Nature's Bounty's new Beauty Gels.

Experts agree that the beauty supplements business is growing at a brisk clip and should hit $8.5 billion by 2020. The mass market, with pharmacies in most doors, is poised to benefit from the synergy between wellness and beauty as the category sprouts. But what retailers are sorting out is if consumers will veer toward ingestibles formulated from vitamin leaders, or beauty companies — or if there is room in the market for both.

Nature’s Bounty is firmly established in the first camp. Emboldened by success in the 10-year-old Hair, Skin & Nails supplements, Nature’s Bounty Co., a vitamin firm, is putting down bets shoppers will trust companies with a heritage in the business. Next month, Nature’s Bounty will extend deeper into ingestibles with a lineup called Beauty Gels set first to debut in the traditional beauty category at Ulta Beauty. That will be followed up with availability in CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aid in the spring. Beauty Gels are also sold on Amazon.

While retailers are trying out beauty-from-within options from both beauty and vitamin brands, at least one retailer feels the edge goes to vitamin companies at this juncture. “Vitamin companies like Nature’s Bounty have the reputation in vitamins that translates to beauty,” explained one drugstore buyer. “They have earned the trust.”

Don Kerrigan, president North America at The Nature’s Bounty Co. agreed that is a competitive edge. “We have a long history of quality and efficacy and have dozens of trusted brands — clearly consumers see the value in that. Additionally, we have a proven track record in beauty with multiple forms of biotin, collagen and vitamin E supplements, including our hair, skin and nail products.”

In tandem with overall vitamin sale growth, beauty supplement sales are on the rise, especially with younger consumers taking a beauty-from-within direction. “Given the growing consumer interest in this segment, we developed Beauty Gels, a dedicated line of softgels that tackle issues that consumers care about most — like sleep, skin elasticity and clear complexion,” Kerrigan said.

The Beauty Gels, according to Nature’s Bounty, can help mass attract consumers who have previously been buying higher-end offers. The collection is priced at $19.99. And, the vitamin expertise, buyers said, could finally move the needle on ingestibles which have been tried with mixed success before in the mass market by some of the giants in the industry such as Olay.

“Our new Beauty Gels line was designed to bridge the gap of premium beauty shoppers and the traditional vitamin category users. The line cues heavily from the beauty industry — from unique, high-end packaging reminiscent of cosmetics, to clean and colorful labels that are beauty-benefit driven,” said Kerrigan.

The approach is simple, he added. “Our insights showed that people are looking for simple solutions that feel customized to address their particular needs and can be seamlessly added to their daily repertoire. Our new Beauty Gels line consists of seven scientifically formulated products that address needs around skin care, skin complexion, restful sleep and healthy aging. We looked to make the packaging clean and simple for consumers to understand — with the formula benefit clearly identifiable through the product name.”

As an example, the GoodnightLovely formula combines skin-hydrating hyaluronic acid with sleep-enhancing melatonin. The ClearComplexion formula combines skin-clarifying zinc with manganese to support a clearer complexion for people with non-cystic acne.

Despite the fact Beauty Gels were developed by a strictly vitamin company, Kerrigan said the products firmly belong in the beauty aisles. “This is where consumers go when looking for new products to add to their existing regimen. Our shopper insights show that consumers who are looking for a particular beauty solution — for example, skin elasticity support — will first try the familiar beauty aisle to see if anything fits their needs. Our line offers something new and different to this shopper — a way to support their needs from the inside out.”

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