Revlon’s latest venture aims to expand its make-up offering, as global beauty brands are influenced by the inclusive 'Fenty effect’. Could this revamp the company’s image among millennials?
In a bid to revive declining sales and remain relevant in the contemporary beauty market, cosmetics giant Revlon has created a brand for millennials that’s grounded in inclusive values.
The luxury make-up line, called Flesh, is a collaboration with American retailer Ulta Beauty. It aims to satisfy growing enthusiasm among consumers for broader representation within the beauty industry. The core collection features 40 shades of stick foundations – distributed among warm, cool and neutral undertones.
The brand’s core ethos is to reduce barriers for people of colour by offering them shade-inclusive products – beyond multi-tonal foundation. The brand follows the example of US singer Jennifer Lopez’s collaboration with Polish brand Inglot, which stocks eight hues of nude lipsticks catered to different skin tones.
Flesh’s range includes 14 shades of highlighter, 30 lipstick tones and eight blush hues. The products provide users with a neutral palette and subtle pops of colour – in contrast with cult US brand Fenty Beauty’s collection, which also touts inclusive ideals but sells neon lipsticks and shimmery eye shadows.
For Revlon, Flesh’s partnership with Ulta Beauty could really help the conglomerate remain connected to this key demographic, as its core brand is struggling. Estimates suggest that Revlon’s sales have declined by 5.9% in comparison to 2017’s first quarter (Nielsen, 2018).
Convenience stores – and, most recently, drugstores – are the latest retail category to undergo a reinvention. We highlight an innovative concept that’s the result of an unusual partnership between France’s Casino Group and beauty giant L'Oréal: a new urban take on the convenience store.
Le Drugstore Parisien stocks everything from beauty and pharmacy products to healthy snacks and treats. It also provides free wi-fi, phone-charging points, water fountains, shoe-shine machines, parcel pick-up points, sinks and dressing tables, and even a “light therapy area”.
The target market of the new retail concept is the urban young, for whom “the lines between work, culture and fun are being blurred, creating a new way of living”, according to Jean Paul Mochet, chief executive of convenience banners at the Casino Group. Around 55% of products are priced at under €10.
The first two stores opened in late June in Paris on rue de la Chaussee d’Antin (360 sq m) and rue du Bac (150 sq m). A third is planned for the city, with a view to roll out the concept to other European locations and possibly even Brazil and Colombia, where Casino Group has subsidiaries.
Jean-Charles Naouri, chairman of Casino Group, hailed the launch as proof “that major companies are able to come together to invent and create unique, original places in line with contemporary lifestyles”.
From extreme colour to unisex make-up, the 2018 edition of annual cosmetics and packaging trade show MakeUp in Paris (June 21-22) highlighted strong beauty directions, with brands and formulators prioritising sustainability with sex appeal.
Here are the top five trends from the show:
Following the opening of Lush’s packaging-free store in Milan, the brand has pledged to further develop its eco-friendly range with an inclusive twist.
British naturals brand Lush is expanding its make-up line with vegan multi-tonal foundation sticks – set to launch in 18 countries. The compact Slap Sticks are available in 40 hues with cool, neutral or warm undertones. Hero ingredients Indonesian coconut oil, Turkish rose wax and Peruvian jojoba oil hydrate and brighten the skin.
The development of shade-inclusive collections is becoming the norm for the colour cosmetics industry, as savvy beauty brands acknowledge diverse consumer groups. Cult US companies ColourPop and CoverGirl are good examples – both have recently relaunched their foundation ranges with up to 42 hues.
In a bid to reduce plastic waste, each Slap Stick is housed in a biodegradable wax casing, encouraging wearers to forego traditional glass or plastic foundation bottles. This ‘unpackaged’ approach has been successfully implemented within the brand’s hair and bodycare ranges – currently, over 35% of Lush’s products are ‘naked’.
In addition, the sticks offer on-the-go usability. The easy-grip egg shape of the foundation stick – which resembles a make-up sponge – ensures consumers can apply the make-up with their fingers and blend the formula for an airbrushed finish, without the use of bulky applicator tools.
While currently a limited-edition run, if popular, they could be rolled out as a permanent feature, and inspire the brand to explore more packaging-free product development in other categories.
British facialist and skincare expert Lisa Franklin has launched her eponymous beauty line, featuring a precision ‘drone delivery’ system and performance-enhanced formulas to protect the skin from pollutants. The luxury range is aimed at the growing ‘skintellectual’ consumer base hungry for smarter skincare.
