LAS VEGAS — Cosmoprof North America proved to be fertile ground for what could be dubbed “nail wars” as several companies poised themselves to take dead aim at CND’s Shellac this fall, a long-lasting power polish formula which altered the manicure playing field last spring with Shellac UV Color.
Nail innovations, along with natural and organically positioned hair-straightening treatments, emerged as trends from Cosmoprof, the show’s ninth annual event, which was held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center here from July 31 through August 2. The show attracted more than 760 exhibiting companies, up 12 percent from last year, according to Y Public Relations, and almost 25,000 attendees, which included importers, distributors, manufacturers and salon owners.
New firms to the show included Love & Toast (which also showed at NACDS Marketplace), Milani (which usually appears at NACDS Marketplace but did not this year), Michael O’Rourke’s Rock Your Hair and EVO, a natural hair and skin care line.
Long-lasting manicures took the industry by storm in 2010, with Shellac revving up slumped salon sales more than $30 million in its first year. As such, all eyes will be on those who are expected to be Shellac’s main competitors, such as OPI GelColor, which is set to hit salons in mid-October with 28 of their most popular colors, plus a base and top coat. Packaged in an opaque bottle (the formulas are light sensitive) OPI GelColor formulas require 30 seconds of dry time after each coat; four coats are needed. To help with removal, OPI is coming out with individual soak-off sleeves, and custom-made LED lamps, which are branded, said Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, executive vice president and creative director of OPI Products.
At Orly, John Galea showed off the firm’s Gel FX new gel manicuring system. Galea said Gel FX has several points of difference, including offering 32 shades, a vitamin-infused primer, basecoat, cuticle oil and cleanser, as well as a super thin formula. The items previewed at Cosmoprof Bologna and are now set for salon distribution in the next three weeks.
Nail color got a lot of play at Cosmoprof, with textured nails remaining hot for the balance of the year, sparked by OPI’s Shatter collection. Some notable items are coming from Essie with LuxEffects, which will roll out to salons in November. Formulas are said to offer both texture and shine, as shine tends to be a trade-off for texture. Items will sell for $8 a bottle. AII is also focusing on textured nails with China Glaze planning 3D glitters for 2012, formulas that also provide a hologram effect.
Natural and organic hair defrizzing treatments were also popular. Philip Pelusi’s Tela Beauty Organics’ Phyto-Keratin Smoothing Treatment Blowout, which contains 85 percent USDA certified organic ingredients, was seeking distribution at Cosmoprof. The treatment, which he said lasts between four and six weeks, uses Hydro Charged Pelusi Ceramide Complex, a patent-pending potent strengthening and moisture-binding plant ceramide complex to help repair damaged sites on hair and aims to defrizz hair, not straighten hair. The formula is free of formaldehyde and formaldehyde derivatives and does not require gloves when handling. The Blowout also contains a string of organic ingredients, such as reishi mushrooms, red sage, horsetail, sprouted soy and burdock. Suggested service price is between $90 to $125.
Also on the defrizz front, Joico is launching Smooth Cure The Frizz, a 72-hour, at-home keratin treatment that is a four-step process offering cumulative benefits. Joico is also partnering with styleseat.com, a Web site based in Palo Alto, to serve as an online platform for customers to search for Joico salons, book appointments and post product reviews. “It will be very Joico centric,” said Valerie Robinett, the brand’s new public relations director. Joico has also partnered with colorist Beth Minardi, for a new collaboration, Minardi Luxury Products. Zotos, Joico’s parent, will distribute and eventually manufacture the items. Robinett also said that Joico has named Rita Hazan a salon partner, where their celebrity stylist, George Papanikolas, can work from while on the East Coast. And for the first time, Joico is partnering with parent company Shiseido for a gift set which will offer two pink Shiseido lip glosses, along with a KPak at home conditioner.
Discover Beauty, a Cosmoprof North America initiative that sets up emerging brands with retailers attending the show, returned this year with 17 brands participating. Brands had the chance to meet face-to-face with retailers such as Bergdorf Goodman, C.O. Bigelow, Cosbar, Duane Reade, Henri Bendel, HSN, Nordstrom, Skins 6|2 and Zappos. The Discover Beauty Award, which awards the brand based on creativity, innovation and market readiness, was voted on by buyers and beauty editors and given to Snowberry from New Zealand, a natural antiaging skin care line comprised of peptides, antioxidants, super fruits and herbal oils, including extracts from New Zealand rain forest plants cultivated on Snowberry’s plantation.
Kicking off Cosmoprof was The North American Hairstyling Awards (NAHA), a Professional Beauty Association (PBA) event and the most prestigious hairstyling and makeup competition in North America. Celebrating 22 years as the pinnacle award for beauty professionals, winners were recognized at an awards ceremony held at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino. NAHA’s top honor, Hairstylist of the Year, was presented to Eli Mancha of Chicago’s Bang Salon and the Lock & Loaded line. More than 3,000 beauty professionals attended the event, including entertainer Holly Madison, who was awarded the 2011 Beautiful Humanitarian Award. NAHA was hosted by the star of Bravo’s “Tabatha’s Salon Takeover,” Tabatha Coffey.
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