Category Archives: Retail

Vivaness 2020: [Show Report]

I began writing this trade show review just after Vivaness 2020, the world’s biggest organic beauty trade show, had ended. That was in late February and just a few weeks before Corona arrived in Europe.

Then came the lockdown and cancelled travel plans and all the rest of it, and other things in my life took priority – like tidying up my collection of cooking spices, cleaning out various cupboards and watching a lot of 1980s and 1990s TV series on DVD.

However, now that things in Germany have started to inch towards a precarious kind of (new) normality I decided that it was high time to finish this article. Which I did. Yay me. So if you detect a certain patchiness to this text that’s why: parts of it were written pre-Corona, the rest post-Corona. Or PreC and PostC. February and Vivaness seem like a very long time ago. Anyway.

This year’s Vivaness took place from 12th to 15th February in Nuremberg, a pretty medium-sized historic city in the Frankonia region of Germany. Vivaness and its sister trade fair Biofach (the biggest organic food products expo in the world) are an annual fixture on the European organic industry trade fair circuit.

The first Biofach show took place back in 1990 so this expo’s been around for 30 years. In 1999 the trade fair moved to Nuremberg and in 2007 Biofach’s organic beauty section was spun off into a separate trade show, Vivaness. The two trade fairs always take place in February and, incidentally, pretty much always in rain and snow. February in Nuremberg can be cold!

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Retail notes from Tokyo: [Show Report] Cosme Tokyo 2020

I was in Tokyo recently for the 8th edition of Japan’s largest retail cosmetics trade show: Cosme Tokyo 2020 took place from 20th-22nd January at Makuhari Messe. The trade fair had relocated from Tokyo Big Sight exhibition centre to Makuhari in Chiba prefectures a few years ago – in 2021, however, Cosme Tokyo will return to Tokyo Big Sight.

Anyway, Makuhari Messe is around 40 minutes by local train from Tokyo Station – i.e. good transport connections if you’re staying in the Chiyoda area. I had booked my hotel in Kanda (one stop away from Tokyo Station) so my daily commute to the trade show was very manageable.

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Retail notes from Hong Kong: [Show Report] Cosmoprof Asia 2019

As you can imagine, this year’s Cosmoprof Asia was massively overshadowed by the political situation in Hong Kong (#StandWithHongKong).

Many international exhibitors had cancelled their appearance at short notice, the majority of attendees from mainland China (one of the biggest visitor demographics for Cosmoprof Asia) also decided to skip the show this year; and so did quite a few international visitors.

I had booked my usual Wan Chai hotel in walking distance of HKCEC and my part of the neighbourhood remained fairly quiet this week so I felt pretty safe throughout my entire stay in Hong Kong. And I did enjoy Cosmoprof Asia 2019 despite everything!

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Retail notes from Bangkok: [Show Report] Beyond Beauty ASEAN 2019

It was my first visit to Beyond Beauty ASEAN Bangkok (or BBAB for short) and – spoiler alert – it’ll also be my last BBAB. The reason: from 2020 onwards Beyond Beauty ASEAN will be combined with another key Thai beauty show (ASEAN Beauty) to form the latest addition to the Cosmoprof world of cosmetics trade fairs: Cosmoprof CBE ASEAN Bangkok (organised by BolognaFiere, Informa Markets and China Beauty Expo). These are the three of the biggest cosmetics trade show organisers in the world (and definitely the leaders in the Asian markets) so the new show is bound to be interesting, to say the least!

The reason why Cosmoprof CBE will continue to take place in Bangkok is simple: Thailand is the biggest beauty retail market in the ASEAN region and (excepting Singapore) it’s also the most highly developed ASEAN country. In fact, according to official figures by the Federation of Thai Industries, the Thai beauty and personal care market is growing strongly. In 2018, the market reached a total value of 6.2 billion USD, says Federation chairman Suphan Mongkolsuthree. And the industry grew 7% annually over the past six years making it the #1 export country amongst the largest export income earners in the ASEAN region.

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Beautyjagd: Organic beauty news in English (Chapters 61, 62, 63 and 64)

It’s been a while since I posted any Beautyjagd translations on the blog, so here’s a bunch of them. Enjoy!

In News and Reviews from the World of Organic Beauty ( Chapter 61) Julia is introducing three essential oils from German brand Primavera that she always carries in her luggage when travelling (sort of an aromatherapy first aid kit). There are also two brand profiles – one on French zero waste beauty brand CoZie, the other on German-Finnish beauty brand Inari Arctic Beauty – and a long review post on organic budget beauty (products for less than 10 Euro) that you can find at online store Ecco Verde.

News and Reviews from the World of Organic Beauty (Chapter 62) offers a detailed post on the new Healing Clay Multi-Masking Kit from French brand Cattier Paris as well as a review of German brand Dr. Hauschka’s Christmas-themed gift sets and a feature on interesting organic sheet masks at Ecco Verde.

And News and Reviews from the World of Organic Beauty (Chapter 63) is pretty much all about Asia beauty! The installment starts with an overview of Julia’s organic beauty haul from her recent trip to Seoul and there’s a review of US brand Burt’s Bees new Overnight Intensive Lip Treatment (which is modelled on the overnight lip masks that are so popular in K-beauty), as well as a Beauty Notes edition from Tokyo and an article about organic beauty products from Taiwan.

Finally, News and Reviews from the World of Organic Beauty (Chapter 64) includes Beauty Notes from Paris, a how-to post on French salon beauty brand Cut by Fred’s new Vegan Stick Shampoo, a review of a recently published book on natural ingredients in cosmetics and, as the pièce de résistance, Julia’s annual organic beauty review for 2018!