The Pro-Effect System includes (but is not limited to) an Anti-Pollution Cleanser, a Pollution Defence Cream and an Overnight Renew Treatment. The ‘drone’ system – referencing the aerial vehicle’s agility in homing in on a target – intelligently delivers ingredients to the areas that need to be treated. A similar technology is employed by Clinique in its Smart skincare range.
Franklin’s hero product in the range is the Luminescent Base, a mattifying serum that is superior in its multifunctionality. Ingredients such as hyaluronic acid and konjac root aid long-term hydration, while nutrient-rich botanical extracts improve skin firmness and reduce redness or irritation. Photoluminescent diamond particles reflect light and illuminate the skin, while a unique bioactive complex reduces the amount of ultraviolet radiation from digital screens that penetrate the skin, and supports cell turnover following sun exposure.
The line also showcases ethical values. It’s vegan, cruelty-free, natural ingredients are sustainably sourced, and all packaging is 100% recyclable. The brand has also been stamped with the Positive Luxury Butterfly Mark, which is awarded by the British regulatory platform to brands that have a positive social and environmental impact. As we explore in The Great Beauty Green-Up, ethical values are now critical for brands as global consumers wise up to the impact of beauty products on the environment.
Tapping into millennials’ desire for experiences, and aligning with contemporary celebrations of gender neutrality, olfactory artist Klara Ravat collaborated with notorious Berlin techno sex club The KitKatClub on a ‘senses’ party in May.
Under the tagline “Hear it. Watch it. Smell it. Taste it. Lick it. Suck it. F*** it. Dance it”, the event sought to champion queer identities through freedom of expression in body, word and performance. Ravat, who created a scent installation for the event, reflected that “the party was a motivation to explore fears and pleasures”.
It comprised a series of ‘Nose Kinks’ – scented bondage-style vinyl strips in red and black, strapped tight from ceiling to floor so clubbers could get close, touch, smell and play with them to explore how the sensory stimulation influenced their dancing and interaction with others.
Ravat designed three scents, aiming to “take the fetishism of the night one step further and create smells that could be perceived as extremely desirable, very animalic and, at the same time, almost stinky”.
Nose Kink N.1 had a strong musky, faecal and moist base, with a green fresh top layer and a sweet heart. Nose Kink N.2 was velvety and warm, designed “to make people feel like touching each other”. Finally, Nose Kink N.3 was built around civet – a traditionally animalic ingredient found in many classic perfumes.
“This club night taps into a trend we’re monitoring for more experimental, sensorial experiences with fragrance and scent,” said Stylus’ senior editor of Beauty, Lisa Payne. For more, see Experimental Scent Summit 2018, Abnormal Fragrance: The New Normal and Exploring Scent Communication.
A new fragrance portfolio launched at the World Perfumery Congress in Nice on June 5 documents global scents in a move to elevate storytelling around perfume creation, refine knowledge of local markets, and explore artistic exchanges across mediums.
The Olfactive Travel Portfolio is a collaboration between German flavour and fragrance giant Symrise and French olfactory magazine Nez. Documenting each stage on Instagram via #AWorldTourThroughScent, at least one Symrise perfumer, one Nez journalist and one photographer from the Tendance Floue agency were assigned to 11 global locations over four months.
From their various angles of expertise, they responded collectively to smells on-site, detailing and deconstructing impactful olfactory experiences, celebrating the heritage of local and mundane smells, and raising awareness around the sustainability of certain indigenous ingredients. Sites included a flower market in Madurai, India; a sawmill in North Carolina in the US; and shipping ports in Dubai, UAE.
“Our passion is to combine the sensorial with the beneficial, to challenge boundaries and to understand the intrinsic connections we, as human beings, have with fragrance,” said Achim Daub, Symrise’s global president of scent and care. “The unexpected fragrances, visuals and words created during A World Tour Through Scent are a direct reflection of the participants’ experience and show a vibrant part of all our lives through a truly unique and authentic lens. They are sometimes provocative, frequently artistic, but always a mirror of our collective human experience.”
China is the last major country to require animal testing on cosmetics and skincare before these items can be sold to the public – but one cruelty-free brand appears to have found a loophole.
