L’Oréal Professionnel has inked a specialty retail partnership with Sephora.
The brand is entering 26 Sephora doors with six collections, including its Metal Detox, Curl Expression, Vitamino, Silver, Absolut Repair and Prolonger franchises. They will debut online Aug. 8 and in-store in Aug. 16.
Mounia Tahiri, the brand’s general manager, said the partnership comes at a time of growth for the brand. “We’ve been very focused on our ranges that not everybody has — the ones based on our expertise as the number-one professional brand in the world,” Tahiri said. “It’s really paying off — this year is probably going to be our record growth year, and last year, we had a very strong year.”
“Our relationships with the salons is clear and solid. They can really see what our brand focuses are,” Tahiri said. “The relationship with Sephora is only going to enhance their relationship with their customers… we’re at a point in the U.S. where professional and prestige retailers are enhancing each other, and the demand for professional products has never been so high.”
It comes as those channels continue to blur. Recently, Briogeo entered the professional side of the business with SalonCentric. As it applies to L’Oréal Professionnel, “One thing that made our partnership so meaningful with Sephora was that their guests over-index when it comes to going to salons,” Tahiri said. “They will translate those products from Sephora to asking for a service.”
For Tahiri, Sephora allows the brand to cast a much wider net. “There’s not professional products in everyone’s showers,” she said. “There’s still so many consumers we can touch and that’s where Sephora comes in. They can help us continue to develop that awareness. And that is being anchored in salons, so ultimately, it’s a win-win.”
Tahiri contended that hair stylists are still the brand’s foremost ambassadors. “The experience, the relationship you create with your stylist, you’ll never get anywhere else. Our presence and partnership with Sephora is only a way to bring awareness that that exists, and that our professional products exist, and that will drive their curiosity around what services could enhance their regimen, and what steps can be built in.”
The move also comes as prestige hair care continues to climb. According to Circana, prestige hair care grew 11 percent in the first quarter of 2023, outpacing the mass market.