Shinsegae's Multi-Brand Cosmetics Shops Take off

  • By Lee Hyun-yi

    October 25, 2017 12:23

    Shinsegae Department Store has opened a new chain store called Chicor that sells a wide selection of beauty products from Korea and overseas.

    Chicor is the brainchild of Shinsegae president Chung Yoo-kyung and modeled after Sephora, the successful French chain. The first Chicor store opened at the Daegu branch last December and now it is expanding nationwide to Seoul, Busan and Ilsan, Gyeonggi Province.

    A Chicor store in Seoul and one of its best-selling products

    The main selling point is the bird's-eye view of cosmetics from around the world. It sells more than 200 cosmetics products in all price ranges, from eye shadow to hair products, many of which had been unavailable to Korean consumers except from overseas online stores.

    Customers can also try on products for free. Sales are rising steadily, with market insiders saying Chung's strategy of using Chicor as a new growth engine for the conglomerate is paying off.

    One makeup artist visiting the Chicor store in Gangnam said, "I come here often because the store sells products that are hard to find elsewhere as well as a wide range of items."

    A woman (left) leaves a Sephora shop, and products from Korean cosmetic giant Amore Pacific (right) are displayed at the Grove shopping mall in Los Angeles, California on Tuesday. /Courtesy of Gina Nam

    So how do prices compare with Sephora in the U.S. for instance? Some products are more expensive, but most are priced similarly because social media has enabled consumers from around the world to share information.

    For example, the NARS Orgasm Blush, which is in high demand in the U.S., costs US$32.85 after tax in California, not much lower than the W40,000 price tag in Korea (US$1=W1,130).

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