticed that women weren't washing their hair as much. As masking hit fever pitch, Arnaudo brought sheet masks togeth er from all across the store in dedicated spaces within both prestige and mass. "We saw such a great increase on the mass side - double-digit, if not triple-digit growth - we doubled the space in the section, and the category continued to trend ," she said. When she created a single Sun section - in response to customer feedback last year - blending products from across mass and prestige, sales increased by double digits. The category has continued to surge, yielding double digit on top of double-digit growth this year, she reported.

And while curation has been shown to encour age browsing and discovery, stores should keep the focus tight. "What we've learned that doesn't work," said Arnaudo, "is if we try to do too many things at the same time - too many stories, too much product, too many added fixtures and additional signage. Over th e holiday season, we were trying to do a little too much, and that can be sensory overload. There is a balance."

Also, tell the story of your customer. I.e., figure out her story. What is she buying, where is she going? And what else might she need? "It's the part of the job a tru e merchant really loves: anticipating what makes the most sense to bring togeth er for our guest," said Arnaudo. The lesson is to get inside the customer's mind-set : a smart merchant will remind her of her narrative and what she needs - or plant the seed and tell her. That's curation, but it's also storytelling.

9. Take cues from digital - and use it to your advantage.

Not only does digital drive people to stores and help them once they're there - phone in hand, looking up a review, recalling an Instagram post they favourited or a product they bookmarked - there is much brick-and-mortar inspiration that can be taken from the online space.

Liebmann likens Sephora's "best-of" micro-curations - an end-cap touting The 5 Best Mascaras, for example - to an IRL internet search. "I Google X and get th e top five options," she said. This type of messaging is smart, too, because it reinforces Sepho ra's position as exper ts, their authority to tell the customer what is best.

The digital world provides a living, breathing mood board of the looks, shades and trending application techniqu es (and the attendant products and tools) that have captured a customer's imagination. It's also a hunti ng ground for new brands that can set a retailer apart, build credibility and win an audience. Arnaudo looks to platforms like YouTube - which 70 percent of her customers are on - to help determine what's coming in to Ulta's assortment. She recently brought on Morphe and Colourpop, two digitally native brands with enormous social followings and influencer ties. "They're driving traffic into the store because the consumer couldn't see or test the product until we had it," said Arnaudo. "It's a piece we all have to stay on top of, and it moves so fast."

Physical stores, from Tom Ford to Target, have incorporated e-commerce's virtual try-on AR technology to speed up the product selection process too. "It's a step forward in acknowledging the expectations of th e consumer," said Hennington.

Savvy merchandising is an ongoing work in progress. And ther e are many different customers to think about, not just the millennial. "We have 30 million consumers who walk through the doors each week," said Hennington, "so how do you stay relevant with a broad base?" The ability to pivot quickly opens the door for experimentation and innovation. "I'd rather be out there trying and learning than perfecting something on a spreadsheet," she continued. "Of course we make mistakes; it's about what we do with that information next that matters."

By Sarah Brown

 WWD
June 27, 2018
About five years ago, when he was the global vice president of the Net-a-porter Group, David Olsen declared brick and mortar dead. He has since reconsidered.

Speaking at a forum, Olsen, chief executive officer of Cos Bar, shared some insights into the firm’s brick-and-mortar strategy, which includes remodeling some locations to improve the in-store experience, taking an omnichannel approach and using data in the workplace.

“To me, one of the most telling stats is that only 10 to 20 percent of all beauty purchases are made online today,” Olsen said. “It’s a shockingly low number and of those 10 to 20, 80 percent of those are replenishment purchases. That says a lot about the power of beauty in the physical store.”

Olsen pointed to Cos Bar’s 12-year-old Carmel location as one example of the positive effects the company has seen by remodeling some of its stores. The Carmel location was previously 800 square feet — Cos Bar’s smallest store — and underwent renovations in December that included adding a couple hundred square feet, which translated to more brand offerings. The result, Olsen said, was a 40 percent growth in comparative sales.

He also shared the company’s focus on omnichannel — his motto at work is ABTO, aka always be thinking about omni. “It’s really about getting people from the physical world to think digital and digital people to think physical,” he said. “The omnichannel is by far our most valuable customer. Their purchase frequency is three times our regular customer.”

Cos Bar uses data to inform merchandising decisions like window displays, employee evaluation and labor allocation. “We’ve woven the entire thing into the culture of our business and it’s been a huge success,” Olsen said, adding that half of the bonus for the people in-store is based on RetailNext metrics.

He also mentioned Stella Connect, which Cos Bar uses to reward in-store specialists. The process is simple: After the customer makes a purchase, she gets an e-mail that allows her to rank the in-store specialist, much like Uber.

“Then it gives you the opportunity to have corporate buy [the specialist] coffee, a lunch or a spa day, and when they gather up a certain amount, we give it to them,” Olsen explained. “This gives the specialist the recognition they deserve. People need recognition and praise. It also creates a strong bond with the customer. It reminds them about their visit with the specialist. It creates a little bit more of a personal connection and it gives us in corporate good insights into day-to-day interactions that we’re having.”


By Alex Tietjen

 glossy
March 14, 2018

Cos Bar, the luxury beauty retailer that has 20 locations across the United States, is refocusing its social media strategy to get closer to customers, at a time when the most successful leaders in beauty are those that get personal.

On Instagram and Facebook, the retailer has started relying on localized and user-generated content, customer crowdsourcing and a new video tutorial series featuring knowledgeable store employees A weekly blog on its website also contributes to the conversation, with posts promoted on both platforms.

The goal is to bring the brand, which carries high-end products selling for hundreds of dollars, down to earth. Although Cos Bar does strive to convey an “elevated image” that’s appealing to its luxury consumer, it tries not to be “seen as unapproachable or intimidating,” said Mimi Slater, Cos Bar’s Vice President of Marketing. “We want to reflect our in-store experience of being friendly and warm.”

It’s better late than never. Luxury brands have historically operated at arm’s length from their consumers, and as a result, they’ve been slower than most to adapt to the digital requirements of today, whether that’s an e-commerce presence or the savvy use of social media, both of which deliver a level of unprecedented brand intimacy. For Cos Bar, its elite store locations in areas like Aspen and Brentwood contributed to its inaccessible luxury image.

The new strategy was put forth by the company’s dedicated social media manager, who also works with managers at each store to develop localized content. Those store managers also help to keep separate Facebook pages for each store active, promoting local in-store events and favored brands, or fielding product questions via messenger. On Instagram, there’s only one main Cos Bar account, but many of its store associates rely on their personal accounts to clientele with local customers, which the brand encourages.

“We want to connect with the customer however she prefers — whether that’s a text message, phone call or via social,” said Slater.

Compared to retailers like Sephora and Ulta, which have full teams dedicated to social media, it’s a tiny operation, though with only 23,400 followers on Instagram, Cos Bar is also catering to a much smaller audience. ( Sephora has 13.9 million followers.) As such, Slater believes the current setup works in Cos Bar’s favor.

“It allows the company to be more reactive and nimble on each platform,” she said.

That size plays into the company’s new social tactics, including UGC, which cuts down on marketing costs, and also crowdsourcing. With a small audience pool, the retailer can reach out directly to customers for feedback.

Using the method, Cos Bar has found that shoppers are asking for more skin-care content, which is not surprising, given the sector’s recent surge. They also regularly weigh in on where the retailer should open its next store, which Slater said has been legitimately helpful in making those decisions.

But more resources are going into video. A new series of beauty tutorials includes 20 videos that were filmed this past fall at the company’s annual all-hands meeting and features store employees. Two to three of them will be rolling out each month for the coming year.

“We know that the most important element of our high-touch luxury service is the people who execute on that vision every day — our managers and beauty specialists — and we are always looking for ways to strengthen that in-store connection [in the online space, as well],” said Cos Bar CEO, David Olsen, who was particularly passionate about the project.

The products featured in these videos were totally up to the store managers’ discretion, as Cos Bar does not offer any paid placements on its social accounts. Managers are also responsible for curating their favorite products every week on the brand’s blog, which also features in-store event recaps, like one focused on a recent Beauty and Wellness panel at the Dallas location.

As for how the brand decides what else to feature, product-wise, on platforms like Instagram, Slater said they look to which items are currently top sellers, what’s trending on social media and anything that’s relevant seasonally or because of a promotion. Recently, that’s meant sheet masks from Patchology and a slew of new cosmetics from Dior.


By Jessica Schiffer

 dmagazine
March 7, 2018

The beauty business is booming here in Dallas – and not just thanks to the opening of more blow dry bars than we can shake our sleek strands at. Lately, there’s been a slew of specialty beauty boutiques open up within the past couple of months in the area. Here, we break them all down, so you can expand your beauty buying horizons.

Cos Bar
Location: Plaza at Preston Center, University Park

High-end brands such as Clé de Peau, Tom Ford, and Sisley-Paris stock the shelves in the striking, 1200-square-foot beauty boutique, which opened in February. Cos Bar founder Lily Garfield, a longtime resident of Aspen, Colorado, originally created the space in 1976 to help other people combat the (sometimes harsh) weather in The Rockies. From there, Cos Bar expanded across the United States, choosing Dallas for its 20th location. The boutique features a Cos Bar B. Cos loyalty program that for every $1 spent, a point is earned. Once $100 worth of points are accumulated, customers will receive $3 off in-store and online purchases.


By Andrea Arterbery

 Raising the Bar
November 2017

A strategy built on great service, omnichannel sales and curated, upscale boutiques have positioned Cos Bar as a top destination for luxury beauty.

Today’s cosmetics junkies have endless options to find what they need, but it’s hard to imagine that just over 40 years ago, department stores and drugstores were about the only places to find beauty products. This was a reality for Lily Garfield, the driven, forward-thinking founder and co-chairman of Cos Bar, established in Aspen, Colorado, in 1976. Living in a dry climate at an altitude of 8,000 feet, Garfield recognized a need for quality skin care, which wasn’t accessible. “I saw how fast your skin can age,” she says.

A former Bloomingdale’s account executive, she applied her knowledge of the industry to do something that was quite radical at the time: she opened a beauty store. However, Garfield sought to create something different than what she experienced at the beauty counter of department stores. “I have seen everything in a department store—the greediness, the aggressiveness, the ‘Don’t go near my counter,’ ‘Don’t try my perfumes’; Bloomingdale’s back then was the epitome of everything I didn’t like,” she says.

“The thing that I always hear Lily saying, which I love and appreciate, is that her model from the start was to be the anti-department store,” adds Cos Bar CEO David Olsen, a down-to-earth, in-command and tech-savvy entrepreneur.

While the Bergdorfs and Saks Fifth Avenues of the world carried high-end cosmetics in the ’70s, Garfield says she was able to convince vendors to distribute to her because she wasn’t a threat to department stores. “I was 200 miles away,” she says.

“We’ve trained our staff to treat every customer the exact same way, and make her feel important regardless of what she’s wearing.” –Lily Garfield, founder, Cos Bar

And unlike department stores that had a different sales model, with associates that represented a single brand, her employees could sell any brand in the store. “Specialists who leave department stores and come and work for us say that one of the best things about working at Cos Bar is that they are now free to sell across brands—giving the customer what’s best for them,” Olsen says.

In today’s competitive beauty retail landscape, Cos Bar continues to be a top luxury brand retailer while running a very smart omnichannel sales program, positioning itself for growth and expansion in the coming years. Its history, leadership, clear identity, customer service and relevant business practices all factor into making it a thriving beauty retail operation—now in its 41st year.

ELEVATING THE EXPERIENCE
Since 1976, the beauty industry has seen unprecedented changes. In the ’80s, many fragrance brands started cropping up, while the 1990s saw the emergence of makeup-artist-created brands like Bobbi Brown. But, Garfield maintains that some things never change.

“For the first two decades of business, everything was being catered to the baby boomers,” says Garfield, who predicts that millennial shoppers’ buying habits will one day follow suit of their boomer predecessors. “Every generation wants to be smarter than there parents, but it turns out, life repeats itself. I’m watching things change, but eventually I can still see that even this millennial generation will end up being like their parents.”

“It’s more about being treated well than what we sell.” –David Olsen, CEO, Cos Bar Garfield says that Cos Bar has not deviated from what she created 41 years ago. Its stores even carry many of the original brands, such as Lancôme and Guerlain. “I’ve always stayed true to what is in the best needs of the customer, not what the vendor wants me to [sell],” she says.

“Another thing that makes us unique is our luxury positioning,” Olsen adds. “A lot of people throw out the buzzword ‘prestige’ or ‘masstige’; we position ourselves at the top of that pyramid.”

Cos Bar carries a curated selection of upscale beauty products in an intimate boutique environment, one that Garfield describes as the “Cheers” of beauty—when a customer walks in, specialists know their name. “What we want to do with digital is really enhance that, so in the off chance [the specialists] don’t know their name, they’re able to look the customer up and see their purchasing history, using technology to enhance the overall experience between the specialist and the customer,” Olsen says.

THE IMPORTANCE OF OMNICHANNEL
David Olsen’s area of expertise is e-commerce. While attending law school at the University of Miami, where he received a joint JD-MBA degree in 2000, he was bitten by the entrepreneurial bug. “When I graduated I really didn’t want to be a lawyer. I was so excited about the internet,” he says.

That year, Olsen asked his dermatologist mother, Dr. Margaret Olsen, if he could build a website for her Los Angeles practice, which sold cosmeceutical products. Soon after, her office and garage served as the company’s warehouse. Because David didn’t become the tech mogul he’d dreamed of being (which he laughs about today), he practiced law for three years while still maintaining the website (“litigating by day and packing boxes by night,” he says).

“People think they can put up products [online] and become rich—but that’s not the case,” Olsen says.

His retail experience eventually led him to start his own e-commerce site in 2004 called DermTeam, which provided online solutions by selling white-label products and building websites for physicians, day spa owners, plastic surgeons and dermatologists. In 2009, DermStore, a competitor with more marketing and development support behind it, acquired DermTeam. Olsen grew DermStore exponentially over the next few years, which helped him land the position of global vice president for the Net-A-Porter Group in 2012, overseeing the launch of their beauty and grooming category.

While working for Net-A-Porter, Olsen connected with Richard Gersten, a lead partner at private equity firm Tengram Capital Partners and Cos Bar board member. Olsen asked Gersten if he was interested in investing in Cos Bar, and that if Tengram did make an investment, he’d want to be considered for the CEO role, he says.

“If you have a clear vision of where you’re trying to get to, it’s much easier to get there.” –David Olsen, CEO

“I just saw a huge opportunity for omnichannel, the ability to sell in-store and online,” Olsen says. “I spent the first 17 years of my career saying, ‘Brick-and-mortar is dead. In digital, we can recreate what occurs in the beauty specialty shop.’ Clearly we can’t. If you look at conversion rate, online sales are 6 percent and in-store is 80 percent. There is clearly something very critical about the human touch.” Garfield adds, “We still want to keep it much more high touch, as opposed to high tech.”

Olsen became Cos Bar’s CEO in February 2016, growing online sales from 2 percent to 15 percent in less than two years. “In today’s day and age, being omnichannel is critical. … I know a lot of people say omnichannel is an overused word, but until the experience online is the same or better than in-store, it’s still multiple channels—so, how do you connect them in a seamless way?”

RETHINKING RETAIL
Olsen’s main focus is ensuring that Cos Bar customers have an overall positive experience, whether that’s giving them the ability to buy online and pick up merchandise in-store, or guaranteeing that deliveries are received on time. But he’s also looking into new text messaging and online technologies to better connect with his target demographic.

Stella Connect is a digital tool that will soon be integrated into all Cos Bar locations, and is currently being beta-tested in the New York and Texas stores. Here’s how it works: About an hour after a customer makes a purchase, they receive an email from the beauty specialist that assisted them. The email includes a picture of the specialist and a friendly letter that includes personal information about him or her. The customer is then asked to rank their experience from one to five stars, and is given the ability to “buy” the specialist a cup of coffee, lunch or a spa day (which corporate pays for). For every five coffees a specialist collects, they receive an actual coffee; for every 10 spa days, they’ll earn a spa day.

“It’s connecting the customer with the specialist and giving us the ability to really congratulate and honor specialists who go above and beyond,” Olsen says.

Cos Bar also has its B. Cos loyalty program, where customers can earn points for every dollar spent after signing up with an email address and birth date. On the month of their birth, shoppers can redeem a complementary makeover and accrue additional points. The loyalty program has been around for just over a year, yet 84 percent of sales come from B. Cos members.

“When I look at technology, I look at three major things: Is it practical technology (will it enhance the experience between the customer and the beauty specialist)? The adoption rate (will people actually use it?); and, does it work?” Olsen says.

Cos Bar is now beta testing same-day delivery from its Brentwood, California, locale with a signature white Fiat, and plans to rollout delivery cars to other locations in the near future.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
Though you’ll find most Cos Bars in affluent neighborhoods (think Vail, Colorado, Montecito, California, and Newport Beach, California), Olsen and Garfield believe that luxury is more of a feeling than a price point. Most customers are over 35 years old, but 20 percent are millennials.

“It’s more about being treated well than what we sell,” Olsen says. “… And if you’re going to splurge, you want the full effect: to be sat down, educated and have someone tell you the perfect products for you. We definitely don’t want to ostracize any group.”

Garfield adds, “Once we assess the socioeconomics of a community, not every [location] is going to be selling the $1,000 creams in an area you might call blue collar; but we’re still going to keep that image that we’re luxury. You can still be luxury and carry affordable products, but you have a choice of being treated nicely.”

Though brands like La Mer, Dolce & Gabbana, Estée Lauder, La Prairie and Sisley Paris are store staples, Cos Bar supplements its roster of about 80 brands based on momentous trends. For example, AmorePacific is for K-beauty fans. For customers seeking natural and organic products, they offer Tata Harper.

“If you’re going to splurge, you want the full effect: to be sat down, educated and have someone tell you the perfect products for you.” –David Olsen, CEO “Luxury is always what we look at, but what does that mean? Efficaciousness, positioning in the market, other distribution and a great founder story—all those things play into how we look at brands,” Olsen says.

For customers looking to meet brand founders and celebrity makeup artists and snap Insta-worthy pics, Cos Bar hosts in-store events, such as makeovers and master classes. Previous events have included visits from Giorgio Armani lead makeup artist Tim Quinn, Laura Mercier makeup artist Jay Halo, Tata Harper and Gwyneth Paltrow for Goop (which is available at the Montecito location). The brands also offer training for specialists two to four times a year. Managers attend training events as well, like the recent Tom Ford education summit in Laguna Beach, California.

