POOLE’S global cosmetics retailer Lush says it has been “handing authority back” to a community of supporters after quitting its main social media channels earlier this year.

The company admitted scaling back its social media presence had contributed to a “decline in mentions of the brand”.

But it said it was “harnessing all that we have learned about the Lush community” to respond to the interests of customers.

Lush closed its main social media accounts in April, despite having 569,000 followers on Instagram, 405,000 on Facebook and 200,000 on Twitter.

Chief data officer Jack Constantine said: “When we made the decision to switch up our approach to social media, it was actually based on a couple of factors for Lush. One important one being when people started to question how their personal data was being used by social media networks.

“As a company we began discussing how comfortable we felt hosting conversations with our customers on such platforms and decided that we had to make a change. We knew that we needed to focus on building the Lush Community through genuine connections in locations we could trust.”

The company said: “There has been a decline in mentions of the brand, which is down to a multitude of factors, but decline in social reach is undeniably one of them. This is why we are harnessing all that we have learned about the Lush Community and handing authority back to them throughout the Christmas period, and beyond.”

It had allowed more voting on its Lush Labs website to determine what products customers would like to be available in its shops or online. The user base in its Lush Labs Perfume Community grew by a quarter in November.

Also last month, Lush launched a curated perfume range, allowing stores to localise and customise their ranges based on customer preferences.

Shops have also been allowed to create their own window “messaging” tailored to their communities.

The company says it is also regenerating communities around the world, because many perfumes have been made with essential oils that help regenerate local environments.