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Prescriptives Builds on Brand’s Foundation With Launch

As Prescriptives turns 25, it will make a bid for new customers in August with its biggest launch in five years: Flawless Skin Total Protection Makeup.

NEW YORK — As Prescriptives celebrates its 25th year in business, the company will make a bid for new customers this August with its most significant launch in five years: Flawless Skin Total Protection Makeup.

The company’s ninth entry into the foundation category, Flawless Skin will commemorate the founding of Prescriptives. And, for the first time since the firm launched Magic — a collection of light-diffusing makeup — in 2000, Prescriptives will back a product with a national advertising campaign.

“We’re saying to the consumer, ‘This is our newest innovation,’” said Lynne Greene, president of the specialty group for the Estée Lauder Cos., who noted that the ad campaign also will highlight other key products for the brand, including Traceless Skin Responsive Tint and Intensive Rebuilding Eye Cream, which features a commentary on “The Aging Eye” by Prescriptives Labs consulting dermatologist Dr. Karyn Grossman. “New customers are the customers we’re soliciting with the magazine advertising.”

Elana Drell-Szyfer, vice president of global marketing for the brand, said that the ads “speak to flawless skin from start to finish and reinforce our two key pillars, doctor-designed skin care and foundation.” She noted that the Flawless Skin ads will drop in September issues of women’s fashion, beauty and lifestyle magazines.

Inspired by the brand’s silver anniversary, the company set out to create a product that was based on the — ahem — foundation of Prescriptives, the products and categories that have helped to build it into a leading cosmetics brand, according to Greene.

“We wanted to evaluate Prescriptives for the future, to look at past breakthroughs and innovations,” said Greene. “When we looked at the milestones [for the brand], a main focus was foundation.”

Developed in conjunction with Dr. Grossman, Flawless is meant not only to deliver cosmetic benefits, but to protect skin from environmental factors, as well. It contains SPF 15 and features Flexmatrix technology, which is said to lock in the makeup’s color pigments and ingredients. Drell-Szyfer compared Flexmatrix with the technology used in transepidermal patches — often used to curb nicotine cravings — continually delivering the product’s ingredients to the skin. “It serves as a delivery system,” she said. “It holds in and time-releases the product’s ingredients throughout the day.”

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Made with liquefied resin, Flexmatrix “forms a breathable, skin-fusing, bonding shield,” according to Drell-Szyfer. “When you apply a regular foundation, throughout the day, it breaks on the skin, but that breaking is stopped with Flexmatrix,” she said. Flawless Skin also contains antioxidants, including rosemary extract, resveratrol and vitamin E, which are said to help neutralize free radicals and boost the skin’s defenses against environmental damage; Pro-XCell Complex, which includes ultrasomes derived from yeast extract and is said to help stimulate the skin’s natural repair mechanisms, and SPF 15 to help shield the skin from UVA and UVB rays. Drell-Szyfer said applying a foundation that contains SPF, like Flawless Skin, actually increases the consumer’s chance of getting better protection from the sun, as opposed to using an SPF skin care product alone.

“Some might say, ‘I wear skin care with SPF, isn’t that enough?’” she said. “But you would never wear a foundation the way you wear a skin care SPF product because [with foundation], you can blend it and see where it goes. You have the opportunity to have a more complete application of product.”

In addition, Flawless Skin features Smart Optics filters, which contain coated silica and mica that help reflect light, giving the skin almost an airbrush effect, according to the company. “[The Smart Optics] help to give the skin a flawless look,” said Drell-Szyfer.

Flawless Skin will retail for $39.50 for a 1-oz. bottle and will be available in a range of 30 shades, which is the average range for Prescriptives’ foundation lines, according to the company.

While executives would not comment on numbers, Flawless Skin Total Perfection Makeup could do $15 million in first-year retail sales, with about $3 million spent on advertising and promotion. “This is our biggest launch in seven years and will be our number-one foundation,” said Drell-Szyfer.

In addition to the ad campaign, the company also will promote Flawless Skin with 3.5 million BeautiSeal samples in national magazines, one million drammed samples at-counter and a “Flawless Skin From Start to Finish” gift-with-purchase kit, featuring Super Line Preventor Plus, Intensive Rebuilding Eye Cream, Magic Invisible Line Smoother, Moonbeam Reflective Lip Gloss and a seven-day supply of Flawless in the customer’s exact shade.