“It’s critical to our business that [specialists are] very knowledgeable about everything we sell. We don’t have 500 brands; we only have 80 to 90 because we really want them to be comfortable and familiar with all the brands,” Olsen says.

Cos Bar’s 20th store opened in Dallas on December 13, 2017. “I’m making sure we’re opening stores faster, better, on time and on budget,” Olsen says, “making sure we’re as close to perfect as we can be. I think that’s what my first two years were about—setting the foundation to give us the ability to scale.”

Utilizing private equity backing, in 2018, eight more stores are expected to open their doors, with another 12 projected for 2019, and 15 to 20 more in 2020. With each store opening, the design becomes more refined. The sleek Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, locale has pale pink walls that have brought a fresh update to Cos Bar—now the Carmel, California store will soon be remodeled to reflect this new look.

“[Garfield] is truly the pioneer in specialty luxury beauty,” Olsen says. “She was doing this so far ahead of everyone. Timing and location is everything, but the fact that she had a family-run business for 39 years—very successful for any business, much less in the beauty space where things change all the time—is absolutely amazing.”

TIPS FOR SUCCESS
Cos Bar founder Lily Garfield and CEO David Olsen share their tips for entrepreneurs.

Set Realistic Goals:
“You need to have tangible goals so you can reach them,” Olsen says. “A lot of people say, ‘I want to be a millionaire,’ but that’s not a goal. How are you going to get there? I write down my goals and I stick them on my mirror one at a time, and knock them down one at a time. If you have a clear vision of where you’re trying to get to, it’s much easier to get there.”

Be Passionate:
“The founder has to be very passionate, whether it’s in retail or coming into a new product. You’ve got to have tough skin to say, ‘I believe in this, this is going to work and I know I can be successful at it,’” Garfield says.

Don’t Give Up:
“Just because you love beauty doesn’t mean you’re going to be an incredible beauty entrepreneur. It is a lot of hard work. It is a lot of constant learning and a lot of dedication,” Olsen says.

Know the Market:
Garfield stresses that basic marketing 101 is all about knowing supply and demand. “Make it sparse, and it becomes much more important,” she says.


By: Written by Karen Wilhelmsen

 Racked
December 11, 2017

On a stretch of Broadway in New York City’s Soho neighborhood, one of the city’s most touristy blocks, two new shiny beauty stores opened right next to each other last month. One is almost entirely red and has a huge red gorilla in the window. The other, lacquered black with red accents and hot-pink neon signs, has a DJ booth in the back and features a rotating roster of visiting YouTube and Instagram beauty influencers. The brands? Armani and YSL.

Designer fashion brands are obviously only within financial reach for a certain shopper, but their associated fragrances and beauty lines traditionally offered a way into the brands for people who couldn’t otherwise afford it. Even then, designer makeup brands held themselves aloft from the beauty fray and reveled in being exclusive, with a price point to match. However, they are now trying to become more accessible, in a bid to grow in the US beauty market. Makeup in particular is on fire as an overall category, but seems to be leaving the luxury stalwarts in the dust.

Prestige makeup sales, which include designer brands as well as heritage brands like Estée Lauder and indie brands like Anastasia Beverly Hills, totaled $7.9 billion in the US for the 12 months ending June 2017, according to NPD Group data. This represents a 10 percent increase in sales from the previous year. Designer brands only made up 6 percent of those total prestige makeup sales. Sales for this group increased by 4 percent, less than half of what the growth was in the rest of the category. Designer brands tend to have strong fragrance businesses, but fragrance is a smaller overall market. For the same time period, women’s fragrance had $2.6 billion in sales, and 66 percent of those sales came from designer brands; overall fragrance sales were flat from the previous year.

Which is presumably why Armani Beauty and YSL Beauté decided to open pop-ups with a heavy makeup focus. Both brands are owned by L’Oréal and are part of that company’s International Designer Collections group, so the fact that the stores are right next to each other makes some sense. They will both be open until December 31st, though it’s pretty clear that this is an experiment for them to see if standalone retail is realistic for these two brands. Both brands have their own e-commerce sites, and both sell in a selection of traditional department stores as well as at Sephora. Representatives for these brands said, in separate interviews and in what appears to be a mantra for the company, “Stores are the new media, and media are the new stores.”

The Armani Box, as the pop-up is called, previously made the rounds in Paris, London, Beijing, and Tokyo before landing in New York City. There is a large portrait of designer Giorgio Armani on the wall and in the window, a replica of Uri, a gorilla prop from an unknown movie set that is in the Armani atelier in Milan. Customers can get lipsticks and fragrances engraved, take selfies with Uri, watch digital makeup tutorials to learn how to create makeup looks from Armani runway shows, and attend live events with celebrity makeup artists and fashion influencers.

Giovanni Valentini, the vice president for Giorgio Armani Beauty, says that the brand has been growing three to four times faster than the general market, with purposefully limited distribution. He thinks Armani’s makeup strength is in its foundations, like the bestselling Luminous Silk ($64), although shoppers are also responding to its lip products. Valentini says, “It’s a brand a lot of people know for fragrance and the awareness of beauty may not be as high.” He says that Armani has been in discussions with an “important” retailer to incorporate the Box concept into an existing store.

Right next door at YSL, there’s a bit of a nightclub vibe, as a DJ plays loudly and Swarovski-encrusted guitars are passed around for selfie-taking. The centerpiece of the store, though, is the engraving station. Customers can pick a shade of Rouge Pur Couture lipstick ($40) and then can choose one of four caps, featuring lips, sparkles, stars, or hearts. They can then have it engraved with whatever they want. A suggestion on display: “Will you marry me?”

Alexandre Choueiri, the president of L’Oréal’s International Design Collections, spoke at a CEW industry panel recently in New York City, where he discussed the state of the luxury-beauty industry and acknowledged that in certain ways YSL was “late to the game. We wanted to put this brand on the map. It’s tiny in the US compared to where it is in Europe,” he says, still noting that overall its growth has been in the double digits. Lipsticks are YSL’s fastest-growing category, so in 2016, the brand started offering engraving for free via its website. It appealed to its intended target. “Gen X doesn’t engrave. The millennials all engrave!” he said, to audience laughter. “We are only going to thrive against the giants if we’re creative and if [customers] are given a special experience.” Choueiri said the engraving resulted in “high-triple-digit growth” in lipsticks.

Verane de Marffy, the vice president of marketing for YSL Beauté, thinks the customization option is the “unique proposal” that will get customers into the door of the pop-up and bring them back for more. She says lipstick is popular because customers think of it as a status symbol, something they will take out of their bag and use proudly, a little piece of what she calls “the edgiest, coolest, couture [fashion] brand.” It’s certainly cheaper than YSL bags, which start at $2,000. (And this alignment with the fashion brand seems to be a strategy itself. Former Saint Laurent creative director Hedi Slimane took to Twitter in 2014 to distance himself from the beauty brand and proclaim he had absolutely nothing to do with YSL Beauty’s Black Opium fragrance campaigns.)

Despite the sunny assessments, designer makeup has a lot of lost ground to, uh, make up. Even de Marffy admits, while laughing, “On other categories it’s more of a battle. I actually think Dior, Chanel, YSL — we have lost the battle of eye palettes. It’s over.” (Indie brands like Natasha Denona can sell out $129 eye palettes at Sephora, and there are countless other brands offering more reasonably priced options.)

David Olsen is the CEO of Cos Bar, a luxury beauty chain that now has 20 freestanding stores and a website whose sales went from 2 percent of the business to 15 percent since he came on board almost two years ago. Before Cos Bar, he launched the beauty category at Net-a-Porter, so he understands designer brands. “They’re not as nimble with trends,” he says, adding that historically, these brands were the trendsetters. “But I think they’re getting better with it. Since they’ve got the billion-dollar pocketbooks, the new technologies that they’re launching are generally very solid.” He says Cos Bar is growing well, but it sells more skincare than makeup.

Other designer makeup brands are in critical transition periods. Coty, which already held fragrance licenses for designer brands like Marc Jacobs and Calvin Klein, acquired a large group of brands from P&G last year, including Gucci beauty and fragrances. And this October, it acquired the license for Burberry Beauty, which had previously been developed in-house at Burberry. Neither Gucci nor Burberry makeup has had breakout hits like some of the other designer companies have, so Coty has some work to do here. The company declined to comment for this story since the brands are in a transitional period, but Coty luxury president Edgar Huber told the trade publication BW Confidential Magazine, “Burberry already has a strong make-up business which is doing well, so we have great opportunities to energize it even more.”

For Olsen, Gucci Beauty is a much more exciting prospect ever since creative director Alessandro Michele took over and re-energized the fashion brand. Coty understands this. Michele just helped develop his first fragrance for the brand, Gucci Bloom. The Gucci cosmetics line debuted a little over three years ago, covered in gold and plastered with the brand’s double-G logo. Huber said in the article, “Gucci has reduced its make-up business a little bit over the past few years, but we have decided to re-focus on it and re-develop it as fast as possible.” Slap some of the house’s fun floral patterns on the packaging and let Gucci fan Harry Styles help promote it, and it would be a winner. (Please see its candles, which cost $250 to $450 each, for a glimpse of what this could look like.)

Then there’s Dior, which is second to Chanel in terms of beauty sales. But only about 30 percent of its revenue comes from makeup, according to WWD. Terry Darland, the president of Parfums Christian Dior North America, came on about 14 years ago to refresh the beauty brand, which she said at the CEW panel had gotten “dusty.” The brand, which is owned by LVMH, opened its first makeup-focused store last year in the Oculus of the Westfield World Trade Center in New York City. It also sells at department stores and at Sephora (also owned by LVMH), where Darland says its customers are “younger and more dynamic.” It was a coup, though a complicated one, for Ulta Beauty, known for selling both drugstore and prestige brands, to land a blessing from Dior to sell its uber-popular DiorShow mascara ($28.50) in select stores.

Dior beauty is also sold online via a brand website, but Darland notes that its “retailer partner sites are much larger generators for us.” Sometimes fashion and beauty arms of a house can actually be too close. The Dior site also features fashion, which it does not actually sell online, so it’s more of a branding exercise for the house. “[The Dior website] does a nice business,” Darland says, “but it’s not as strong as if it was a pure play beauty site.”

In a story similar to the other brands here, Darland says Dior’s makeup business has “rebounded,” primarily due to the lip and face category. This can partially be attributed to beauty influencers like Manny Gutierrez and Jaclyn Hill, who have raved about Dior’s Airflash ($62) and Forever ($50) foundations. Forever’s sales are up 150 percent for Dior. At the panel, Darland proudly played a video clip of influencers gushing about the brand’s foundations. “Everyone says to me, ‘How does that work in terms of having Bella Hadid as the face for the brand?’” Darland says, presumably referring to the high-low nature of these ambassadors. “We obviously appreciate all that Bella brings to Dior, but there is a highly engaged, highly visible audience for influencers.”

While designer brands may not have wanted to be associated with beauty influencers in the past, there are no qualms now. YSL and Armani both paid influencers to do meet-and-greets at the pop-ups. But the brands could probably do more. Tribe Dynamics, which measures earned media value (EMV) based on influencer engagement with brands via social media, pulled some data for Racked. EMV is an indirect measure based on mentions and engagement, but does have some correlation with actual market share and revenue. From January through September of this year, most designer-brand engagement was based around fragrance launches, not makeup, although some of YSL’s buzz came from its $58 All Hours Foundation. But designer brand EMV pales in comparison to other prestige brands. For example, Dior’s estimated EMV, the highest of all the designer brands in this time period, was about $136 million. Anastasia Beverly Hills’s EMV was over $1 billion for the same time period.

While luxury-beauty brands say they are staying away from Amazon, which doesn’t allow brands to tell a visual story and still places an emphasis on “commoditization” and selling things cheaply (according to L’Oréal’s Choueiri), other options are on the table. (Likely to their dismay, though, Amazon does carry designer beauty brands like Chanel and Dior via third-party vendors, probably sourced from the gray market.)

Octoly, the business that works with brands to offer free beauty samples to micro-influencers to review, just raised a $10 million investment and launched a program called Octoprime, which allows influencers to sell products via their own storefronts and receive a commission from brands directly. Thomas Owadenko, the CEO and co-founder of Octoly, says it’s a way for brands to compete against Amazon, which just launched its own influencer storefront program. He calls it B-to-I-to-C marketing, or business to influencer to consumer. “I think with the relationship we have with the brands [which include Dior and Givenchy] right now, they could really leverage it and have fun with it,” Owadenko says.

Fun is the thing that could be the tipping point for designer makeup brands’ success, in fact. The designer brands mentioned here have a lot of competitors breathing down their necks and from whom they could learn a few things. There is American designer beauty upstart Tom Ford, whose beauty license is owned by Estée Lauder. The brand started with fragrance, then lipsticks, and grew from there. It is now on track to hit $1 billion in sales. Cos Bar’s Olsen says the brand is selling exceptionally well there.

“I think that luxury needs to take itself a little less seriously because if it isn’t fun, especially in this day and age, people won’t engage in it,” he says, mentioning Ford’s new “Fucking Fabulous” perfume ($310). “He’s not scared to break the mold of what people think luxury is and still maintain that luxury position.” Tom Ford beauty is sold at department stores, but also more niche retailers like Beautylish. It experimented with its Soleil line of products at Sephora a few years ago, which did so well that the brand launched the entire makeup line there. It also courts a younger customer (who presumably has less money) with its Boys and Girls lipsticks, which are smaller and, at $36, cheaper than the full-size $54 versions. The brand just opened its first freestanding beauty emporium in London.

Then there are powerhouse makeup artists Charlotte Tilbury and Pat McGrath. The latter was a creative director at P&G Prestige for many years, and had a hand in designing both Gucci’s and Dolce & Gabbana’s makeup collections. She has also spent decades behind the scenes at designer runway shows. She is savvy with social media, took a page out of the Supreme and Kylie Jenner “drop” book to build excitement for her limited-edition launches, embraced influencers, and has tons of chic and influential friends. She now has a permanent line that is sold on her site and at Sephora — and it is growing.

Charlotte Tilbury leveraged her years of working with celebrities and her bubbly, charismatic persona into a line of luxury products with whimsical packaging launched in 2013. It’s sold at every major department store, on Net-a-Porter, and on Beautylish. This past spring, it received an undisclosed amount of venture capital, and retailers have reported that it “exceeds sales expectations.”

L’Oréal’s Choueiri says that his brand’s sales have been much better since Thanksgiving and credits it to people “being ready to party. They’ve had enough negativity.” Time will tell if that translates to more people wanting to engrave things on $40 lipsticks.


By Cheryl Wischhover

 Mother
November 2017

Walk into any retailer—be it Bloomingdales’s, Walgreens, or something in the middle—and you’re sure to find shelves upon shelves of all things beauty: makeup, skincare, and everything in between. Whether you choose to purchase your look-good, feel-good go-tos from the drugstore or the department store, one thing we know for sure is the industry is growing every single day, especially online. Within this seemingly ever-expanding category lies a highly sought after, somewhat enigmatic subset of premium products, called luxury, that few of us know too much about. To be an expert in high-end beauty is to have widespread knowledge and clout with some major, coveted brands. In today’s profile, Mimi Slater, Vice President of Marketing at experiential luxury beauty retailer, Cos Bar, and mother to two-year-old, Elle, invites us into her Dallas home where she dishes about motherhood, working from home, and the luxe beauty biz.


By: Written by James Kicinski-McCoy

 Forbes
February 2017

When Lily Garfield founded opened the first Cos Bar in Aspen back in 1976, her vision was to be "everything a department store isn't," says CEO David Olsen. Today with department store beauty shopping on the decline and specialty retail players Ulta and Sephora taking over the beauty retail landscape, Cos Bar faces new competition. But it's sticking with the one essential competitive strategy that has established the brand with high-end customers: luxury service.

Cos Bar was started because Garfield had a vision to fill a gap in the beauty retail. Back then, department stores were the only place where you could buy luxury beauty products. But the commissioned salespeople at department stores were notoriously aggressive and focused only on selling the single brand that they represented. Garfield decided to open a store where well-trained employees would provide a level of personal, caring service suitable for the full range of luxury brands they would sell.

Forty years later, Cos Bar has 19 stores in upscale locales such as La Jolla, CA, and Vail, CO. It has earned a reputation as the go-to source for exclusive brands such as Tata Harper and Sisley-Paris among celebrities and high-end clientele who don't blink an eye at dropping $1,000 for cosmetics in a single visit. It also carries more accessible brands such as Bobbi Brown and Estee Lauder, but the shopping experience is definitively luxurious, with stores designed around personal service, not open selling.

Garfield accomplished her goal of positioning Cos Bar as the antithesis of department stores but the company now faces new competition from burgeoning specialty retailers Ulta and Sephora. By carrying a large selection of hair products, skincare, and cosmetics and mastering promotional and loyalty programs, these retailers attract a mass market of consumers who have been fueling their double-digit annual growth. But rather than following the trend and going more mainstream, Cos Bar remains steadfast with its luxury service strategy. Garfield goes so far as to say that a key difference between her brand and Ulta and Sephora is that Cos Bar isn't "prestige," it's "luxury." In a recent interview, Olsen explained to me that luxury customers are "extremely demanding" and their expectations are "through the roof."

So luxury service at Cos Bar is:

· Personalized
"Beauty specialists" (as Cos Bar store employees are called) greet their clientele by name, spend the time to get to know their customers' individual needs and provide caring consultation, and create an atmosphere where there's no hard selling. The personal touch continues after the sale, too, with employees using a "3 x 3 x 3" follow-up approach wherein three days after a customer visits, employees send a personal thank you note; three weeks later they make contact only to build a relationship, not to sell anything; and three months later, they inquire with the customer about replenishing existing products and offer additional ones. What's more, every online order is shipped with a personal note, business card, and offer to help from a beauty specialist.

· Knowledgeable
Cos Bar customers want unbiased advice and full transparency about the products they buy, so employees receive extensive training on the products they sell. From Google hangouts with brand representatives to quarterly in-person trainings added to the minimum of 15-20 years experience Cos Bar employees have, they can present all facets of every product expertly.

