The Latest Thing You Can Get At CVS? A Full Makeover.

Photo: Courtesy of CVS.
With adulthood comes plenty of important realizations. For example: 30 really isn't that old. A good vacuum cleaner will change your life. Cheese can be extremely expensive. And lastly, CVS has pretty much everything you will ever need.
By the end of 2019, that will be especially true for beauty lovers. Today, CVS has announced that, in partnership with the on-demand beauty services company Glamsquad, it will be expanding its interactive beauty departments, called BeautyIRL, to 45 new stores in California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, and New York. The Sephora-esque lounges offer services like blowouts, makeup applications, hair styling, live tutorials, and even ear piercing, alongside the chance the try out products and tools on the spot.
"We had a lot of people saying CVS was one of the first places they went to buy makeup," Maly Bernstein, the vice president of beauty and personal care at CVS, tells Refinery29. "We listened to our consumers. They wanted to experience brands and services. So we wanted to create a 'beauty IRL' concept that played into being a part of their life and giving them what they’re looking for."
It was just a little over one year ago that CVS first launched BeautyIRL, but it was contained to four select stores in Florida, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. After seeing the results of that soft launch, it decided it was finally time to bring these services to its millions of shoppers nationwide, and into key markets like Los Angeles, Boston, Miami, and New York City.
"We and CVS knew that there was a pent-up demand for conveniently-located express beauty services," Amy Shecter, the CEO of Glamsquad, says. "When you talked to women in the stores, they didn’t have access to these services. CVS is one of those most accessible stores there is, so it was a no-brainer."
As with most things sold at CVS, these beauty services are ultra-affordable. A shampoo and blowdry goes for $35, while a blowdry without a shampoo goes for $30. A dry styling session, which could include anything from an expertly-styled bun to romantic waves, goes for $20. Adding accent braids to your hair is just $10. Getting a full face of makeup is $35. And if you buy false lashes in the store, you can get them applied by an expert for $0. Glamsquad is also launching a CVS-exclusive collection of hair-care and beauty tools called GSQ by Glamsquad to align with this expansion.
"The real mission of these stores is to democratize beauty," Bernstein says. "We wanted to make sure that consumers — regardless of income — have access to these services. It's about not making the joy of beauty confined to just how much you can afford."
Given that much of these new treatments require professionals with special training, CVS is working with Glamsquad to hire new people or train current employees to administer these services, making sure that everyone is fully vetted.
Come holiday party season, the hottest place to get ready — and also buy pre-party snacks — really will be CVS.

More from Beauty

R29 Original Series