[Herald Interview] Lab Series campaigns for ‘less is more’

By Korea Herald

Estee Lauder enjoys heyday in Korea

  • Published : Jul 30, 2014 - 21:24
  • Updated : Jul 30, 2014 - 21:25
Lab Series, an Estee Lauder skin care line for men, believes less is more when it comes to men’s cosmetics.

“For beginners, starting with one or two ― perhaps all-in-one products ― is enough. When they are ready, they could mix some more,” said Paul Jarrod Frank, a skin care expert at Lab Series, in a recent interview with The Korea Herald.

“I would rather have customers buy a single classic product for 20 or 30 years than buy multiple (types) at once without knowing the exact pros and cons,” he said. 
Paul Jarrod Frank, skin care expert at Lab Series (Lab Series)

Frank himself uses only two ― the brand’s Multi-Action Face Wash and Age Rescue + Water Charged Gel Cream. The latter product with moisturizing and anti-aging effects will be released in Korea in September.

As the only men’s skin care brand under the Estee Lauder Group, Lab Series has enjoyed success in South Korea, its largest market in terms of sales. Accordingly, its outlet at Lotte Department Store in Sogong-dong, Seoul, has outperformed all other Lab Series stores around the world for the past several years, the company said.

According to Euro Monitor, Korean men spent an average of $25.30 last year on skin care products. The number is the highest in the world.

Frank cited the highly systemized consulting services that Lab Series offers at its counters as the key to its success. Expertly trained sales clerks are there to assist customers in choosing the best-fitting products based on their skin conditions and lifestyles.

“We ask how many hours they sleep every day, whether they smoke or drink alcohol, whether they drink enough water or exercise. All these things are as important as applying expensive products,” the dermatologist said.

Race, nationality and gender-specific demands are other factors that Lab Series takes into account when recommending products.

“In my experience, Chinese men are more concerned about acne and scars, compared to Korean men who are more aware of their pore conditions. (In general) what is different for men (from women) is that they aren’t so concerned about wrinkles. Instead, they are concerned more about the skin tone,” he said.

The deep understanding of what men need and want from their cosmetics was attained from relentless research, he said.

“Through intensive and repeated clinical research, I believe that we have found solutions for all people,” Frank said.

By Bae Ji-sook (