I arrived at Evolué thinking it was going to another one of those snooty stores in Beverly Hills but the experience was anything but. There was a promotional event going on in the store for a new product Evolué recently started carrying. As I waited to interview owner Jean Seo, I browsed the store shelves. I was intrigued and a bit confused to find seemingly misplaced things like a book about numbers and colors randomly displayed amongst the all natural products. Confusion turned to clarity the moment I began chatting with Jean. My first impression was that of an adorable, grounded yet eccentric girl who is as natural in all ways as the products she carries at her shop. The interview was like talking to a good friend.
Jean says she got her start in the realm of skin care because of her sister who often struggled with keeping a clear complexion. After watching her sister spend hundreds of dollars a month on useless products, she decided to help her find a real and lasting solution to her skin challenges. Using her masters degree in library science from UCLA, she began to research the best skin care for her sister and studied the beauty industry.
She discovered the reason behind her sister's beauty troubles was that she had thin and sensitive skin. Jean says she and her sister are opposites when it comes to how they look and that includes their skin type. “For me, I could wash my face in detergent but there are some people who can't do that.” Based on her research, Jean recommended a brand of skin care products to her sister and six months later her skin was clear. This would be the first time her sister had a clear complexion and was able to leave the house without makeup since she was sixteen years old.
Jean also has her own brand of products called Evolue Sensible Skincare and Evolue Flower Mists. She currently carries it exclusively at her shop but says she may expand to offer it elsewhere as the demand grows. Her product line was created to provide the best natural and chemical-free skincare that everyone can afford in light, break resistant, and inexpensive BPA-free packaging. She stresses her products aren't a fad or a trend and she uses the best pharmaceutical grade natural ingredients, staying authentic to it’s purpose which is to be pure, effective, and logical skincare for those who truly seek it.
The company name, Evolué is a French word meaning evolved. Jean chose the name because it fit the image of the business she wanted to create. “I wanted a beauty store that a woman could go into that was more than just a beauty store. Somewhere they could go and have the best products, evolved products for evolved people.”
Located on Robertson Blvd, Evolué caters to everyone from the average woman to celebrity customers carrying a smorgasbord of quality products and brands to choose from that are all naturally based. Some of brand she carries are lines like Prada Lab and Tilth Beauty. Jean says she has strict criteria when it comes to considering a product to place on the shelves of Evolué. “It's a process! I'm actually known as the hardest beauty boutique to get into in the country. I have very loyal clients that depend on me.” To pass the test to be considered by Evolué, a company must first send a full ingredient list along with testers for every product and every skin type. If they pass this initial in-depth checkpoint by both Jean and her customers, longevity is the next thing to consider. The length a company has been in business as well as their ability to sustain the product long term is very important. She's not into fad products or anything homemade due to the tendency for inconsistency in ingredients and replication ability.
I was curious to know Jean's favorite brand and she was quick to say “Rose-Marie Swift. She's created this makeup line called RMS Beauty. She's a makeup artist for the Victoria Secret Angels. They all use that makeup - especially the Living Luminizer. It's a bestseller for her and a bestseller in my store.”
Evolué's customer based consists of two main clientele: The models, actresses and wealthy house wives who make up her more high end customer base as the store carries many top notch brands. The second group is the sensitive skin customer who has tried everything (like her sister) and is looking for products the really work for them. Many of her celebrity clients come to her while the store is closed because Jean needs to see them without makeup in order to recommend products and skin care solutions.
Aside from the all natural products, other services at Evolué include all natural hair coloring by Jin Bang Hair, eyebrow and lash tinting, lash lifting is also offered at the store.
What is Evolué's mission statement? “Make a woman feel beautiful naturally. I think woman are so mean to each other, they're so critical. I grew up with boys so I look at women like a boy might look at a woman. There's something beautiful about every woman. It's sad when I see a woman who refuses to be seen without her makeup on.”
After browsing Evolué and meeting with the sunny, bright and grounded Jean Seo, I will definitely be recommending Evolué to everyone I meet. Jean knows her stuff and has a very likable personality to go along with it. Anyone can have an all natural beauty products store but the combination of quality, amazing customer service and a homey atmosphere makes Evolué a nest of all things good and pure.
Visit Evolué Beauty at 357 1/2 Robertson Blvd in Beverly Hills or online to preview a list of products and services.