Monday, November 14, 2005

Estee Lauder ups its hipness quotient with Tom Ford, Gwyneth Paltrow

The Estee Lauder Companies are working hard to re-energize their flagship Estee Lauder label. Last April, The Style Page noted Tom Ford's venture with Estee Lauder. In June, I noted Gwyneth Paltrow's contract with Estee Lauder to appear in their advertising campaigns. Only now are we seeing the results of these two ventures.

I was at Nordstrom in Tysons Corner last week, and a visiting makeup artist from Estee Lauder told me that only Neiman-Marcus and Saks are carrying the color products from the Tom Ford Collection. I then went to Saks, where the saleswoman told me that the Estee Lauder company was giving only small quantities of the products in the Tom Ford Collection to individual stores: for example, this Saks store received only one compact of solid perfume in Youth Dew Amber Nude (selling for $175!). The Eau du Parfum spray is strong enough to curl your toes, although Youth Dew Amber Nude is supposed to be lighter than original Youth Dew. I tested five lipsticks from the Tom Ford Collection ranging from a shimmering champagne to a shade that looked like malted milk to a deep plummy brown. The Tom Ford Collection also offers a subdued pinkish bronzer. I didn't find anything I wanted, thanked the saleswoman for her time, and walked away.

I have not been able to find the Tom Ford Collection sold online on I also tried, as the Tom Ford Collection premiered at its Fifth Avenue store, but all I could find available was the Eau du Parfum spray. With the way that Estee Lauder is limiting supply of the Tom Ford Collection, it's no surprise that these products are up for bid on eBay!

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