The Aesop store in Greenbelt 5 is designed by Hong Kong-based Mlkk Studio and influenced by Leandro Locsin.
Beauty fables are retold at Aesop
GLOSS THE RECORD - Marbbie Tagabucba (The Philippine Star) - March 6, 2020 - 12:00am

For a design approach that aims to do anything but scream and stand out, Aesop stores around the world are something of a go-to for fans not only of its Australian luxury natural skincare but also design fans. Everything is well considered, from the uncomplicated product formulations and recyclable packaging, to the retail experience and the architecture of the stores themselves. Brought in by multi-brand retailer Welcome Worldwide, Aesop is finally in the Philippines.

Aesop designs based on its location and the context of the space it’s in. The store is located in Greenbelt 5, on the site of the old Ayala Museum designed by Leandro Locsin in 1967. Here, Mlkk Studio, the Hong Kong-based design firm and regular Aesop collaborator for its Southeast Asia stores, references the iconic Filipino architect with the style he is best known for: brutalism. The store appears to be a tranquil cave carved out of the mall facade. Inside, you can see a little of the monumental solidity of the Cultural Center of the Philippines in the sink and bench. Outside, concrete, floating volume extends, jutting out of delicate glass.

Aesop store designs are based on its location. The first store in the Philippines stands on the site of the old Ayala Museum designed by Leandro Locsin and the design pays homage to this with a bru-talist look.

What’s unique about this cult favorite brand is it does not have anti-aging categories, instead promising to nourish and protect the skin from its natural process, as it is now. Like their site-specific store design, you get product recommendations based on your skin type, preference, and the environment that your lifestyle exposes you to.

The Manila store carries the complete range, encompassing home (their home fragrances are typically one’s introduction to the brand), hair care, body care, fragrances, and their popular skincare. Skincare is divided into classic (for everyday use with the three-step cleanse, tone and moisturize routine) and skincare plus, meant for those who want to address specific concerns with another step in their routine packed with antioxidants and vitamins.

Aesop’s Parsley Seed Anti-Oxidant range responds to Manila’s pollution and the hectic lifestyle of the city.

The store opening is headlined by the 10-piece Parsley Seed Anti-Oxidant range in response to Manila’s pollution and the hectic lifestyle of the city. The extract is meant to protect and restore the skin from the damage caused by an urban environment.

Here’s a compact version of the Parsley Seed routine. The ideal regimen begins with washing it all off. Parsley Seed has two types of cleansers: cleansing oil (a combination of skin-conditioning macadamia seed, bisabolol and chamomile), which emulsifies with water to remove makeup without the need to double cleanse, and cleansing gel, enriched with the light exfoliation properties of lactic acid, for those who like a good lather and squeaky-clean feeling, especially those with oily and combination skin.

Next is the facial toner that has soothing lavender stem and blue chamomile. It not only removes whatever grime is left by the cleaner; it also readjusts the skin’s pH and preps the skin for the next, nourishing steps.

Once a week, you can follow it with the cleansing masque, a personal favorite from the range for clearing the pores. Kaolin clay and bentonite draws out the impurities and then nourishes skin with evening primrose and rosehip seed.

The Parsley Seed line offers different textures for hydration. From lightest to richest: the aloe vera-based serum, the hydrator (fortified with panthenol or provitamin B5), and the facial hydration cream (which has added vitamin E). You can also choose between a serum and cream for the eyes.

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Aesop is in Greenbelt 5, Ayala Center, Makati.

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