Is Haircare IQ in Sephora’s Future?


It all started with Fragrance Finder, the handy kiosk that helped steer fragrance fanatics to their signature scent. Then came the Color IQ, which scanned users’ skin to find the perfect shade of foundation. Next, Skincare IQ helped novices navigate aisles for the appropriate products for their skin type and budget. So what’s the next beauty frontier for Sephora to tackle? Simple, it’s haircare.

The retailer has bought the technology platform that created all of the kiosks, Scentsa, and now hopes to round out the rest of the Digital IQ universe. Julie Bornstein, chief marketing and digital officer for Sephora, hinted that the new haircare technology would be on the horizon. “What we want to do is build on [these learnings going forward],” Bornstein told Women’s Wear Daily. “We don’t want to overwhelm the consumer, but we really want to make it focused and effective and really solve a problem. As with all technology, it always needs to evolve. For us, we see all of these things as continuing to evolve and making sure they stay relevant and whatever new ideas and experiences we can create, we will build on to them.”

The retailer has been innovative on the technology front, especially after its Meatpacking District location opened up sans cash registers. The staff currently checks out items through a mobile device and the receipt prints from one of several printers throughout the store. Plus, the mobile technology has helped speed up service at several other locations.

With its stronghold on social media, and its amped up Beauty Insider program, it’s turning out to be a very good year for Sephora!