Bright idea: South Korean fashion firm Michaa enters beauty space with sun care-focused brand

By Amanda Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

Sisun International to expand its business into the cosmetics market with its newly launched sun care brand. ©Sun Stage
Sisun International to expand its business into the cosmetics market with its newly launched sun care brand. ©Sun Stage

Related tags: Sun care

Sisun International, the company behind South Korean apparel retailer Michaa, is looking to expand its business into the cosmetics market with its newly launched sun care brand.

Sun stage was launched less than six months ago and is the company’s second cosmetics brand.

The company officially entered the K-beauty scene in January with a launch of Cure Program.

“We wanted to explore our business in a different category but still closely related to women’s fashion,”​ said Hyunsik You, business development manager, Sisun International.

You told CosmeticsDesign-Asia​ that the company did not want Cure Program to be like other conventional make-up or skin care brands in an already saturated South Korean beauty market.

“So, we decided to create a product that can help the retail employees in our fashion stores. They spend the whole day on their feet, so we thought we should create something that could relax their legs,”​ explained You.

Cure Program’s first product was the Leg Spa, a mask that hydrates and soothes tired legs with a refreshing cooling effect. It was launched to moderate success and soon its next product, a room spray, followed.

“The idea was to heal the mind and body. Taking care of your body is becoming as important as taking care of your face. I think people globally now understand this. Maybe people are working too hard and these workaholics need rest. [Cure Program] lets you take care of yourself at home, without having to spend all that time and money at a spa,” ​You said.

The new sun care experts?

While the company believes there is a need for products like those from Cure Program, it has now shifted its focus to the sun care category where it believes has more potential.

Sun Stage was a collaborative project between the company and a well-known South Korean stylist, Soo Kyung Seo, who had previously worked with the company’s fashion brands.

“[Seo] works outdoors a lot because she works as a stylist on television dramas and movies. She was very concerned about skin damage and [photoaging] so she wanted to create a sun care brand,” ​said You.

The result was a sun care-focused brand that launched with two sun screens in both stick and cushion form. The brand claims that its formula cools the skin instantly, which in turn heals skin damage and slows down the ageing process.

Seo worked very closely with the team on the branding and products. You said this intimate partnership remained the strongest advantage the brand has as it opens the doors for the brand to reach other celebrities or influencers.

“I think we have a lot of potential in this brand because we work with celebrities and influencers. This is our strong advantage,” ​You said.

Moving forward, the brand plans to launch more products early next year. Fans of the brand can look forward to an extended sun care range including primers, lip care or even after-sun care masks.

“We have a few products under development and we’re testing different types of sun screen products. We want to show that our brand is the sun care expert,” ​said You.

While the company has over 1,300 Michaa retail outlets in South Korea, You said the company is focused on building Sun Stage as a direct-to-consumer, online brand.

“Worldwide, offline retail is not doing so good right now, so we are very online oriented in South Korea,”​ said You

The company has ambitions to expand the brand globally and will begin by expanding across Asia first.

“Hong Kong is a pretty important market for us because of China. We also want to expand into South East Asia, like Singapore, where the weather is hot,”​ said You.

He concluded: “The goal is to expand our products all over the world, that’s why we are here at Cosmoprof Asia and that’s why we exhibited at Cosmoprof in Las Vegas too. We’re hoping to find a partner that will take us all over the world.”

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