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The Skift Wellness newsletter is our weekly dispatch focused on what’s happening in wellness from a global business standpoint. Skift Wellness lives where wellness meets commerce, mindfulness meets technology, the yoga studio meets the boardroom, and health meets business.
It seems like simply being known for your beauty or fitness brand is passé these days.
Take Bobbi Brown: After selling her eponymous beauty company to Estée Lauder in 1995, she stayed on to lead the brand until two years ago, when she left due to conflicting ideas about the future of the company (our guess is that she wanted to keep up with the current clean beauty trend).
She now oversees a whole new kind of empire, this time focused on where beauty and wellness meet. “I believe wellness and beauty are interconnected. The better you feel, the better you look,” Brown recently told CNBC. In addition to offering a line of supplements and other wellness goods, she has also launched a wellness-themed editorial site, as well as The George, a “wellness and design hotel” located in Montclair, New Jersey.
Meanwhile, Taryn Toomey, a well-known name among millennial fitness fans, wants to be known for more than her popular workout, The Class. By growing The Retreatment branch of her business, which includes day-long events and multi-day getaways, she’s becoming an overall leader in the wellness space, rather than being siloed in the fitness realm.
In other wellness getaway news, InterContinental Hotels Group purchased Six Senses resorts for $300 million, thus gaining not just another luxury brand, but also a company that has wellness in its DNA (a wise way to enter the space, if you ask us). Hyatt also holds a big stake in the wellness sector, which we examined in our new Skift Research Report.
Whether we’re talking about entrepreneurs or hospitality giants, there seems to be a common thread in that each are looking to carve out a niche in the wellness world. We’ll be watching to see who can do it effectively.
— Leslie Barrie, Wellness Editor
Beauty & Spa
Bobbi Brown Redefines Herself as a Wellness Guru: The beauty icon stepped away from her namesake brand (which is now owned by Estée Lauder) two years ago, when she had a different idea of where the company should go. Rather than retire from business, the 61-year-old went back to school to become a certified health coach and started her own line of wellness products and supplements called Evolution 18, along with the editorial site justBOBBI. We predict her shift to wellness may inspire other established entrepreneurs to do the same. Read more here.
Celebrity Fitness Entrepreneur Taryn Toomey Expands Into Wellness Tourism: This week, Taryn Toomey, the creator of the buzzy workout The Class (fans include actresses Naomi Watts and Jennifer Aniston), announced she’ll be expanding The Retreatment, her wellness one-day events and multi-day trips brand. The excursions will likely appeal to an experience-minded millennial who would rather attend a getaway hosted by a favorite instructor than a 5-star luxury wellness resort. Offering more trips to this consumer sect is a smart way for Toomey to find her niche in the wellness tourism boom. Read more here.
Skift Research Says Wellness Represents Major Opportunities for Hyatt: Even though Hyatt is one of the current leaders in the wellness hospitality segment thanks to its purchase of Miraval Resorts and Exhale (which provides boutique fitness classes and spa services), there are still many ways for the brand to grow in the sector. Hyatt has found success in the Americas, the source of much wellness tourism spending. However, the hotel group is wisely expanding in the Asia Pacific region, where wellness tourism is predicted to grow the fastest over the next five years. Read more here.
InterContinental Hotels to Gain a Wellness Platform With Six Senses Acquisition: It’s a smart play by InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG). Not only does the Six Senses purchase boost IHG’s luxury portfolio, but it also allows the company to gain traction in the growing wellness space. The Six Senses brand, which focuses on high-end wellness and sustainability, will likely benefit from the extra support –– IHG plans to expand to 60 properties in the next decade, including key urban markets like New York City. Now it’s just up to IHG to retain Six Senses’ core wellness identity. Read more here.
Canyon Ranch Plans to Enter the Senior Living Industry: A pioneer of wellness resorts in America (it opened its first location in 1979 in Tucson, Arizona), Canyon Ranch looks to branch into the senior living sector, with an announcement of the official brand slated for later this year. In keeping true to its mission, wellness will, of course, be promoted at the properties. Considering the brand recognition among active, health-oriented baby boomers –– and how many will soon have a need for senior housing –– it’s a logical step for the wellness company. Read more here.
Patient Influencers Are the Latest Instagram Trend: It’s one thing for influencers to get paid to promote hair care products and luggage. It’s another for them to hawk pharmaceuticals, surgical techniques, and medical devices. That hasn’t stopped big medicine from enlisting the help of Instagram influencers to promote anything from psoriasis medication and breast implants, to a monitor that tracks a woman’s contractions while giving birth. Until the FTC and FDA can better regulate social media ads, we’ll probably see more medical-sponsored posts in the future. Read more here.
Green Growth Brands to Open CBD Shops in Simon Malls Across the U.S.: Last week Barneys announced its new luxury cannabis-themed shop –– but mass-market companies in the cannabis sector will soon get retail space, too. Simon Property Group, the largest U.S. mall owner, is (wisely) partnering with Ohio-based cannabis company Green Growth Brands to open over 100 stores selling CBD-infused goods, such as body care and chocolate. We’ll see if Green Growth’s offerings will have to shift due to the recent crackdowns on food and drink containing CBD. Read more here.
Skift Wellness Editor Leslie Barrie [firstname.lastname@example.org] curates the Skift Wellness newsletter. Skift emails the newsletter every Thursday.