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Brief Published: 30 Aug 2018

The InKey List Taps Into the Ordinary Beauty Model

The InKey List

As novices and self-proclaimed ‘skintellectuals’ alike face an oversaturated beauty market, they increasingly struggle to pinpoint the right products for their needs. Agile new brands are addressing this with simpler, but nonetheless effective offerings.

The InKey List, a new start-up from British group BeForBeauty, is one such brand. It aims to arm consumers with industry knowledge by dissecting key ingredients, offering single-ingredient products, and introducing a ‘Beauty Translator’ service to cut through confusing jargon. 

Set to launch in August 2018, the brand’s core value is delivering results-driven products without overcharging for active ingredients – similar to the strategy successfully deployed by Deciem-owned The Ordinary. The 15-piece hero-ingredient-led line includes a kaolin clay mask, a glycolic acid toner and a hemp oil moisturiser. 

As explored in our Industry Trend the Austerity Opportunity, younger millennials and Gen Zers are actively searching for inexpensive goods. Catering to this demand, The Inkey List offers a non-gendered approach to skincare at a low price point – everything costs less than £10 ($13). For example, its Vitamin C Serum, which contains the high-performance ingredient vitamin C to brighten dull skin, retails for £7.99 ($10).

The InKey List’s labelling strategy also appeals to consumers, who are seeking more honesty from brands – 76% of the UK public felt misled by claims on packaging (Soil Association, 2017). Each product is named after its core ingredient, simplifying the confusing beauty jargon.

To further demystify the process, the brand will also work with influencers and editors (or ‘Beauty Translators’), who will offer advice in a bid to better interpret the function of each ingredient in relation to customers’ needs. Consumers will be able to ask questions by logging on to the brand’s website, and all answers will be posted in the Beauty Translated section.

For more on honest labelling strategies, see Transparent Beauty: Valuing Best Practice and Brandless: Online Supermarket.