Kiehls

Kiehl's is an American cosmetics brand retailer that specializes in making premium skin, hair, and body care products. Founded as a single pharmacy in New York City's East Village in 1851, Kiehl's was purchased by the L'Oréal Group in 2000 and currently has more than 250 retail stores worldwide, and over 1000 points of sale supplemented by sales in high-end department stores, select airport locations, as well as independent stockists.

In contrast to its market competitors, Kiehl's is distinguished for its unorthodox marketing approach, exceptionally large male clientele base and its products' simple and straightforward packaging.

History

The corner of 3rd Avenue and 13th Street, known as "Pear Tree Corner," in the East Village of Manhattan circa 1900, where Kiehl's has been located since its founding in 1851.

Founded in 1851 by John Kiehl, Kiehl's began as a homeopathic pharmacy located at 3rd Avenue and 13th Street in the East Village of New York City. In 1921, Irving Morse, a former apprentice and Russian Jewish émigré who had studied pharmacology at Columbia University, purchased the store. Morse was involved in the development of many Kiehl's products that are still popular today, including Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion and Creme de Corps.

Irving's son, Aaron Morse, who also studied pharmacology at Columbia and was a former World War II pilot, took over the store in the 1960s. The younger Morse was credited for propelling Kiehl's from obscurity in the 1950s to international recognition as an upscale natural cosmetics shop in the 1980s. Aaron transitioned the store from the traditional pharmaceuticals his father preferred to develop skin care lines. After he died in 1995, his desk and some of his vintage motorcycles were prominently showcased in the store.

By then, Aaron's daughter, Jami Morse Heidegger, had been operating the business since 1988. Described as "a clever marketer," she relied on word of mouth and extensive free samples and gifts to market Kiehl's products, rather than traditional advertising.
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