It seems a day doesn’t go by or a news article released without the mention of infrared light (IR), blue light (HEVL), and specific forms of pollution such as PM2.5, unclean water and heavy metals.
As a leading consumer concern, both brands and consumers are striving to find an appropriate solution. Consumers are searching for gentle, protection-based items, while brands are creating sustainability initiatives and investing in research and development (R&D) into new product launches.
Raising the volume
However, “beauty brands are all struggling to make themselves heard in the crowded skin care and sun care markets”, Vivienne Rudd, Director of Global Innovation and Insight, Beauty & Personal Care, at Mintel, indicated. And so, as a result, these names are “trying to win over consumers with new and more specific protection claims”.
As UV protection has become “standard”, brands and their products have forged greater competitiveness, and are now marketing their products with “additional infrared protection”.
Rudd highlighted how in the Asia-Pacific region (APAC) Japanese brands such as Orbis and Dr. Ci:Labo, refer to near and far infrared protection. While in Latin America, for example, Esika talks about infrared A, B and C. These claims are varied in their positioning and choice of selection to suit specific markets.
What’s new for anti-pollution
As the anti-pollution market moves ahead, Rudd stated that “pollution claims are also becoming more specific”.
Whereas in the past, brands “used fairly vague language” that simply referred to anti-pollution complexes, today’s consumers are “starting to ask questions”.
With intelligence and education such a fundamental part of beauty selling, brands are having to respond with “information about specific ingredients and the sort of pollution their products are tackling”.
Following this leap and increased consumer interest, “PM2.5 and PM10 are both starting to crop up in Western marketing”, Rudd revealed.
Emphasising those claims currently exclusive to Asia, Rudd explained: “References to heavy metals, dust and unclean water are still only seen in Asia, but we will see more references to the urban heavy metals and traffic exhaust in the West in the future.”
High Energy Visible
Hailed as the “new protection buzzword”, HEV (High Energy Visible) or blue light, is gaining popularity and subsequently, customers. It concentrates on “repurposing sun protection technology to prevent the pigmentation and premature ageing associated with blue light”.
Lierac and Dr Sebagh, for example, both use fractionated melanin to back their protective claim, Rudd backed.
Forming beauty definitions
In the cosmetics market, internal stress is defined as emotional and mental stress caused by busy lifestyles, working environments, lack of sleep and seasonal affective disorder.
External stress comes from the environment in the form of weather and pollution, for instance.
Using plants to remove stress
Historically sitting within the fragrance sector, Rudd stated that “anti-stress products are moving beyond the use of fragrances to a more therapeutic approach”.
The creation of neurocosmetics is on the up, due to “research into the connection between emotional stress and skin condition”. These strive to minimise cortisol levels in the skin and raise endorphin levels.
On the whole, packaging claims are based on ingredients including chasteberry, a plant associated with traditional remedies for premenstrual syndrome (PMS) which is used by Butter London in its Plush Rush lipsticks, and indigo seed, which is in Eve Lom's Intensive Night Cream.
Suppliers such as Givaudan, Greenaltech and Vytrus, though are going a step further by delving into the properties of other plants and creating convincing anti-stress claims. “We're sure to see many more anti-stress products hit the market in the next year,” Rudd emphasised.
The second part of this interview will be published on Wednesday 23rd January 2018.