The triumphant return of the nostalgic ‘nana brands’
As Yardley and Avon see sales increasing, it looks like Granny really did know best. Sonia Haria reports
EVEN FOR THE MOST seasoned beauty junkie, it’s hard to keep up with the rate of new brands launching every week. But this year there seems to have been a revival of old-school favourites that have stood the test of time. The labels you remember from your granny’s or mother’s dressing table are now enjoying success with a younger audience.
Take Yardley, for instance. Over the past few decades it has quietly retained a certain popularity as an affordable British brand with floral fragrance offerings. But recently, The Perfume Shop has reported that sales of Yardley have almost doubled in a year. ‘Classic scents have a strong sense of nostalgia and remind customers of their childhood or of loved ones,’ says the chain’s trading director Andrea Rickard. ‘We’ve seen a big spike in millennial customers who love those floral fragrances.’
But Yardley isn’t the only brand making a comeback. Sales of Avon have come a long way since its door-knocking days in the 1980s; in fact, it’s leading the way with innovation. It has just launched the first beauty app to use a unique colour algorithm to accurately match make-up to any skin tone. Welcome news for the 70 per cent of British women found to have been buying the wrong base, according to the brand’s research.
And heritage labels don’t get much chicer than Buly. The apothecary brand began life in Paris in 1803 and was revived in 2014. Since then, it has opened stores around the world, including an impressive space in Selfridges, London. With vintage pharmacy counters stocked with original vials of fragrance, it’s nostalgic charm at its finest.
Right Vintage magazine adverts from Yardley in the 1950s. Far right Avon in the 1960s