Scientific breakthroughs power beauty forward. Hyaluronic acid, alpha hydroxy, peptides, sulfate-free shampoos—the list of innovations goes on and on, and chances are it’s going to get exponentially longer thanks to the impact of the latest discoveries on our industry. In this, WWD Beauty Inc’s second annual science issue, we’re delving into the newest research and technologies that are expected to exert the most significant influence on skin care and hair care. Foremost, of course, is the mapping of the human genome and the many secrets now being revealed about how our bodies work at a cellular level. For example, P&G’s scientists recently discovered the five fundamental pathways involved in the pigmentation process, knowledge that transformed the way they formulated their newest skin-discoloration product. Surprisingly, only 7 percent of discoloration is caused by pigmentation.
Such discoveries are becoming increasingly common, and, as you’ll read in “The Genius Files," are expected to lead to ever more meaningful breakthroughs. The possibilities are endless and for beauty’s top scientists, the opportunities unlimited. As Johnson and Johnson’s Cathy Salerno points out, researchers have already identified the genetic coding responsible for breast cancer. Why not skin cancer? “Wouldn’t it be great if we had some sort of [sun] protection that could be used as easily as fluoride is for young kids through their drinking water?” she muses. Right now, that’s only a dream. But if Salerno’s track record, and those of her colleagues, is any indication, the reality is not far away.
Already, we are seeing the impact of advanced research on the hair-care market. Plagued by stagnant low-single-digit growth, more researchers and marketers are looking to skin care for strategy and inspiration, and the result is a slew of next-generation launches expected to significantly shake up the market. As P&G’s Walter Geiger tells WWD’s West Coast beauty editor, Rachel Brown, in “Hair!,” “When you have performance, are in the right benefit space and tell the right story, you can charge higher prices—even in the recession.” Robb Akridge, the cofounder of Clarisonic, knows about charging higher prices. One industry executive once called the device a $100 washcloth. Akridge was quick to correct him—it’s actually closer to $200—and the high price hasn’t hindered growth in the least. During a recent appearance on QVC, Dr. Robb, as he’s fondly known, set a personal record by generating $87,000 a minute in sales. Some execs might be content to rest on those laurels, but not Akridge and his cohorts at the L’Oréal-owned Clarisonic. Discover how they’re driving growth forward in “Sonic King.”
These are exciting times for our industry: E-mail me at jenny_fine@ fairchildfashion.com and tell me what breakthrough you’re most excited about and I’ll include your thoughts in an upcoming issue of WWD Beauty Inc.
5 Key Points From This Issue
1. The Age of Omics: Genomics, proteomics and metabolomics will deliver ever-deeper insights into skin aging.
2. Promoting Hair Growth: Taking a page from skin-care marketers, hair-care brands are tapping into antiaging concepts to help drive sales.
3. The Doctor Is In: Treatments performed in doctor’s offices will continue to have a significant impact on product developers.
4. Different Strokes: While beauty has historically drawn students from the chemical sciences, biologists are increasingly in demand.
5. How Green Is Your Garden: Implementing sustainable practices—in sourcing, manufacturing and even marketing— will grow in importance.
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews