A bad news for beauty stores for professionals: Amazon

Amazon muscling in on a new market is bad news for incumbents. The gloss has been knocked off some of the biggest beauty and cosmetics groups in the US after the online retail giant launched a beauty supply store for professionals. Its impact will be felt by suppliers to salons, such as distributor Sally Beauty… Hopes that beauty might be Amazon-proof look overblown. True, beauty sales direct to consumers are harder to disrupt. Shoppers like to touch and see products. Bricks-and-mortar retailers have supplemented their make-up counters with eyebrow threading, facial massage, consultations and make-up lessons — in tune with a growing appetite for “experiences”… Amazon is better known for mass market goods than luxury… Upmarket brands have been slower to embrace Amazon, thinking its site too downmarket for the most prestigious products. But L’Oreal reports success selling its CeraVe skin care brand on Amazon and does not rule out doing more. Amazon has ambitions to expand its presence in a market worth more than $300 billion… Earlier this month, Amazon announced a tie-up with L’Oréal’s augmented reality business ModiFace. Shoppers can “try on” lipsticks using mobile phone videos or photos. Such technology might accelerate the shift online. The beauty industry is due a virtual makeover.