Named after the Greek goddess of the night, NYX (pronounced “Nix”) will be expanding its retail presence this fall. The L.A.-based makeup brand, acquired by L’Oréal in 2014, is currently carried at select London Drugs, Rexall and Lawtons stores, but come October it will open its first freestanding Canadian location, in downtown Toronto. Update: On Instagram, @NYXcanada is inviting followers to find the exact mystery location with its #NYXintheSIX contest; the spot appears to be the site of a former M.A.C store on Queen Street West.
The new NYX shop in Toronto is one of several North American locations set to open this fall and holiday season; five stand-alone stores in California have also been announced. In addition, NYX is in talks for shelf space in new Canadian drugstores nationwide. “We started our [@NYXcanada] Instagram a month and a half ago, and the number one question is ‘Where can I find NYX?’” says Montreal-based brand director Rachelle Mladjenovic, noting that the new distribution plan should be in place by 2016.
Dubbed “the M.A.C of mass” because of its pro-artist following and budget-friendly price point, NYX is set to gain even wider recognition. Here, five things you may not know about the company:
1 — It was founded in 1999 by Toni Ko, then a 25-year-old makeup enthusiast with zero product development experience, who created eyeliner pencils and took them on the tradeshow circuit. “It was really grassroots, so community is at the heart of NYX. And because of the time period, naturally social media took over this brand,” says Mladjenovic. “Today, a lot of the product development ideas come from bloggers who give feedback.”
2 — The company is quick to react to ever-changing beauty trends. From concept to market, a launch can take as little as six months, while other makeup brands may take a year or longer.
3 — It’s plugged in to what millennials want. NYX consumers tend to be young, digitally connected makeup junkies keen on dramatic, transformative looks. “Usually, these are women who use more than four cosmetics a day, own more than 50 cosmetic products overall and shop cosmetics biweekly,” says Mladjenovic.
4 — It offers an abundance of choice: roughly 1,500 SKUs. By comparison, sister brand Maybelline has about 800. “The goal with the freestanding store is to give Canada the opportunity to have all the SKUs,” says Mladjenovic. “The consumer we’re targeting wants more.”
5 — Available in 70 countries, it’s one of the fastest-growing colour cosmetics brands in the world, reporting net sales of US$72 million in 2013.
This article was originally published in the Fall 2015 issue of Cosmetics magazine. For more, download our iPad edition.