Founded in 2015, Suu Balm offers a range of products developed specially for people suffering from sensitive skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. The products are developed with Dr Tey Hong Liang, a senior consultant dermatologist at Singapore’s National Skin Centre (NSC).
Suu Balm first debuted with the Rapid Itch Relief Moisturiser, a dual-function body moisturiser and later expanded with a kids’ range, body washes, scalp spray, facial care series.
Most recently, Suu Balm has launched a new, upgraded formula of the Rapid Itch Relief Moisturiser.
Dr John O’Shea, co-founder of Suu Balm told CosmeticsDesign-Asia that it was important for the company to continue improving on its formulation to keep up with the new developments in a fast-paced industry.
The company has adopted a Kai Zen philosophy – continuously improving all functions and aspects of a product’s development to ensure the end user has the best possible product.
At the same time, it strives to retain the same price point. “Rather than launch a new product with new ingredients at a higher price point, we decided to take a different approach and work on the continuous improvement of one product,” said O’Shea.
The improved preservative-free formulation now contains five types of skin-identical ceramides to improve its hydrating effects.
“Dr Tey has a passion for research and finding new ingredients that are suitable for his patients for sensitive and eczema-prone skin. Since we first developed the formulation in 2014, we’ve discovered other ceramide ingredients that perform better than pure ceramide-3 in terms of its moisturising efficacy,” said O’Shea.
The formulation now also contains saccharide isomerate, a humectant that boosts skin moisture levels and restores the skin barrier that is also 100% natural and plant-derived.
Additionally, the firm has also developed the new formulation without preservatives while retaining the same shelf life.
“We have a lot of interest in our environmental impact and we’re working to improve our footprint over time. I think its an imperative these days, otherwise there’s not going to be a world for our kids to live in,” said O’Shea.
The new formula has yet to undergo independent testing, but from the firm’s own internal corneometry testing, the new formula was found to be significantly more hydrating than the original.
Surviving a pandemic
Despite the complications of the COVID-19 pandemic, Suu Balm has managed to grow its business in 2020.
According to O’Shea, the firm has met its pre-pandemic growth targets in Singapore and even saw sales growth in Malaysia, the UK and Ireland, which experienced more pandemic-related turbulence in 2020.
“We feel extraordinarily lucky to have been able to do so well over the year and didn’t have to let anyone go or make people take a pay cut over COVID-19. We’re very excited for the coming financial year as we will be launching in Indonesia in the next couple of weeks,” said O’Shea.
Aside from market expansion, the company also has new products in the pipeline. Among them, two of the products were developed from an environmentally friendly approach.
O’Shea told us that it was important for the company to take more environmentally steps as it continues to growth.
“I think eventually there will be pressure in terms of regulation and there will be constraints. In a way you could say its good to do it now rather than wait till the last minute. That being said, the main motivator behind these is really because we feel it’s the right thing to do,” he said.
“The environment also plays a huge role in skin conditions and high levels of pollution can trigger skin irritation. As a company that makes creams to help people manage their skin conditions better, we should take a broader view and do our best to minimise our impact.”