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Tarte’s Dual Effort: Dedicated Color Lines for Sephora and Ulta Beauty

The color cosmetics brand has created two new brands: Rainforest of the Sea for Sephora, and Double Duty Beauty for Ulta Beauty.

It’s a double play for Tarte. The color cosmetics brand has produced two fresh brands for two different retailers: Rainforest of the Sea for Sephora and Double Duty Beauty for Ulta Beauty.

Both are exclusive to those respective retailers and will be considered subbrands within the Tarte corporate structure, said Candace Craig Bulishak, chief marketing officer of Tarte. In addition to their exclusives, both retailers will continue to stock the core Tarte line.

Rainforest of the Sea has an underwater beauty theme, complete with algaes and marine extracts. “Our core brand is all about high-performance naturals and we have ingredient stories, one being Amazonian clay,” Bulishak said. “We realized the next ingredient story was water. The ingredients are algaes, marine extracts and everything has a luminous finish. And we’re including other trends, such as highlighting and color-correcting, which we’ve never really done before.”

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The Rainforest of the Sea collection includes 48 stockkeeping units; three are skin-care offerings (cleanser, 4-in-1 Mist and lightweight moisturizer), with the balance devoted mostly to color cosmetics, although six of the skus are brushes. A water-based foundation will be available in 12 shades, paired with six shades of concealer. Prices range from $19 for Quench Lip Rescue lip balms to $45 for a color-correcting palette called Wipeout. Packaging is in turquoise and purple with hints of gold; two-bay gondolas in the same colors will house the collection.

At launch, the Rainforest of the Sea collection will be sold in 242 free-standing Sephora doors in the U.S., 42 in Canada and 258 Sephora inside J.C. Penney doors. Rainforest of the Sea will be available on at the end of February and in bricks-and-mortar in mid-March. In all cases, it will grow Tarte’s footprint, said Bulishak.

Artemis Patrick, senior vice president of merchandising for Sephora, said the new collection “offers radiance, luminosity and brightness — all of which are very relevant to today’s consumer needs and beauty trends.”

Double Duty Beauty focuses on products that do double duty and makeup with skin-care benefits, noted Bulishak. “We really want to grow our business within Ulta, so we sat down with them and looked for areas of opportunity,” she said. “We think of this collection more of a lifestyle brand for the customer on the go. We include positive beauty-isms like ‘She Dreamed, She Believed, She Succeeded,’ which is on one of our palettes. Also, often moms and daughters are shopping together at Ulta, and this line works for both generations.”

The Ulta line has 38 skus. They include The Eye Architect, a double-ended eyeliner and eyeshadow in three color combinations, $24 each; The Lip Sculptor, eight colorways of a double-ended lipstick and gloss, also each $24, and Double Duty Beauty Day/Night Eye and Cheek Palettes, each $28. Customers also have two foundation options: a gel foundation in 10 shades, each $39, and Confidence Creamy Powder Foundation in 10 shades, each $35. Three double-ended mascaras, each $21, will be offered. Packaging is in lavender, purple and gold.

Double Duty Beauty will be available online on Feb. 21 and in store on March 8. It will be available in full Ulta distribution, currently about 900 doors.

“Double Duty Beauty was Maureen [Kelly, founder and chief executive of Tarte]’s brainchild and it was a pleasure to work and develop this project in partnership with the Tarte team,” said Tara Simon, senior vice president of merchandising at Ulta Beauty, who praised the “distinct and differentiated” benefits.

Social media will be the driving force behind the marketing campaigns for both lines, said Bulishak. “There are two pieces of that,” she said. “The social PR part, and a social content platform. Our customers are Millennials and they are all on social media. We’ve strongly adapted our marketing strategy to incorporate social.” Snapchat and Periscope are a particular focus, she said. “Snapchat and Periscope are live and in real-time — there isn’t that editing aspect which you have with YouTube and Instagram,” she said. “With Snapchat, you have 10 or 15 seconds to show real, live action and send messages. Periscope is live-streaming — it’s the new way to do YouTube. We’ll do tutorials, Q&A sessions and more.” The brand will also unveil its new philanthropy project, an antibullying campaign called #KissAndMakeUp, on Periscope.

On social media, Tarte will use #TarteUnderTheSea for the Sephora brand and #TarteDDB for Ulta’s line.

Tarte will also roll out a new ath-leisure-inspired skin-care line in its core line in April at 175 Sephora doors, said Bulishak. It will be 18 skus, a combination of existing and new items, gathered together under one umbrella, with more to be added throughout the year. “We’re leveraging our color positioning, pointing out that high-performance skin care will make the makeup on top of it look and wear better,” Bulishak said.

While all involved declined to discuss sales projections, industry sources estimated that the lines could each generate sales of $25 million at retail in their first year on counter. Industry sources estimated that Tarte’s overall business globally is currently more than $100 million at retail.