Future Beauty Labs, the parent company of Tan Luxe, Isle of Paradise and Tanologist, has tapped corporate financial advisory firm Baylor Klein to explore a deal, Marc Elrick, chief executive officer and cofounder of the company, confirmed to WWD.
“We’re going to market because we are struggling to keep up with demand,” Elrick said. “There is a huge opportunity for tanning to become a regular part of the everyday consumer’s beauty regime…to bring that vision to life, we identified that we really need to align ourselves with a strategic partner that has…the experience required to help us scale up the business.”
The business, which has three brands that each target different self-tanning shoppers, is said to be on track to do between $13 million and $15 million in gross sales for 2018 — that number is expected to reach $25 million for 2019, according to industry sources. Elrick noted that the company had received inbound interest from potential partners.
Back in 2015, Elrick launched the company because he felt the self-tanning category hadn’t evolved. “The formats were a bit outdated.…The consumer was still often blaming themself for poor application, rather than [poor] performance,” he said.
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Of its three brands, Tan Luxe is the most established — it makes up about half of the overall operation. Sold at Space NK, Sephora, Ulta Beauty, Nordstrom, HSN, Selfridges, Revolve and other retailers, Tan Luxe is best known for its Tailor Made Tanning system, which allows users to customize their tans by mixing droplets of the Illuminating Self-Tan Drops ($64), into their body lotion or oil.
“On the weekend if you’re like, I want to turn it up a little, you can apply four drops. If you’re going to a wedding and you want to be darker, you can apply six drops and be golden,” Elrick said. “It puts the consumer in the driver’s seat, and for me, that’s the future of beauty.”
In that same vein is Isle of Paradise, a brand founded by celebrity tanner Jules Von Hep, who has tanned Blake Lively, Kate Moss, Sienna Miller and other celebrities. Launched in 2018, Isle of Paradise centers around color-correcting self-tanners with clean formulations — the products are included in Sephora’s Clean at Sephora program. The lineup includes Prep It Self-Tan Priming Spray, $22; Self Tanning Mousse, $29; Self Tanning Drops, $29; and Self Tanning Water, $28, in green, peach and purple — meant to help even out undertones, similar to color-correcting concealer.
“Many people don’t know where to place our brand,” said Elrick. “We kind of created this new category that’s a hybrid between tanning, skin-care and cosmetics.”
A third brand under the umbrella, Tanologist, is slated to hit U.S. shelves in early 2019. Created by influencer Lottie Tomlinson, who has 3.3 million followers on Instagram, the brand makes self-tanning drops and waters that are also meant to give users a gradual and customizable tan.
“Her network is a huge opportunity to market this brand,” Elrick said.
Tanologist is set to enter a growing market. According to the NPD Group, prestige self-tanners did $56.7 million in sales for the year ended July 31, up 23 percent from the prior year period. Tanning has also already attracted some deal action — in January, Hildred acquired self-tan brand Vita Liberata.