Mini Clinics Could Threaten Beauty Sales

The addition of mini medical clinics within drugstores could affect the beauty industry. Recently, drugstores and some supermarkets have been adding small clinics that offer quick tests and medical information. To make enough room for the addition, however, the companies have to sacrifice in other sectors. Some are thinking that sacrifice should be in the beauty department.

Beauty reportedly is one of the most successful departments in drugstores, and some experts think it can stand to give up square footage for the expansion of mini clinics. Some, however, say that beauty should be left alone, maintaining that beauty is related to the wellness that clinics promote.

"Chain drugstores have been under pressure in makeup and fragrances because they sell the same products as mass merchandisers but at higher prices. This has caused slower turnover rate in an intensive stock keeping unit category," said industry consultant Allan Motthus.

Drugstores are beginning to explore categories other than beauty where there is less competition with mass retailers.  Retailers such as Kerr Drug keep their focus more on health care than on beauty, whereas Walgreens continues to be a major beauty source.

Although many drugstores and mass retailers are making the effort to maintain their beauty selection, there are some that are cutting down on the beauty segment. Wal-Mart reportedly has decreased its selection of beauty products. The industry has seen the success of mini clinics, but the beauty industry may suffer as a result.

-Women's Wear Daily

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