· Local And Omnichanel
Cos Bar manages to operate as a local brand and an omnichannel retailer at the same time. Olsen explained that Cos Bar doesn't want to be seen as a chain, so it is "tied into its communities" through special events and hosted parties. It also curates its product assortment by location and features local brands. At the same time, it understands that its customers expect to engage across channels, so it is developing e-commerce capabilities that advance its luxury service strategy including the ability to track in-store purchases online. It also uses social media to develop the personal service link between employee and customer through weekly posts from beauty specialists with their personal recommendations.

Olsen said the company plans to quadruple its sales in 3 years and open 50 stores. Equally ambitious is its aspiration to be "the world's best luxury beauty buying experience." In order to achieve its goals, Cos Bar will have to continue leveraging the one thing Ulta and Sephora can't: luxury service. So far, it seems to be working.

Denise Lee Yohn is a brand-building expert, speaker, and author of What Great Brands Do and Extraordinary Experiences. Contact, follow, friend, or link in with her.


By: Denise Lee Yohn

 CEW
August 2017
Cos Bar's New Store Prototype Takes Tech Turn

Cos Bar knows the importance of looking good. To that end, the Los Angeles and Aspen-based retailer is readying for a new store design, complete with in-store and window digital displays, private treatment and event rooms, a feature product display and mobile point of sales on tablets. Oklahoma City will be the first to tout the new prototype design, set to debut August 25. All future stores will follow the new format, with 32 new stores planned over the next three years.

The last time Cos Bar redesigned its stores was in 2007. The goal of the new store layout, said David Olsen, Cos Bar's CEO, is to achieve a simple, uncluttered environment, which maximizes the quantity and impact of the merchandise displays. "The cash wrap is in the center of the store, and will be flanked by impulse item display cubes, with the new product display located immediately in front of the counter. Play bars will be located in the center of the store, with ample seating and phone charging stations. Counters line both perimeter walls with ample room for navigation on all sides. When viewed as a whole, the light, fresh and welcoming Cos Bar environmental brand language should represent the height of beauty, impeccable quality and world class luxury," David said.

Inspiration behind the new design looks to reflect the retailers' luxury brands and to also be functional, while maintaining a feminine, light, warm and engaging atmosphere. Incorporating the 41-year old company's heritage elements, such as Aspen wood floors and its Grecian mark, which was part of the original Cos Bar logo, was top of mind. Feedback from customers – such as adding a featured product display, was also considered.

Digital displays in windows will feature videos, brands and promotions; digital displays in store will be used to highlight events, exclusives and promotions. Private treatment and event rooms will accommodate in-store experiences and special events, such as spa treatments, services and a nail and/or brow bar pop-up. A featured product display will be centrally located and showcase new, favorite and bestselling products. Mobile POS tablets look to give Beauty Specialists more of an interactive side-by-side checkout process with the customer rather than an across-the-table interaction typically seen with a stationary cash wrap. "We hope to eventually eliminate the cash wrap so that we can encourage more free-flow customer movement throughout the store and have more space for merchandise and visual elements," said David.

The new store design will feature interior facing monitors to communicate more with customers, such as in-house material produced by Cos Bar, but also vendor content, beauty trends, social media and recently-purchased product reviews. "It's another way of getting our customer socially engaged through an omni-channel shopping experience," said David.

In 2017 Cos Bar has opened four stores (Brentwood, Newport Beach, Lexington and Red Bank), bringing total store count to 18. Oklahoma City marks the chain's 19th store, with two more set to open in the last half. About eight to 12 new stores each year are forecasted for the next three years.

"We'll continue to tweak the design and in-store elements until we've perfected the client experience," said David.


 

 WWD
August 2017

The luxury beauty retailer's 19th store is slated to open in late August, in Oklahoma City's Classen Curve.

"There's an extremely wealthy population in Oklahoma City — they're definitely craving a new beauty retail buying experience," said Cos Bar chief executive officer David Olsen. "There's a Dillard's there, and that's about it." The Oklahoma City location marks the start of a new store prototype for Cos Bar that features a room for services and more digital displays, according to chief executive officer David Olsen.

"There are enhancements we're doing," Olsen said. "We're adding a lot more digital to it." In addition to street-facing digital displays, the store will have in-store digital displays that will highlight events and in-store promotions. The treatment room will feature a rotating series of services, Olsen said. Cos Bar has experimented with in-store services before, but going forward will include them in each new store. The Oklahoma City location is Cos Bar's fifth for 2017, following an investment from Tengram Capital Partners in late 2015 that came with plans to open more doors.

Services-wise, the Oklahoma City store will "keep it as fresh as possible," Olsen said. "It will be a rotating schedule. We'll do tanning Tuesdays and hair-braiding Thursdays, whatever it may be, so rotate through. We want to keep it fresh and interesting to the local clientele."

The Oklahoma City store is more focused on the Cos Bar brand than the brands it sells, Olsen noted, though there will be a Tom Ford display in the location. The location is outfitted with adjustable shelving, Aspen wood (a throwback to the chain's Aspen, Colo. roots), backlit featured-product and new-brand product displays, and items at the checkout section.

The store is also data enabled with Retail Next and Stella Connect, Olsen said, which essentially sends an e-mail from a staff member to a customer following up, offering continued communication and asking for a rating. "It's really building the relationship that's been built in store and continuing that relationship online," Olsen said. "The customer can rank the experience à la Uber and if they want, they can give the beauty specialist a cup of coffee, a spa day or a lunch, and corporate will pay for it when they get a certain amount."

The Classen Curve location — where Cos Bar will sit among other lifestyle-type businesses — sits within the company's overall real estate strategy, to focus on street-level locations in lifestyle centers near affluent customers. It worked well for Cos Bar's new Lexington location, Olsen noted. "Lexington has been really strong right out of the gate because of the lack of shopping experience," Olsen said.

In addition to its store rollout, Cos Bar has also brought on Heather Connelly from Space NK as head of buying and merchandising. Lily Garfield, Cos Bar founder and formerly chief merchant, will now be founder and co-chairman. Garfield, a cancer survivor, will be honored at CEW's Beauty of Giving Luncheon by Cancer and Careers.

Connelly was part of the team that built up Blue Mercury before it was acquired by Macy's, before she joined Space NK. She adds more retail expertise to the team, Olsen said (he joined from Net-a-porter in 2016).


By: Allison Collins

 GC Magazine
June 2017

In the age of Amazon and the implosion of so much physical retail, what's the future of the beauty omnichannel? This was the focus of a recent CEW panel in New York, featuring Lauren Brindley, GVP and GMM of beauty and personal care, Walgreens; Kecia Steelman, chief store operations officer, Ulta Beauty; and David Olsen, CEO, Cos Bar.

Who is the Omnichannel Shopper?

Omnichannel shoppers are best shoppers, said Steelman. These customers buy online and in-store and, in the best cases, use Ulta's salon services. The retailer currently has 24 million shoppers enrolled in its loyalty program, which is a significant opportunity. But Steelman added that these shoppers want what they want when and where they want it. As a result, retailers have to look at their businesses holistically.

Consumers want things on their own terms.

Online retail offers convenience and discovery, while the physical store is about newness and excitement, as well as (in Ulta's case) salon services. But whatever channel the consumer is in, the experience must be seamless. Steelman added that millennial consumers want something unique and comes to the store armed with a great deal of knowledge. As such, they expect a lot out of Ulta team members in-store.

Retail on the Consumer's Terms

Consumers want things on their own terms, said Brindley. Therefore, brick-and-mortar retailers cannot simply construct an e-commerce platform and consider themselves an omnichannel player.

She stressed that e-commerce is strictly about transactions, while true omnichannel strategies embrace a holistic experience across stores, m-commerce, desktop and social media. The result, she said, should be a seamless retail experience wherever the consumer is.

Digital and physical retail facets must work close together to create an in-store experience in digital and vice versa.

One day, omnichannel will no longer be a term but a retail reality, Brindley continued. This strategy will provide brands and retailers with opportunities to connect to different parts of customer journey. This is critical as the path to purchase is no longer a linear process, with consumers demanding info across whatever channel she might find herself in.

Brindley added that conversion rates can be great in digital, which Walgreens is ramping up. However, retailers must get more comfortable in a less controlled atmosphere, she added. Retailers simply cannot control every interaction. In addition, companies should deliver a bit more humor and casualness in the digital channel to meet consumers' expectations in the space.

Can Brick-and-Mortar & Digital Play Nice?

Olsen described a different challenge: Often, he said, the digital teams can forget to fully consider the physical store in their planning, which has a massive impact given that Cos Bar still produces about 85% of its business in the physical channel. Digital and physical retail facets must work close together to create an in-store experience in digital and vice versa. Olsen added that any failure to fully consider omnichannel strategies for a retailer will spell doom.

While Cos Bar's digital business has grown from 2% to 15% of its business, Olsen ensures that his digital teams have an understanding that consumers have many shopping choices and that staff on the floor in-store are a critical element of success.

In-store shopping can build the total experience for the consumer.

With roughly 8,200 stores, it would be easy to overly focus on where Walgreens' business is today, versus where the growth is, said Brindley. To ensure digital and physical retail cohesion, Brindley said she cross-pollinates her teams across channels. In addition, all of Walgreens' initiatives are built for the omnichannel, rather than reverse engineered after the fact. This prevents waste of resources and overhead.

Steelman added that true collaboration removes silos among channels—it's all about growing the business together. She noted that she often finds answers to challenges from the floor staff. She added that, just as the millennial shopper is demanding, so too is the millennial worker. They want to feel heard and appreciated, said Steelman, so it's important to make sure teams feel committed.

In-store: the Experiential Factor

In-store shopping can build the total experience for the consumer, said Steelman. She noted that Ulta's salons, which are present in every store, are a clear differen­tiator in the age of ailing retail. The company also recently partnered with MAC to bring the makeup brand's products into its stores and offer makeup services from MAC-trained staffers. (The deal works well for MAC, which has suffered due to its dependence on mall and department store channels.)

In addition, Ulta is partnering with professional artists from Redken, Matrix, Wella and Lonza to help Ulta stylists perfect their skillsets and provide insights into building their client business. This brand-retailer partnership, Steelman said, is expected to help build Ulta's overall uniqueness in the marketplace.

Cos Bar's customers have done their research.

Ulta has also introduced a GlamLab app that allows consumers to try on virtual looks and individual products and then make purchases based on their preferences. The app supports virtual try ons from more than 1,000 SKUs from Urban Decay, MAC, Nyx and more.

The retailer is also establishing flagships in Chicago on Michigan Avenue and another in Manhattan at 86th Street and 3rd Avenue. Steelman noted that during the development of the two spaces Ulta teams were able to use VR headsets to virtually walk through store layouts to better understand how guests would experience the spaces.

Olsen noted that Cos Bar serves its demanding customers with services for makeup and skin care recommen­dations. The staff are also trained to sell across brands and to give brand-neutral recommen­dations.

Cos Bar's customers have done their research, said Olsen, and demand products that omit certain ingredients. In response, the retailer has distributed email blasts to shoppers featuring staff recommen­dations. These emails contain the direct contacts for staffers to encourage consumer interaction.

The best relationships with brands are those in which they build the business in partnership with the retailer.

Cos Bar has also partnered with brands such as Natura Bisse, which offered its Mindful Touch experience to elevate face and body spa treatments with the incorporation of a VR headset that offered immersive video and audio paired with a gentle massage from a therapist. The multisensory experience is intended to treat the skin, lower stress and offer a "more intense experience of the treatment."

In-store, Walgreens bringing beauty consultants into 1,100 doors to guide consumers to the right solutions across brands and pricepoints. Its No7 Match Made Foundation Service, which helps consumers find their right foundation, merges the digital and physical elements of retail while also boosting Walgreens' beauty credibility, said Brindley.

Avoiding Omnichannel Gimmicks

Brindley warned, however, that retailers and brands must make sure technology is adding to the consumer's journey and not simply serving as a distraction. This requires sober assessments of the value added by any new retail facets.

Brindley noted that several years ago many brands and retailers spent large sums of money installing iPads into stores to facilitate product and information searches and other services. However, it quickly became clear that shoppers actually wanted this type of information delivered directly to their phones. Brindley concluded that technology changes quickly and that retailers and brands must make sure they incorporate it in inspirational ways in order to avoid being stuck with outdated, irrelevant technology. Olsen concluded that, when it comes to tech, it's good to be ahead of your time but not too far ahead. It pays to think through how technology will practically impact the consumer experience.

How Brands Get on Retailers' Radars

The best relationships with brands are those in which they build the business in partnership with the retailer, said Steelman. This means building business plans together and establishing a healthy rate of growth.

Ulta has more than 500 brands in-store, said Steelman, so the retailer often looks at brands that consumers request in-store or online. Ulta also looks at brands that have a big social media audience or that fill a gap in the retailer's offerings. And, whenever possible, exclusivity is highly desirable.

There's a lot less "noise" in the luxury space, compared to specialty retail and the pharmacy channels.

More specifically, Steelman said that K-beauty is compelling because it "flies out the door," while skin health continues to be a growing focus of interest. In addition, health and wellness is the next big trend that will impact Ulta, which has already gained momentum in skin care, featuring products with clearer ingredient labels and more natural packaging design.

There's a lot less "noise" in the luxury space, compared to specialty retail and the pharmacy channels, said Olsen. Cos Bar looks for luxury brands with luxury distribution. In addition, brands should look and feel that money has been invested in the formulas and packaging. And, of course, efficacy is critical, as is a compelling proposition or uniqueness.

In addition, Olsen looks for a good founder story. He singled out Jen Atkin of Ouai as a good example of a compelling founder. Cos Bar uses stories like these to tell compelling narratives in its emails to consumers. At the same time, the retailer's blog creates a strong connection with shoppers. Olsen also looks for brands that deliver on trends, as Amorepacific has with K-beauty. As for the last product that impressed him, Olsen highlighted Nannette de Gaspé's Dry Masques, which are waterless face and body masques that allow for micro penetration of active ingredients through the multiple layers of the epidermis. The masks retail for $85 to $120 and are reusable.

The omnichannel allows Walgreens to make small bets on brands.

Olsen also noted that, in terms of omnichannel performance, he looks to the successes of Home Depot, which he believes has done an excellent job in being service-oriented and best-in-class in providing store locators, inventory searches, service scheduling, etc.

Brindley noted that the Walgreens teams focus on on-trend products that have staying power beyond a mere fad. Fads can be expensive, she said. It's far more important to be relevant. Therefore, the Walgreens insight team tracks trends two years out. Walgreens also looks for differen­tiated products that communicate that point of difference clearly.

The omnichannel allows Walgreens to make small bets on brands, testing them out on a small scale before rolling out system-wide. As with Ulta, she said, the brands that work best work in collaboration with Walgreens.


By: Jeb Gleason-Allured, Editor in Chief

 Glossy
April 2017

Newport Beach, CA - Rare is the development that is unveiled and delivers those idyllic settings evoked in its renderings. But at Lido Marina Village, DJM Capital Partners Inc. has breathed new life into a run-down marina, turning it into a quaint hamlet filled with high-end shops and waterfront dining.

On a recent sunny, weekday afternoon, the restaurant Zinque was bustling with the lunch crowd and a few people strolled. Here, valets will park your boat for you or ample parking can be found at a parking garage that leads visitors right out onto the 116,000-square-foot property.

Lido Marina is nearly done save for some light construction on the street and shops yet to be opened with retail occupancy at around 94.6 percent. A craft beer, wine and tapas outpost called Lido Bottle Works and coastal-inspired home store Bixby & Ball are scheduled for May openings. Lido has been enough to woo Elyse Walker who, after 16 years, made the decision to open a second location in what some view as a secondary market filled with malls oftentimes eclipsed by Los Angeles. There are also Steven Alan, Clare V., Bailey 44, Eberjey and Jenni Kayne, among others that have opened stores.

"We saw this unique opportunity with great real estate surrounded by one of the best customer bases in the U.S. in an area that has this rich history that we saw as the golden era of Newport. That story is really told by these old residences that we bought," said Stenn Parton, DJM director of acquisitions and development. "We saw the responsibility to tell that story. These buildings are unique to Orange County, where you find mainly malls or newly built [real estate]. This had a lot more character and charm." The immediate area's also affluent, with average household incomes last year totaling $136,538, according to CBRE Research.

Stenn's father, Lindsay Parton, serves as president of DJM, which has a portfolio of managed assets in California totaling 2.65 million square feet, most of it in Southern California.

Lido Marina's heritage, stored up in Thirties-built buildings sitting at the entrance to the man-made Lido Marina island, is now infused into the updated center, but it was a careful process signing tenants. The deal with Steven Alan became the catalyst and momentum picked up from there, Parton said.

"We had to show differentiation in our competitive landscape in Orange County, which is more traditional malls — but really well-performing malls," Parton said, referencing centers such as South Coast Plaza and Fashion Island. "It was not just about getting leased up, but understanding the merchandising."

Retailers were won over with the retail component (the project also some office). Broken English and Cos Bar are among the most recent openings. Average store sizes total 1,295 square feet.

DJM declined to provide retail rent information. According to CBRE Research, triple net rents (where the tenant pays for real estate taxes, insurance and maintenance) range from $3.50 to $6 at Lido Marina. "Lido Marina Village reminded me of the Brentwood Country Mart, which has a special place in my heart," said Broken English owner Laura Freedman. "I could tell that a lot of thought and love went into the development and renovation, and I knew that it was a good fit for Broken English's first Orange County store."

The jewelry boutique — which sells everything from vintage to contemporary pieces — set up its first door at the Country Mart, another highly curated retail center.

"We are committed to serving local communities by creating high-touch relationships with our customers and we felt that Lido Marina Village was the perfect place for our newest store," said Cos Bar chief executive officer David Olsen. "Fashion Island is a great mall, and has serviced that community for many years, but we know that the experience we provide and this new location is very different. It has more of a small town feel, right on the water, with excellent boutique co-tenants like Elyse Walker, Jenni Kayne, Aesop, Black Optical and incredible restaurants anchored by Nobu sushi."

DJM sits on an interesting perch, informed by experience on both the developer and retailer side. Parton's brothers, Raan and Shea Parton, are the founders of the Apolis label and boutiques. Raan and his wife also established the retail concept Alchemy Works — with one at Lido Marina — that's a hybrid store, gallery and event space.

