What goes on must come off. With that in mind, mass-market retailers are adding new technology nail polish removers to nail-care departments hoping gains in the $118 million remover market can offset declines in nail lacquer.

“Nail polish removers don’t have the same volatility as some other categories,” explained Barbara Hershfelt, director of sales and marketing at Cutex. Although Cutex is one of the most recognizable remover brands (88 percent of consumers recall purchasing Cutex in the past, according to market research), the brand was supplanted in many stores by private labels. Private label nail polish removers currently have a 75 percent share of sales.

Cutex, which was acquired by a private equity firm in 2010, spent the past few years refocusing and investigating market gaps. The result is a bevy of new items aimed at specific needs. The company expects new products will produce as much as 40 percent of sales. Industry sources estimate Cutex’s annual volume to be between $15 million and $20 million. Cutex did not comment on sales figures.

One of the most notable of the launches is Twister SPA Formula, a two-in-one instant remover packaged in a jar with a sponge soaked in the formula along with a brush for stubborn polish. In particular, Twister helps remove dark shades, glitter polish and gels. Twister is now available at Target, Kmart and Rite Aid with a suggested retail of $4.99 for a 7-oz. container.

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The attention to nail polish remover is not wasted on Target, which just overhauled its entire nail presentation. Cutex is among the brands added to the lineup—the first time the company has been in Target in the past eight years. Previously the remover selection included private label and Sally Hansen.

Target is promoting Twister through its Beauty Concierge platform. “Cutex will provide ongoing knowledge about important nail-care topics, its product and current trends will be used for the Beauty Concierge training blog.” Target now carries five Cutex products — Cutex Regular Nail Polish Remover, Cutex SPA Formula Nail Polish Remover, Cutex Advanced Revival Nail Polish Remover and Cutex Advanced Revival Nail Polish Remover Pads.

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