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Glossier: How This Startup Brand Gained Cult Status

The beauty industry is a very saturated and competitive market. with huge companies like Loreal, who own more than 20 different brands (including Yves Saint Laurent, Lancome and Maybelline New Your just to name a few) in the beauty sector, it can be tough to make your mark, let alone gain a huge US following like Glossier have done.

Email Marketing

The brand focuses on its audience, and this is most evident in email and newsletters, which are fun, amusing and interesting.

Back in March 2016, a message was sent out with the title ‘Re: Phase 2 Launch Tomorrow’. Inside was a message appearing to be for professional exchange  only – Plain text and no image, just a regular email. This made it seem as if the email was mistakenly forwarded to the customers, making it almost irresistible to read through.  Advertising a launch for the next day, it made all the customers aware and gave them a small thrill that they saw an email that they were not supposed to.

Glossier email

Glossier have kept up with the theme of out of the box subject lines, using subjects such as’whoops’, ‘ADULTS ONLY’ and ‘How To Get Rich’. Most are ambiguous, though some are relevant to the content, the latter example contained information on a rich moisturizer.


User Experience

Users are given the opportunity to view different products on different skin tones, which important when the business is online and there is nowhere to try before you buy.

The checkout process is incredibly easy to use. A progress bar is displayed to show how much more you need to spend to get free shipping.

The mobile site is one of the most impressive qualities of Glossier. They have skipped the app, and instead made their mobile site so responsive that it basically is a mobile app.


The simple navigation on the mobile site is anchored to the bottom, with cute, simple icons representing each section. The page fits perfectly in an iPhone screen, with photos being the perfect size so that you can see the whole photo in great quality.

The mobile checkout is just as good as the desktop type. It also features a handy promo code box at the top, making it very convenient to enter one.


Glossier Products

Even with all the fantastic effort put into marketing, it would all be for nothing if the products weren’t any good. However, for the most part, glossier have good ratings for their products and customers are happy.


The price point is similar to the main competitor, Sephora. One of their most raved about products, Boy Brow, retails for $16. This is comparable, or cheaper that other brow gels sold at Sephora.

Packaging is sturdy, and the print is bold and powerful. Simple contrasted colour blocks makes the presentation feminine without being ‘girly’


Finishing Touches

Glossier add personal touches in their packaging. Notes or stickers are put in the box to make it all that more exciting to open. The order comes in a white box with Glossier’s logo embossed. Underneath the lid, there are different quotes for each, like “Skin First. Make up second. Smile always.”.


Glossier offer customers free returns to if they are not happy with their purchase. However, they give the customer the option to gift a friend who might like it and still receive money back.


Honorable Mentions

Glossier have made a huge impact with social media, Instagram in particular. You can read more about this here.


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