"One of the great gifts we've been able to benefit from is the experience learned as a retailer being on the other side of the table from landlords and seeing what's happening at retail today," Stenn said. "My brothers are still managing, operating and running that [Apolis] business and so we learn from them on a day-to-day basis….It's one thing for a bunch of people in real estate to sit in a room and talk about what they think is cool. It's another thing to sit with my brothers and their friends and just be a fly on the wall and listen to what they're saying. I think that's really been a key driving factor in where we've directed our merchandising plan."

It's also in tune with the communities where DJM's other centers are located. About four-and-a-half miles north on Pacific Coast Highway, the real estate investor and developer also has the recently built, 191,000-square-foot Pacific City project, which offers a mix of national and boutique tenants ranging from H&M and Free People to Seafolly and Kin. A food hall, dubbed Lot 579, includes the popular Bear Flag Fish Co., Dudes' Brewing Company and Hans' Homemade Ice Cream.

"It's only 4.5 miles away [from Lido], but we feel it represents a different culture. They feel like they're worlds apart," Stenn said. The beachfront property in Huntington Beach, which calls itself Surf City and is home to the annual U.S. Open of Surfing, serves as a destination for tourists and locals. Average income last year totaled $121,837, with triple net rents at Pacific City ranging from $4 to $6 per square foot, according to CBRE Research.

"We looked at this [project] as the epicenter of Southern California lifestyle having deep roots in surfing," Stenn said. "Surfing is one of those things that's very delicate in how you define that culture. It can be very kitschy or it can be very soulful."

Pacific City offers visitors live music and a speaker series that will kick off in a few weeks with big-wave surfer Laird Hamilton. There is also a dedicated pop-up space at Pacific City to keep up with fast-changing trends and cultural movements, Stenn pointed out. It's not something that can be done at Lido, which doesn't have the space, but there are still activities there that are more community-based with sailboats for kids, Saturday street fairs and an incoming midweek farmers' market.

Up next for DJM is the revitalization of the Runway at Playa Vista project. Stenn — who lives in nearby Venice — sees nothing but upside in the potential to create something specific to the area that's become known as Silicon Beach and an enclave for the likes of Yahoo, YouTube and Google. "We're rolling up our sleeves and thinking through how [Playa] can be re-imagined to tap into that culture," he said. "Every community has its own story. Every community has its own DNA and the merchant mix should reflect that DNA and that community's story.".


By: Savita Iyer

 Glossy
February 2017

For 40 years, Cos Bar has run a small operation selling expensive creams, serums and cosmetics to wealthy women in vacation destination cities like Vail, Aspen and Carmel. To its affluent customer base, who typically fall in the 35 and up range, a $795 night cream is nothing to bat a well-moisturized eye at.

Now, Cos Bar is going through a growth spurt, fueled by a newly digital strategy. Founder Lily Garfield, who had self-funded her 14-store fleet since its launch in 1976, took her first outside funding from private equity firm Tengram in 2015. Soon after, Cos Bar launched an e-commerce store. Last year, Garfield brought on David Olsen as CEO, the former global vp of Yoox Net-a-Porter, the company that sells a similar set of luxury beauty brands in its online store.

Cos Bar's driving its growth through a focus on digital, but don't consider it a Sephora copycat. At the core of Cos Bar's digital renovations isn't e-commerce, or augmented reality, or a jazzy mobile app. At Cos Bar, according to Olsen, changes are made to support top-notch customer service.

"We want to give the customer the same experience, no matter where she is or how she wants to shop," said Olsen. "At the center of that is customer service. It's essential for us."

Cos Bar stores are manned by beauty and skincare specialists who often know clients by name, according to Olsen. Unlike department stores, which outsource cosmetics department staff to brand sales reps working on commission, Cos Bar encourages shoppers to mix and match products for the best results. And unlike Sephora and Ulta, Cos Bar locations are small and tailored to their neighborhood environment. Sales reps who know the community are hired to run stores. As a result of that concentrated customer service, orders add up: According to the company, it's not unheard of for Cos Bar customers to drop $10,000 on one order. "The conversation in stores goes: 'Hi, Sue. Are you out of your La Mer? Have you seen this new lipstick we got in? This color would look great on you,'" said Olsen.

Olsen's steps to grow Cos Bar's digital footprint revolve around the company's staff. Cos Bar uses Retail Next data as a physical iteration of Google Analytics (something that hip, millennial brand Reformation has also tested). The data reports how many people enter the store each day, where they linger and whether or not they ultimately chose to buy. Using wifi, the tool pulls customer profiles from shoppers' phones. It's all a bit Big Brother, but Olsen said he's already seen average order values increase. The reports are shared with store managers so they can figure out how to best organize their merchandise.

"I don't know if other stores share this type of information with their managers, but I believe in sharing with the entire company," said Olsen. "It gives managers the ability to re-merchandise their own stores and make educated decisions."

Store associates also work with the Cos Bar marketing team to give input on what products are trending and should be included in customer emails and on social media. In the retailer's Facebook Live debut, two store managers and beauty specialists gave Valentine's Day gift ideas on camera. Olsen said 50-somethings were making purchases based on what they saw. Cos Bar gives sales associates commission for online sales. Cos Bar now has digitized its loyalty program to encourage cross-channel shopping.

Cos Bar is opening seven stores in 2017, focusing their brick-and-mortar efforts on areas that are a little bit pricey. Next up, Olsen will focus on implementing same-day shipping and click-and-collect, two tools he thinks harbor a community feel.

"We're heavily focused on opening new stores, so equally important is making sure we get the right staff in place and roll out these tools to give them the ability to provide the best service," Olsen said. "This is why we've survived for 40 years."


By: Hilary Milnes

 Swaay
February 2017

Situated at 8,000 feet above sea level, the luxury ski resort town of Aspen, Colorado is a dry, dry place. There's very little humidity or moisture in the air, and that, in conjunction with Aspen's cerulean blue, super sunny skies, means the skin is prone to aging rapidly. Fortunately, both residents of and visitors to Aspen can rely on Lily Garfield and Cos Bar.
Garfield set up Cos Bar, a one-stop shop for luxury beauty brands, in 1976 with the Aspen climate in mind. Back then, she says, "the only skincare that was available were drugstore brands that were sold in a pharmacy and I knew our local ladies needed something better."

She scouted around carefully for those brands she knew would counter the effects of the local weather, zeroing in on French brands Lancôme and Orlane (both of which Cos Bar still carries today) and other European skincare names with solid reputations that she knew were ideally suited to Aspen's harsh climate.

"I brought in products like cleansing lotions and creams, eye creams, face creams and hand creams – products focused on moisturizing, to name a few."

The local ladies of Aspen – who, at the outset, were Garfield's target client base — enthusiastically received every item she brought into Cos Bar. Their best interests were her chief concern because while it has become synonymous with wealth and luxury, Aspen was not always the playground of the rich, the famous and the fabulous.
"There were no luxury stores back in the '70s," Garfield says. "Over the years, Aspen has become an extremely popular tourist destination and luxury stores started to open. In the '70s, I was inspired to open a cosmetics boutique that would become synonymous with quality, personally selecting skincare, makeup and fragrances from the world's best brands."


Today, Cos Bar caters to both local customers and visitors to Aspen, serving clients who shopped at the store when it first opened in 1976 and others who happen to be in town and chance upon Cos Bar. There are now 15 Cos Bar stores in 10 different states and the company has a growing e-commerce business as well.

"We meet customers in Aspen who have discovered us in one of our other markets, or through out e-commerce site," Garfield says. "It's all very exciting to see our client base grow and evolve."

Garfield and her team make it their mission to carefully stock each Cos Bar store, selecting brands and products for every location depending on customer demand, climate and lifestyle.

"We do not carry the same assortment in every door – we have stores in cities, mountains, deserts and beaches, and we curate and cater to each market's need," Garfield says.

Cos Bar stores today stock around 88 brands (including names like Sisley, Cle de Peau, Tata Harper, La Mer and La Prairie, among others) give or take a few, and Garfield has plans to triple the store's footprint to around 50 locations in the next few years.

"Women of all ages are always going to be looking for effective products no matter what is on trend," she says. "They are looking for the right product for them. We offer thoughtful solutions, and we cater to each customer's unique needs by carrying an array of the best beauty products in the world. We want our customers to leave feeling great about themselves and their purchase."

Most importantly, Cos Bar's mission remains unchanged from its beginnings in 1976: Service has always been and remains the bottom line, Garfield says.

"We have trained beauty specialists who know every product in our store and they educate and advise customers on products that will suit their needs and lifestyle," she says. "We are passionate about helping our customers, and we want them to walk away having learned something new."


By: Savita Iyer

 In-Store Intel: Beauty Retail's Top Loyalty Programs
December 2016

Cos Bar Loyalty program: B. Cos, named by store manager, Maria Campitiello Good Date established: Launched in-store August 2016 and online November 2016. Card carrier: There is no physical card. Points automatically drop into a customer's account from wherever they purchase. How it works: If a customer provides her birthday and email, she's in. A customer receives one point for every dollar spent. She gets $3 off for every 100 points they earn. They also receive bonus points for signing up, writing an onsite review, their birthday and more. How many consumers participate: Thousands of customers have joined and hundreds of thousands of points have already been redeemed, and growing fast. Why the program is special: Customers have been shopping with Cos Bar for 40 years. There are also customers discovering the store for the first time. Cos Bar wanted to launch a program that was easy to understand and use, and truly rewarded loyal customers by giving 3 percent back on every purchase. Cos Bar also aims to surprise and delight customers throughout the year with special bonus offers.


 Beauty Store Business Magazine
December 2016

On a warm, fall October afternoon, I drove up to Cos Bar in beautiful Montecito, California, for an event featuring Tata Harper. A coastal town in Santa Barbara County, Montecito boasts some of the most spectacular and expensive real estate in the United States and includes Oprah Winfrey among its star-studded residents. It's the perfect place for a highend beauty store.

I had recently read about Tata Harper and her 100-percent organic, natural skincare line that bears her name. It's no secret that organic beauty care is a fastgrowing market segment. In fact, market research projects the organic personal care market to be worth $16 billion by 2020. The challenge for consumers and beauty store buyers alike will be to find quality organic products that perform at the right price points. Many beauty news sources had pointed to Tata Harper as a high-performing, luxury organic line, and I was eager to try it and have an in-store beauty experience for myself. Cos Bar did not disappoint—and neither did Harper.

Well staffed, tastefully catered with light fare and beverages and well attended for the time and location, the event was uplifting, informative—and fun! Perhaps what struck me most was the multi-aged crowd. There were young women present—as well as women in their 40s, 50s, 60s, and beyond—chatting, getting facials from Harper and her knowledgeable staff and enjoying themselves. I overheard one young gal talking with an older woman about a concert in Coachella Valley featuring legends of rock and roll—they bonded over mutual enthusiasm for Paul McCartney (who apparently brought out Rihanna for one song) and the Rolling Stones. The beauty business itself is very much a mix of generations and here they were converging—even the Cos Bar employees ran the gamut from young millennials to baby boomers.

At that moment, it occurred to me that an online retailer could never create this experience of community. And it made me thoughtful of beauty stores in general. Beauty stores can be and often are gathering places for women of all ages—and men, too—to find beauty solutions together. It was a good day for business for Cos Bar. Nearly all who received a facial purchased Tata Harper as well as other products that they had ample time to explore while waiting for their turn for a facial. It was also an opportunity to gather information. Harper brought a tremendous amount of knowledge about natural skin care. She directed me and other attendees to the products that would address our individual needs. We experienced, firsthand, before and after differences in our skin. It made an impact.

Beauty stores offer community in addition to personal customer service, education and, let's not forget, an enjoyable time. This holiday season, give your customers an experience to remember. Give them a reason to come back. No online retailer can do that!


By: Kim Henderson, Executive Editor

Skipping Breakfast at Tiffany's
November 2016

Happy Friday y'all!! Who is excited for the weekend?! I know I am! I'm heading to Tiger Town for the game tomorrow. One of the last home games—just one left after this weekend! I don't know where this football season has gone! Fall is flying by!

Well if you are going to be staying around Charleston this weekend then you should head on in to Cos Bar downtown on King St for a chance to meet Tim Quinn, Giorgio Armani's Celebrity Face Designer! He'll be there from 10 am to 5pm Saturday. He and his team will be showing the hottest trends from the runway to the red carpet. And 10% of the proceeds go to the Farrah Fawcett Foundation! If you want to make an appointment to get beautified send an email to charleston@cosbar.com or call 843-793-1776.

Speaking of getting all dolled up I had the pleasure of heading in to Cos Bar a couple of weeks ago when they had Tom Ford artists in. I'm a big fan of Cos Bar—you may remember me bragging about them in the past. They have prestige brands that no other stores have—actually they are the only retailer of Tom Ford in the Carolinas. And the women that work there are sooo knowledgeable. I always walk out with awesome purchases and new makeup tips. I also see Karen for my eyebrow threading! She is the best!

The first part of my makeover was a fragrance consulting session. I've never had anyone ask about how I like to feel when wearing a fragrance or to describe what I like. I usually walk in a department store, smell fragrances, and decide on my own. So this was a really unique experience. The Tom Ford rep was on point. She really nailed 3 fragrances for me. And they are amazing! Definitely thinking I'm going to need to go Tom Ford for my next fragrance purchase. My favorite that she picked out for me was the Jasmine Rouge. Loveeee!

Heavenly did my makeup and she had me looking fabulous! Super natural but more eye makeup than I typically wear. I've never used any Tom Ford products before so it was really neat to learn about the brand and see what he has to offer in the cosmetic world. The first product that Heavenly used on me that I loved was the foundation stick. I have never used a foundation stick before. I usually either use powder, liquid, or some sort of BB or CC cream (yes, I have a problem with trying different products!). But I really like the idea of the foundation stick. You can do as little or as much coverage as you would like. And it's really handy as you can just throw it in your bag for touch ups.

Some other products that were used that I loved include the eyebrow pen and some eyeshadows. I may be switching my eyebrow pencil when I run out of mine. It's larger so it fills in really nicely and goes on super smooth. The 2 eyeshadow products that I fell in love with (and of course had to leave with) are a cream shadow in Sphinx and a pallet in Disco Dust. I'm a very big fan of the neutral colors—tans, browns, golds, rose golds, etc. and these 2 products are amazinggggg. Soooo glad I bought them.

Heavenly did a stunning job with my makeover! I didn't want to take off my makeup that night! If you are looking for a new place to shop for your cosmetic needs definitely check out Cos Bar if you haven't yet! They are the best! Go treat yo'self!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!


By: Tiffany Hoard

Refinery29

Aspen Sojourner
November 2016

Old Man Winter has finally arrived in town, bringing even drier air to altitude along with him. Cooler temperatures aside, day-to-day life in the mountains can take a more extreme toll on your skin, so we turned to longtime local and beauty industry legend Lily Garfield. As the founder of Cos Bar, which debuted in Aspen in 1976, Garfield marked a major milestone this summer with a grand 40th anniversary celebration.

Today, the beloved luxury cosmetics emporium has 14 stores in 10 states and last year took on its first outside investor, Tengram Capital Partners, which aims to introduce some 50 stores and a refocus on e-commerce over the next few years. Now serving as Cos Bar's chief merchandising officer, Garfield is still on the hunt for new, exclusive, and hard-to-find lines, just as she was in the early days. Garfield was among the first independent retailers to discover the likes of La Mer, Clé de Peau Beauté, Laura Mercier, and Bobbi Brown, and has grown the Cos Bar portfolio into one of the poshest collections of beauty brands across the globe.

Garfield cites the "limited number of skincare products available to combat the climate conditions in the Rockies" as one of her inspirations to launch Cos Bar 40 years ago. Here (in no particular order), she shares her personal picks on how best to protect the face and body this season. They're on on the pricier end of the skincare spectrum, but when Garfield recommends a product, we listen!

  1. 1. Creme d'Olives, d'Olives
    "This cream is great, as it can be used 24 hours a day, year-round. It's especially effective at combating environmental stressors in the winter: it will hydrate wind-burned, parched skin and take the redness out. Both men and women love it." Exclusive to Cos Bar. $145
  2. 2. Black Rose Precious Face Oil, Sisley Paris
    "This essential face oil leaves my skin soft and hydrated." $235
  3. 3. Revitalizing Body Oil, Tata Harper
    "Use this 100-percent natural, hydrating [and anti-aging] body oil right after the shower, while skin is slightly damp. Follow with La Mer body cream for extra moisture." $95
  4. 4. The Body Cream, La Mer
    "The best of the best for super-rich effective mositure. We sell this in both a tube and a jar, so you can keep one at home and one for travel." $275 (jar), $195 (tube)
  5. 5. Intensive Eye Contour Cream, Cle de Peau Beaute
    "This eye cream leaves the eye area very soft, cushy, and moisturized. You only need to use a tiny drop." $255
  6. 6. Cellular Swiss UV Protection Veil Sunscreen SPF 50, La Prairie
    "This is perfect for everyday use and is also great on-the-go so you can reapply on the mountain. Apply it as a film (like icing on a cake) and let it absorb. Do not rub it in." $185

Shop Lily's picks in town at Cos Bar Aspen, 309 S. Galena St., 970-925-6249, or online at cosbar.com.


By: Katie Shapiro

Happi
November 2016

Sephora and Ulta aren't the only games in town when it comes to specialty beauty retail. Cos Bar, a true luxury beauty outpost founded in Aspen, CO, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. And while it some may consider 40 to be middle age, Cos Bar isn't slowing down. In fact, by some standards, this beauty retailer that promises "beauty elevated" is just getting warmed up.

Selling a curated assortment of ultra high-end makeup, skin care, fragrances and bath and body products for women and men such as like Tom Ford, La Prairie, Chanel, Sisley-Paris, Dior, Cle de Peau, Oribe, Laura Mercier, Giorgio Armani, and YSL Beaute, Cos Bar is already is already having a critical year.

For starters, Cos Bar recently took in a major financial investment from parent company Tengram (which owns brands like Laura Geller, Nest and Algenist in its portfolio too). In addition, Cos Bar expanded its leadership team by hiring four marketing heads and naming David Olsen, formerly of Net-a-Porter, as its CEO.

This month, it will open another flagship Southern California location in Brentwood, marking the start of a major expansion plan that includes remodeling existing stores and opening 36 new stores over the next five years. The new doors will join other stores in Carmel, CA; Charleston, SC; Edwards, Aspen and Vail, CO; Wailea, HI; The Woodlands, TX; Edina, MN; Highland Park, IL; La Jolla, Montecito and Los Angeles, CA; Santa Fe, NM; Brookfield Place in New York City; and Scottsdale.