LA-based skincare and nutricosmetics brand Ceramiracle has emphasised its cruelty-free ethos with inventory-free, digitally led pop-up stores around China.
The company has partnered with the country’s largest digital platform WeChat to enable consumers to make purchases by scanning a QR code, which leads them to the app’s e-commerce store. The products are then delivered to the customer within three days from a warehouse in Hangzhou, a free-trade zone in Eastern China. In this region, goods can be imported, manufactured and exported without direct intervention from Chinese customs.
Ceramiracle is also capitalising on China’s e-commerce opportunity – online sales increased by 32% and totalled $1.2tn in 2017 (China’s Ministry of Commerce, 2018). Stylus’ Retail editor Stefanie Dorfer said: “WeChat is one of the most dominant digital platforms in China, and the perfect gateway for brands wanting to expand into this booming market. A strategy like this should be explored by other cruelty-free brands as they can bypass the country’s animal-testing legislation.”
Forty-seven per cent of millennials check whether luxury brands foster sustainable values before purchasing (Deloitte, 2017) – indicating the importance of considering ethical sourcing and distribution methods. For more on this, see The Great Beauty Green-Up and Doing Good.
A new pop-up salon in London is challenging taboos by opening a nail bar for guys. Could it redefine masculinity in the era of ‘male beauty’?
New British pop-up Guys That Nail It is boldly reframing the beauty salon concept with a nail bar dedicated solely to men. Open from June 12-22 in London’s edgy Peckham district, clients are offered treatments ranging from classic pedicures through to more daring gel extensions.
The launch of the nail bar capitalises on the new era of male beauty, which we expect to grow in line with – and potentially overtake – the male grooming market, which is forecast to reach $60.7bn by 2020 globally (Euromonitor, 2017). Lisa Payne, Stylus’ senior editor of Beauty, says: “Although Guys That Nail It has opened as a pop-up, its success will indicate a gap in the market for more permanent beauty spaces dedicated to men.”
Another brand successfully tapping into the male beauty category is British label MMUK Man. It’s set to launch the UK’s first male-only make-up store in Brighton in July 2018, where consumers will be able to experiment with the 80-piece line.
These openings signal the potential of beauty spaces and services dedicated to men, with 45% of parlours and 64% of mobile professionals in the UK currently not offering male grooming treatments (Beautiful Britain, 2017).
Following a number of microbead bans in the cosmetics industry, consumer demand for sustainable beauty has increased. Is eliminating environmentally damaging wet wipes the next mainstream solution?
Green beauty brands are creating eco-friendly wet wipes, responding to consumers’ concerns about the toxic impact of water pollution.
Estimates suggest that by 2050, there could be more plastic than fish in the oceans by weight (Ellen MacArthur Foundation, 2017). The beauty industry is a major contributor to this. In the UK alone, there has been a 700% increase in the number of wet wipes found along the coastline over the last decade (Marine Conservation Society, 2017).
Stylus explores two innovative products looking to tackle the problem:
The tastes of British consumers are diverging from the offerings on the current fragrance market, a May 2018 survey by OnBuy suggests. Although the e-commerce platform’s analysis was solely based on the UK, the findings are useful for global perfume brands.
The study of approximately 517,780 British fragrance enthusiasts found that while 75% of women wanted to try a unisex perfume, the market had instead been bombarded with sweet fragrances and pink packaging.
The survey analysed product trends and revealed that 70% of the perfumes released in the first quarter of 2018 had sweet accords, compared to woody notes (45%) and floral scents (60%). Packaging innovations have also shifted towards stereotypically feminine colours – 75% of the perfumes released since January 2018 were pink.
We spotlight two new fragrance launches, both of which respond to these trends.
US naturals start-up Knours is capitalising on the wellness category’s personalised beauty trend by addressing hormonal changes in the skin linked to the menstrual cycle.
The company has developed an artificial intelligence-powered app that is designed to analyse changes in the user’s skin condition and mood. It determines an appropriate skincare routine for consumers via a questionnaire, using data such as skin type and the date of their last period to generate a selection of suitable products.
An extension of this personalisation strategy might be an analysis tool that visually assesses and tracks the skin’s health. We believe this is a bankable opportunity for brands, as the global beauty devices market is expected to reach $94.3bn by 2023 (P&S Market Research, 2017).