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Retail notes from Seoul: [Show Report] Cosmobeauty 2019

This was my third visit to Cosmobeauty Seoul and I must say, this trade fair is getting better every year. The 2019 edition took place from 9th-11th April 2019 and it was so busy; it definitely felt much more crowded than last year. Official figures confirm this: according to the organisers 52,376 visitors attended the 2019 trade fair (last year’s Cosmobeauty attracted 50,673 attendees). And, on a personal note, there were so many Westerners/foreigners amongst the visitors this year!

I remember my first Cosmobeauty in 2016: there were just a handful of foreign faces then. I guess it goes to show how K-beauty continues to influence the international beauty industry. Or something. Anyway, if you’re interested in the trade show review of my previous visits, you can check out Cosmobeauty 2016, Cosmobeauty 2017 or Cosmobeauty 2018.

And here are the official facts and figures about Cosmobeauty 2019! The exhibition space reached 11,088 m2 this year and there were around 520 exhibition booths with a total of 373 exhibitors from 13 countries – a significant increase compared to the 2018 edition of the show with its 342 exhibitors. The majority of exhibitors – 308 companies – were Korean, the remaining 65 companies came from Europe, China, South East Asia and the US.

Cosmobeauty 2019 also felt a lot more trend-driven than the previous shows – exhibitors came from the organic/natural sector and from the green/clean category; there were several young millennial-style brands and quite a few start-ups. The organisers also added some exciting features in 2019: a new section was the “Rookies of the Year” showcase which introduced interesting new exhibitors and their product innovations. Altogether a very exciting show!

And now let’s jump straight in! Click on the link below to read about some of my favourite brand discoveries.

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Retail notes from Seoul: [Show Report] Getitbeautycon 2019

This was a bit of an impromptu trade show visit! Visiting the big Chicor flagship in Gangnam I discovered Korean skin care brand Toun28, started following them on Instagram and saw in their Instastories that they were exhibiting at a COEX event called Getitbeautycon this weekend.

Then I googled Getitbeautycon and found out that this is an annual beauty expo organised by popular Korean cosmetics reality show, Get it Beauty. As you might expect Getitbeautycon is a lifestyle-ey event rather than a serious trade show – hordes of Korean beauty bloggers, Q&As with celebs and influencers, brand promotions and activities, live makeovers and workshops, freebies and selfie corners; you get the idea : )

I really wanted to get the opportunity to look at the Toun28 products in more detail (the Chicor only had a partial selection) so I decided to check out the expo, and I’m so glad I went! I spent most of Sunday at the show and really enjoyed myself, discovered some interesting new brands and even met some old favourites.

Click on the link below for pictures and brand discoveries from the 2019 edition of Getitbeautycon! Spoiler alert: if you follow me on Instagram you’ll have seen these brands in my feed already. However, I can be so much more expansive in a blog article than within the restrictive Instagram word limit : )

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Cosmoprof Bologna 2019: [Show Report]

Cosmoprof Bologna becomes more fun every year. This was my third visit to the world’s biggest C&T trade show (well, the fourth if you count my Cosnova-sponsored overnight visit from 2016 – and while I’m at it, here are my trade show reviews from 2017 and 2018!).

By now I know the basic layout of the halls (although I still get lost in the CS (Centro Servizio – press office, event rooms, store, pharmacy, post office etc.) every single time because the different sections are just so badly signposted!).

I know which buses go to the trade show from the city centre (an important consideration when selecting my accommodation!) and, almost more importantly, which of these bus lines are diverted on the weekends because Bologna’s historic city centre turns into a pedestrian zone on Saturdays and Sundays.

And I can rest assured that I won’t need need to get morning espresso fix in the city before heading to the trade show centre (like I would in any German city) because the cafés in Bologna Fiera serve excellent espresso for 1.20 Euro and a 1 ½ littre bottle of water retails for 3 Euro. Water and caffeine, two trade show essentials!

Click on the link below for an overview of some of my favourite brand discoveries at this year’s Cosmoprof Bologna!

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Vivaness 2019: [Show Report]

Ah, Vivaness. The biggest (and most exciting) organic C&T show in the world!  As I was finishing my Vivaness article for SPC Magazine earlier this week – explaining the trade show’s concept and regulatory framework for a reader demographic that is mostly non-European – it occured to me that some background info might also be interesting for you lot reading the article right here.

After all, the WordPress stats tell me that most of my readers are located outside of Europe (or at least their IP adddresses are but hey, I’m a  NordVPN fangirl so no judgment here ; )). I think it might also have to do with the fact that I have written a lot of articles about Asian retailers, brands and companies.

Many of these brands are not particularly well documented in the English-language online world  (this is a polite understatement: usually my article will be the longest and most informative brand or company profile available in English!). So, if you google certain brand or store names in English, Google lists my articles fairly prominently, despite the fact that I can’t be bothered to use SEO or keywords strategies (it seems like a lot of work).

Anyway, long story short: in this year’s Vivaness article I’ll tell you a bit about the history of the trade show and why it is so different from any other natural beauty show out there. And no, I don’t work for the trade show organisers and I don’t get paid for this either! Just wanted to clarify this point ; )

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Retail notes from Tokyo: [Show Report] Cosme Tokyo 2019

Cosme Tokyo is getting bigger and better every year. The 2019 edition of Japan’s largest trade show for retail cosmetics featured 780 exhibitors from 35 countries. And over 25.000 visitors attended during the three days of Cosme Tokyo and its sister fair, Cosme Tech.

It was one busy and very cool show! My Insta feed shows almost 30 mini brand/product profiles which is usually my Cosmoprof Asia average! Anyway, it was an exciting trade fair: I met a lot of interesting new brands (and some old favourites). And if you’re interested: here is my Cosme Tokyo 2018 show report.

For more on my favourite brand discoveries and the key trends at Cosme Tokyo 2019, click on the link below!

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