Happi recently interviewed Lily Garfield, founder/owner and president, and Olsen about Cos Bar's past and its plans for the future and how the beauty retail scene has changed during the past four decades.

Happi: So, this year marks a major milestone for Cos Bar. As the founder, what does this mean to you personally and professionally?
Garfield:We are celebrating our 40th anniversary of the Aspen Cos Bar opening this year which is a dream come true! I had worked in the beauty industry in New York and knew that women needed something better and more convenient. Opening up a Cos Bar in the heart of New York City last year was a monumental moment for the brand as well as my career in the beauty industry.

Happi: Brand/product wise, how has beauty/skin care changed over time since you opened your first door in the late 1970s?
Garfield: In the past few decades new brands have emerged and the iconic brands we all know and love have evolved with the ever-changing needs of consumers and trends. At Cos Bar, we have been successful in keeping up with the times and trends while also staying true to our ways with excellent customer service and top beauty brands catering to each and every loyal customer.

Happi: How has the beauty retail scene changed since then too?
Garfield: Forty years ago, all you had were department stores or drug stores; you had certain brands in drug stores and luxe brands at department stores. There weren't many niche beauty focused retailers and Cos Bar was created to meet this need within the marketplace.

Happi: Can you share with us more about the deal with Tengram—what will it mean for the company this year and moving forward?
Olsen: Tengram Capital Partners took a stake in Cos Bar in December of last year. This partnership has allowed the brand to grow and evolve at a steady and successful rate. With new store openings, additional digital assets and programming as well as larger scale partnerships and expansion Tengram will be a key player in these milestone moments for Cos Bar.

Happi: Opening 36 stores in five years is an ambitious plan. Why so fast now? What are the major challenges this will entail? Garfield:It was never my intention to expand when I was starting out 40 years ago. However, there was customer demand for our business and, in response, we kept exploring new areas and methods to reach our customer.
Olsen: We know there are larger markets where this luxury consumer exists. We're using huge amounts of data science to understand which locations will be productive for us and meet our customers' needs.

Happi: What makes Cos Bar different than other retailers now in the space—like Sephora or Ulta?
Garfield: At the core, Cos Bar is all about service. We pride ourselves on our friendly and expertly trained staff, and the personal relationships we build with all of our clients. All of the brands are curated to offer only the best of the best and are tailored based on each location/market, and ultimately tailored for each customer. Another main difference from a Sephora or Ulta is that we aren't prestige, we are luxury.

Happi: How has the online beauty retail space impacted your operations?
Olsen: Our expansion strategy includes a large focus on omnichannel, with plans to add at least one warehouse, click-and-collect services and next-day delivery.

Happi: Can you share with us the company's annual sales or provide us with another indicator of growth?
Olsen: The brand plans to quadruple sales in three years with 120% year-over-year e-commerce growth predicted. In addition to physical retail, growing the brand's omnichannel destination at cosbar.com is a focus. We are focusing on expanding our social media presence and have rolled out a loyalty program in-stores that will launch online later this month.


Cos Bar Store Front

By: Christine Esposito, Associate Editor

Fox 5
October 2016

NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) – When it comes to your complexion sometimes you need that little something extra, so why not try a beauty gadget?

I went to Cos Bar in Brookfield Place, the latest destination for all things beauty. I was joined by skincare expert Jenny Patinkin.

We discussed five simple gadgets that can take you from good to gorgeous.

By: Christal Young

People Style
October 2016

Clinique DDML+ BCA

By: Sarah Kinonen

Cosmopolitan

The Huffington Post
October 2016

When October rolls around I get excited about apples and pumpkins, with the hopes that we'll pick up the latter and get them carved before Halloween night passes. (Last year with work travel, I cut it kinda close!).

While we all think in terms of orange and black this month, my mind and inbox are also plastered pink for breast cancer awareness, which is awe-inspiring. It's humbling to see the number of businesses, designers and entrepreneurs sharing personal stories and striving to make a difference.

Below are my finds of BCA goodies that I'd buy whether or not they benefitted any charities because they pass the test of total coolness regardless. A reformulated lipstick that's better than ever, a sophisticated, top-handle bag, snappy workout staples...sign me up! The fact that they are supporting such a good cause on a multitude of levels—education, caregiving, support and research—well, it just makes me believe we're stepping closer to a cure.

Bobbi Brown Art Stick Duo from CosBar.com

Bobbi Brown BCA

Nab these universally flattering lip hues of Electric Pink and Dusty Pink, and for every set purchased $10 goes to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

By: Amy Goodman

Racked
October 2016

Most people probably don't view ski trips as an opportunity to stock up on $525 face creams, but that's exactly what happens at Cos Bar, a 14-store chain of ultra-luxe beauty emporiums primarily located in upscale resort communities like Vail and La Jolla.

Selling $2,000 worth of merchandise to a single Cos Bar shopper is a daily occurrence. One customer even recently broke the $10,000 barrier, according to a representative for the company. Customers will come to their vacation homes for two weeks and pop in to Cos Bar regularly to add products to a box, which staff will then ship home for them. (This Clive Christian scent will set you back $865, so it's easy to see how that bill can add up.)

"What stands out with Cos Bar is that no one has touched what we've done, and that's super luxury," says founder Lily Garfield, who opened the first Cos Bar in Aspen in 1976. The 14th store opened last year in the high-end Brookfield Place in downtown Manhattan. While Cos Bar sells brands with eye-wateringly high price points like Clé de Peau, Sisley, Tom Ford, La Prairie, and Creed, it also carries prestige-priced but decidedly more affordable lines like Bobbi Brown, Laura Mercier, and Bliss. The store will soon be stocking Serge Lutens, which sells a lipstick palette for $160, and also Jo Malone, purveyor of $85 candles.

Garfield is right that her luxury-focused business model is unique, at least in the brick and mortar space. The beauty landscape now is ruled by stores like Ulta and Sephora that collectively carry products at every price point, from mass drugstore brands to prestige luxury labels like Dior. The era of department store beauty buying is waning. Department stores are hedging their bets with different retail strategies lately, like Macy's purchasing growing indie beauty retailer Bluemercury and JCPenney adding Sephora outlets into its stores.

Finding new brands has also always been a priority for Garfield. She carried both La Mer and Bobbi Brown before Estee Lauder purchased those companies. Now she's on the hunt for high-end, efficacious natural brands because they're in demand by customers. She stocks Goop's skincare collection and has been carrying the organic Tata Harper brand for more than a year. The Elixir Vitae ($380) line is a robust seller there, according to Harper herself.

Harper, who vacations in Aspen and had often visited Cos Bar, is excited to sell her products there. "I love their strategy of how they've been able to go into a lot of really high-end, second home places. You can have that exposure with your clients from New York who are in Aspen," she says. "I think she's been very strategic about opening her locations."

When Garfield opened her first store, she had two goals: first, to provide upscale beauty products to her hometown of Aspen, which did not have a department store; and second, to provide an alternative to department store shopping in general. She wanted shoppers to be able to mix and match brands, which does not happen easily in a department store where counter salespeople work for a specific brand and are trained to sell as many products from that brand as possible.

Cos Bar had been self-funded up until the end of 2015, when Garfield took on Tengram, her first-ever outside investor.This is not Tengram's first investment in a beauty company. It has also invested in skincare brand Algenist, fragrance brand Nest, and color cosmetics brand Laura Geller. Cos Bar will soon be tripling its brick and mortar footprint to 50 stores, including locations in Brentwood, California and other upscale destinations that Garfield did not want to disclose yet. The company is also investing heavily in its e-commerce capabilities.

While it might seem there's a finite market for "super luxury" beauty, Rich Gersten, a partner at Tengram, explains why his firm was keen to invest in Cos Bar. "We believe this was the right time to finally partner, given the strong growth in the prestige and luxury beauty industry and the shift away from department stores to specialty retailers."

According to Cos Bar CEO David Olsen, "specialty beauty is in a sweet spot. Beauty spend is increasing at 10 percent, but malls are suffering and specialty is thriving. Many customers still want to purchase beauty in-store, especially luxury beauty, so physical presence is essential. We are in the business of 'luxury,' but beauty is an attainable luxury."

E-commerce is where the store faces the most competition right now. Net-a-Porter and Violet Grey, which also has a physical store in LA, carry many of the same brands as Cos Bar. The brick and mortar stores are still more profitable than the website, but that may soon change. It's probably not coincidental that Tengram appointed Olsen, who was Net-a-Porter's former head of beauty operations, as CEO. He notes that people who buy things "multichannel," meaning both digitally and from stores, spend four times the amount than those that shop in only one channel.

"This is a whole different ballgame with e-commerce," Garfield acknowledges. "I'm from the old school – I'm brick and mortar. [Olsen]'s new school – he's e-commerce. I'm going to give myself a pat on the back, because now we have two very smart people here!"

Garfield moved to Aspen in her twenties after working at a cosmetics counter at Bloomingdale's in New York City. She became a ski bum and took a job at a local drugstore to support herself. She got the idea to open Cos Bar after seeing her friends in Aspen give each other lists of beauty products to pick up at department stores when they went to Denver or other large cities. Garfield called a few brands like Lancôme and Borghese, who supported her idea to open up a small, upscale cosmetics shop.

She opened Cos Bar in 1976 using her own money, then got married a year later. She had only the Aspen store for the next ten years. "I wasn't interested in more stores. I was more interested in being a mom and an athlete," she explains.

Garfield opened her second store in Vail in 1986, after she and her husband divorced. (Fun fact: She remarried him again 10 years later.) The third store, which she says was a turning point for her, was in Santa Fe. "Leonard Lauder himself called me and said, 'Lily, a department store in downtown Santa Fe is closing down. We'd like for you to open up Cos Bar.' I said okay!" The Lauder company didn't fund it, but having the blessing of the most powerful beauty company in the US and access to its brands was a big deal.

She opened several more shops. Another turning point came in 2000, when a friend of Ross Perot's wife, who loved to shop at Cos Bar in Vail, reached out to Garfield. It turned out Perot's company was opening the upscale Wailea Mall in Maui and wanted a Cos Bar there. She signed a lease on Labor Day in 2001. A week later, 9/11 happened. The landlord offered to let her out of the commitment. "I said to him, 'If I back out of the lease, they will have accomplished exactly what they wanted to and kill the US economy. I'm not doing it, because we are resilient.'"

Cos Bar also weathered the recession in 2008, a time when being a seller of luxury goods was tricky. "It still was selling, because of our locations. But instead of the customer coming in and buying five products, she'd only spend on three products. In 40 years of history, this wasn't the first recession. We also had a recession in the early '90s," Garfield notes. When asked if business has picked back up again, she says, "Oh god, yes."

The final realization that Cos Bar could be a brand to be reckoned with came in 2012, when Target reached out to Garfield and asked her to curate some products for the discount retailer's Shops at Target project. In this initiative, Target opened pop-up shops in its stores with various indie retailers. Cos Bar provided reasonably-priced eponymously branded products for the collaboration. Being in 1,800 stores made Garfield realize, "Everyone knows who I am now. I think it's time we put the pedal to the metal."

With the store growth and e-commerce push, Garfield is still very sure of her customer, who's generally older than 35, likes to shop in person – especially for makeup – and loves a good serum. But what about attracting millennials, something that many businesses will need to do to stay afloat? Garfield laughs and says her shopper is "the millennials's mothers!" She later acknowledges that Cos Bar definitely has something for a younger and (ostensibly) less flush customer.

"They're hitting their thirties now, they've finished grad school, and we are seeing them. They might not buy as much, but they buy a brand like Amore Pacific," Garfield says of the upscale Korean brand, where prices range from $40 for sunscreen to $525 for a serum. "She's not buying the top-of-the-line product, but it's that aspirational thing like, 'Okay, I like what this product stands for.'" The implicit assumption is that once you get hooked on the fancy stuff, it's hard to go back to Olay.

Garfield is bullish on Cos Bar's future, especially with her new investor on board. "We interviewed a lot of frogs and this is the prince that understands who we are and knows not to change our DNA. I'm very happy with this so-called marriage."

Cos Bar Brookfield Place

By: Cheryl Wischhover

NewBeauty
October 2016

Linda Rodin is a quiet, but strong, force: super stylish, striking silver hair and the kind of energy you spot from a mile away. And she's not close to slowing down. The 68-year-old model, stylist and creator of the cult-classic facial oil line Rodin Olio Lusso sat down with us at Cos Bar in New York to share some of her best beauty secrets and hinted at some very big upcoming launches for the brand.

On her biggest beauty secret...
"I get nine hours of sleep a night. For me, sleep is key. I eat dinner very early. I eat at 5 p.m., so by 7 p.m. I'm not stuffed or drunk. I do everything very early. Recently, I've been glued to the TV. Nighttime is my time to watch TV, answer emails, text. I'm not a big nighttime socializer. I'm out all day, so at night, I just want to be my myself. Someone recently asked me, 'Don't you have FOMO [fear of missing out]?' No, I have FOBI. Fear of being invited."

On her bath time ritual...
"I take a bath every night. I stay in as long as I can or as long as my dog will let me. I cleanse my face with my facial oil, I use my soap and I use my body oil. I'm pretty much a one-stop shop; I use all my own stuff. We're thinking about creating something for the bath, but it's not that simple to make a bath oil that doesn't smell commercial. But we are working on it!"

On the facial-oil revolution...
"Oils have been around since Cleopatra; there's nothing new about them. But I think everyone was afraid of them before, for all the wrong reasons. Women have sent me testimonials that they had acne for 30 years and my oil helped them; the truth is, you need oil to help with oil. So I think the light bulb went off.

I just always loved oils and I was making my oil [as the story goes, Rodin mixed her first oil in her kitchen, launched the line in 2007 and Estée Lauder acquired the brand in 2014] for myself. The fact that it snowballed is kind of funny, but gratifying. I still think mine is the best, but that is subjective! Now, there's a million of them. There's a new oil a day. I'm sure some of them are great, but, and this may sound snotty, I have no interest in trying them. I love mine."

On her new lipsticks...
"For me, it's not about lipstick—there are a billion reds out there. I made the lipsticks because I don't leave the house without lipstick. I have five shades, they are all mix-and-match, they all look great together, but they aren't trendy. It's more about the formulation and how I wear it. I make things that I use, use repeatedly and are classic."

On the one shade she won't wear...
"At my age, I don't look great in the nude shade, but I made one because I lived in nude from 20 to 40. I think it's better on younger people. It just doesn't work with my gray hair—it makes me look really tired. I do mix it with the other shades and it makes the other colors look more vibrant."

On the beauty step she skips...
"I don't wear foundation. I haven't worn it since my early 30s. I never really felt comfortable in it. If I have a pimple or a spot, I'll cover it up."

On her signature hair...
"I use purple shampoo. It really does work. It's great. We want to make one because it's all I use. I started going gray when I was 35 and I've been using it ever since. People see what they want to see in the mirror; in my mind, I'm still a brunette! I wash my hair once a week. I used to straighten it, and I ruined it for years. I gave that up about five years ago. It's amazing I have any hair left. Now, I just put it in a tight ponytail. It has to be easy for me; I never wear it down."

On what we can look forward to from the brand...
"I have a lip pencil coming out. And possibly some eye stuff. I don't consider the line to be a color brand; it's a lifestyle brand. I want it to be things I use every day. My thinking is you have to pick your lane and stay in it."

Linda Rodin

By: Liz Ritter, Executive Managing Editor
Image: Getty Images

Charleston Weekender
October 2016

A lot of people have been asking me who the "Holy City Chicks" are and what we are all about. The #HolyCityChicks (see photos via hashtag on Instagram) are not so much one group of people, but any Charleston gal with a blog or social media presence that wants to meet up to have some great professional photos taken at a great price. Jennifer Collins Photography offers this photo meet-up session monthly to bloggers as a group, and I coordinate with brands that want to have their products photographed. Everyone involved benefits through affordable photography and a larger pool of cross-promotion. We are having so much fun with this, and some really fun brands are starting to take notice! We are thrilled to be featuring Draper James soon so stay tuned...

Here is a little behind the scenes look at one of our monthly photo shoots for your entertainment, which featured Weekender shirts from Bonfire and dog accessories from Crew LaLa. Maddie became a Crew LaLa customer a long time ago when we were vendors at a market together, and I have used Bonfire's platform to sell shirts that raised around $1000 for a friend of mine who needed help with medical bills. The cool thing about Bonfire is you don't have to put any of your own money up front for t-shirt sales, and you can start your own fundraiser with this link. The company will then give and you and I both get an extra dollar for every shirt sold! You can also buy one of these fun "Weekender" t-shirts through October 30 to benefit Pet Helpers with 100% of profits.

The day of this Bonfire/CrewLaLa shoot was the day before I was leaving town for a week, so I was feeling very scattered. I'm usually a planner and love coordinating shoots like this, but today was just not my day. Of course my husband had been cleaning for an overnight guest and "cleaned up" the bag of bracelets from Wear It And Wander we were planning to use during the shoot (which I discovered about 10 minutes before needing to leave). Next it was on to get my make-up done thanks to an invitation from Cos Bar, who was celebrating 40 years of great make-up! This was a bright spot of the day, because the CosBar staff was not only so welcoming and sweet to me, but also to Maddie! I loved the whole experience because the makeup artist, Leslie, was really fast and knew her stuff without making me feel too done up. This was probably the only thing that went right that day, because my makeup was STILL looking good 7 hours later when I finally had my lunch at 10pm (see bathroom selfie, and I hate selfies but I had to share)!

Post make-up application and Maddie and I are rushing to get to the shoot with 2 bags full of collars and leashes. We head to the battery where some of the bloggers and their pups are hanging out at the gazebo being very patient. One after another we got photos of each pair, with group photos in the middle. Well, needless to say some dogs liked each other better than others so we didn't get to have many as a grou. I hope you enjoy my favorite shots of the day along with a couple of outtakes. Remind me to NEVER try to take photos so many dogs at once ever again, I'm sticking with bloggers!

Thanks to Jennifer's daughter, Bethany for being such a perfect and life-saving assistant!

Everyone wound up looking pretty darn great, don't you think? You and your pup should grab a Weekender tee to benefit Pet Helpers, and support a great local handmade company with a CrewLaLa leash/collar & bow, bowtie, or bandana!

