New York — Nivea is bringing a soft touch to the moisturizing market.
Nivea Soft, a light textured cream first introduced to international markets 11 years ago, is now making its way to the U.S.
The cream’s lightweight, whipped formula has a soufflé-like feel. It contains jojoba oil, intended to make skin soft and smooth, and the antioxidant vitamin E for skin protection. It comes in a 6.8-oz. jar for $5.99 and a 2.6-oz. tube for $2.99. The product is gentle enough to be used on both body and face.
Susan Savoie, vice president, marketing, for Beiersdorf, Nivea’s parent, said Nivea Soft “is very light and very easy to apply.” Its consistency is similar to, but even lighter than, Nivea Renewal Night Creme, introduced in the U.S. last year.
In foreign markets, the Nivea Soft items have matched sales of Nivea’s core item, Nivea Creme, a moisturizer for dry skin.
The U.S. moisturizer market is dominated by lotions, representing 90 percent of mass market sales, versus 10 percent for creams. But Savoie sees the market starting to evolve, with consumer interest in new product forms.
“There is a real element of bringing that other dimension to moisturizing. This takes it to a whole new sensory experience,” said Savoie. “It is a pretty simple story. We are not touting a big ingredient, although there are some wonderful ingredients.”
Nivea Soft was introduced in Europe in 1993 and has since been rolled out in South America, Asia, Africa, Canada and Mexico. It will make its U.S. debut in August. It will be heavily supported with aggressive direct-to-consumer sampling using trial-size pots. Advertising will follow next year.
In 2003, Nivea’s U.S retail sales reached $180 million, including its body, face and men’s products. Along with the new Nivea Soft, the brand has been expanding its offering this year with a lotion version of its Renewal Body Night Creme, a new Silky Shimmer Lotion and several additions to the men’s line, including Fresh Cooling Shaving Gel, Oil Control Face Wash and Oil Control Lotion.
Savoie has said sales for the franchise are expected to grow in the double digits, as they have in each of the past five years.