AP® Monthly Archives: August 2016
Pick. Pick. Pick.
That’s the sound of an ingrown hair being fidgeted with. Inflammation from ingrown hairs makes the skin irritation almost unbearable. They tend to start as a slow, mildly annoying itch. Ingrown hairs can go away on their own, sometimes, with no treatment necessary. More often, they don’t, and that mild itch turns into major discomfort! So what is a person to do?
Everyone will get an ingrown hair at least once in their lifetime.
From teen years on, anybody is susceptible to getting one. Improper hair removal techniques or a need for exfoliation often causes an ingrown hair, but, they can also be caused by something as benign as wearing tight synthetic clothing. Typically, a person with thick, coarse and/or curly hair has an increased risk of getting an ingrown hair.
There are 2 types of ingrown hairs.
Debris, such as dead skin cells, can cause a hair to never leave the follicle and become stuck in it. This often lead to trans follicular penetration. Once this happens, the sharp hair tip (usually from a broken hair, or shaving too closely) punctures the follicle wall and tries to grow in at an unnatural angle. Extrafollicular penetration occurs when hairs manage to exit the shaft only to curl back around and re-penetrate the skin. Both of these can lead to intense irritation and sometimes even infection.
Ingrown hairs can happen on almost any part of the body!
While any part of the body that has a hair shaft can get an ingrown hair, they are most common in the bikini, underarms, and men’s faces. Oftentimes, hair in these areas is thick and coarse. Ingrown hairs also commonly appear on the upper thigh. This is believed to be caused by friction from clothing.
The good news about ingrown hair!
Ingrown hairs don’t have to be a mainstay in your life. Many people – including AP brand ambassador, Marie Digby- believed that ingrown hairs were just par-the-course. But, that is simply not true! There are steps you can take to reduce and alleviate ingrown hairs altogether.
3 Steps for skin free of ingrown hair!
Firstly, ensure your hair removal technique is above reproach. Sugaring removes the hair from the root, as well as clears any debris that might still be in the hair shaft. If you shave, ensure to shave in the direction of the hair growth, with a fresh razor ensuring not to drag the skin. Waxing and tweezing are not recommended due to the high instance of hair breakage. If you do wax or tweeze, ensure to follow strict at-home protocol.
Secondly, make sure you follow a Full Circle™ methodology at home. Soften skin cells, exfoliate with a gentle, non-comedogenic exfoliant, purify with a treatment mask and then moisturize. Following these steps at home will give your follicle the best opportunity to stay clear of impurities, thus allowing the hair to travel freely through the hair shaft.
Thirdly, keep irritation to a minimum. If you are experiencing ingrown hairs, try to keep clothing from rubbing on the skin in that area in an effort to reduce friction. Wear breathable cotton garments whenever possible. Delicate areas like the bikini can suffer irritation from manual exfoliation, so make sure to scrub gently, or do a salt compress instead.
And, above all, DON’T PICK!!! Picking is a surefire way to make a simple ingrown hair into an infection or worse. If you seem to get ingrown hairs at an extremely high rate regardless of the steps taken to prevent them, be sure to see your dermatologist for further treatment.
As always, stay smooth, everyone!
Do you get ingrown hairs despite your best efforts? Message us on our facebook page to find out how AP can help YOU have the smoothest skin ever!
AP® Monthly Archives: August 2016
Marketing. It is a teeth-gnashing subject that has to happen. The main challenge is that marketing is fluid. In terms of marketing, there are very few permanent rules; marketing transitions with the finicky ebb and flow of the purchasers’ sea. There are a few mainstays, though, when it comes to visual merchandising. Check out our top 3 mainstays below as well as a few helpful hints!
Visual Marketing: Time-tested mainstays
First thing’s first, start with your set up. Before you put any merchandise at all on the shelves, ensure your location is prepared to accept merchandise. I know it sounds counterintuitive but go to a mall. Walk through the various different beauty stores. These companies have mastered visual marketing to customers (your potential clients.) Notice something? All of their payment areas are set back from the entrance. This gives the products a chance to shine in a stress-free way for the purchaser. The same concept holds true in a salon or spa.