Cos Bar Charleston Fab 40

By: Liz Martin
Image: Jennifer Collins Photography

People Style
September 2016

New York Fashion Week is winding down, but fall campaigns are just picking up. Just in time for the new season, brands are introducing new collaborations, videos and campaigns. First up? David Beckham and Kevin Hart, who wear Beckham's new H&M Modern Essentials line.

"I loved shooting the first campaign with Kevin for H&M so much that we just had to do a sequel," Beckham says of the previous campaign, in which Hart pretended to play Beckham for a movie role. "This time we've pushed the story even further. I hope everyone likes it — we certainly enjoyed filming it."

And that's not all for the brand. H&M is also teaming up with Kenzo to create a Kenzo x H&M collection, launching November 3rd. The campaign, which will launch on October 17, was shot by photographer Jean-Paul Goude and stars famous faces including Iman, Chloë Sevigny, Rosario Dawson, Chance The Rapper and more stars. Plus, they've also created Kenzo-themed GIFs ike the one below.

Moving to footwear, you can now find Sarah Jessica Parker's SJP shoe collection on Amazon Fashion! The actress and designer released a fun video to go along with the new collaboration, in which she embarks on her first day on the job at Amazon and hands out shoes to her very lucky fellow employees. Watch it all unfold here.

For Marc Jacobs' Fall 2016 campaign, the designer teamed up with music video director Hype Williams, to create a neon-yet-dark masterpiece starring Cara Delevingne, Kendall Jenner, Missy Elliot, Susan Sarandon and more stars.

Zosia Mamet stars in a video for Kate Spade's new #missadventure series in order to support the brand's new see-now-buy-now collection. The pieces are all worn throughout the video short and are available for purchase now.

Jimmy Choo celebrated its 20th Anniversary during New York Fashion Week! Jasmine Tookes, Taylor Hill, and more stars helped the iconic label spice up the occasion in the music video below.

Shinola is giving us a look inside the brand's factory, with the help of actor Luke Wilson and Facebook. The actor walks through the factory with a 360 degree camera, making sure viewers can catch every detail. Catch the tour here.

And last but not least, beauty store Cos Bar is turning 40, and industry pros like Bobbi Brown, Deborah Lippmann and more are proudly helping the brand celebrate in the video below.

By: Jillian Ruffo

WWD
August 2016

Cos Bar, one of the first specialty cosmetics retailers, is hitting 40 years in business with a growth spurt.

The 14-store chain – with doors in cities such as Aspen and Vail, Colo., Carmel, Calif., Scottsdale, Ariz., and New York – has ambitious plans to open 35 more stores in key markets over the next four to five years, according to Cos Bar founder and chief merchandising officer Lily Garfield.

Garfield maintained she was "comfortable as a family-owned business," but to take the company to the next level – and to further "differentiate Cos Bar from the Sephora's and the Ulta's" – she would need a strategic partner.

"We're not prestige, we're luxury. This is a market I feel we can tap into, and I can't do it alone," Garfield told WWD of Cos Bar's retail expansion.

This has been made possible by the involvement of private equity firm Tengram Capital Partners, which took a majority stake in Cos Bar in December of last year. David Olsen, who spent four years at Net-a-porter Group as senior vice president, was named chief executive officer of Cos Bar in February.

Already, there are plans in the next few months to open stores in Brentwood, Calif., and Lexington, Ky. A 1,300-square-foot door in New York's Brookfield Place bowed in spring 2014, the last store Garfield opened before Tengram came on board.

Industry sources put Cos Bar's business at around $25 million, and Olsen said plans are to quadruple sales over the next several years. In addition to physical retail, growing the brand's e-commerce destination at cosbar.com is a focus. Also in the pipeline is the introduction of same-day delivery and a loyalty rewards program, B. Cos.

"We've barely scratched the surface with digital," Olsen said, adding that a new web site will launch next month. (He predicts 120 percent year-over-year e-commerce growth.) Additionally, a second corporate headquarters in Los Angeles (the first is in Aspen) will be up and running later this month that will house marketing, finance, human resources and technology departments.

Garfield and Olsen have compiled a list of about 50 locations where they want to open the next Cos Bar locations, and hope to open 10 to 12 doors next year. Potential locations include another store in the New Jersey area, Manhattan and Texas.

Among the brands carried in Cos Bar are La Mer, Tom Ford, La Prairie, Chanel, Sisley-Paris, Dior, Clé de Peau, Oribe, Bobbi Brown, Laura Mercier, Giorgio Armani, Tata Harper, YSL Beaute and Creed. Select locations offer spa services from facials to eyelash extensions.

"Forty years ago, all you had were department stores or drug stores; you had certain brands in drug stores and luxe brands at department stores," said Garfield, who opened the first store in Aspen, Colo., in 1976 with a range from Lancôme. "[And] who had the number-one location in department stores? It was always cosmetics. You had shoe stores, jewelry stores – why couldn't you have a cosmetics shop?"

This thinking is what precipitated the opening of her first shop, as did the harsh climate conditions in the Rockies and living 200 miles from Denver, where the nearest department stores were located at the time.

The original store, she noted, sees close to double-digit growth every single year.

Cos Bar Brookfield Place

By: Rachel Strugatz

Refinery 29
August 2016

Despite the fact that the first Cos Bar outpost opened in Aspen 40 years ago, it now has 14 locations (including one in downtown Manhattan), and it did a collaboration with Target years ago, the ultra-cool beauty retailer still feels under-the-radar. It's our go-to when we want an edited-down selection from department-store brands, gorgeous candles, and hard-to-find fragrances. Ahead, Maria Campitiello, store manager at Cos Bar Brookfield Place, shares the location's top four sell-out beauty buys.

Cos Bar Brookfield Place

Design By Tristan Offit


Aspen Daily News
July 2016

Private equity firm behind major expansion

The last time the Republican party faced a potentially contested national convention was 1976, when Gerald R. Ford beat Ronald Reagan on the first ballot before going on to lose the general election to a little known peanut farmer from Georgia named Jimmy Carter.

During that bicentennial year celebrating the 200th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, KSNO radio was playing in heavy rotation hits like “Sara Smile” by Daryl Hall and Woody Creeker John Oates, which elbowed out Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” for 11th on Billboard’s “Hot 100” songs of 1976.

Over in a tiny space on the edge of Wagner Park in downtown Aspen, Lily Horn, a 25-year-old transplant from New York had just opened her “cosmetics boutique” that sold luxury, city-style skin care products to mountain women and tourists. Luxury cosmetics had heretofore been the domain of department stores like Bloomingdale’s, where Horn (now Lily Garfield) worked the previous year; Carl’s Pharmacy’s selection at the time was limited at best.

Armed with $5,000 and contacts with luxury lines like Borghese, Germaine Monteil, Lancome and eventually Clinique, Garfield opened the first Cos Bar (short for “cosmetics bar”), a store that this year celebrates its 40th anniversary in Aspen. There are now 14 stores in the Cos Bar chain, from Vail to Scottsdale and most recently at the Brookfield place in Manhattan.

After taking on private equity company Tengram Capital Partners as an investor in December 2015, Cos Bar became poised for a major expansion to double the number of stores across the country, beginning with a new “flagship” Cos Bar in Los Angeles this fall. All told, 50 Cos Bar stores are planned.

“We’ve been self funding for 40 years. To take it to the next level, you need help,” Garfield said this week from the busy second-floor offices where her son, Oliver, the company’s COO, also works. Oliver plans to relocate this fall to Cos Bar’s new Los Angeles headquarters where he’ll work side-by-side with CEO David Olsen, formerly of the luxury e-commerce site Net a Porter.

Lily Garfield said she isn’t afraid that control over the Cos Bar concept and name would be lost with a private equity partner.

“One of the things they loved about the Cos Bar was that it was really unique, nothing like Sephora or Uta,” two cosmetic boutiques that have made inroads nationally and have arguably changed the way women approach an industry that, by 2018, is forecasted to approach $11 billion for skin care products, according to the trend-following GCI magazine.

While Sephora and Uta offer variety but little in the way of service, Cos Bar prides itself on a trained staff.

Its focus on service and “the luxury space that we occupy” is much in demand, Garfield suggested It was that luxury space of coveted client data bases and stolen trade secrets that was at the heart of a 2015 lawsuit between Cos Bar and a former employee that was dismissed last May by now retired Judge Gail Nichols.

Changing times

“When I first started, it was all about skin care and to make sure women were protecting their skin in this environment,” Garfield said.

“The original concept of makeup was, what was proper for skiing, for playing golf or for tennis,” she said, citing Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova as early clients who were reflective of the outdoors, healthy style.

Today, “The outdoor fresh look has gone the way of more of a city look,” Garfield added.

Ricki McHugh, owner of McHugh Antiques in the Aspen Square building, said she remembers Garfield’s first business and identified its location, in a mark of true longtime local-dom, as “above the old Aspen State Teachers College.”

“That was where you went to get a face cream,” McHugh recalled. “There were very few places to go. You could get Vasoline at Carl’s back then but if you had fine or fair skin, there really wasn’t anything available,” she said about the 1970s-era Aspen retail landscape.

The years of hands-on experience, followed by a slow initial expansion of properties (Vail, in 1986, was second in the chain) seems to have served the Cos Bar well.

“I think Lily was learning along the way,” said McHugh, whose business has also evolved, to include art and decor. “I think we were all learning,” she added.

The Cos Bar “look” or the idea, of what surrounded the Cos Bar brand, was behind a surprise phone call in 2012 from a representative of the Target chain asking her to curate a store-within-a-store called “The Shops at Target.” Cos Bar’s Target line was limited to nail polish, bath and body items and accessories like makeup pouches.

No makeup or skin care products were part of the promotion that lasted only six weeks in the store but had the longer lasting impact of creating a luxury brand with mass market appeal and staying power. Later in 2012, Garfield was recognized by Women’s Wear Daily as “retailer of the year.”

Pointing to a trophy in her office that represents the Oscars of the beauty industry, Garfield said,”I slept with it that night.”

For new business owners who may feel discouraged by headwinds early in their business, it’s worth noting that Garfield opened the Cos Bar in 1976, on the cusp of the driest ski season in Aspen’s modern history. She survived that year in part by learning an important lesson: Cultivate a local following.

While her new title is founder and chief merchandising officer,Garfield, 67, shows no sign of wanting to retreat from steering the Cos Bar’s future direction.

“They still want me (involved in the operation) because I am the face of Cos Bar. This has been my baby” for the past 40 years, she said.

Twitter, @Madski99

Cos Bar shows few wrinkles at age 40

Craig Turpin/Aspen Daily News

Cos Bar founder Lily Garfield helps customers at the cosmetic boutique’s store at 309 S. Galena St. that packs a lot of merchandise into its 1,200-square-foot main floor. The Aspen business, which turns 40 years old this year, is undertaking a major expansion and has taken on a private equity partner.

By Madeleine Osberger, Aspen Daily News Staff Writer

Financial Times
August 2016

Kathleen Baird Murray’s edit of the best products — depending on what you need

There were three of us on our Californian road trip, or four if you count the huge bag of sunscreens that came with us. Enough to cover the population of Venice Beach and yet somehow there wasn’t one product that suited our specific skin concerns. A cluster of spots had broken out on the face of one of our party; another was so sensitive her skin was irritated the minute she stepped away from the air-conditioning. As for me, the sun seeks me out like an Exocet missile; I could be buried under a rock and I would still get a tan. A good thing, perhaps, under England’s grey skies, but not so welcome if you’re exploring Joshua Tree National Park in July.

We happened to be on our way to Santa Barbara at the time, so I made a pit-stop at Cos Bar in Montecito, a niche beauty store founded 40 years ago. I wanted to learn how the local chic Californian women with their immaculate skin can live in the sun with seemingly so few repercussions.

At Cos Bar, the very welcoming beauty consultant, Sybil Mata, recommended Amore Pacific’s Natural Protector SPF30 (£52.30) as a good all-rounder sunscreen that won’t cause breakouts. And, she told me, the trick to making make-up last longer in the heat is YSL’s Touche Eclat Blur Primer (£29.50), an extremely popular product. To set make-up, she loves By Terry’s Hyaluronic Hydra Powder (£42). Personally, I find the thought of wearing powder in the heat bordering on abhorrent, but this one is so lightweight you can’t feel it on your skin. After that, Mata suggests topping up on SPF throughout the day with a spritz of Amore Pacific’s Sun Protection Mist Broad Spectrum SPF30 (£56). “I keep mine on ice.” she added. They’ve got it covered, those Californians.

Now returned to Britain, I have since resolved never to grab the closest bottle of sun cream to me again. Here’s my edit of the best suncare products — depending on what you need. None smell of tiare flowers, but all come with a previously missing ingredient: trust.

Chantecaille Ultra Sun Protection SPF45

The make-up primer: Chantecaille Ultra Sun Protection SPF45 (£76) A modern classic, with a silicone base that creates an invisible film for make-up to cling to when it gets hot, and a strong sunscreen protection. You need to shake the tube first to ensure the lightweight lotion goes on evenly.

"All these products come with a previously missing ingredient: trust"

The pigmentation protector: Institut Esthederm Photo Reverse (£55) While it’s loaded with filters and mineral screens to block out infra red, UVA and UVB rays, there are no actual SPF numbers displayed on the bottle of Photo Reverse (or indeed any of the Institut Esthederm products); they also encourage tanning, providing it isn’t achieved with any burning, as they believe that the quicker we tan, the more the skin builds its own natural protection. Many a dermatologist would be up in arms, but this French skincare brand, which has been going since the late 1970s and was created by a pharmacist, comes backed with so many proven patents that its counterintuitive philosophy does make common sense. Photo Reverse, a light, white cream that smooths to nothing, is heaven-sent for pigmentation sufferers. Not only does it block out the sun, it lightens existing brown marks even while you’re exposed to it. Protection and treatment in one.

Institut Esthederm No Sun

For those who can’t be in the sun at all: Institut Esthederm No Sun (£38) Another one by Institut Esthederm, this is loved by those with the kind of heat sensitivity that makes them prone to prickly heat, or who need to avoid sun exposure post-surgery or because of medication. A cream derived from 100 per cent minerals, it requires application 20 minutes before going into the sun and then reapplying every two hours.

Dry, sensitive skin prone to redness: Paula’s Choice Redness Relief SPF30 (£22.50) Paula’s Choice Beautypedia website, is a fascinating resource for ingredient listings and reviews, and not just of founder Paula Begoun’s products. This lightweight sunscreen from her own skincare range keeps skin feeling calm, and fights redness.

Institut Esthederm No Sun

Breaking the breakouts: Bioderma’s AKN Mat SPF30 (£13.90) Bioderma is brilliant for all skin complaints. This high-protection fluid for acne-prone skin is not only water-resistant, but it also claims to prevent your skin from having that all-too-familiar rebound outbreak when you get home.

The one-hit wonder: Innovative Skincare’s Extreme Protect SPF30 (£60) If you could take just one sun protection product to your desert island? With aloe vera to comfort and promote healing, Extreme Protect helps reduce inflammation and erythema, and is also good for acne-prone skins. It smells neutral but nice.

@kathleen_bairdmurray

Perfect sun care for sensitive skin

Main photograph: General Photographic Agency/Getty Images

By: Kathleen Baird Murray

Aspen Daily News
July 2016

Private equity firm behind major expansion

The last time the Republican party faced a potentially contested national convention was 1976, when Gerald R. Ford beat Ronald Reagan on the first ballot before going on to lose the general election to a little known peanut farmer from Georgia named Jimmy Carter.

During that bicentennial year celebrating the 200th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, KSNO radio was playing in heavy rotation hits like “Sara Smile” by Daryl Hall and Woody Creeker John Oates, which elbowed out Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” for 11th on Billboard’s “Hot 100” songs of 1976.

Over in a tiny space on the edge of Wagner Park in downtown Aspen, Lily Horn, a 25-year-old transplant from New York had just opened her “cosmetics boutique” that sold luxury, city-style skin care products to mountain women and tourists. Luxury cosmetics had heretofore been the domain of department stores like Bloomingdale’s, where Horn (now Lily Garfield) worked the previous year; Carl’s Pharmacy’s selection at the time was limited at best.

Armed with $5,000 and contacts with luxury lines like Borghese, Germaine Monteil, Lancome and eventually Clinique, Garfield opened the first Cos Bar (short for “cosmetics bar”), a store that this year celebrates its 40th anniversary in Aspen. There are now 14 stores in the Cos Bar chain, from Vail to Scottsdale and most recently at the Brookfield place in Manhattan.

After taking on private equity company Tengram Capital Partners as an investor in December 2015, Cos Bar became poised for a major expansion to double the number of stores across the country, beginning with a new “flagship” Cos Bar in Los Angeles this fall. All told, 50 Cos Bar stores are planned.

“We’ve been self funding for 40 years. To take it to the next level, you need help,” Garfield said this week from the busy second-floor offices where her son, Oliver, the company’s COO, also works. Oliver plans to relocate this fall to Cos Bar’s new Los Angeles headquarters where he’ll work side-by-side with CEO David Olsen, formerly of the luxury e-commerce site Net a Porter.

Lily Garfield said she isn’t afraid that control over the Cos Bar concept and name would be lost with a private equity partner.

“One of the things they loved about the Cos Bar was that it was really unique, nothing like Sephora or Uta,” two cosmetic boutiques that have made inroads nationally and have arguably changed the way women approach an industry that, by 2018, is forecasted to approach $11 billion for skin care products, according to the trend-following GCI magazine.

While Sephora and Uta offer variety but little in the way of service, Cos Bar prides itself on a trained staff.

Its focus on service and “the luxury space that we occupy” is much in demand, Garfield suggested It was that luxury space of coveted client data bases and stolen trade secrets that was at the heart of a 2015 lawsuit between Cos Bar and a former employee that was dismissed last May by now retired Judge Gail Nichols.

Changing times

“When I first started, it was all about skin care and to make sure women were protecting their skin in this environment,” Garfield said.

“The original concept of makeup was, what was proper for skiing, for playing golf or for tennis,” she said, citing Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova as early clients who were reflective of the outdoors, healthy style.

Today, “The outdoor fresh look has gone the way of more of a city look,” Garfield added.

Ricki McHugh, owner of McHugh Antiques in the Aspen Square building, said she remembers Garfield’s first business and identified its location, in a mark of true longtime local-dom, as “above the old Aspen State Teachers College.”

