City of Beverly Hills markets own branded fragrances, cosmetics

By T.L. Stanley on Thu Oct 21 2010


What would a perfume called Beverly Hills smell like? Some combination of new money, plastic-surgery waiting rooms and disdain for "the little people"? Just a guess. The jokes are almost too easy, with the Associated Press taking a fairly uncatty stab at it by dubbing the new fragrance line "9021-Eau." But the city may have the last laugh, since it's one of a handful of places that has an internationally known name and image, for better or worse. City leaders have a five-year goal of making $500,000 from the sale of three Beverly Hills-branded colognes and a still-to-debut cosmetic line. The first perfume will go on sale—retail price: $120—in January. Don't look for it at CVS. Bradford Licensing is handling the tony city's deals, which, depending on response, could fan out further. Drop us your own suggestions about what the conspicuous-consumption capital should do next. Beverly Hills Botox? Sure, why not?

Have Justin Bieber ardently spruce up your fingers and your toes

By T.L. Stanley on Mon Oct 11 2010


Do you love Justin Bieber from the top of your head to the tips of your toes? (If you answered yes, and you're not a 12-year-old girl, please seek help.) The merchandising machine that is Team Bieber has already clothed and accessorized millions of fans' body parts with charm bracelets, T-shirts, hoodies, necklaces and hats. Now, it's on to the all-important mani-pedi. The YouTube pop sensation has "designed" a line of nail polish with Nicole by OPI that will go on sale exclusively at Walmart in December. (Stocking stuffer alert!) An expanded line will hit Ulta and Target in February, just in time for Bieber's 3-D concert movie/big-screen "acting" debut. The product's called One Less Lonely Girl, after the Canadian moppet's hit song, and will feature shades like "Step 2 the Beat of My Heart," which is metallic blue with girly glitter. So, don't wonder why members of Bieber Nation will be a little woozier than usual in a few months. They'll be high on hormones and acetate fumes.

Cosmedicine offers big bucks for your spoof beauty commercial

Posted on Wed Sep 23 2009

Beauty brand Cosmedicine (which bills itself—no duh—as a combination of cosmetics and medicine) has launched a video contest where consumers are asked to vent about the beauty industry's outrageous claims. The "Protest Beauty B.S." competition has a $5,000 cash prize, with the winner selected from among 11 top "vote getters" on YouTube. (Can we get a spa treatment with that money?) The submissions so far include a spoof of a U.K. "pore-evaporating" liquid concealer spot ("I tried this makeup last week, and it burned my skin. It'll get rid of your pores all right, and replace them with third-degree burns") and the top-rated video so far, shown here, for a product called Rosyline. It makes fun of acne creams, with two girls singing the praises of the "micro-scrubbing Photoshop cells which completely blur up all your pores and acne, stopping breakouts. Heck, if the one girl had used it earlier, she might've prevented her dog from getting run over. (The poor critter dashed into the street after seeing her pimply face.) "The reason I know it was my acne was the people who ran over my dog thought I was the one who got run over," she adds.

—Posted by Elaine Wong

Brooke Shields shows you how to be longer, thicker and fuller

Posted on Wed Sep 16 2009

Do you have feelings of inadequacy? Is length an issue? Does it make you feel insecure? Sounds like a pitch you might find in a piece of e-mail spam. However, this is the tactic Allergan and spokesperson Brooke Shields are taking to pressure women into buying Latisse. The product is the first and only FDA-approved prescription medication to address inadequate lashes—a condition known as hypotrichosis. (Seems about as valid as restless leg syndrome.) Anyway, in as little as eight weeks, you can see results which include not only longer, fuller, darker lashes, but also potentially itchy eyes, eye redness and "eye pressure." As an added bonus, Latisse can change the color of your eyes and eyelids. Eyelid darkening (in lieu of eyeshadow?) may be reversible. However, potential for increased brown iris pigmentation is likely permanent (which is a bonus if you you've always wanted darker colored eyes). Brooke advises us in the TV ad, "Ask your doctor if Latisse is right for you." And if your doctor says you are out of your mind, go purchase fake eyelashes if it bothers you that much. Or go to, where you can find a more favorable doctor.

—Posted by Kenneth Hein

Look virtually stunning with a virtual makeover by Estée Lauder

Posted on Mon Aug 17 2009


You no longer need to visit the makeup aisle or the beauty counter to see how you look in the season's hip cosmetics. Estée Lauder, whose earnings have been hit hard by the recession, has introduced what it calls the first "branded makeup widget" that allows consumers to try makeup on right in their own homes online. The Estée Lauder Virtual Makeover widget, which launched today, can be downloaded to a user's Facebook or social-media profile, where the beauty conscious can try on new shades, virtually, by uploading their own photos. Fashionistas can choose from runway favorites to classic makeup must haves, to, well, basically everything on the Estée Lauder site. Deep Focus, New York, created the campaign. BrandFreak would like to see how she looks with the new Double Wear "12-hour staying power" lipstick. Ah, simply kissable. Muah.

—Posted by Elaine Wong

Economy got you down? Try stuffing yourself full of candy

Posted on Tue Mar 24 2009


Conventional wisdom has lately maintained (echoing a theory first put forth by Leonard Lauder) that lipstick is recession-proof: that women will cut back on a lot of other stuff in a crappy economy but will keep buying lipstick for the little morale boost that's achieved by looking good. This week, The New York Times puts forth a parallel theory: that candy might be recession-proof, too. "The recession seems to have a sweet tooth," says the story, as "Americans, particularly adults, have been consuming growing volumes of candy, from Mary Janes and Tootsie Rolls to Gummy Bears and cheap chocolates." Among the possible reasons why: the sugar high; the nostalgic thoughts of better times; and the low price tag. Candy fared well during the Great Depression, it turns out, and many popular candy brands were actually born then: Snickers in 1930, Tootsie Pops in 1931, and Three Musketeers in 1932. Of course, there's a downside: Over the longer term, battling the recession with candy won't keep you looking quite as good as doing so with cosmetics. And if you try to combine the two ... well, then you're just putting lipstick on a pig.

—Posted by Tim Nudd



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