13 December 2022
It took Oh My Cream! less than ten years to become a top Clean Beauty place in France. With 22 stores across the French territory plus an e-shop, it is Beauty Destination 2.0, as founder Juliette Levy likes to call it, because it “reconciled many French women with retail skincare advice and expertise”. The specialized retailer has now headed to the UK: they recently opened two stores on the other side of the Channel, and the next destination is Belgium, in the first semester 2023! We met Juliette Levy.
Premium Beauty News - After 21 openings in France, Oh My Cream! is now crossing national borders, and the first stopover is the United Kingdom! Why choose England to start expanding abroad?
Juliette Levy - At Oh My Cream!, we are very pragmatic. We are still a small company with a reduced team and limited means, which is why we thought accessibility – geographic proximity to the headquarters – and the language spoken might be the right choice for a first test on the global level, without using too much of our resources. The United Kingdom is the third European beauty market, after France and Germany, so it looked like the obvious solution to our equation. London is two hours and twenty minutes away from Paris by Eurostar, and the whole team at Oh My Cream! speaks fluent English, contrary to other languages like Italian or German.
Premium Beauty News - Why decide to open two stores in two months?
Juliette Levy - We aim to replicate the strategy we implemented in France in London, and all across the UK. We had not really planned to open two stores almost at the same time. However, opening a second store quickly, and then a third, etc., is definitely part of our action plan to expand in the UK. I instantaneously fell in love with the places we now occupy. The first, in Notting Hill, is a niche address which reminds me of our first venues in Paris: we stand next to trendy French brands like Sézane, Maje and Diptyque. The second is in Chelsea, on King’s Road. It is clearly the premium shopping destination par excellence. We definitely had to be there. These two places are complementary.
And then, thinking about it, with my investors, of course, we concluded that by opening two stores almost at the same time, our message would be stronger and more impactful. To everyone’s eyes, we are the Clean Beauty retailer who is ready to take London, not a small concept store landing here randomly.
Premium Beauty News - You opened your doors over a month ago in Notting Hill, and a few days ago in Chelsea: have you had any feedback yet?
Juliette Levy - Londoners had been waiting for us, in particular as regards skincare. They are delighted with the insightful expertise they get, and which our competitors do not necessarily offer, i.e. Space NK, Boots, or department stores. And we have another asset: treatments are already doing very well here. Londoners indulge in skincare treatments and aesthetic medicine much more frequently and easily than French women do. In addition, if they have a real taste for face treatments, in particular facials, not all of them actually give in: a standard session at a facialist’s costs at least 300 pounds. Oh My Cream! treatments have bright days ahead, that is for sure!
Our own brand, Oh My Cream Skincare, is really successful. Obviously, they are exclusive products there, so they appeal to a population eager for novelty. Plus, they are affordable, so the buying act is quite simple.
Oh My Cream Skincare sun products are doing even better than expected. Londoners use sun products on a daily basis: they are an integral part of their daily routines. Almost one customer out of two asks us for a sun block when they step in our store!
Premium Beauty News - After the United Kingdom, what country were you thinking about?
Juliette Levy - The Oh My Cream!, Beauty Destination 2.0 concept could meet consumer expectations beyond European borders, but it is not our main objective right now. We aim to succeed in expanding in the UK, and then in Belgium, where we have started developing: we will open two stores in Brussels in the first semester 2023. Belgium is our first foreign market right now in terms of online sales. We know we can have our own place there, but at a smaller scale than in England, of course. In two years, we will most probably expand in another neighbouring country: why not Italy, which loves skincare, but it is too soon to tell.