The eight-piece, Korean-beauty-inspired offering provides skincare and bodycare products to use at different points in the menstrual cycle. For instance, the multitasking Double Duty Mist is ideal for pre- and post-menstruation. The moisturising jojoba oil rises to the top, while the aloe vera water sinks to the bottom. Users simply shake the bottle to mix the ingredients for use on dry, dull skin. When the mixture is left separated, the hero ingredients target oily, acne-prone skin.
Skincare based on menstrual cycles is becoming a fast-developing category as innovative start-ups cater to this model. US brand Amareta launched a three-step skincare range based on women’s menstrual cycles and hormonal changes in August 2017.
New US personal care start-up Recess is tapping into demand for on-the-go beauty solutions in the active category by tackling a pet peeve among gym-goers: queuing up for showers.
The company is launching portable unisex products that aim to eliminate sweat in a few swipes – condensing a lengthy post-gym ritual into three steps. The range includes Face 101: Cleansing Wipes, Body 101: Deodorant Wipes and Hair 101: Hair Blotters.
With a tagline of “no sink, no shower, no problem”, the products require no water to activate the hero ingredients. For example, the Body 101: Deodorant Wipes combine tea tree oil and acai extract to fight off bacteria, eliminate odour and hydrate the skin.
Users are encouraged to forgo bulky bottle packaging and use the brand’s biodegradable wipes and blotting paper instead. Another active beauty range that has successfully implemented this compact packaging strategy is Clinique’s Clinique Fit. The Post Workout Face + Body Cleansing Swipes remove excess dirt and oil after exercise, while priming the skin for make-up and bodycare products.
This launch feeds into modern consumers’ enthusiasm for time-saving solutions (as explored in Sports Beauty Steps Up), with 18% of US personal care users wishing their routine was less time consuming (Mintel, 2016). For deeper insights into time-saving beauty and portable packaging solutions see, Agile Beauty and Packaging Futures: In-Transit.
The eight shaving creams in Marram Co’s inaugural collection all use different notes to alter the user’s state of mind in different ways. For instance, Time Out is aimed at men looking to unwind. It claims to reduce stress while cleansing, detoxifying and brightening tired skin. The brand harnesses the sensory properties of essential oils, using ingredients such as basil, thyme and cardamom to enhance relaxation.
Essential oils are a growing market, forecast to reach $12.85bn globally by 2025 (Statistics MRC, 2017). We believe aromatherapy is a key area for brands to explore, as consumers look to improve their mood and mental state with scent. Another good example is American tween start-up Scent Republik, which uses vanilla and mandarin in its Fab! fragrance to boost feelings of empowerment.
With each of Marram Co’s shaving creams evoking a distinct olfactory experience, consumers are encouraged to experiment with the scents depending on their mood. For more on this idea, see The Rise of Fragrance Wardrobes and St Giles: Personality-Enhancing Perfume.
With a tagline of “bringing pleasure to shaving”, the brand operates on a subscription basis. Each kit, containing a shaving cream of choice, is delivered every four, six or eight weeks, depending on how frequently the recipient shaves and uses up the product. For more on this concept, see Luxurifying Personal Hygiene.
Tapping the rise in demand for eco-friendly personal care and fitness-inspired beauty products, US start-up Type: A’s natural deodorant range targets active consumers.
With a tagline of “the more you sweat, the harder it works”, the smart deodorant features aloe vera, coconut oil and arrowroot powder sourced from California to absorb moisture and hydrate the skin. The sweat-activated formula mimics a time-released effect that fights off bacteria, as safe synthetics such as glycerine are used to channel the aluminium-free, antiperspirant ingredients.
The unisex range consists of two cream-based deodorants. The Visionary combines citrus and herbal notes and The Minimalist is 100% fragrance- and essential oil-free. Both products are housed in a tube, which is perforated by three holes to let the formula through.
Wearers are encouraged to swipe on a pea-sized amount of the lightweight formula onto dry armpits like a stick. This is a key selling point for the brand, as most of the natural deodorants on the market have to be applied using consumers’ fingertips.
The launch signals an uptick in natural and organic product innovation in an untapped category – only 25% of US consumers purchase natural deodorant (Mintel, 2017). We believe this market has not been explored properly, as many natural deodorant formulas are not effective enough to combat excessive sweat.
For more on strategies that target the active community in other categories, see Elevating Active and Millennial Fitness Update: Tech Tones Up. Also look out for Stylus’ report Sports Beauty Steps Up for the latest developments.