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High-End Cosmetics Get Pricier in China
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Prices of the world's top cosmetic brands, Clarins and Sisley, bounced up on August 1, due to increased costs of natural plant extracts and rising import taxes.

About 80 percent of Clarins' products, from cosmetic water to anti-aging cream of eyes and lips, increased from 10 yuan to about 100 yuan, respectively.

Most of Sisley's products also garnered a 10 percent increase, equal to about 100 yuan each, according to a shop assistant from one of Shanghai's shopping centers on Huaihai Road.

Korean ginsengs and French gulfweeds have risen in price, causing a parallel rise in Sisley products because they contain these two plant extracts, explained a Sisley staff member.

Price sensitive customers have already noticed the seemingly subtle change, reported Zhejiang On Line or zjol.com.cn, a news website of east China's Zhejiang Province, on August 2.

"Basically, the price increase will not have a great impact on our Luxury brand sales if the growth is not too dramatic. High-end cosmetics usually have a steady group of targeted customers," said Cindy Chou, director from sales support department of a domestic cosmetic company.

China raised its import tax on overseas cosmetics from 20 percent to 50 percent in the beginning of this year. The world famous make-up brands, including Clinique and Bobbi Brown, also raised their prices early last month.

(China.org.cn by Wu Jin, August 4, 2007)

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