GB: Sephora is set to return to the UK: Where do Britons buy make-up products from?
October 14th, 2022, Shinmin Bali

GB: Sephora is set to return to the UK: Where do Britons buy make-up products from?

After exiting the UK market in 2005, personal care and beauty product retailer, Sephora, is all set for a reentry. Fast-forward to 2021 – Sephora – has acquired UK’s online beauty retailer - FeelUnique - a signal of its renewed interest in the UK market. Sephora’s online store will go live on 17 October 2022 as the FeelUnique website will turn into a Sephora one. Brick-and-mortar stores, however, could take until Spring 2023 to open up.

While Sephora will also make its presence felt in the UK through a pop-up store in London on 20 October, where do Britons shop for make-up or personal care products typically?

According to YouGov Profiles - which covers demographic, psychographic, attitudinal and behavioral consumer metrics - Sephora will be facing its toughest competition from retailers like Boots, Tesco and Superdrug. Where the last three months saw 39% of Britons shopping for personal care/make-up products from Boots, 33% and 25% shopped from Tesco and Superdrug, respectively.

Since Sephora’s reentry was marked by the acquisition of FeelUnique – the ecommerce route – it’s worth remarking that just 8% of Britons have shopped from retailers which are only online for the category in the last three months.

Contrary to the retailer’s previous stint in the UK when offline was a big part of its strategy, this time around Sephora is entering via online first and will eventually follow it up with offline next year. As it stands now, according to Profiles data, offline is the preferred channel for 43% of Britons looking to buy health and beauty products. Where 18% of Britons make their purchases both online and offline, another 18% prefer to shop exclusively online.

While the data shows that offline might be the best place for Sephora to find interested consumers, perhaps the retailer’s past experiences in the market are guiding a seemingly cautious strategy this time around.

Explore our living data - for free

Discover more retail content here

Want to run your own research? Start building a survey now

Make smarter business decisions with better intelligence. Understand exactly what your audience is thinking by leveraging our panel of 20 million+ members. Speak with us today.

Methodology: YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. Profiles data for the UK is nationally representative and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about Profiles.