If you’re a fan of natural beauty products, you probably know and love Lush. But who is the face behind the brand? In this article, we learn more about Mark Constantine, the Lush CEO.
Lush prides itself on its extensive selection of “fresh, handmade cosmetics” available in stores up and down the UK. Drawing customers in from the street with the intoxicating fragrance of its creations, Lush has a huge customer base of ethically minded consumers.
According to IBISWorld, the toiletries and cosmetics market in the UK is made up of over 4,500 businesses generating more than £5 billion per year. This is an impressive figure, and it’s set to rise even further. Since 2014, the sector has experienced an annual growth rate of 4.5 percent, so it’s a great time to invest if you’re interested in running your own business in the cosmetics industry.
As awareness surrounding the environmental impact of our consumer choices grows, we’re increasingly turning to ethical and eco-friendly products. Mintel suggests the UK is the leading European country for the launch of ‘clean’ colour cosmetics; in other words, products that claim to be free from harmful ingredients. In fact, in 2018, more than 20 percent of global ‘clean’ colour cosmetic products were launched in the UK.
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Who is Lush CEO, Mark Constantine?
Mark Constantine leads the Lush brand. Having co-founded the business in 1995 with his wife, Mo Constantine, who fills the position of Director, he is also a Managing Director. This is truly a family affair, as their son, Jack Constantine, serves as the brand’s Chief Digital Officer.
What is Lush?
Lush crafts a huge range of ‘natural’ beauty products, from bath and shower products to hair conditioners and perfumes. The business has seen success by carefully developing the business to reflect consumers’ priorities.
This increased interest in the origin and impact of personal care products is good news for Lush, which has been adhering to strict ethical standards for 40 years. The business first emerged shortly after its founders’ previous mail order business, Cosmetics To Go, collapsed.
The founders spent their remaining money on fruit and vegetables, using them to make hand-crafted products to sell in a small shop in Poole. The couple’s products became so popular, they were able to launch a network of outlets across the UK. Today, there are over 900 spread across more than 50 countries.
Lush’s ethical credentials are at the heart of its success. 40 years ago, Lush CEO Mark Constantine decided to do away with plastic packaging. As well as eliminating single-use packaging and other waste, Lush aims to source all its products ethically and make sure they’re vegetarian and vegan-friendly. The retailer has also led campaigns against the use of palm oil, animal testing and other practices that negatively affect animals, such as fox hunting and shark finning.
Lush believes it’s vital the public are well-informed about their impact on the world around them, but it’s not just environmental issues the retailer prioritises. Lush also champions “random acts of kindness” towards customers like offering free product samples, and does not advertise the brand on television, in print or through celebrity endorsements. Through these modern approaches to business operations, Lush proves it’s willing to dedicate time, money and effort to the causes the general public really care about.
Does Lush franchise?
Unfortunately, Lush is not a franchise and its stores are all company owned. But, if you want to work under the Lush brand name, you can apply for a role at one of its stores. Browse current vacancies at the Lush careers site.
Alternative franchise opportunities
Guinot is a French beauty salon offering a number of products and treatments. Founded back in 1972, it has more than 30 years of experience under its belt. It started up its franchise programme in 2010 and now has 210 outlets worldwide, providing customers with a range of high-quality products and services.
- Becoming a Guinot franchisee: You don’t need industry experience to join Guinot, but the drive to learn and succeed is essential. To learn more and sign up, click here.
- How much you need to invest: You’ll need to invest between £85,000 and £125,000.
- What you get in return: After becoming a Guinot franchisee, your abilities will be put to the test with its training programme. A week-long course will provide insight into the business’ operations and history, and teach investors how to create effective marketing campaigns and use digital software. Franchisees will then be able to spend two days shadowing a Guinot expert at one of the business’ salons to get valuable hands-on experience. Ongoing support and refresher seminars are also available to franchisees throughout the contract term to make sure the franchise is running as profitably as possible.
This perfume franchise has over 35 years of industry experience and 900 stores in more than 35 countries. The franchise brands itself as an alternative to western stores like The Perfume Shop, and produces 35 million bottles yearly. Because this franchise offers a unique product, it has been able to grow alongside some of the biggest global perfume brands.
Arabian Oud is also the first Arabic member of the Fragrance Foundation and has been mentioned in the Fragrances of the World handbook. It vows to respect different cultures and abide by the founders’ promise to only use natural materials that don’t harm the environment.
- Becoming an Arabian Oud franchisee: The perfume franchise is on the lookout for savvy entrepreneurs who are passionate about fragrance and business minded. To learn more and sign up, click here.
- How much you need to invest: The franchise fees and initial costs vary depending on the territory you operate in. Arabian Oud suggests potential franchisees should contact them directly to discuss franchise costs and the application process.
- What you get for your investment: Franchisees will be referred to as ‘area developers’ and given the right to use the brand name, as well as associated trademarks. The company will provide comprehensive training to get the franchisees up to speed with the company’s ethos and operational system, and support will be given in business management and marketing. Of course, product training will be provided so franchisees will have expertise on the perfume collections.
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This family business sells the biggest range of natural, vegan and halal-certified beauty products in the world. Founded in 2012, PHB is a relatively new company and, when it rolled out its expansion model, it was the youngest business ever to become a franchise. It’s also run by Rose Brown, the world’s youngest franchise owner.
- Becoming a PHB franchisee: This franchise is looking for compassionate entrepreneurs with the ability to lead and motivate a team of employees. You’ll need business acumen and the drive to act as a PHB ambassador. To learn more about the franchise opportunity, click here.
- How much you need to invest: PHB hasn’t revealed how much it might cost to set up your own retail store, but you can get in touch with the brand to get accurate financial figures.
- What you get for your investment: All franchisees get the best chance at high profitability, with an exclusive territory and a dedicated Franchise Development Agent to guide you. Also, you’ll get the satisfaction of investing in a franchise with an ethical outlook, as PHB donates 20 percent of its net profits to charity.
The Body Shop
The Body Shop is one of the biggest toiletries and cosmetics stores in the world. It’s been in operation since 1976, when it was launched in Brighton by founder Anita Roddick, and it began franchising two years later.
- Becoming a The Body Shop franchisee: This franchise offers investors the opportunity to become part of a leading high street brand with a commitment to cruelty-free beauty. You can join it with a ‘Head Franchise’ or ‘Sub Franchise’ contract, depending on your ambitions for your business. Click here to find out more.
- How much you need to invest: There isn’t any investment information about The Body Shop’s franchise opportunity, but you should get in touch with the business if you’d like to find out how much it would cost to set up your own store.
- What you get for your investment: You’ll get access to high-quality ongoing support to make sure your business thrives in the long term. Again, you’ll be able to rest assured you’re part of a compassionate franchise. The Body Shop has prioritised fair trade in the beauty sector since its 1987 Community Trade initiative, and cruelty-free practices since 1989. Also, 100 percent of its products are vegetarian, and more than half are vegan.
My passionate belief is that business can be fun, it can be conducted with love and a powerful force for good. – Anita Roddick
Become a beauty ambassador
To browse our current beauty and cosmetics franchise opportunities, click here. You can find out more about the industry by seeking out interesting podcasts and publications. For our rundown of the best ones, read our article: Stay Informed: The Best Publications And Podcasts For The Hair, Beauty, And Cosmetics Industry.
Alice Tuffery, Point Franchise ©