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Beauty Turn for ‘American Idol’

NEW YORK — Now even beauty is going for reality.<br><br>JAKKS Pacific’s Flying Colors, the craft division of toy giant JAKKS Pacific, is introducing fashion and beauty items based on the Fox smash "American Idol." <br><br>Now in its second...

NEW YORK — Now even beauty is going for reality.

JAKKS Pacific’s Flying Colors, the craft division of toy giant JAKKS Pacific, is introducing fashion and beauty items based on the Fox smash “American Idol.”

Now in its second season, American Idol’s premiere was watched by an estimated 26.5 million people, according to Nielsen Media Research.

The “American Idol” audience includes millions of tween and teenage girls who flocked to buy last year’s winner Kelly Clarkson’s single, “A Moment Like This.”

Now, JAKKS is hoping consumers will also run to nab beauty products bearing “American Idol” logos. “As one of the hottest reality shows on television, ‘American Idol’ is well-positioned for success at retail,” said Jennifer Richmond, vice president of licensing for JAKKS Pacific. “With young people aspiring to be superstars, we think “American Idol”’s young fans will be excited to emulate the glamorous look of the show and its contestants at home.”

More than 65,000 people auditioned for the second round of “American Idol.” Each week America votes on its favorites until one winner is selected who receives a record contract. The new crop features men and women of all sizes, ages and shapes — many with definitive beauty styles.

The products include hairstyling aids such as ponytail holders, glitter hair mascara and glitter hairspray. For face, there are Pretty Peepers eye shadow and glitter compacts with eyelid decals. A kit called Puttin’ on the Glitz features a makeup brush, multicolored lipstick and lip gloss key chain. The pop-sensation TV show also is the inspiration for American Idol Max Body Gels featuring metallic body gel pens with stencils and rhinestone tattoos so users can decorate their bodies. The hair and cosmetics items will retail between $2.99 and $4.99.

The “American Idol” franchise will include nonbeauty goods such as stationery, writing instruments and portfolios. Beauty will bow first with stores receiving merchandise this spring. The other products will be set up in time for back-to-school. The company hopes the portfolio of licenses will help build multiple sales. Industry sources estimate the entire line could have sales exceeding $30 million within one year.

This story first appeared in the February 7, 2003 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

This is JAKKS Pacific’s Flying Colors’ second venture into beauty. The company also markets the It’s a Girl Thing collection of cosmetics that also targets young users.

“American Idol” isn’t the first licensed beauty line to hit mass-market doors. There have been brands based on shows such as “Sabrina The Teenage Witch,” “Dynasty,” “Beverly Hills 90210″ and cartoon “Powerpuff Girls” — with mixed success. But the timing could be right. “I’ve never [before] experienced these changes in the American consumer and taste levels,” remarked Allan Mottus, industry consultant. “The pivotal point is the success of J.Lo — so who knows? Hey, I think ‘The Bachelorette’ is a great [idea] for cosmetics,” he concluded, invoking the name of another reality hit.