“That was where you went to get a face cream,” McHugh recalled. “There were very few places to go. You could get Vasoline at Carl’s back then but if you had fine or fair skin, there really wasn’t anything available,” she said about the 1970s-era Aspen retail landscape.

The years of hands-on experience, followed by a slow initial expansion of properties (Vail, in 1986, was second in the chain) seems to have served the Cos Bar well.

“I think Lily was learning along the way,” said McHugh, whose business has also evolved, to include art and decor. “I think we were all learning,” she added.

The Cos Bar “look” or the idea, of what surrounded the Cos Bar brand, was behind a surprise phone call in 2012 from a representative of the Target chain asking her to curate a store-within-a-store called “The Shops at Target.” Cos Bar’s Target line was limited to nail polish, bath and body items and accessories like makeup pouches.

No makeup or skin care products were part of the promotion that lasted only six weeks in the store but had the longer lasting impact of creating a luxury brand with mass market appeal and staying power. Later in 2012, Garfield was recognized by Women’s Wear Daily as “retailer of the year.”

Pointing to a trophy in her office that represents the Oscars of the beauty industry, Garfield said,”I slept with it that night.”

For new business owners who may feel discouraged by headwinds early in their business, it’s worth noting that Garfield opened the Cos Bar in 1976, on the cusp of the driest ski season in Aspen’s modern history. She survived that year in part by learning an important lesson: Cultivate a local following.

While her new title is founder and chief merchandising officer,Garfield, 67, shows no sign of wanting to retreat from steering the Cos Bar’s future direction.

“They still want me (involved in the operation) because I am the face of Cos Bar. This has been my baby” for the past 40 years, she said.

Twitter, @Madski99

Cos Bar shows few wrinkles at age 40

Craig Turpin/Aspen Daily News

Cos Bar founder Lily Garfield helps customers at the cosmetic boutique’s store at 309 S. Galena St. that packs a lot of merchandise into its 1,200-square-foot main floor. The Aspen business, which turns 40 years old this year, is undertaking a major expansion and has taken on a private equity partner.

By Madeleine Osberger, Aspen Daily News Staff Writer

65 | 57 Mag
May 2016

As a pronounced minimalist and disciple of all things au natural, this fashion editor has very few skincare and make-up basics in her possession. I prove to be profoundly overwhelmed and inefficient when perusing make-up counters and skincare lines My mind becomes festooned with a make-up mathematical equation that's lost on me. I keep in mind that the object of the game is to choose wisely any product I put onto the most important feature I present to the world: my face.

My mystical voyage of dermal beauty starts with a horrible habit of scouring Amazon, reading ambiguous skincare reviews inside the pages of Vogue, or trusting the advice of friends who have entirely different skin types than I possess. The arduous task at hand for some, if not most women, can either provoke migraines or worse – worry wrinkles!

Thanks to Shanna, manager of Carmel's Cos Bar, I'm encouraged to voyage into planet Make-Up with a renewed sense of confidence. What Cos Bar achieves so seamlessly is personalized service, epic variety of the most modern, all natural, and luxury products, plus a staff of studied professionals (quick summer job applicants for college kids or those just passing through, NEED NOT APPLY!) You are well taken care of here, ladies. Once you walk into Cos Bar armed with the motivation to change your makeup palette or skincare routine, you can rest easy knowing you're in good hands with the true queens of dermal beauty.

I spoke to Shanna recently while in the midst of a makeup and skincare rut and walked out with renewed hope of trying out (gasp!) blue eye shadow and sampling the highly coveted Korean skincare line, Amore Pacific.

HOW DID Cos Bar COME TO BE IN THE WORLD?
Cos Bar was founded in 1976 Lily Garfield. It started with a flag-ship store in Aspen, CO and now we have 15 stores.

WHAT IS THE PHILOSOPHY BEHIND THE Cos Bar BRAND?
Everyone here that works with Cos Bar has a minimum of 15-20 years experience. Nobody works here as a part-time job while they're going to college or just for fun. We make a firm career out of what we do. You have to have experience and we want to provide that for our customers. Our ladies are trained by every single line we represent. For instance, we are trained to present all the facets of each and every product. Cos Bar is an alternative to your run-of-the-mill department store and we aim to create a luxury boutique shopping experience that personalized for your needs- this is why we stand out! At Cos Bar we are not brand driven, we are customer experience driven, which makes for a more intimate experience.

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE MAKE-UP TRENDS FOR THIS SEASON?
Strobing. Intense highlighting. Flat and dull skin is definitely something to avoid. Playful make-up is definitely having a resurgence. The natural look is out and the Eighties are definitely seeing a resurgence. Make-Up is definitely supposed to be fun at the moment! We are seeing a lot more customers who really want to have fun with their colors and make-up techniques. Also, the lash! Long, long, va-va-voom eyelashes. And then fragrance, our fragrances are getting very popular.

WHAT KINDS OF SERVICES DOES Cos Bar SPECIALIZE IN?
We do make-up for weddings, proms, private parties, you name it. One thing we specialize in that's not offered anywhere else on the peninsula is Air-Brushing. We sale air-brushing kits, we teach our customers how to use them, and it's an incredible make-up experience and tool.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MOST COMMON MAKE-UP MISTAKES WOMEN MAKE THAT DAMAGE THEIR SKIN?
Not taking care of their skin. Not washing make-up off before bed. I always tell people when they ask me what to spend money on is to start with a good moisturizer and a good foundation. The rest will follow. You must take good care of your skin. You have to exfoliate, moisturize, and build a good skincare routine.

WHAT ARE THE MOST SUCCESSFUL PRODUCTS AT CARMEL's Cos Bar LOCATION?
La Prairie is definitely very popular. La Mer has a huge cult following and that's a big seller here, Tom Ford. Anything Tom Ford, the fragrances, including the lipsticks, mascaras, we can't keep them on the shelves!

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE PRODUCTS THAT YOU USE ON A DAILY BASIS FROM Cos Bar?
Our Air Brush from TEMPTU. Sisley is one of my favorite brands. It's a French brand, not mass-produced and they use a very refreshing variety of botanicals. I really enjoy their anti-aging products.

WHERE'S YOUR FAVORITE PLACE TO GO AND GET A GLASS OF WINE OR MEAL AFTER A LONG, HARD, SATISFYING DAY AT Cos Bar?
It depends on the time of day! For lunch we definitely do Lafayette, we love Little Napoli, Vesuvios, all fun places to go.

THERE'S SO MUCH OUT THERE WITH REGARDS TO SKINCARE. SOME WOMEN CAN REALLY FEEL OVERWHELMED BY ALL THE OPTIONS! CAN YOU GIVE US TIPS OR ADVICE ON HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST PRODUCTS?
The first thing you need to do is come in and let us talk to you. Every single woman is so different and unique. One woman may only need a moisturizer, because that's what she can handle for her lifestyle. We really need you to give us the opportunity to meet you, see you, and get acquainted with your skin. We have something for everyone even when it comes to different price points. We pride ourselves and standout by forging personal relationships with all our clients. Also, there's no recipe for good skin. If you give us just a few minutes or some time to work with you, we will find the perfect products that suit your needs.

WHAT'S THE BEST COMPLIMENT YOU'VE EVER RECIEVED FROM A CUSTOMER?
How good my skin looks! Once you commit to a skincare routine everything else just fall into place.

Visit Shanna and the staff of highly trained Professionals at Cos Bar in Carmel

A New Era Of Make Up and Luxury Skincare Service inside Carmel's Own Cos Bar
By: Ana L. Roman / Photo: Manny Espinoza

New York Magazine, The Cut
March 2016

No doubt you've done some damage at Sephora, and maybe at upscale beauty boutique Bluemercury, too. But it's unlikely Cos Bar has your credit card on file, yet. It will. With 14 Cos Bar beauty boutiques around the country today and 50 slated for the next five years, plus a big push in e-commerce, the luxury beauty retailer is about to go big. It's also celebrating a birthday – the big four-o – and, thanks to a steady regimen of retinoids, vitamin-C serums, and hyaluronic-acid creams, it doesn't look a day over 29. Not bad, considering Cos Bar is old enough to be those other beauty boutiques' mother.

I visited the first Cos Bar in its unlikely birthplace, Aspen, Colorado, last week while on vacation with my sons. I say unlikely because Aspen is not exactly the center of the beauty universe. Nor is it the capital of great skin, unless you like a goggle tan. Two days on the slopes and I'm florid with windburn, gummy with sunscreen, flaky-lipped, runny-nosed, and begging for mercy. When we sat down in her office, Lily Garfield, the founder of Cos Bar and queen of luxury beauty, handed me a box of tissues, a leopard-print face mask, and a bunch of beauty wisdom.

Give me a little Cos Bar history. How did you start it? Why Aspen?
I worked at Bloomingdale's in New York and I never wanted to set foot in there again. I came out to Aspen and with $5,000 to my name, I put in an order for Borghese, Lancôme, Orlane, and Germaine Monteil. Your skin takes such a beating in this environment. And there was nothing else here, other than the pharmacy. My store was originally supposed to be for locals, with the theory that, if it worked for locals, then the tourists would come. That was 1976. When Leonard Lauder saw the store – he has a house here – he said, "This is how cosmetics will be sold in the 21st century." And now indie cosmetics stores are more common.

Why is the skin-care business challenged right now? Fragrances outsold skin care last year, and that was a first.
There's more competition. There's the dermatologist, the aesthetician, spas – we're all competing for the same dollar. And they're all copying each other. Doctors are taking existing products to labs and saying, "Replicate this." Also, some products need to be explained. And most salespeople aren't trained well enough to explain skin care. Salespeople will tell you things like, "You have to use every product in our line or your skin will react." Nothing bad is going to happen if you mix brands.

So what are your favorite products right now?
This cream by Amore Pacific. It's called Prime Reserve Creme. You have to try it. I'm 66 – should I say that? – and after I used it I ran into people who said, "What have you done? You look amazing." They only make 1,000 jars of the cream a year because it comes from some particular plant.

How much is it?
$750 a jar.

What?
Yes. And you cannot use it alone. You have to use another cream on top of it.

I'm sorry, but that's insane. Tell me what else you like that's under $750.
Linda Rodin's oil [Olio Lusso; $170]. Sisley Black Rose Oil ($235). I love oils, especially in this climate. You have to try This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray ($29). It's lavender and chamomile, and it puts you right to sleep. Try it on your kids' pillows. I love Temptu [the portable airbrush makeup machine; $195]. You can almost use it with your eyes closed. You could use it wearing a white chiffon blouse and it wouldn't get on it. And it doesn't look like heavy makeup at all. I'm a Clarisonic brush girl. I keep it in the shower. One of the greatest cleansers is by Cle de Peau. It's a cream that dissolves into an oil ($72). And don't even talk to me about the Cle de Peau concealer ($70). It's the best concealer in the world.

I need more than concealer. My skin is so red and dry and wrecked right now. I'm embarrassed to be seeing you like this. What can I do?
Did you bring your Clarisonic brush with you?

No. I had a lot of luggage.
You should have. Your skin is clogged with sunscreens. It's also dehydrated and windburned. [She searches her desk and hands me a Patchology face mask.] This will help. And you have to drink more water.

So tell me, what's the future of skin care?
Keep it simple. Go for immediate results. After cleansing, while your skin is still damp, apply an essential oil – the purest, highest-grade extracts from the plants. Then wait. Then apply cream. It's that simple.

The Beauty Boutique With a $750 Face Cream
By: Linda Wells / Photo: ShotShare-Getty Images

Downtown Magazine
October 2015

In our newly released fall 2015 issue, we featured Cos Bar; a luxury cosmetics shop with a twist; cosmetics are served with a side of compassion.

The new downtown hangout is taking up residency at Brookfield Place, and after its initial installation among the sea of lavish brand names, the beauty shop is having an official grand opening with founder, Lily Garfield, making a debut, on October 16th.

Cos Bar at Brookfield Place marks the brands 14th location, and first ever in New York. AND, you can attend the grand opening for the grandest city on earth. By rsvping on the CosBar website, you'll be able to mingle, meet the owner and learn about her compassionate ethos. Garfield's incentive to open shop was solely for customer satisfaction, telling us at Downtown Magazine, "We promote the customer, not the brand."

The festivity will include champagne, mini-facials, makeup applications, beauty demos and a gift with each purchase. Plus, 10% of all in-store sales will be donated to Cancer and Careers.

Downtown Magazine NYC article
By: Yasmine Rimawi

Charleston Weddings
July 2015

Some couples are plain fun. One sign? The first (or close to the first) vendor booked for their wedding is their party band. So it went for Annie and Davis, who returned to their beloved Charleston (where both had vacationed for ages) to exchange vows and celebrate in grand style.

But before the fun-loving duo got to the dance-off portion in their love story, a few other chapters came first. After having met in 2008 at a friend's wedding, they dated long-distance with Annie in the Big Apple and Davis in Charlotte, North Carolina. In time, the two moved to Santa Monica, California, for work (he's in sales; she's been in nearly every facet of events, from planning to stationery and staffing) and settled in, evolving into an inseparable couple and becoming parents of a beloved pup, Dempsey. Two years in, Davis received a transfer back to the Tar Heel State and knew he had to cook up a plan to pop the question.

After packing the moving truck and cleverly having all their apartment utilities shut off, he suggested they head to their favorite beachfront hotel for their last night on the West Coast. "I had no idea he had been planning this for weeks," she says, "or that he had already booked the best room in the hotel, one overlooking the Santa Monica Pier." They drove the truck over, checked in, and hit the porch for a sunset cocktail where Davis dropped to one knee and proposed.

The next three days were spent driving cross-country with Annie rattling off wedding details and reveling, she says, in Davis' undivided attention. By the time they'd made it to the East Coast, she knew she wanted to enlist Tara Guérard as a planner (she had styled Davis' sister's wedding, and as one in the event industry, Annie had been a huge—huge—fan of Soiree for years) and that they wanted to host the wedding in the Lowcountry. Another must? Hiring Simply Irresistible as their band.

"Besides getting married," explains Annie, "the second most important thing was for our guests to have the best time possible. We wanted to make it a night they'd never forget." They booked all their requisites (including the band) and were stunned with a 90 percent invitation acceptance rate (most out-of-town weddings average 60 to 70 percent). What started out as a "smaller" wedding had ballooned into a nearly 400-person blowout at Hibernian Hall. The couple balanced things out with an intimate Friday rehearsal dinner ("Making Waves"), and then hosted a self-described "huge" wedding on Saturday. "It was the best of both worlds," says Annie. "And we still have people raving about how much fun they had."

Charleston Weddings Party People
Courtesy of Charleston Weddings
Images: Corbin Gurkin

Meg O on the Go
May 2015

It's been months since I've done a favorites video. I think it's been since January! FAIL. Anyway, I thought it would be fun instead of trying to play catch up, I would talk about all of the products I've been using the past couple of months and whether or not I would recommend them. The raw footage for this is over 35 minutes long, but I've condensed it into two videos under 12 minutes! We've got a lot to talk about, (we're talking over 25 products) so I'm doing it the best way I can. Get those wish lists out and ready to go. There's a lot of good things you'll want to write down!

Also, there are some cameos in this video. Caroline makes an appearance right at the beginning and Katie and her son are towards the end when they FaceTime me!

By: Meg O.

Scottsdale Business & Life
November 2013
Scottsdale Business & Life
By: Scottsdale Business & Life

She Knows Beauty and Style
October 2013

Ever wondered what goes on in the minds of the beauty industry's best experts? You're about to find out! Over the next few months, I'll be chatting all things fashion and beauty with some of the brightest minds in the industry. Up today? Cos Bar owner Lily Garfield.

SheKnows: What are your top three beauty essentials?

Lily Garfield:The Clarisonic gently exfoliates and cleans your face thoroughly while stimulating skin. Creme d'Olives is a great product for women over 50. It softens the skin, prevents wrinkles and brightens the skin, creating a more elegant glow. Amore Pacific Time Response Eye Renewal Creme is a basic moisturizer that softens, hydrates the skin and allows the foundation to stay on and not change colors.

SK: Beauty products are expensive sometimes! For the gal on a budget, what in your opinion is worth splurging on and what's better off saving on?

LG: Invest in sunblocks. Not all sunblocks are created equal. Not all drugstore and mass produced sunblocks do the job intended. Many pass the FDA requirements but don't necessarily give optimal coverage.

SK: Which celeb do you think nails it every time with her makeup?

LG: Halle Berry gets it right every time. She is flawless every time she steps out whether it is on the red carpet or the playground with her child. She can wear very minimal makeup and still look like the glamorous movie star that she is.

Lily Garfield

SK: What's one piece of beauty advice you've learned on the job that you'll keep with you forever?

LG: From my own personal experience, I would say whether you are pregnant, just gave birth or are going through chemo, you must always define your lips and eyes. The lips and eyes are communication tools and the first thing another person will notice on your face.

SK: What's your best tip for staying beautiful on the go while traveling?

LG: I would suggest always carrying a sample size of your favorite moisturizer while traveling that you can pat on your face to rejuvenate and plump up the skin. You want to avoid rubbing, as that will take your makeup off, and focus just on patting and pressing it gently into your skin. I would also recommend Amore Pacific's Skin Renewal spraying mist.

In terms of traveling and packing your makeup, I would recommend sticking with all creams and solids. Bringing a compact foundation and/or creams versus liquid will save you from the high altitude pressure explosion that causes most liquids to leak all over your belongings.

By: She Knows Beauty & Style

pure-wow
June 2013

We're bound to make the century mark, thanks to the buckets of olive oil we consume. Now we're dousing ourselves with the magical fruit in the name of beauty.

Cos Bar—an Aspen-based chain of high-end beauty boutiques—just opened its first Midwest shop in Highland Park. After the closing of the North Shore's Saks Fifth Avenue last year, Cos Bar is the new spot for finding brands such as La Prairie and Darphin.

It's also the only place in Illinois where you can find our newest beauty obsession: a pistachio-green face cream.

Creme d'Olives is exactly what it sounds like: a rich skin-care formula that's green in color thanks to two key ingredients, circulation-boosting olive leaf and pea extracts. It makes no wild claims about "erasing fine lines" or "plumping skin cells"; this is a straightforward moisturizer that's so luscious you need only a dime-size dab to cover your face, eye area and neck.

