Beauty once again brought people together, in-person, for this year’s Ulta Beauty Field Leadership Conference held in San Antonio over the weekend. This much-hyped event came back bigger and better than ever before, allowing more than 2,000 Ulta team members to connect and engage with brands on topics such as brand awareness, new product launches, marketing and beauty education. JJLA had the opportunity to work with not one, but two iconic brands for this year’s conference – MAC Cosmetics and Paul Mitchell. Both brands have had such amazing success in laying the groundwork for beauty standards – we were thrilled at the opportunity to tell their story through booth design and innovation.

The inspiration of this year’s MAC Cosmetics booth was the launch of their MAC Stack Mascara, which promises buildable, clump-resistant mascara. Using the futuristic, innovative design of the mascara wand as a jumping point, elements of the design were incorporated into every feature of the booth from color, shape, vibe to even large-scale recreations of the impressive, never-before-seen mascara wand. Guests were transported into a futuristic setting with walls made of giant mirrored branded circles taken directly from the design of the mascara wand. In the center of the booth, four giant MAC Stacks were fabricated, each holding an iPad that provided the technology for guests to customize their foundation shades. These four larger-than-life MAC Stacks created a base for a colossus hot pink 3D printed mascara wand that rose to heights of over 9 feet tall. A giant LED screen provided the perfect backdrop for individual makeup counters, allowing MAC centric content and branding, which could be seen from all areas of the convention center. From the moment the doors opened, the MAC Cosmetics booth had lines of 20 people deep, eagerly awaiting to try out the innovative technology and sample the products of this truly, iconic brand.

Taking a cue from Mother Nature, this year’s Paul Mitchell booth was all about sustainability, simplicity, and technology with a focus on their Tea Tree and Clean Beauty products. However, there was nothing “simple” about this secret garden themed booth. From the floor to the walls, every inch of the booth was dressed with hand-picked florals and greenery. Each sense was stimulated with this booth design. Birds chirping and sounds of rushing water were piped into the sound system and scent machines were strategically placed, pumping in smells of lavender, eucalyptus and evergreen. As guests enter the space, a giant light up sign peaks out of the lush, overgrown plantings that reads “Beauty with Purpose” and that’s exactly what Paul Mitchell had in mind with this year’s message. With their commitment to combating deforestation, Paul Mitchell has agreed to planting one million trees by the end of 2022. JJLA worked closely with the brand to highlight this message, creating a story with elaborate set dressings, innovative technology and booth design. To address sustainability, the booth design can be broken up into a variety of different configurations, allowing the booth to be reused for multiple purposes. AR technology was brought in which transported guests to journey into the virtual world, pointing their phones around various activations within the booth. QR codes were used to highlight these different activations, allowing guests to learn more about the Paul Mitchell mission. On one side of the booth, a realistic, cut down tree was fabricated. As guests aimed their phones at the stump, a virtual, life-sized tree grew from the wooded remains.

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