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Chanel launches men's make-up line

Lauretta Roberts
22 August 2018

Chanel is about to launch its first make-up line targeted at men and has chosen South Korea for its global debut on 1 September.

The line, called Boy de Chanel (a reference to Boy Capel, a one-time lover of Coco Chanel), comprises three key products: a tinted fluid in four shades; a matte moisturising lip balm; and an eyebrow pencil in four shades.

Following the launch in South Korea the range will be made available globally on the Chanel website from November and will launch in boutiques in 2019. “Beauty is not a matter of gender, it is a matter of style," said the global luxury fashion and beauty house of the new launch.

Chanel is known as an innovator in cosmetics and where it goes other brands follow; its move into men's make-up is likely to prompt other prestige brands to take the plunge. Though Tom Ford was some years ahead of the game having launched a pioneering range of male cosmetics in 2013.

While others have not yet launched male-specific ranges they are already enlisting male ambassadors to promote their products and to make their ranges more inclusive, including L’Oréal and Covergirl.

Data analyst GlobalData believes it's a smart move for Chanel to take the Boy de Chanel range to South Korea first since according to its own 2018 Q3 consumer survey, 75% of South Korean males claim to do a beauty/grooming treatment at home at least once a week or more, compared with just 38% in Chanel’s home market of France.

Lia Neophytou, consumer analyst at GlobalData said: “Unlike the relatively simple male grooming routines in the West, beauty products for men have an established position within South Korean culture. This offers a strong customer base for Chanel to launch a prestige, high-end beauty range for South Korean men to engage with, increasing the likelihood of product adoption and success.

“Similarly, this will allow Chanel to leverage its strong brand heritage and luxury credentials within beauty and fashion to offer a point of differentiation in the male beauty space. This can be expected to be well received given the already established beauty regimens evident among South Korean men.”

Neophytou said other brands will be watching Chanel's performance in this space with interest. "[...] the success – or failure – of Chanel’s venture in the beauty innovation capital of the world will present a key indicator of the opportunity to invest in this trend.”

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