What Happened: Following the launch of its lipstick-focused beauty line last year, the French fashion house is back with a new range of blushes. The upcoming collection, named Rose Hermès, promises eight Silk Blush shades that draw inspiration from the iconic Hermès silk scarves. Most excitingly, the Maison is paying particular attention to Asia this time by offering the exclusive shade Rose Poivré, which it describes as “a pink of a Persian night enveloped in spices, vibrant yet discreet, soft, and elegant.” These blushes, along with two brushes, a blush case, and three lip enhancers, are set to release on April 15.
The Jing Take: Considering Asia’s pivotal role in Hermès’ post-pandemic recovery, continuing to court these consumers is a smart move. In the fourth quarter, the Birkin bag maker beat expectations, with sales rising 16 percent from the year prior, driven by 47 percent growth in Asia. And these figures don’t even reflect the nice boost the brand got after its Guangzhou store reopened in April, amassing $2.7 million in sales in one day.
As Hermès noted in its earnings report, “the reduction in tourist flows was offset by the loyalty of local customers.” To foster this loyalty in China, the brand expanded its physical footprint, from doubling the size of its Harbour City location to repositioning its Dalian store to live inside the dynamic Times Square Shopping Center. Hermès also recently partnered with Exor to take Shang Xia, the Chinese luxury company it co-founded, to new heights. The move reaffirmed the brand’s commitment to the local market as well as its ambitions to boost Chinese fashion worldwide.
With its iconic products already loved as both status symbols and financial investments, Hermès now stands to gain from China’s beauty boom. According to Goldman Sachs, Mainland China’s beauty market was estimated to reach $65.75 billion by 2019 and grow 12 percent to over $150 billion by 2025. Because beauty products are easier entry points into the luxury world — compared to, say, a five-figure Kelly bag — Hermès’ makeup venture could help bring in new customers from China’s rising middle class. But with several strong C-beauty competitors and other global brands like Aesop eyeing the market after China’s animal testing requirements were dropped, Hermès will have a lot of ground to make up.
The Jing Take reports on a piece of the leading news and presents our editorial team’s analysis of the key implications for the luxury industry. In the recurring column, we analyze everything from product drops and mergers to heated debate sprouting on Chinese social media.