Boots to grow in-store beauty specialists to 1,000

Boots has announced plans to increase its in-store beauty specialists to 1,000 individuals in 2020. The retailer recruited and trained 350 beauty specialists in 2019 and has plans to grow this number by 185% in the coming months.

Boots said the specialists will provide “unbiased advice across all brands from premium to mass cosmetics”.

Boots said it will introduce its new beauty hall store concept to 60 additional stores this year, in addition to the 29 stores that were refitted with new beauty halls in 2019. The retailer’s redesign of its beauty department resulted in removing traditional beauty counters and replacing them with open furniture, trend zones, play stations, discovery areas and live demonstrations.

The retailer has also announced it will begin stocking cult make-up brand Huda Beauty in selected stores and online from the end of this month.

A report from RetailEXPO concluded that consumers are crying out for assistance from knowledgeable store staff, with 64% of shoppers saying highly-skilled associates who deliver better service and in-depth product information make them more likely to visit a physical store.

Meanwhile, online health and beauty is thriving. “The online health and beauty category was the strongest we recorded in 2019; up 26% against a forecast of +14%,” explained Andy Mulcahy, strategy and insight director at IMRG.

“It has been doing very well for a few years now, perhaps because it is a category where augmented reality technology has such a strong use case through beauty apps. It’s also arguably the most prominent category for vloggers to use the products in their videos.”