Bonnie Bing

Kiehl's Outlet comes to the east Dillard's

If you've been in Dillard's in Towne East Square recently, you may have noticed a new area that's been drawing a lot of attention.

A crowd gathered Nov. 19 for the ribbon-cutting of the new Kiehl's store in the cosmetics department.

Celebs such as Chelsea Chilcott, Miss Kansas Outstanding Teen, and Wichita State University baseball coach Gene Stephenson were on hand for the festivities. Representatives from the Ronald McDonald house were there and happy to receive a $1,000 check from Kiehl's.

You've probably heard of the product line because it's been around since 1851. The in-store area in Dillard's has a bit of a rustic feel with brick accents and a wooden floor. The design represents the look of the original store in New York, which started out as a family-owned apothecary.

Those attending who had never used a Kiehl's product were eager to see the big variety of skin and hair products for women, men and even babies.

But many were touting their personal favorites. Joshua Shepler, who moved here from New York, has used Kiehl's for 10 years. "It's great because the products are guaranteed. If you don't like it, you bring it back and get your money back," he said.

Dillard's assistant manager Tom Uran says he likes the men's soap. The oversized bar has a fresh smell and costs $12.50. "That might seem like a lot for a bar of soap, but it lasts a very long time," he said.

I was impressed as I looked at the hundreds of lotions and potions, all made of natural ingredients. The "Powerful Strength Line Reducing Concentrate" sounded like a product for me.

You can get a free sample of any product. I didn't need a sample of my personal favorite, Kiehl's lip balm, which I've used for years.

It was fun to welcome Kiehl's to Wichita and to see some excitement in the retail world.

Ebony Fashion Fair tour canceled

Ebony Fashion Fair, a fashion show that has traveled across the country, Canada and the Bahamas, won't be making its usual stop in Wichita this year.

The entire fall 2009 tour was canceled. Linda Johnson of Johnson Publishing Co., which produces the show, said in a statement that the reason for the cancellation was "economic challenges."

Ebony Fashion Fair has been sponsored locally since 1963 by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, a philanthropic organization that raises money for scholarships. Ebony officials hope the show will return next year.