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Glossier’s havens of the millennial aesthetic are shutting their photogenic, pastel doors. In a letter to customers, Glossier founder and CEO Emily Weiss announced that as of today, March 13, the company has made the “difficult decision” to close all permanent and temporary Glossier retail locations, “for at least the next two weeks to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”
The closure includes stores in Los Angeles, London, Atlanta, and the two-story Glossier flagship store in New York, at which Weiss says “2,000 people gather daily from around the world, often lining up down the block to connect with Glossier and with one another.” Unfortunately, that figure does not mesh with recommended social distancing, a concept that Weiss notes is “basically the opposite of our mission.”
However, after reading an article in The Atlantic, Weiss says she reconsidered her original strategy of “let’s follow, not lead” on the retail front. “If stores start closing, we’ll quickly follow suit. If foot traffic drops, we’ll close. Then I thought: Wait a minute, we are leaders in retail, in so many ways. Our permanent and temporary offline experiences are more of a daily community event than a traditional store. Why wouldn’t we lead here? This quickly became an easy, albeit painful, decision. Together with our community, we will always strive to create less harm and more good in the world.”
According to the statement, Glossier store employees (“offline editors”) will still be compensated for their scheduled times throughout the two-week closure, and the opening of Glossier Arizona, which was scheduled for next Wednesday, will be postponed. “This is obviously a fluid situation, so we’ll be monitoring and adjusting our plans and timeline accordingly.”