Men’s skin care brand Zirh is looking to kick off a resurgence this spring with the launch at Barneys New York of a high-priced skin care line called Zirh Platinum.

Zirh, which was purchased from Shiseido Co. in August by a group of investors led by the brand’s former owner, Brian Robinson, is readying eight products to be launched exclusively with Barneys on April 15. Plans call for the line to remain exclusive for at least a year.

Zirh is betting that upscale male shoppers will shell out more for skin care products with a high-tech bent, with four Platinum items priced at $125 or more. The line’s entry price point is $65 for the 1.7-oz. R2 R-Evolution balm, a retexturizing, postshave product designed to reduce redness and irritation. Its most expensive item is the 1-oz. Repair Deep Wrinkle Concentrate for $145.

The items, whose packaging differs from Zirh’s signature silver and blue motif with a black and silver look, include specialized moisturizers and antiaging treatments.

“It’s the first step in reestablishing Zirh as an innovative and forward-thinking brand,” Robinson, president of Zirh Holdings LLC, said of Platinum.

The line, which is positioned as an “ultraluxe” combination of nature and science, blends botanical extracts with liposome technology designed to deliver ingredients like Kalahari watermelon extract to skin cells.

The watermelon extract contains vitamins and amino acids said to protect the skin, while an ingredient complex called Natural Moisturizing Factor blends potassium, sodium, magnesium lactate and urea to hydrate and promote elasticity. Formulations also feature peptides; barley, tomato and mushroom extracts and sodium hyaluronate.

In addition to the R2 R-Evolution and Repair items, the Platinum line includes Drenched Ultra Hydrating Moisturizer, $95 for 1.7 oz.; Revive Under Eye Complex, $75 for 0.5 oz., and Accli-Matte Mattifying Moisturizer, $95 for 2 oz. There’s also PM Rescue Night Time Renewing Serum, $125 for 2 oz.; Age Defense Environmental Response Cream, $125 for 1.7 oz., and Total Re-Charge Retexturing Facial Lotion, $125 for 1.7 oz.

The fact that Zirh first came on to the market in 1995 at Barneys was central in deciding where to launch Platinum, according to Robinson.

This story first appeared in the February 8, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

“We have a long-standing relationship with the Zirh brand and think that Platinum offers a great opportunity for us and our customers who are looking for strong, performance products,” Bettina O’Neill, vice president and divisional merchandise manager at Barneys, said in a statement. “We believe that the brand has a lot of potential.”

Platinum is slated to be launched exclusively with key retailers in 40 or 50 of Zirh’s 68 international markets. In the U.K., plans call for Platinum to be launched at London’s Liberty department store. In Canada, it is set for Holt Renfrew.

In the U.S., the 27-item Zirh brand will maintain its existing distribution in 1,050 Sephora, Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s and Ulta stores as it adds Platinum to its product mix.

Zirh is estimated by industry sources to have total annual revenues of $25 million. Platinum could generate $5 million in first-year retail sales volume worldwide, sources added.

In addition to in-store efforts, a print advertising campaign targeting magazines such as Gotham, New York and L.A. Confidential is planned to support Platinum.

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