DESTIN, Fla. — Buyers were awash in new bath and body products at the ECRM show held here.
Manufacturers, scurrying to find ways to pump up sales, are launching items with natural or organic positioning as well as unique packaging. There was also a definite Canadian accent to the show as many suppliers from there took advantage of the exchange rate to show their goods to the more than 80 buyers in attendance.
According to ACNielsen, bar and bath product sales rose 5 percent for the 52-week period ended Dec. 27, 2007 (food, drug and mass excluding Wal-Mart) to $1.9 billion.
Many companies are looking to extend sales from natural food outlets to the mass market. Buyers said they are trying to sort out the complexities of natural and organic. They are awaiting true validation of a product's claim and for some clearing house symbol that will help Americans understand what is really natural or organic. The goal is to make sure consumers don't get disenchanted by poorly performing natural products.
In the meantime, marketers are trying to beat each other out of the gate with items. Some have histories in natural food stores; others are new brands. There was a great emphasis on natural products and packaging, too, with many companies using easy-to-replenish materials such as bamboo. Some retailers said they are hoping to stage promotional activities with organic items around events such as Earth Day.
Out of Africa, for example, has been selling Whole Foods for almost two years and was getting notice at this show for its quality items, such as shea butters, as well as its altruistic efforts in Africa. Among the companies that have added or plan to include Out of Africa in natural sets are Wegmans, Big Y, Safeway, Harmon and Duane Reade
Body America, which gained fame at the National Association of Chain Drug Store's Marketplace meeting last year, also has a natural positioning, but one that Joseph Sasson, executive vice president, hopes takes the message to the next level. "Our packaging is already ahead of the market — we call it organic chic," he said. Body America is extending the line to include scrubs, a foaming body wash and body mists.E.L.F. Cosmetics, known for its value-priced beauty with $1 cosmetics items, has also expanded into bath and body. "We have the unique situation from our loyal Web visitors of knowing what they want and they've asked for bath and body products," said Joseph Shamah, chief executive officer of E.L.F. Cosmetics.
Delicious Brands is launching an exclusive skin care line for Rite Aid called Derma. Conceived in conjunction with Rite Aid category manager Cathy Furtado, the line is the first to feature Delicious Brands' founder Coleen Booth on promotional materials. "This line is great because it covers different ages and needs," said Booth, who added Rite Aid has a one-year exclusive on the line. Also new at Delicious Brands is serious skin care for the entire body. "No one had really done skin care for the body so we came up with Skin Below the Chin. A final new thrust at the company are On the Go packs perfect for travel and including packets of body lotions, nail polish removers and mints."
J.R. Watkins is launching a new line of all-natural products dubbed J.R. Watkins Natural Apothecary. Designed to be at least 95 percent natural, the new formulas eliminate certain ingredients such as parabens, sulfates, glycols and phthalates. Launching in March, the lineup is scheduled to roll out to Target and Ulta, followed by a full rollout in major food, drug and mass stores. In June, the company plans to expand the range by entering into the bath and hair care categories.
Organic Bath Co. is extending beyond its natural distribution with a new antiaging line called Timeless.
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia