Our Story

1988 – 1992 : the beginning

Korres_pharmacy
Pharmacy of Korres

In 1988, George KORRES while still a pharmacology student  starts working at Athens’ oldest homeopathic pharmacy,  owned by Mr. Tzivanides, where he first begins mixing natural pharmacy ingredients to create herbal preparations, natural remedies and, eventually, cosmetic products.

In 1992, Mr KORRES sets up an exemplary homeopathic laboratory at the pharmacy, based on international lab standards and respecting the pharmacy’s heritage. Led by his deep knowledge and understanding of over 3,000 herbal remedies as well as his passion for a more natural approach, Mr KORRES starts developing formulas that he first tests on his own friends.

1996 : KORRES Establised

Korres_rakomelo
Rakomelo Syrop the first Korres product

The KORRES brand is born with the simple philosophy to use natural and-or certified organic ingredients of the highest quality such as skin and environmentally-friendly products with clinically tested efficacy as well as products that are affordable for everyday use yet of interesting aesthetics that can inspire & make us happy.

The first KORRES product is an aromatic herbal syrup with honey and aniseed, a recipe inspired by «rakomelo», a warming spirit-with-honey concoction, which Mr KORRE’s grandfather used  in his hometown on the island of Naxos.

KORRES Wild Rose 24-Hour Cream, the brand’s first global innovation and first ever skincare product, is launched the same year…..  it goes on to become a global best-seller.

1999-2007: KORRES International Journey

KORRES shop in Paris
KORRES shop in Paris

In 1999, an American buyer discovers KORRES products in a pharmacy while on holiday on the island of Crete and asks to be the first to import them to the US.  A year later, a beauty buyer for Harvey Nichols London spots KORRES in New York and immediately places an order for Harvey Nichols’, then newly created , Beyond Beauty section.  A number of partnerships with the most prestigious department stores in UK and France including; Selfridges, Harrods, Liberty’s, Bon Marche and Galleries Lafayette, follows shortly after. This domino effect, while not part of the brand’s original strategy, makes KORRES products available to most parts of the world. In 2002, the first KORRES exclusive store opens abroad; in London’s Chelsea. Two years later, in 2004, two new stores open in Barcelona, Spain and at the same time KORRES goes from a cult brand to a breakthrough product line in the US market thanks to the Sephora network.

In 2006, KORRES products hit shelves in Asia, starting in Japan and then China. KORRES is ranked by Entrepreneurs for Growth Association as among Europe’s 500 highest developing companies.

In 2007, KORRES stores open in New York, Paris, Shanghai, Madrid, Vienna and Geneva while the Greek Association of Pharmacists honours George KORRES for his contribution to Greek trade and business development. In March, KORRES is listed on the Athens Stock Exchange and in November, George Korres is invited to open the first-of-its-kind international Natural Beauty Summit held in Paris.

2008-2015: KORRES growth innovation & awards

In 2008, KORRES is awarded as the World’s Most Innovative Brand by International Cosmetic News, while later in the year, the KORRES New York flagship store in SoHo is awarded with the first prize at the Retail Renovation Competition.

korres formula facts

The same year KORRES launches the Formula Facts initiative.  This helps to communicate in an honest, transparent, and easy to comprehend way, the natural percentage of each product as well as the ingredients that are selected and those that are avoided in each product in the form of a panel which is placed on each product’s package.  This is a daring and novel step in the cosmetics industry in fact, the Formula Facts panel is positively received by consumers, beauty experts and editors alike, while Sephora US uses the Formula Facts panel as a benchmark for assessing all of the natural cosmetic brands that are in its network. In December of the same year, the first ever KORRES fragrance launches. George KORRES worked closely with the world’s best perfume houses in Tokyo, Geneva and Gras on three unique formulations to best represent the brand’s mood through scent.

In 2009, and after five years of primary research on Proteasome & Human Ageing, KORRES presents its third global innovation; the first natural anti ageing line to achieve higher scores on all clinical tests compared to the market’s best-selling conventional anti ageing creams.  Later that year, a mapping of the Greek flora is completed, fulfilling a long-term KORRES team vision of exploring and promoting the beneficial activity of the country’s unique, native plants.  This vision also comes to life through scientific research on the properties of Greek herbs as well as the brand’s cooperations with local farmers and developing an exemplary, herbal extraction unit.  Key to the KORRES vision are ethical, environmental and social programs that support local communities and endangered plants, while also promoting the production of Greek organic active extracts of superior quality.

In 2010, ELLE US and Marie Claire US praise KORRES products for their effectiveness while the European Union grants KORRES funding for a four year study of the antioxidant, anti ageing and sun protection activity of over 3,600 natural antioxidant extracts.  Executed in cooperation with eight international university and research centres, the study will be completed by 2014. The study supports the KORRES goals of developing innovative and clinically effective skincare products based on natural, active ingredients; promoting research of natural ingredients in relation to skin biochemistry; projecting the benefits of unique Greek flora and producing proprietary high value organic extracts.

In 2012, following on from primary research on Proteasome & Ageing, KORRES introduces Black Pine, a natural and sustainable total anti-ageing skincare and in 2013 the KORRES exclusive boutique comes to Brussels !!

Mr Korres in Brussels

In 2014, inspired by the most breathtaking destination in the world and the only ancient grape variety that made it through the centuries, KORRES develops a body care line based  on a white wine grape indigenous to Santorini that grows in the arid volcanic ash-rich soil of the island, called Assyrtiko.  This unique ingredient is cultivated and harvested by the Union of Santorini Cooperatives / Santowines – one of many KORRES collaborations with organic farmers nationwide in a continuous effort to source the highest quality ingredients for our formulations and support our local producers.

2016: 20 years KORRES Wild Rose

This year marks the 20th anniversary of KORRES and the opportunity to celebrate 20 years of radiant skin with a journey back to the brand’s roots and with the launch of  a limited, advanced edition of the very first apothecary beauty elixir the Wild Rose Vitamin C active Brightening Oil.  A face oil with real rose petals, boosted with a special vitamin C  that increases skin’s absorption of this type of vitamin by 1000% for incredibly advanced brightening and tone repairing.

I have been repeatedly asked how did I start using the Wild Rose oil and how did this product become such a success.  Well, it was one of these unique magic moments, where inspiration and demand come together. I was asked by one of my customers, back at the homeopathic pharmacy days, to offer her a dark-spots treatment. It was then when the Wild Rose Oil formula came to my mind.  This patient was the first to try it and swears by it.  This soon became a legendary formula, mainly because of my mother, who was literally a live promotion convincing even the most skeptical customers by proudly showing them her hands; the one full of dark spots alongside the other which was treated with Wild Rose Oil and was dark-spot free!  The rest is history!

–George KORRES