Espoir emerged as a unique makeup brand, boasting diverse color palettes and sophisticated base makeup products. Today, it stands as a source of inspiration for Millennials and Gen Z, encouraging them to craft their own distinctive looks. A! People spoke with , Lee Yeon Jung, head of Espoir, and we learned a lot! Click the link below for our conversation.
Please tell us about the brand Espoir.
Espoir was first launched in 1999 as a fragrance brand. Eleven years later, in December 2010, Espoir shifted its focus, rebranding as a makeup brand. As we moved from the previous identity as a vibrant perfume brand, Espoir emerged as a unique makeup brand, boasting diverse color palettes and sophisticated base makeup products. Today, it stands as a source of inspiration for Millennials and Gen Z, encouraging them to craft their own distinctive looks. Espoir reaches these audiences through various channels, including Olive Young and online malls.
What are some flagship products?
Espoir's most celebrated flagship product is the Cushion Foundation. We have conducted extensive research on base makeup and the characteristics of Asian skin. The needs of customers were very diverse. Beyond the essential requirement for skin adherence, the makeup had to cover pores and irregularities precisely without being too thick or have a color mismatch. Hence, we pondered how to satisfy these customer needs with our Cushion. Considerable effort went into developing competitive product technologies, including the synergy between the container and the puff and the foundation content to create a smooth complexion. As a result, Espoir Cushion developed an ivory shade that enhances the clarity of the skin tone. Customers consistently say how satisfied they are with the way Espoir Cushion enhances their skin, solidifying Espoir's reputation for excellence in Cushion Foundation products.
Another item we take pride in is the Water Splash Sun Cream Ceramide.
This product not only offers sun protection but also, with its ceramide-infused formula, provides instant hydration and adds a subtle layer of pink tone for a natural tone-up. It is one of Espoir’s most beloved products, having garnered its own fan base through word-of-mouth, even without dedicated advertisements or promotions.
How has Espoir managed to cultivate such a devoted fan base?
Espoir is dedicated to crafting unique products and sharing narratives that set us apart. Our customers are at the core of our narrative, forming a robust community of loyal fans and enthusiasts.
A standout example is Espoir's Lookbook, a limited-concept eye palette released once or twice a year, showcasing compelling stories we're eager to share. Customers actively contribute ideas and express concerns about potential discontinuation, demonstrating a sincere connection to the series, with some collecting them annually. By attentively listening to the stories customers share, empathizing with their experiences, and bringing those stories to life, we've uncovered the secret to capturing the hearts of our customers.
The recently relaunched 'Serenade' color lipstick has garnered significant affection from enthusiasts. Originally introduced in 2017, the shade Serenade achieved notable success. Its recent relaunch, highlighting the trendy #LukewarmPinkTone shade, resulted in the product selling out within an hour of a live commerce broadcast and securing the top spot on NAVER Shopping for a week. Our intention was to revisit some of our past hit items, presenting them with a modern voice and appeal, and this strategy resonated well with many Millennial and Gen Z consumers. It’s great to see how much our fans genuinely love our brand. It brings me a lot of joy.
Can you share some details about the new Espoir Yeonnam store designed for your dedicated fans?
While the Espoir Yeonnam store might not be situated on a main road or boast a huge space, it stands out as the perfect showcase for Espoir's essence. Regardless of its size or location, our aim was to provide a special experience tailored to every customer. At Espoir Yeonnam, we introduce the '&Play Service,' letting you customize and blend your powder, and the 'Personal Makeup Consulting Service,' offering guidance on makeup techniques that suit you best. Our commitment to our fans seems to have struck a chord, which can be seen in the overwhelming demand for our personal makeup consulting service. The competition for reservations is fierce, with slots filling up almost immediately as they open at the stroke of midnight.
What is the future vision and plan for Espoir?
Espoir is on a path of dynamic growth both at home and abroad, but we're not content with our current achievements. Our aim is to elevate our performance in Korea and expand even more rapidly around the world. In the coming year, we're committed to boosting our brand visibility in foreign markets by enlisting a global ambassador. We'll kick off extensive local operations, starting with Japan and Thailand, and venture into Western markets, including the United States, via platforms like Amazon.
Espoir is also striving to evolve into an even more distinctive and creative makeup brand. We’ll continue sharing the confidence and joy that makeup brings to our customers through various channels, both in Korea and internationally. Ultimately, we aspire to be the go-to brand for makeup, a true representation of Korea on the global stage.
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