In mid-December, P2PI's Patrycja Malinowska visited the BYOB shop at Walgreens' Mall of America store in Bloomington, MN.
"Birchbox elevates the drugstore beauty experience at Walgreens by enabling discovery of more than 40 higher-end indie brands in inviting boutiques designed with plenty of warm lighting and natural colors," Malinowska says. "Products are organized by function (skincare/makeup/hair) rather than brand, and shoppers can try on and play with most of the cosmetics. The 400- to 1,000-square-foot boutiques even make space for a powder-room-inspired makeup remover/wipes station.
"A Birchbox-trained beauty consultant answered my questions and helped me curate my own sample box, which came with a free co-branded pouch gift. Most shoppers used the dedicated Birchbox checkout register to purchase their beauty items, though I was also able to do other shopping at the drugstore and check out at the regular register. The partnership certainly helps Walgreens stand out as a fun discovery destination for the casual beauty consumer."
Walgreens and Birchbox in December kicked off promotional efforts supporting their new partnership, which is bringing Birchbox retail experiences to select stores.
Birchbox is a monthly beauty subscription service. As of December, six stores now house interactive BYOB (Build Your Own Birchbox) stations where shoppers can select five samples to take home in an exclusively designed box – Walgreens locations in Bloomington, MN; Los Angeles and Chicago; and three Duane Reade locations in New York. Five additional Walgreens locations will feature the stations early in 2019: El Segundo, CA; Miami Beach, FL; North Miami, FL; Glenview, IL; and Dallas.
Birchbox sent an email to its current subscribers on Dec. 6 that touted the partnership and linked to a birchbox.com landing page that identified the 11 aforementioned store locations.
On Dec. 13, Walgreens sent emails to its Beauty Enthusiast members that linked to a Birchbox landing page on walgreens.com that promoted exclusive, limited-edition Birchbox sets available for purchase in-store and online as well as a free-gift-with-subscription-purchase code usable on Birchbox’s website.
Both Walgreens’ and Birchbox’s websites call out 15 brands whose products are available in the BYOB stations at Walgreens.