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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

No, Not My Drugstore!

First off, everyone knows that I have extremely strong brand affinity with the brands I know, right? Right. As much as I love to explore new brands, I also will always go back to the ones I know and love most. So I was really stunned to read that my favorite drugstore, Longs, has been bought out by CVS. Noooo!

I never knew that Longs was a local-to-the-Bay-Area chain in the sense that it started here. I certainly knew that it was regional, as there aren't Longs in Oregon or New York, but I didn't realize it was a full-on Bay Area thing.

Ever since I was in middle school, Longs has been my drugstore of choice, even when it's literally down the block or across the street from a Walgreens -- I pick the Longs first. And so I have a lot of memories of picking up wonderful things at Longs -- Jane eyeshadow, my favorite L'Oreal lipglosses (now discontinued, wah!), and, well... things like Sweet Georgia Brown glitter lipgloss and pastel blue lipstick and, on one occasion, a belly chain. (You have to make those kinds of mistakes so you can go forward and learn something, right?)

A big part of the reason why I stopped most of my playing with make-up in college was that I went to school in a town where there was one local drugstore, and it wasn't on the way between home and school, so there wasn't really any opportunity to drop in and browse the beauty section. I had to wait for breaks where I went home to pick up my cosmetic-y needs because I just didn't go to the drugstore in college... or the cosmetic counters, for that matter.

Today, Longs is still my drugstore of choice -- there's now two on my way home from work, and so I now have two to browse and stalk for Tracy Reese for Sally Hansen nail polishes. (Seriously, twice a week for about three to four weeks, I was popping into one or the other of both Longs; the stalking for the fall colors officially began yesterday.)

I'm a little apprehensive about CVS taking over my Longs, but at least I know that they carry Boots (online, anyway -- not sure if they do in the actual store), which would save me a trip to Target if I want to buy some Boots stuff, they have weekly deals (but so does Longs, of course), and soon they'll be creating prestige cosmetics areas within their stores, too.

So while these are all exciting (I guess) developments, I also wonder about how my store's going to change. True, I've changed too, but I still remember picking out my first red lip gloss and the chunky clear glitter lip gloss that smelled (surprise!) like cupcakes. Longs really was where my beauty product mania started. And I'm going to miss it as it is now. I'm still going to poke my head in and see what sort of treasures I can find, but it just won't be the same.

image from associated press/sfgate.com

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