Aesop, meaning “storyteller ” in Greek, is a fitting name for this unique skincare brand that started in Australia in 1987. Its very first European boutique is now open on Rue Bonaparte in the fashionable district of Saint Germain-des-Prés in Paris.
Minimal, convivial, surprising. The boutique, which used to house Napoleon’s first tailor, is as Parisian as it is Aesop. The design of the space was a fruitful collaboration between the brand and esteemed French architect Jean-François Bourdet. The opening of the boutique is an auspicious move, given Aesop’s 10-year relationship with Colette which started stocking the skin- and hair-care collection long before people knew what Aesop was all about.
I had the pleasure of meeting Dennis Paphitis, Aesop’s founder, who tells us the philosophy and reasoning behind the line of products that speak for themselves.
What is Aesop’s philosophy?
Our philosophy is to marry botanical ingredients with advanced technology, and produce precise and efficient products for the skin and hair.
What is your approach to skincare?
The physiology of the skin is an integral part of our daily lifestyle. Through Aesop, you will learn about your skin’s life cyle, and its relationship to the climate that you live in. I do not believe that you need a lot of products to keep your skin in good condition. What is important is to learn how to achieve equilibrium.
What is unique about Aesop skincare products?
We go to the ends of the world to get the best quality for each ingredient that goes into our products. Our research team is based in Melbourne, and our products are all made in Australia. Thanks to our laboratories’ technology, we are able to produce a succinct and unique collection.
How important is it to educate your customers?
It is very important for us to share scientific information about Aesop products with our customers. All of our store managers and consultants have gone through formal training so they are able to provide the best advice and suggest the most suitable products for our customers.
What is the inpiration of your packaging and boutique design?
Every aspect of Aesop is active reasoning. Being in charge of Aesop’s art direction, the brown glass packaging is a purely functional choice, because it protects the product inside from UV rays. Our boutiques are different, though. Each of them is individually designed so Aesop boutiques are not chain stores. Rather, they are like charms on a bracelet. Each boutique is unique, but they all provide a warm, friendly and informative environment where you can learn about skincare.
What kind of experience can we expect at an Aesop boutique?
Every day, Aesop welcomes customers from all over the world. You can feel free to walk into any of our stores and receive professional advice. Besides our core skincare routine products, you will find specific items catered to your skintype. Our consultants will help you choose the right Aesop products according to your diet, lifestyle, the city that you live in, everything
that affects your skin.
Listening to Dennis is like hearing the true story about skincare for the first time. Aesop skincare is not a brand that promises miracles or everlasting youth. Instead, it approaches skincare with sound and solid reasoning. Now, that makes sense.
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