By  on November 19, 2004

NEW YORK — Coty is out to prove the specialty bath category’s bubble hasn’t burst. The company’s The Healing Garden brand will plant its roots deeper into the category it helped create seven years ago with the launch of 2-in-1 Moisturizing Body Wash with Lotion, a cleanser said to moisturize as effectively as body lotion.

The 2-in-1 product will go head-to-head with the most significant innovation to hit the personal cleansing segment in recent years, Olay Moisturinse In Shower Body Lotion. Since it launched last June, Moisturinse has generated $3.4 million in sales in the mass retail channel (excluding Wal-Mart), according to Information Resources Inc.

While Coty does not break out sales, industry sources estimate The Healing Garden dual-action body wash could ring up $2.8 million in sales in the first year.

What separates The Healing Garden’s entry is that instead of adding another product to women’s shower regimens it knocks out a step, said Paul Seplowitz, vice president of product development for Coty Beauty U.S. Rather than compete on Olay Moisturinse’s turf, The Healing Garden will fortify its home base by merchandising the 2-in-1 product in the specialty bath department. “Because The Healing Garden is so established in the specialty bath category, it’s the best place for us to launch this product,” said Coty Beauty group marketing director Kelley Woodland.

This year’s introduction of its Active Anti-Cellulite Treatment product and body-toning creams under its Spa Theraphy line were the first in what Coty has promised will be a vanguard of benefit-laden products. The move toward serious skin care allows Coty to introduce premium price points in a commodity-driven category. “Every item you introduce has to perform at a higher level, which is why we introduced a $12.95 anti-cellulite treatment in a category filled with $5 products,” said Roslyn Griner, newly named vice president of bath and body for Coty Beauty. Griner’s appointment followed the departure of Coty’s senior vice president of global fragrances Anastasia Ayala, who was credited with expanding the distribution of The Healing Garden.

Griner noted, “Shelf space is not growing, but companies have to find a way to grow sales.”

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