WET ‘N’ WILD’S NEW TAKE ON FACE

Byline: Laura Klepacki

NEW YORK — Wet ‘n’ Wild, already a leading color brand, now hopes to make a splash in face.
Despite its budget prices, Wet ‘n’ Wild ranks among the top 10 best-selling mass cosmetics lines, with retail sales of $75 million. Stephanie Hayano, executive vice president of global marketing for AM Cosmetics, the brand’s parent, noted that in units sold, Wet ‘n’ Wild is at the top of the pack in lip color and nail polish.
According to Information Resources Inc., Wet ‘n’ Wild is second to Revlon in the number of lipsticks sold. Revlon sold 28 million lipsticks for the 52 weeks ended Feb. 20 and Wet ‘n’ Wild sold about 21 million. The next closest was Maybelline at 16 million.
In nail polish bottles, Wet ‘n’ Wild ranks number three with 17.4 million after Sally Hansen and Revlon, which sold 21.2 million and 19.5 million, respectively, according to IRI. The brand also moves its share of eye shadow. For the same period, Wet ‘n’ Wild was eighth in the category in unit volume.
In foundation, Wet ‘n’ Wild is nowhere on the chart. But that could be remedied this year as the brand rolls out new face products. It is replacing the brand’s existing liquid foundation with a new item called Keep It Real, described as a light oil-free formula in six shades. It contains cucumber extract and Vitamins A, C and E. A bottle is $2.99. It is also introducing Twisted, a cream foundation stick, said to dry to a powdery satin finish. It contains Vitamins A and E and comes in five shades. And Twist-Up, a cream blush stick, comes in four colors. The sticks are $1.99 each.
No consumer advertising is planned for the items, which are rolling out now, said Hayano. But to alert retailers, there will be some advertising in trade publications.
Most items are 99 cents to $1.99, Hayano said. “Wherever we can have cost savings, we will pump the money back into price.”
The new Wet ‘n’ Wild products come as the brand gets an in-store facelift, with new graphics and new imagery to appeal to hip young women with attitude. “With prices of 99 cents and $1.99, she buys to play and to have fun,” said Hayano.
New trendy items from Wet ‘n’ Wild include Phat Lip, a high-shine gloss containing yeast extract to plump lips, and Body Puddin, a body glitter with the texture of pudding.
AM Cosmetics has mapped out a plan to update the image and strengthen the market position for each of its seven brands. In addition to Wet ‘n’ Wild, they are Jonel, Sweet Georgia Brown, Artmatic, Black Radiance, Tropez and Lord & Berry.
Like Wet ‘n’ Wild, Black Radiance is rolling out a new liquid foundation, and a new cream foundation stick is replacing its compact foundation. Plans to reintroduce the Jonel brand in new packaging have been delayed until early next year to coincide with retailer resets.
Arnie Zimmerman, chairman of AM, has said he hoped to double the company’s annual sales of $150 million.

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