You also won't smell like a perfume lab. Made in Barcelona, Creme d'Olives contains no added fragrances—it comes by its herby, slightly floral scent naturally. A jar of the super-hydrating cream costs $145, but we're starting with the lightweight lotion version ($105) for summer.

Long olive our fresh complexions.

By: Pure-Wow
Creme d'Olives

Allure Magazine
February 2013
Going Downhill
Allure Going Downhill
By: Allure Magazine

Live Well Network
February 2013

The perfect nude lip can look elegant and effortless. However, the wrong shade can actually make you look worse. Here's how to choose your best buff!

"It's effortless. It's sexy. It's clean. You're going to see it at the gala, you're going to see it while you're at the grocery store," says image consultant Cliff McAden of The Cos Bar.

Although it looks easy, there are some know-how's!...

By: Live Well Network

Wise Choice
June 27, 2012

When celebrities like Kate Hudson and Heidi Klum holiday in Aspen, they visit Cos Bar beauty boutique! Cos Bar was started in 1976 by Lily Garfield and quickly became the go to hot spot for everything beauty. While Cos Bar is a beauty palace for fashionistas, the products often come with a hefty price tag.

I have exciting news! Now you can get a taste of the Cos Bar's stylish take on beauty without luxury brand prices. Cos Bar has teamed up with Target to offer a line of nail polishes, body wash, scrubs, lotions, body butter, cleansing towelettes, false lashes, tweezers, scented soaps, etc. all under $20.00 each!

By: Is it a Wise Choice? Video from Austin Live

Aspen Times
June 25, 2012

ASPEN — When Lily Garfield opened her first Cos Bar — in Aspen in 1976 — she had little idea of how far the business would take her. As it turns out, the boutique took her very far: There are now 12 stores in eight states, and most recently, Cos Bar was featured in the new The Shops at Target.

"I haven't been able to put my hands on it; it's been so surreal," said Garfield. "I still have this little-girl reaction when someone says they saw Cos Bar at Target. ...like, 'Really, did you buy something?!'...

By: The Aspen Times

Gloss Daily
May 23, 2012

Headed out of town for Memorial Day? It's always a puzzle trying figure out exactly what to pack—especially in your makeup bag. Our theory is, the safer the better. So if we're going to haul more that we really need, it's probably best to pack small. We went to Lily Garfield, founder of the beauty apothecary The Cos Bar, for tips on what not to leave behind. Plus a few perfectly sized travel items from her new Shops at Target collection. Happy packing!

By: Gloss Daily.com

ABC 4
May 14, 2012
Watch Lily and Oliver Garfield discuss the success of Cos Bar's line for The Shops at Target on ABC NEWS 4's "Low Country Live"!
By: ABC NEWS 4's "Low Country Live"

Shops at Target
April 20, 2012

We've been talking about The Shops at Target for months, but for those of you who remain unacquainted, here is what you need to know about the new design platform's five boutiques, shop owners and their upcoming collections: The Candy Store, Polka Dog Bakery, Cos Bar, Privet House and The Webster.

Soon enough, the masses will get to know each shop in a new commercial, airing this Sunday, April 22. That's right—The Shops are getting the VIP treatment with their very own Target commercial. Take a sneak peek at the spot below ...

By: abullseyeview.com

Shops at Target
April 20, 2012

Target always has cool collaborations where you go batty counting the days until they appear. Guess what! They're at it again! On May 6th, Target unveils their newest: The Shops at Target, online and in stores nationwide.They've partnered with five specialty stores for limited edition, affordable and way too cute items. They are: Cos Bar, The Webster, Privet House, The Candy Bar and Polka Dog Bakery.

Cos Bar is run by founder Lily Garfield and her son Oliver. The first store was in Aspen in 1976 and you can now find stores in eight states. The stores are full of prestige beauty products, beautifully packaged.

By: Sbettyconfidential.com

Allure
April 2012
Beauty Buzz. A Cult Line Goes Mainstream
Allure
By: Allure Magazine

Style Goes Strong
March 30, 2012

Lily Garfield knows a thing or two about taking care of your skin. She's a pioneer in the beauty boutique industry, having opened her first cosmetic and skincare Cos Bar emporium in 1976. Now, with a total of 12 locations dotted throughout the U.S., she's a living example of how doting on your skin can make you look younger.

She tests every single product before it hits The Cos Bar's shelves. In this way, it needs to get the Lily stamp of approval before it's sold.

By: Style.lifegoesstrong.com

Beauty High
March 28, 2012
Collaborations have become trendier than actual designer labels themselves. From the recently announced Altuzarra for J.Crew collab to Targets bevy of collabs (with everyone from Missoni to Jason Wu) we now not only look forward to the next pairing, but plan out how to be the first one through the doors on opening day.

Now, Target has decided the lifestyle brands need to get into the collaboration game, and will be releasing The Shops at Target coming in May. From brands such as The Candy Store and Cos Bar, they'll be bringing us products from upscale specialty stores at affordable prices.
By: Beauty High

Shops at Target
March 26, 2012

Lily Garfield began her foray into cosmetics where many makeup mavens start—behind the beauty counter. But she didn't stay there for long. The New Yorker-turned-ski bum quickly became Aspen's cosmetics queen and opened up Cos Bar on Main Street in 1976, one of the first independent beauty boutiques in the country.

By: abullseyeview.com

Vail Daily
February 9, 2012

EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado — Cos Bar, an Aspen-based company that has shops in Vail and Edwards, is part of a new program Target stores will roll out in May.

According to an e-mail from company spokesman Evan Miller, the program, called "the Shops at Target," will put limited-edition items from five specialty stores into Target stores around the nation. Miller wrote that the Shops at Target items will be "affordable limited-edition collections designed and co-created by the shop owners."

By: Vail Daily

Shops at Target
January 12, 2012

Target announces the latest design partnership program, The Shops at Target!

By: abullseyeview.com
Downtown Magazine
October 2015

In our newly released fall 2015 issue, we featured Cos Bar; a luxury cosmetics shop with a twist; cosmetics are served with a side of compassion.

The new downtown hangout is taking up residency at Brookfield Place, and after its initial installation among the sea of lavish brand names, the beauty shop is having an official grand opening with founder, Lily Garfield, making a debut, on October 16th.

Cos Bar at Brookfield Place marks the brands 14th location, and first ever in New York. AND, you can attend the grand opening for the grandest city on earth. By rsvping on the CosBar website, you'll be able to mingle, meet the owner and learn about her compassionate ethos. Garfield's incentive to open shop was solely for customer satisfaction, telling us at Downtown Magazine, "We promote the customer, not the brand."

The festivity will include champagne, mini-facials, makeup applications, beauty demos and a gift with each purchase. Plus, 10% of all in-store sales will be donated to Cancer and Careers.

Downtown Magazine NYC article
By: Yasmine Rimawi

Charleston Weddings
July 2015

Some couples are plain fun. One sign? The first (or close to the first) vendor booked for their wedding is their party band. So it went for Annie and Davis, who returned to their beloved Charleston (where both had vacationed for ages) to exchange vows and celebrate in grand style.

But before the fun-loving duo got to the dance-off portion in their love story, a few other chapters came first. After having met in 2008 at a friend's wedding, they dated long-distance with Annie in the Big Apple and Davis in Charlotte, North Carolina. In time, the two moved to Santa Monica, California, for work (he's in sales; she's been in nearly every facet of events, from planning to stationery and staffing) and settled in, evolving into an inseparable couple and becoming parents of a beloved pup, Dempsey. Two years in, Davis received a transfer back to the Tar Heel State and knew he had to cook up a plan to pop the question.

After packing the moving truck and cleverly having all their apartment utilities shut off, he suggested they head to their favorite beachfront hotel for their last night on the West Coast. "I had no idea he had been planning this for weeks," she says, "or that he had already booked the best room in the hotel, one overlooking the Santa Monica Pier." They drove the truck over, checked in, and hit the porch for a sunset cocktail where Davis dropped to one knee and proposed.

The next three days were spent driving cross-country with Annie rattling off wedding details and reveling, she says, in Davis' undivided attention. By the time they'd made it to the East Coast, she knew she wanted to enlist Tara Guérard as a planner (she had styled Davis' sister's wedding, and as one in the event industry, Annie had been a huge—huge—fan of Soiree for years) and that they wanted to host the wedding in the Lowcountry. Another must? Hiring Simply Irresistible as their band.

"Besides getting married," explains Annie, "the second most important thing was for our guests to have the best time possible. We wanted to make it a night they'd never forget." They booked all their requisites (including the band) and were stunned with a 90 percent invitation acceptance rate (most out-of-town weddings average 60 to 70 percent). What started out as a "smaller" wedding had ballooned into a nearly 400-person blowout at Hibernian Hall. The couple balanced things out with an intimate Friday rehearsal dinner ("Making Waves"), and then hosted a self-described "huge" wedding on Saturday. "It was the best of both worlds," says Annie. "And we still have people raving about how much fun they had."

Charleston Weddings Party People
Courtesy of Charleston Weddings
Images: Corbin Gurkin

Meg O on the Go
May 2015

It's been months since I've done a favorites video. I think it's been since January! FAIL. Anyway, I thought it would be fun instead of trying to play catch up, I would talk about all of the products I've been using the past couple of months and whether or not I would recommend them. The raw footage for this is over 35 minutes long, but I've condensed it into two videos under 12 minutes! We've got a lot to talk about, (we're talking over 25 products) so I'm doing it the best way I can. Get those wish lists out and ready to go. There's a lot of good things you'll want to write down!

Also, there are some cameos in this video. Caroline makes an appearance right at the beginning and Katie and her son are towards the end when they FaceTime me!

By: Meg O.

Scottsdale Business & Life
November 2013
Scottsdale Business & Life
By: Scottsdale Business & Life

She Knows Beauty and Style
October 2013

Ever wondered what goes on in the minds of the beauty industry's best experts? You're about to find out! Over the next few months, I'll be chatting all things fashion and beauty with some of the brightest minds in the industry. Up today? Cos Bar owner Lily Garfield.

SheKnows: What are your top three beauty essentials?

Lily Garfield:The Clarisonic gently exfoliates and cleans your face thoroughly while stimulating skin. Creme d'Olives is a great product for women over 50. It softens the skin, prevents wrinkles and brightens the skin, creating a more elegant glow. Amore Pacific Time Response Eye Renewal Creme is a basic moisturizer that softens, hydrates the skin and allows the foundation to stay on and not change colors.

SK: Beauty products are expensive sometimes! For the gal on a budget, what in your opinion is worth splurging on and what's better off saving on?

LG: Invest in sunblocks. Not all sunblocks are created equal. Not all drugstore and mass produced sunblocks do the job intended. Many pass the FDA requirements but don't necessarily give optimal coverage.

SK: Which celeb do you think nails it every time with her makeup?

LG: Halle Berry gets it right every time. She is flawless every time she steps out whether it is on the red carpet or the playground with her child. She can wear very minimal makeup and still look like the glamorous movie star that she is.

Lily Garfield

SK: What's one piece of beauty advice you've learned on the job that you'll keep with you forever?

LG: From my own personal experience, I would say whether you are pregnant, just gave birth or are going through chemo, you must always define your lips and eyes. The lips and eyes are communication tools and the first thing another person will notice on your face.

SK: What's your best tip for staying beautiful on the go while traveling?

LG: I would suggest always carrying a sample size of your favorite moisturizer while traveling that you can pat on your face to rejuvenate and plump up the skin. You want to avoid rubbing, as that will take your makeup off, and focus just on patting and pressing it gently into your skin. I would also recommend Amore Pacific's Skin Renewal spraying mist.

In terms of traveling and packing your makeup, I would recommend sticking with all creams and solids. Bringing a compact foundation and/or creams versus liquid will save you from the high altitude pressure explosion that causes most liquids to leak all over your belongings.

By: She Knows Beauty & Style

pure-wow
June 2013

We're bound to make the century mark, thanks to the buckets of olive oil we consume. Now we're dousing ourselves with the magical fruit in the name of beauty.

Cos Bar—an Aspen-based chain of high-end beauty boutiques—just opened its first Midwest shop in Highland Park. After the closing of the North Shore's Saks Fifth Avenue last year, Cos Bar is the new spot for finding brands such as La Prairie and Darphin.

It's also the only place in Illinois where you can find our newest beauty obsession: a pistachio-green face cream.

Creme d'Olives is exactly what it sounds like: a rich skin-care formula that's green in color thanks to two key ingredients, circulation-boosting olive leaf and pea extracts. It makes no wild claims about "erasing fine lines" or "plumping skin cells"; this is a straightforward moisturizer that's so luscious you need only a dime-size dab to cover your face, eye area and neck.

You also won't smell like a perfume lab. Made in Barcelona, Creme d'Olives contains no added fragrances—it comes by its herby, slightly floral scent naturally. A jar of the super-hydrating cream costs $145, but we're starting with the lightweight lotion version ($105) for summer.

Long olive our fresh complexions.

By: Pure-Wow
Creme d'Olives

Allure Magazine
February 2013
Going Downhill
Allure Going Downhill
By: Allure Magazine

Live Well Network
February 2013

The perfect nude lip can look elegant and effortless. However, the wrong shade can actually make you look worse. Here's how to choose your best buff!

"It's effortless. It's sexy. It's clean. You're going to see it at the gala, you're going to see it while you're at the grocery store," says image consultant Cliff McAden of The Cos Bar.

Although it looks easy, there are some know-how's!...

By: Live Well Network

Wise Choice
June 27, 2012

When celebrities like Kate Hudson and Heidi Klum holiday in Aspen, they visit Cos Bar beauty boutique! Cos Bar was started in 1976 by Lily Garfield and quickly became the go to hot spot for everything beauty. While Cos Bar is a beauty palace for fashionistas, the products often come with a hefty price tag.

I have exciting news! Now you can get a taste of the Cos Bar's stylish take on beauty without luxury brand prices. Cos Bar has teamed up with Target to offer a line of nail polishes, body wash, scrubs, lotions, body butter, cleansing towelettes, false lashes, tweezers, scented soaps, etc. all under $20.00 each!

By: Is it a Wise Choice? Video from Austin Live

Aspen Times
June 25, 2012

ASPEN — When Lily Garfield opened her first Cos Bar — in Aspen in 1976 — she had little idea of how far the business would take her. As it turns out, the boutique took her very far: There are now 12 stores in eight states, and most recently, Cos Bar was featured in the new The Shops at Target.

"I haven't been able to put my hands on it; it's been so surreal," said Garfield. "I still have this little-girl reaction when someone says they saw Cos Bar at Target. ...like, 'Really, did you buy something?!'...

By: The Aspen Times

Gloss Daily
May 23, 2012

Headed out of town for Memorial Day? It's always a puzzle trying figure out exactly what to pack—especially in your makeup bag. Our theory is, the safer the better. So if we're going to haul more that we really need, it's probably best to pack small. We went to Lily Garfield, founder of the beauty apothecary The Cos Bar, for tips on what not to leave behind. Plus a few perfectly sized travel items from her new Shops at Target collection. Happy packing!

By: Gloss Daily.com

ABC 4
May 14, 2012
Watch Lily and Oliver Garfield discuss the success of Cos Bar's line for The Shops at Target on ABC NEWS 4's "Low Country Live"!
By: ABC NEWS 4's "Low Country Live"

Shops at Target
April 20, 2012

We've been talking about The Shops at Target for months, but for those of you who remain unacquainted, here is what you need to know about the new design platform's five boutiques, shop owners and their upcoming collections: The Candy Store, Polka Dog Bakery, Cos Bar, Privet House and The Webster.

Soon enough, the masses will get to know each shop in a new commercial, airing this Sunday, April 22. That's right—The Shops are getting the VIP treatment with their very own Target commercial. Take a sneak peek at the spot below ...

By: abullseyeview.com

Shops at Target
April 20, 2012

Target always has cool collaborations where you go batty counting the days until they appear. Guess what! They're at it again! On May 6th, Target unveils their newest: The Shops at Target, online and in stores nationwide.They've partnered with five specialty stores for limited edition, affordable and way too cute items. They are: Cos Bar, The Webster, Privet House, The Candy Bar and Polka Dog Bakery.

Cos Bar is run by founder Lily Garfield and her son Oliver. The first store was in Aspen in 1976 and you can now find stores in eight states. The stores are full of prestige beauty products, beautifully packaged.

By: Sbettyconfidential.com

Allure
April 2012
Beauty Buzz. A Cult Line Goes Mainstream
Allure
By: Allure Magazine

Style Goes Strong
March 30, 2012

Lily Garfield knows a thing or two about taking care of your skin. She's a pioneer in the beauty boutique industry, having opened her first cosmetic and skincare Cos Bar emporium in 1976. Now, with a total of 12 locations dotted throughout the U.S., she's a living example of how doting on your skin can make you look younger.

She tests every single product before it hits The Cos Bar's shelves. In this way, it needs to get the Lily stamp of approval before it's sold.

By: Style.lifegoesstrong.com

Beauty High
March 28, 2012
Collaborations have become trendier than actual designer labels themselves. From the recently announced Altuzarra for J.Crew collab to Targets bevy of collabs (with everyone from Missoni to Jason Wu) we now not only look forward to the next pairing, but plan out how to be the first one through the doors on opening day.

Now, Target has decided the lifestyle brands need to get into the collaboration game, and will be releasing The Shops at Target coming in May. From brands such as The Candy Store and Cos Bar, they'll be bringing us products from upscale specialty stores at affordable prices.
By: Beauty High

Shops at Target
March 26, 2012

Lily Garfield began her foray into cosmetics where many makeup mavens start—behind the beauty counter. But she didn't stay there for long. The New Yorker-turned-ski bum quickly became Aspen's cosmetics queen and opened up Cos Bar on Main Street in 1976, one of the first independent beauty boutiques in the country.

By: abullseyeview.com

Vail Daily
February 9, 2012

EAGLE COUNTY, Colorado — Cos Bar, an Aspen-based company that has shops in Vail and Edwards, is part of a new program Target stores will roll out in May.

According to an e-mail from company spokesman Evan Miller, the program, called "the Shops at Target," will put limited-edition items from five specialty stores into Target stores around the nation. Miller wrote that the Shops at Target items will be "affordable limited-edition collections designed and co-created by the shop owners."

By: Vail Daily

Shops at Target
January 12, 2012

Target announces the latest design partnership program, The Shops at Target!

By: abullseyeview.com