From there, work on your flow. Is there ample space for wheelchairs? Are your shelves set up in such a way that you have the opportunity to tell a story with the products you carry once they are on the shelves? What does your reception area look like?
The pros suggest ditching most ideas of full-sized furniture (unless you have an XL space.) When you have a ‘cozy’ (aka small) sitting space in the reception area, clients are encouraged to walk the retail space. This also goes for oversized bookshelves and cabinets for display. While they may look Pinterest-worthy, it sets a tone of “look, but don’t touch” and you WANT your clients to touch. Instead, try clear plexi for stands and tables. These materials create an open and inviting space. They can also be draped with fabric for a quick and inexpensive theme change – which brings us to visuals.
Once you have the space figured out, know your products. Use your products to tell a story. Is your establishment known for its dedication to holistic skincare? Tell that story with your merchandising. Does the majority of your revenue come from anti-aging treatments? Tell a story of youth with your products. This also falls into knowing your customer base. Use that knowledge to decide of what imagery you want to use. Is the majority of your revenue coming from hi-tech advancements in skincare? Create a more scientific feel in your reception area and tell that story through imagery and coordinating products.
Now that visual themes are in place, let’s get those displays in order. As the old adage goes: eye height is buy height. Most people throughout the retail area are looking while standing. Keep products waist height through eye height, as well as shading from darkest at the bottom to lightest at the top in order to keep the space weighted. Keep the theme consistent and complementary.
We need to sometimes think ahead for the customer. This is where the importance of a story comes in. Customers need to be guided through that story through consistent themes and strategic product placement. This product placement should have a focus at each display, as well as supporting products for that focus. For instance, have the sunscreen displayed with the after sun care (instead skin cleansers and moisturizers); Bikini’s (if you sell them) with the hair removal post care; mud mask with spa head wraps and candles/aromatherapy. All of these tell a story that your customer can visually see his or herself being a part of. Keep displayed products at an odd number. IE: 3 or 5 key products on display. The same rule of 3 that makes Instagram images a huge hit works in visual retailing as well. This same rule keeps the clutter to a minimum.
Visual marketing: Tips and Tricks
Once all the mainstays are checked off the list, you can move on to the presentation. This is more artistic and flexible. Lighting can play a huge role in your product sales. Use lighting to bring focus to your themes. Highlight any product labels you are trying to focus on, backlight any shapes you find integral to your story.
Also, make sure your tables/shelves have descriptors on them with prices. Everyone’s favorite bath product store, Lush, is a great example of applying this practice with their clear and concise signs highlighting the top purposes of a product as well as price. More often than not, if a customer has to ask too many specifics about the product, they won’t bother and skip over it.
Speaking of skipping over, make sure to make it nearly impossible for them to do so by having testers! When a client/customer is able to actively insert themselves into that storyline you’ve created, they are more likely to take it home. Let them touch, squeeze and sniff.
Client vs Customer: The difference a window can make
Clients come in regularly. They book appointments, and, in theory, have already been warmed up to the products on the sales floor in the treatment room. For clients, you might offer a package deal with services and products, or a discount program or an upsell at the ‘cash wrap.’ But, have you thought about the non-client?
Even mild to moderate foot traffic around your location has the potential to bring in a sale. Take an afternoon walk to get to know your area. What are the shoppers near you interested in? Is it something you can provide them with in terms of retail? Have a display window with common use products. Keep it in theme with the story you want to tell once that customer comes in. Keep window wording to a minimum, but highly visible. Every other month switch it up to keep it fresh. And don’t forget about digital marketing. Create a QR code to display on the outside of your building with a direct link to your website, or your snapcode if you are on Snapchat.
Note, Notes, and more Notes
Someone once said if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail. This is ever true in marketing. Notes help to plan. Once done setting up your displays, snap a picture at different times of the day. Review the pictures and decide what you might want to change. Store the pictures in a file and take notes. Did this display set up work for your business? Did it bring in new traffic? Were you able to convert the new customers into new clients? What do you think you should change for your next display? All of these questions will enable you to find trends specific to your business and fine tune your technique.
Above all, enjoy yourself! Your story will come through in your presentation. Relish in the success of a great display and learn from the ones that didn’t do so well.
Have a display tip that worked well for you? Comment below and share with our community of innovators!