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Mass skin care is on the upswing, but the antiaging category will be the year ahead’s big challenge.

Cleansers are growing double digits — up 16 percent from last year — and moisturizers are rising, too, up 7 percent according to IRI data tracking the 52 weeks ending Nov. 28. But the antiaging category is in decline by 3 percent.

Can the early 2018 launches from the big power players turn the category around?

Procter & Gamble’s Olay, newly helmed by former SK-II executive Markus Strobel, is unleashing a Millennial-minded update to moisturizers in its key franchises: Regenerist, Total Effects and Luminous. L’Oréal Paris has caved to consumer demand for natural ingredients with clinically proven efficacy, and is launching an antiaging product that blends pro-retinol with an ingredient common in Chinese medicine. Unilever is still focused on playing catch-up with prestige trends, offering a slew of newness and some firsts-to-mass, including a cleansing stick on St. Ives.

The acne sector has shown some promise with blockbuster innovations like the Neutrogena LED Therapy Light. A rush of new Johnson & Johnson products — under both Neutrogena and Clean & Clear — aims to sustain that momentum in a category that is only just under 1 percent decline.

Click through the gallery for the key launches and innovations for the mass market in early 2018. 

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