NEW YORK — For the first major treatment addition to its Terme di Montecatini Spa line since 1987, Princess Marcella Borghese is keeping things strictly Italian.
The new product — called Cura Notte, or Night Therapy — utilizes alpha-hydroxy acids found in Italian olives. Other alpha-hydroxy acid products on the market use acids found in milk, citrus fruits, apples or sugar cane.
The Borghese product’s unusual ingredient, however, is not its only Italian attribute. According to Sherry Baker, president of Halston Borghese Inc., the company will draw on its Italian spa heritage in all aspects of the brand’s advertising and promotion.
“We feel that we have not nearly appropriately capitalized on our Italian spa background, which is something that no other company has,” she said, referring to the Montecatini Spa in Italy. “Going forward, our goal will be to not keep that part of our business a secret any more. We will be reinforcing at counter, through visuals, advertising and new product launches.”
Cura Notte, which will hit Borghese’s 900-door distribution in September, will be launched in three different formulations that are tailored to skin types.
There will be a version for normal-to-oily skin, one for normal-to-dry and another for dry-to-very dry. Each of the 1.7-oz. pumps will sell for $39.50.
“We thought that consumers will have a better end result if they use a product geared to their specific skin type,” said Linda Quinn, vice president of marketing for Borghese. “We felt that we would then have a higher brand loyalty.”
According to Quinn, the company is expecting Cura Notte to represent 7 percent of total Borghese business in the first 12 months.
“But we think that within a few years, it could be as high as 15 percent,” she added.
Industry sources estimated that a 7 percent share would give Cura Notte a wholesale volume of about $5 million in the first 12 months.
“We are really getting behind this treatment launch like we never have before,” Quinn said. “We are definitely spending the lion’s share of our advertising budget on it.”
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According to sources, the company is backing the brand with $2 million in print advertising during the launch year. The first ad flight will run in October and November women’s magazines. The campaign will pick up again in January and will run intermittently throughout the rest of the year, Quinn said.
This spring the company will send out one million mail pieces containing a sample and an order form. The company will also sample Cura Notte through 400,000 1/4-oz. tubes that will be available two weeks prior to the launch.
Cura Notte is just one of the strategies the company plans for getting more aggressive about its treatment business, which currently comprises about 45 percent of the line’s total sales.
“We are shooting for skin care to grow to 55 percent within the next three years,” she said. “I don’t think we can get any higher than that, given our strong sales in color and in our new Il Bacio fragrance.
“We think that Cura Notte is a great way to get there,” she added. “For the last few years we have been kind of quiet in this area, but we are planning several other major introductions in the next year or so, including one that will anniversary the launch of Cura Notte.”
In addition to the alpha-hydroxy acids found in olives, Cura Notte will also contain salicylic acid and MPG, an extremely gentle alpha-hydroxy acid-like compound.
The product also incorporates Vitamin A and Vitamin E to help sustain moisture, while derivatives of Vitamins C and E serve as free radical protectors, according to Marlene Tietjen, vice president of research and development for the company.
A consumer who uses this product needs no additional moisturizers or night creams, the company claims.
“We think that while Cura Notte will appeal to our existing customers and bring in new business, it won’t necessarily cannibalize our existing nighttime products,” Baker said. “There is a consumer who is most interested in state-of-the-art treatment. But there is also one who isn’t interested in going the alpha-hydroxy acid route.
“We have traditionally been very strong in our daytime skin care and a little weak in our night care,” Baker added. “Cura Notte will add a new nighttime ritual to our treatment business.”