One of the retail beauty industry’s widest known BAs – Michael Brown – places equal respect to the tools of the trade and the makeup itself. Tools such as face charts and brush types galore have far more value than their ‘cost of materials’ and you can make them work in synergy with cosmetics to engage a customer, bring greater depth to the sale and simply help the customer get the best results out of her makeup purchases.
esprit asks the BAs: What is your favourite tool to share with customers to enhance your customer interaction?
Erin Norden, Clean Beauty Market, Mermaid Beach, Gold Coast, QLD
Our clean beauty swaps (in-store and by phone or email for our online shoppers) are the perfect way for our customers to find the right non-toxic products for them based on what they are currently using and their old favourites. The customer brings in their makeup bag or product selection and we introduce them to clean beauty equivalents that will delight them in all areas – performance, look, feel and packaging – with the bonus of the product being better for their skin and health. This is a great “tool”/way to provide education around ingredients, introduce them to the very best brands and address any misconceptions they may have around natural non-toxic products. We love bringing people into the world of clean beauty and not only exceeding their expectations but changing the way they shop beauty forever.
Annabelle Hogg, Lancôme Queens Plaza, Brisbane, QLD
I would say that the products I use are my tools. One product in particular which I love to play and use with guests is the new Lancôme Custom Glow Drops. Custom Glow Drops is a product that allows the guest and myself to personalise the look of both skincare and makeup as it can be mixed with primer or foundation to enhance one’s radiance and also on top of makeup to customise their beauty look with highlighted luminosity. On counter using products such as Custom Glow Drops interacts with guests to show them the best way to recreate looks at home using a ‘teach-and-repeat’ technique by means of their BEST tools; beauty and one’s own interpretation of beauty.
Sue Shaw, Clarins Myer Sydney City, Sydney, NSW
Taking my customers’ make up routine to a whole new level is my passion, so the ultimate must have tool I use on my Clarins customer is the Fix Make-Up spray.
There are many tools at the BA’s fingertips on counter but utilising the technique behind each product is key. I teach my customers that by spraying Fix Make-Up they are able to build the foundation between applications, keeping the skin hydrated and ensuring the pigments bind together. With the Fix Make-Up customers learn how to increase the wear of their foundation, as well as lock in hydration. My favourite technique is to spray Fix Make-Up over the night time skincare routine, ensuring maximum hydration while sleeping. Educating our customers is my passion, and with each product or tool I use, I am able to see the customer transform right before their eyes.
Kate Silverstein, MAC Cosmetics, MAC Macquarie FSS, North Ryde, NSW
My favourite tool to share with customers to enhance an interaction really comes from ensuring that they feel comfortable and confident when they walk out of the store to do the look we created on themselves. I love utilising mini face charts in every demonstration I do to personalise the look we are doing to that customer’s face shape or eye shape. It serves as a personal guide or map to your customer’s face in which they learn the best placement and techniques for makeup application to enhance their natural features. Personalised to them. Whether it’s a simple guide to contour or where to place highlight to a full makeup look, this little piece of paper makes the world of a difference when it comes to building trust and turning them into a repeat customer!
Evy Mihas, Dermalogica Melbourne Central, Melbourne, VIC
Working for a forward thinking brand like Dermalogica has really exposed me to innovative technology. My favourite tool I use on a daily basis is the bt-Analyze, a hand held machine placed on multiple areas of the skin which measures hydration levels. This not only allows the customer to visually see digital readings but also opens up the conversation that all areas of the skin have different needs and should be treated accordingly. This gives me the opportunity to educate customers on what will address their concerns and personalise their home care regime. Both customer and therapist can compare results with each visit to ensure the recommended products are actively working correctly on the skin, therefore building a relationship of trust and support with achieving their personal skin goals.
Julie Winwood-Jones, Ramsay Pharmacy Shoalhaven, Shoalhaven, QLD
To give your customers the ultimate service when choosing a fragrance, I recommend Michael Edwards ‘Fragrances of the World’ guide book, a bible in the world of fragrance retail. The book categorises thousands of fragrances based on scent (floral, oriental, fresh and woody notes, for example). I have found it extremely useful when a particular fragrance is unavailable or discounted as it allows you to match particular scents so that your customer can easily find what they are looking for. It is also great for giving you the information to direct a customer towards a particular fragrance based on the description they give of what they like, or even to match a scent to a person they may be buying a gift for. I find my customers enjoy looking through the book themselves too as it gives more information about fragrances and how they are characterised than they can get anywhere else. When I use this book in service, I am usually met with great appreciation as it shows that we have taken interest in our customers and provided them with the most accurate recommendations. Regardless of whether or not a purchase is made, this tool guarantees we have a highly satisfied customer.
Michele Paxman Priceline Pharmacy Pinewood, Mt Waverley, VIC
When I am with my customer and they are purchasing foundation, I always suggest using a Foundation Brush. It could be the original shape or any of the flat, oval ranges that are available, explaining how much better the makeup she is using will look and how it will give her a longer-wearing result.
If time permits I will ask her to sit in my chair in front of a lighted mirror so she can see the difference when I apply one side of her face with a brush and the other with fingers (clean of course) and it also shows her how much product to use. I then complete her makeover with eyeshadow, blush and lip gloss/lipstick and mascara.
Sometimes I like to use sponges, there are great little ones for around the eyes and nose and of course bigger ones for larger areas. They tend to give a more natural look and I really insist on cleaning them every time they are used – that goes for brushes as well – using a cosmetic shampoo for brushes and sponges. You really cannot have too many brushes and sponges for when you are applying cosmetics.