Beau Monde Spa and Boutique to expand at Comotara Center

WICHITA — Michele Wheeler began contemplating expanding her Beau Monde Spa and Boutique at Comotara Center more than a year ago.

With the entry of six new national competitors in the market, though, she figured she better wait before she made the investment.

She’s not waiting anymore.

“I just decided that it was the right time,” Wheeler says.

She’s adding 2,000 more square feet to her almost 6,000-square-foot space at the center at 29th and Rock Road. That’s where Eccentricity was before moving to part of the former Olive Tree Bistro space.

“I knew we had a great clientele,” Wheeler says.

Still, it was daunting when a new Sephora opened at Bradley Fair and two more opened within JC Penney stores. There also are two new Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance stores, which are at NewMarket Square and Eastgate Plaza, and a Bare Escentuals at Towne East Square.

“I had to wait kind of wait and see what was going to happen,” Wheeler says. “We just had to stay true to our game and let everybody go check it out.”

She thinks Beau Monde has continued to do well in part because customers have “gotten behind that ‘shop local.’”

Also, she says, “It’s a little more personal attention when you come in here.”

In addition to the spa, Beau Monde offers makeup and skincare products.

Wheeler was prompted to finally take the extra space for a couple of reasons.

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Bare Escentuals is the lastest beauty-supply store on its way to Wichita

WICHITA — It’s apparently going to be a beautiful year in Wichita.

Bare Escentuals is the third new beauty-supply store on its way to Wichita.

In late December, Bradley Fair announced Sephora is coming to its shopping center this spring.

Last week, Eastgate Plaza announced Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance is coming to the center at Kellogg and Rock in early summer.

Bare Escentuals, which Have You Heard? first reported was eyeing the market last summer, will open in Towne East Square in March.

“It’s a very cultlike cosmetic company,” says David Friedman, a real estate consultant to Bare Escentuals.

“Women are really into it.”

The company sells skin-care products as well, but it’s best known for its bareMinerals line of makeup.

“Oh, my god,” Friedman says. “It’s so popular.”

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Bare Escentuals eyeing Wichita market

WICHITA — San Francisco-based Bare Escentuals is looking to come to Wichita, but perhaps not soon enough to please some shoppers.

“We were hoping to go into the Wichita market in the fall,” says district manager Janet Bradley.

That’s not going to happen.

Spring is a possibility, though.

“I’m certainly hoping,” Bradley says.

Bare Escentuals sells mineral makeup and skin-care products. Though some of those products are available here at spas, the company would bring a boutique carrying its full line of products.

“We are looking at that,” Bradley says. “Nothing has been signed or confirmed.”

There are about 136 Bare Escentuals boutiques nationally.

There are one or two opening each week now.

“We’ve been opening (a lot) recently,” Bradley says. “It’s pretty crazy.”