The book Granularity of Growth was published in 2008, but it is a concept that has become especially ubiquitous today in beauty as growth plateaus in traditional sectors. As a result, marketers are forced to create new opportunities in unexpected places, and many have done so with spectacular results—to wit, Clinique’s Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector, which blasted open the brightening category in the U.S. Although the stories in this issue of WWD Beauty Inc are very diverse, they have a common thread: The retailers and categories featured are all experiencing explosive growth in a period when single-digit increases are the norm.
Take the dollar store channel of retail, which is growing at a pace faster than Starbucks, reports WWD’s contributing editor and mass-market expert, Faye Brookman. This year alone, two of the biggest players will open more than 1,000 new stores combined, and the channel is expected to continue nabbing market share (and top executive talent) from drugstores and discounters. Brookman explains what this means for beauty in “Penny Press.”
Another fast-growing and ever-evolving channel is infomercials. The direct-response television business is booming—spending increased 47 percent in 2012 and was up 38 percent in January alone this year—but as many brands are discovering, a big spend doesn’t necessarily translate into big sales. WWD’s West Coast–based beauty reporter Rachel Brown talked to the industry’s most successful practitioners to discover what it takes to win today and the foundation brands are laying for a multiplatform future. The results are in “Small Screen Dreams.”
Mass-market hair-care brands are also looking for a big win. After years of stagnant growth, the category has been energized in the past 16 months by an onslaught of launches—more than 500 new stockkeeping units alone from the industry’s biggest names. This generation of innovation has a singular goal: to transform consumer’s behavior and convince women to evolve their hair-care regimens into multistep programs that mimic skin care. “The hair-care market is undergoing a massive, long-term transition,” Unilever’s Gina Boswell told beauty financial editor Molly Prior. “Increasingly hair consumers are becoming more sophisticated and understanding that products work as a regimen of wash, care and treatment and they are willing to invest.” The early numbers bear out Boswell’s optimism. Find out how the market is expected to evolve this year in “Maximum Volume.”
There is another theme running throughout this issue: an emphasis on West Coast brands and leaders. You’ll find Benefit’s Aurelian Lis in “Master Class,” skin-care entrepreneur Ole Henriksen in “Private Lives,” and the hottest young Hollywood makeup artists and hair stylists in “Red Carpet Whiz Kids.” Although he brings a unique sensibility to the industry, Lis’ ideas about beauty are universal. “We all work in the cosmetics industry, which is inherently frivolous by nature, but it makes a big impact on people’s lives,” he says. “It is an awesome job. And very motivating.” I couldn’t agree more.
5 Key Points From This Issue
1. TUNE IN: The infomerical channel is growing and becoming increasingly integrated with other platforms.
2. REGIMEN CHANGE: Hair-care marketers are trying to grow the pie by transforming women’s habits.
3. VALUE ADDED: Dollar stores are booming, proliferating even faster than Starbucks.
4. GOOD TIMES: Why making people laugh is good for sales.
5. POP TOPS: Bright colors are all the rage for spring.
In honor the @CFDA’s announcement of @iamnaomicampbell receiving the Fashion Icon Award at the 2018 #CFDAAwards, which will take place on June 4, here’s a #tbt of the supermodel on @michaelkors’ runway in 1991. #wwdfashion #wwdarchive (📷: George Chinsee)
“I was making the guacamole when my scout saw me,” says model @stuckinteenage on being discovered just six months ago while working at @chipotlemexicangrill. Since then Williams has signed with @dnamodels, walked in her first show at @calvinklein and landed on the cover of @vogueitalia – a high point of any model’s career. To read @lisajlockwood’s full interview with the model on her experiences thus far, head to WWD.com – link in bio. (📷: George Chinsee)
“I love the idea of dialogue, period. It’s where I’ve always gotten my inspiration from: hearing other women speak, their journeys and their paths,” said @hereisgina, who delivered the keynote speech during @sxsw for @createcultivate in partnership with @fossil. For her two panels, Rodriguez chose female empowering, female-led and female entrepreneurs to focus on. Head to WWD.com to read more about her thoughts on Time’s Up, growing up in a family of women and why we “need a girls’ club.” #wwdeye #sxsw (📷: @jgreenery)
Leading luxury brand are shaking things up to keep up with streetwear. Case in point: the arrival of @mrkimjones as artistic director of @diorhomme. Jones, who succeeds @Kris_Van_Assche, is seen as one of the handful of designers who can actually straddle the luxury and streetwear worlds — which could lead to even more changes at established brands. What could this mean for the rest of the menswear landscape? Head to WWD.com to find out what experts predict #wwdfashion (📷: @franckmura)
“It’s like buying groceries. You’re going to buy the best mango, the best mozzarella, the best things. You have to, or others are going to take it all,” said @gabrielahearst on why she uses only the finest fabrics. Last week, Hearst received her first @cfda nomination for Womenswear Designer of the Year, and earlier this month she opened a permanent showroom in Paris. To read @jessiredale’s interview with the designer and find out why this is shaping up to be a big year for her, head to WWD.com. #wwdfashion (📷: @francoisgoize)
“It’s an interesting thing, playing a younger version of your mother. It’s an interesting concept. I adore my mom and love her in every capacity, but it was just something that had never crossed my mind,” says @anniemstarke on playing a young Joan Castleman in “The Wife.” The same role will be played by her mother Glenn Close. Read more about her growing up in the film industry as the daughter of producer John H. Starke and Close and what she has planned for the future #wwdeye (📷: @nataliamantini)
@asics is launching a new streetwear sneaker inspired by its latest ambassador, @steveaoki. The Hyper-Kenzen x Aoki, which will launch at @footlocker stores exclusively tomorrow, is a slip-on style that incorporates the brand’s proprietary Gel technology through beads integrated into the midsole for comfort and endurance. Read the full story on WWD.com.