TORONTO -- Enthusiasm for alpha-hydroxy acid products and items containing sun protection benefits shows no signs of waning across Canada, according to national cosmetics buyers.
New product launches, combined with the ongoing advertising and media hype surrounding AHA's, are fueling overall treatment sales growth of about 20 percent, the retailers said.
Since Estee Lauder launched Fruition and Clinique introduced Turnaround Cream in Canada just over a year ago, the two lines have led most others in sales for major retailers like Sears Canada, Hudson Bay and Holt Renfrew.
Lancome was also mentioned by buyers, not for any specific products but because of the interest created by an ongoing series of introductions.
Retailers also noted that body treatment has been doing well, particularly cellulite creams that smooth and tone the skin.
"AHA products are really driving the treatment business. It hasn't lost steam because there is a lot more awareness of AHA's among customers," said Shelley Rozenwald, vice president and general merchandise manager for Holt Renfrew stores.
The Sisley line has been the top seller at Holt Renfrew for two years, followed by Lauder, Clinique and Princess Marcella Borghese. However, the best-selling individual products are Fruition, Prescriptives' All You Need and Sisley's Ecological Compound.
Rod Ulmer, divisional merchandise manager of cosmetics and fragrances for Hudson Bay stores, said treatment sales are booming.
"Consumers are ready to believe the advertising claims, but I don't think it's just marketing hype that makes them successful. Anybody making claims has to be really sure they can be proven," Ulmer said.
Lancome has unseated Lauder as the top-selling line at Hudson Bay. However, Lauder and Clinique continue to do well with the chain, where the leading individual skin care items are Fruition, Turnaround Cream, Elizabeth Arden's Ceramides line and Lancome's Renergie.
Arden will be put to the test as it rolls out Alpha-Ceramide across Canada in March. Retailers say extra effort will be required at the cosmetics counter, not only to explain the benefits of the new product, but to convince customers to invest in a multistep system.
"I think the new product will help build loyalty for Elizabeth Arden, because it means more frequent contact with the customers," said Joan Lash, cosmetics buyer for Brettons, where Lancome, Christian Dior, Clarins and Erno Laszlo are the top lines.While AHA products have created excitement at the cosmetics counter, interest in skin care products with sun protection benefits continues to build. Face moisturizers with a minimum SPF of 15 have become such fast movers, they're matching sales volumes for AHA products, said Lash.
As a result, introductions like Shiseido's new sun care line are expected to generate healthy volumes this year, she said.
"Products with UV connotations are doing very well, particularly in Vancouver and Calgary, where there is a lot of outdoor activity even in the winter," Lash noted.
Body treatment is starting to gain momentum because of the ongoing fitness craze, retailers said. Christian Dior's new Svelte cellulite control cream is a hit at Brettons and Hudson Bay, while Lancome's new Vitalite Douceur body care line is expected to capture a lot of attention this year.
Holt Renfrew's Rozenwald agreed that body treatment is gaining ground and expected Sisley's new Botanical Tensor firming product to be a top seller when it hits the counter in March.
At Sears, cosmetics manager Angela Bunting said, "Our Canadian customer isn't that body-oriented yet. For now, AHA's are still the strongest-selling growth area, and I expect them to continue to drive the business."
Sears' top skin care lines are Clinique, Lauder and Lancome, while the top products are Fruition and Turnaround, Bunting said.
The one consumer-buying trend that hasn't lost steam for any of the major retailers is the demand for added value.
Said Bunting, "Customers want to sample before buying, they recognize that they're making an investment, and they want to make sure the products are right for them."
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews
“Stranger Things” is getting a new cast member for season 2. Meet @sadiesink_, the 15-year-old who will be joining the Netflix series for its new season. You may recognize her from “The Glass Castle” with Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson, but the Texas native’s next role goes in an entirely different direction. She describes her character, Max, as “a rough and tumble skater girl [who] becomes friends with the boys at school.” The second season debuts on October 27. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdeye
Amid the Harvey Weinstein controversy, there’s another sector that’s being put under the spotlight for sexual abuse: the modeling industry. While rumors about abuse and sexual harassment of female and male models — and the photographers, agents and others who perpetrated it — have circulated within the fashion world for years, model @cameronrussell started posting stories from models on Instagram last week about abusive situations they’ve encountered — from sexual harassment and molestation to attempted rape. Over 75 have weighed in so far. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdnews
To celebrate its 16th anniversary, @dylanscandybar tapped designers and celebrities to create mosaics out of candy. The mosaics will be auctioned off to support the philanthropic cause of each participant’s choice. Pictured here is the mural created by @aliceandolivia's Stacey Bendet. For a first look at some of the other artwork being unveiled tonight, go to WWD.com. #wwdeye
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye