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Kanebo Targets Mature Skin With Upscale Serum

NEW YORK — This fall, Kanebo is taking aim at skin aging. <br><br>Sensai Cellular Performance Advanced Recovery Concentrate, Kanebo’s new anti-aging serum, is intended to improve skin’s cell memory, as well as boost the efficacy of...

NEW YORK — This fall, Kanebo is taking aim at skin aging.

Sensai Cellular Performance Advanced Recovery Concentrate, Kanebo’s new anti-aging serum, is intended to improve skin’s cell memory, as well as boost the efficacy of other skin care products used with it, said Hiroshi Yuki, president of Kanebo Cosmetics USA and chief representative of Kanebo Cosmetics.

The product’s key ingredient is the proprietary Bio-Cell Activator, derived from an amino acid found in spinach beet, said Jean-Baptiste Grieu, research and development engineer for Kanebo. “Bio-Cell Activator is intended to boost cell energy by stimulating mitochondria, enhancing its ability to synthesize higher levels of adenosine triphosphate, a molecule which supplies energy for healthy cellular activity,” added Grieu. “In short, the product is designed to help reprogram the cell, trigger cell memory and make it more efficient. The result is smoother, more translucent, firmer skin.”

The concentrate also includes apricot essence B15, said to stimulate epidermal cell renewal; barrier power booster, a vitamin B complex from yeast extract, which is said to improve the natural barrier function of the skin; a collagen booster, said to improve skin firmness; OH scavenger, a clove derivative which is said to neutralize free radicals, defending skin from photo-aging and wrinkles; and kakyoku extract, extracted from rose bushes, which is said to inhibit melanin formation and to maintain an even skin tone and brighten the complexion. It is designed to be used in combination with a moisturizer both in the morning and in the evening.

Advanced Recovery Concentrate is set to launch in September and will be available in three doors in the United States — Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York and Takashimaya — as well as at kanebo.com. Worldwide, the product will be available in about 2,000 doors.

Retailing for $200 for a 1.36-ounce bottle, the product’s main market is expected to be 40-plus women. While neither of the executives would comment on projected sales, industry sources estimated that the item would do at least $5 million at retail worldwide in its first year on counter.

“We expect that as many as 50 to 75 percent of our present customers will also begin to use this item,” said Yuki. “We believe this will be a winner for us.”

While the price point is high, Yuki isn’t worried. “In treatment, the price range is wide —?many products fall from $100 to $300. We’re taking advantage of that as a company with many different products in many different price points. Within our company’s range, we have both a $120 cream and a $500 cream. We’ve found that if the product is effective, the consumer will buy; they are very loyal to their skin care.”

While national advertising is not currently in the works, the brand is planning to sample the new product in each of its launch doors, with a total of about 2,000 pieces. Unlike many one-use samples, Kanebo’s version features a one-week supply. “We feel that this will give consumers the best chance to experience the benefits of the product,” said Yuki.