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News and information on natural products, merchandising and trends in retail pharmacies.

Beauty category looks to weather pending storm

DSN looks at five ways beauty brands and retailers are looking to survive a potentially forthcoming industry downturn.

Johnson & Johnson to buy OGX shampoo maker for $3.3B

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. -- Johnson & Johnson is looking to strengthen its position in hair care by agreeing to acquire Vogue International, a privately held personal care products company, for approximately $3.3 billion in cash.

J&J said the acquisition will include the OGX collection of shampoos, conditioners, treatments, styling products, body care and bath products, the FX line of hair styling products, and the Proganix and Maui Moisture hair care lines.

For all the clamor and controversy over being “cruelty-free,” little attention is paid to the animal derivatives used in the products themselves. There is a small but growing band of thought leaders — brands, bloggers and activists — who are determined to raise awareness and create a market for those who want to lessen the environmental impact of animal agriculture by offering vegan beauty products.

In just the past few months, Walmart announced plans for a naturally positioned color cosmetics line called Found. CVS has pumped in more than 2,000 natural, organic and naturally inspired items, such as Organic Doctor and Burt’s Bees cosmetics into 3,000 doors. And earlier this year, Target substantially built out its natural assortment and dubbed natural skin care as a business contributing double-digit percentage sales lifts.  

Hamacher Resource Group’s Future 50 Emerging Brands from 2017 include products that run the gamut from OTC to beauty, from eyedrops to hemorrhoid cream, all of which have set themselves apart from the pack based on sales indicators and community pharmacy distribution.

The nine-SKU line of natural products spans the personal care category from lip balm to shampoo, beard oil and under-eye moisturizer.

Cosmoprof North America, or CPNA, delivered a robust beauty trade fair featuring resources for every aspect of business, from packaging and filling to finished product. The event, held July 9 to July 12 in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, grew this year in both attendance and square footage, which can be attributed to expansion in such specialized areas as scent, natural products and multicultural items, not to mention a multitude of country pavilions — with Korean beauty holding court in two areas.

Drug chains are editing existing product assortments to clear more space for up-and-coming brands that court back shoppers who may have migrated to specialty stores. Several categories are heating things up in the beauty aisles, especially Korean beauty. Kline research reveals the category is growing at a 30% annual clip, and chains are seeking the right items to introduce more shoppers to the innovative and effective Korean entries.

MIAMI, Fla. -- Beauty products brand HSI Professional is planning to expand distribution of its styling tools and hair care products to brick-and-mortar retailers.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Private equity firm VMG Partners has sold a rapidly growing brand of personal care for families to SC Johnson. 

Founded in 2004, Babyganics is a lifestyle brand offering family-focused products including skin care, bath care, sun care, insect repellent, oral care, hand hygiene, surface cleaners, laundry products, dish soaps, diapers and wipes.

At top from left: Judy Ard, VP of HBC, ECRM; Jack Savdie, Vice President of Sales and Albert Savdie, President, Global Beauty Care; Alex Tomas, Area Manager, DSN. At bottom right, from left: Judy Ard, VP of HBC, ECRM; Peter Mulholland, General Manager Australasia at InnovaDerma Aus & NZ Pty Limited, Louise  Ferguson co-founder of SkinnyTan; Alex Tomas, Area Manager, DSN.

Kroger will have more than 40 representatives, ranging from buyers and category managers to merchandising executives, participate in NatExpo West this year.

Although the U.S. color cosmetics market has seen a 2% increase so far this year, growth is sluggish across individual segments, according to new research by Mintel. Consumer desire for simplified makeup routines have affected lip, facial and eye cosmetics — each of which has grown about two percentage points slower this year compared with last year.

Mass market doors might not be the prime destination for all beauty products, but there are market wedges the channel dominates. An example is color cosmetics, where brows and lashes are leading the charge to attract shoppers. Bath sales are also bubbling again as drug stores wrest customers away from mall-based specialty stores, while also nabbing licensed hits that score big with parents. IRI tracked double-digit increases in the category over the past year.

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