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Dermatologist Creates CVS Exclusive

CVS will soon clear room in its beauty department for yet another exclusive brand.

NEW YORK — CVS will soon clear room in its beauty department for yet another exclusive brand. The drugstore chain has teamed up with a leading dermatologist to create Skin Effects by Dr. Jeffrey Dover, the first derm-created skin care line for the mass market.

The nine-item antiaging collection will launch in most CVS stores this August, and bow chainwide in October.

CVS’ consumer research revealed that there was still a niche left to fill in the burgeoning skin care category. “We wanted to bring our customers high-quality products at a good value — with the dermatologists’ seal of approval,” said Eileen Howard Dunn, vice president of communications for CVS. She added that the concept has been in development for approximately a year.

After an extensive search for the right dermatologist, CVS inked a deal with Dover, founding partner of SkinCare Physicians in Chestnut Hill, Mass. In addition to his own practice, Dover holds the position of associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale University School of Medicine.

The dermatologist acknowledged that during his 20-year career he has been approached by several beauty companies. In fact, just prior to linking arms with CVS, a French beauty house was actively courting the dermatologist. Although Dover would not divulge the name, he hinted that the company was of the same ilk as L’Oreal and Coty.

Ultimately, he chose CVS because his patients match the same spectrum of women who walk into CVS stores. “CVS offered me something I’ve always wanted to do,” he said.

CVS executives also managed to alleviate Dover’s main concern, promising exceptional product quality, one that would not tarnish the reputation he has spent 20 years building. Although he could not reveal who his retail partner was at the time, Dover said his friend Tina Alster — a consulting dermatologist for Lancome — encouraged him to accept the offer.

Dover attempted to create his own line five years ago, but shelved the project after realizing the cost of the products would have been too high for consumers to swallow.

He added, CVS’ network of more than 5,000 stores allows him to use the “most expensive products money can buy” and sell them for an affordable price. Items in the line range from a $6.99 Purifying Effects Deep Cleansing Enzyme Scrub to $29.99 for Wrinkle Effects Relaxing Cream, which is said to relax facial muscles and reduce the appearance of fine lines for 24 hours. Other standout items include Resurfacing Effects Micro-Dermabrasion Kit, Lip Effects Lip Magnifier and Flawless Effects Advanced Brightening Complex, a daily-use formula developed to lighten dark sun spots and even out skin tone.

Each of the items are designed to improve overall skin tone and texture, and “help reclaim a vibrant complexion” without cosmetic surgery.

CVS will merchandise the products in the skin care aisle, within a 2-foot-wide fixture that includes a photo of Dover and consumer brochures. As it has done for its exclusive Finnish beauty brand Lumene, CVS will promote the brand though in-store signage, within its circulars and through a direct mail piece tied to its Extra Care loyalty program.

For the initial launch, CVS presented Dover with a list of potential products. He modified the line and added several more products to the list. The dermatologist will drive all future product development and is currently testing five additional Skin Effects products at his practice.