After leaving her namesake company in December, Bobbi Brown has joined Lord & Taylor as a creative consultant, kicking things off yesterday with the launch of the retailer’s Just Bobbi curated lifestyle concept shops. Coinciding conveniently with the release of her ninth book, “Beauty from the Inside Out,” the career move marks Brown’s first since leaving her brand behind and is an unexpected pivot for a woman largely synonymous with the beauty world.

Brown credits her friendship Richard Baker — “the most creative, expansive guy” and the owner of Hudson’s Bay Company, Lord & Taylor’s parent company — with facilitating the partnership. “When I moved out of my company, I called him, and he said, ‘Great, I’ve got so many things I want you to do,’” she said, noting that a subsequent brainstorm session landed them with the concept shop idea. “I’m excited about it, because I had no clue what I was doing, and it’s only fun to do things if you learn from them,” said Brown.

Although she’s dabbled in spheres adjacent to or outside of beauty with her brief stint as Yahoo Beauty’s editor-in-chief and the launch of her eyewear collection in 2014, she’s no Gwyneth Paltrow, who has consumers lining up to replicate her every move with Goop.

1706_003The Just Bobbi concept shop at Lord & Taylor’s New York City flagship

Brown, to her credit, understands this, citing an insatiable curiosity and the desire to inspire women as the driving forces behind her decision. “Beauty is not just about how you look, it’s about how you live your life, [including] health and wellness,” she said. “I’ve kind of figured out the makeup thing, so now I want to figure out the rest of it.”

The shops, which will be updated monthly by Brown, aim to give shoppers a 360-degree view of her life by featuring her favorite products across categories, from apparel to books. She selected some of the items from Lord & Taylor’s slew of brands, like tops from Theory and jeans by Karl Lagerfeld, and introduced a slew of new brands as well, including the Ampersand as Apostrophe handbag line and Dr. Kellyann’s Slim Collagen Broth. Selects from her eyewear line and, yes, Bobbi Brown cosmetics are also on offer.

Though the initiative will only appear in select stores, including the New York City flagship and a store in Brown’s hometown of Oakbrook, Illinois, Just Bobbi products will be shoppable online at both and The latter will also serve as a content hub, featuring videos of Bobbi sharing wide-ranging advice alongside other service-style content.

Driving in-store traffic, however, is still crucial for Lord & Taylor and is surely one result the retailer’s team is looking to see. Although Hudson’s Bay Company’s retail sales were up 2.5 percent, or $114 million, in 2016, the bulk of that was attributed to the company’s purchase of Gilt and numerous new Saks Fifth Avenue and Saks Off 5th locations.

1706_007The Just Bobbi concept shop at Lord & Taylor’s New York City flagship

To drive its individual profits, Lord & Taylor seems to be taking a page from Nordstrom’s book: To keep customers in store, Nordstrom has relied on a “pop-in shop” model, curated by Olivia Kim, since 2014. Shops to date have been themed around everything from menswear to K-beauty. While they’ve received lots of hype, their effects, if any, on Nordstrom’s bottom line are less clear. However, the company reported a 7.6 increase in overall sales in 2016.

To mimic that hype, and potential sales correlation, Lord & Taylor may need to look further than Bobbi Brown. “The campaign is only as good as the influencer delivering it, and there are many candidates with a much more relevant and active audience that could have been selected,” said Ryan Berger, a senior partner at HYPR, the world’s largest influencer discovery platform. “Bobbi Brown is very beauty-centric with an older social demographic, while Lord & Taylor is likely to be targeting a younger following with an interest in all things lifestyle.”

Whether or not they’re interested in Brown’s remains to be seen.