TIME OF CHANGE | Pocketmags.com

2 mins


Aston and Fincher’s national beauty manager Claire Lebrun tells us about the complete rebrand of Hara and how the pandemic has influenced industry trends

Why did you decide to rebrand and relaunch your classic Hara brand?

“The brand has been around for more than 50 years. We started with wax, then about 30 years ago we introduced our lash and brow tint, and in 2017 we launched gel polish.

“We wanted to do a rebrand because the packaging was looking a bit tired. We really want to raise the profile of the brand. As a business we’ve had Hara for more than 50 years, but we’ve really kept it in house, like a closely guarded secret.

“It was time for a rebrand, because the products are good and have an incredibly loyal following, but the outside didn’t really look as good as the inside. We have great aspirations to push the brand forward. To do that, not only does it have to look good, but it also has to be appropriate for 2022.”

Will there be any new products launching into the Hara range?

“When we relaunch, we’ll be adding some new stripless waxes to the range and some new equipment. We’re launching a new wax heater, as well as an extra colour and developer for lash and brow. Then later, we’ll be adding lash lift and brow lamination.

“Gel polish is also having a complete overhaul. Our gel polish is a really goodvalue brand, but it only ever had about 39 core colours, which is not enough for a nail tech. So, we hope to bring out extra colours with seasonal launches, give the bottle a completely new look and make the range hema free.

“We are also looking to move into skincare – not a full-service skincare range, but I do think that we might have some small bespoke treatment packages that people could add into their existing skincare ranges in salon or freelance. We could end up with a peeling system within the range.”

How did the difficult trading period over the last two years impact Aston and Fincher?

“Without wanting to blow our own trumpet, because lots of people suffered, Aston and Fincher has had a good few years. Covid was terrible; we kept our website open, but our stores had to close. However, the hairdressing industry bounced back incredibly for us. Beauty took a bit longer to recover but is coming back strong.

“I think we can put it down to the fact that we have a really good head of buying and product manager who both made sure we had everything we needed throughout the pandemic in stock. So, where other suppliers didn’t have stock of PPE or the popular lines that had boomed through lockdown, we had lots.

“Once salons were reopening and experiencing busy periods, we were able to fulfil those stock needs. We definitely picked up new business through the pandemic.”

What trends have you seen emerge post-pandemic?

“In wholesale, we traditionally haven’t sold the high-end electrical equipment, the body and facial machines, but I see a huge switch towards that in the beauty industry now.

“I was also surprised that tanning picked up well, because so many people learnt to tan themselves at home during lockdowns, so I wasn’t sure whether tanning would recover but it has. It’s the same with nails, which also bounced back really strongly.”

This article appears in November 2022

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This article appears in...
November 2022
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