Founded in 1989, Chlitina is a cosmetics company that has a beauty salon network of over 5,000 stores in markets including Taiwan, China and Vietnam.
Like many businesses in the service industry, the company was heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in its largest market, China.
It was able to weather the crisis by adapting to the online migration and strategic sponsorship deals with partners such as the Shanghai International Film and TV Festival.
Speaking to CosmeticsDesign-Asia, CEO Ryan Chao said the company managed to finish the year on a positive note and even surpass pre-pandemic levels. “In a word, in such an adverse context, you may say the company’s performance over the past 12 months or so has been stellar.”
Over the past 18 months or so, it has become clear to the company that the focus of their skin care developments should emphasis on health.
Chao noted that he has been observing sales of health-related products and seen huge jumps on e-commerce platforms like JD.com, especially during shopping festivals like 6.18.
“Health and safety have become top keywords for beauty and skin care consumption. The new emphasis on healthy products and lifestyles brims with new opportunities. Experts point out that China's health industry will represent about 10 trillion Chinese yuan in 2021, of which 80% will be dedicated to health management and health consumption, and only 20% to medicine per se,” he said.
Beauty from inside out
Moving forward, the company believes beauty consumers will demand cosmetics focused on “life sciences and smart innovation”.
“Women are always investing more in their beauty, and skin care is an ever more important part of their budget,” said Chao.
In light of this, the company is concentrating future product development on three core elements: water, the human microbiome and regenerative medicine.
“The idea is to approach health and beauty from the inside out,” said Chao. “The human body is a mysterious ecological universe… It needs high-quality water, because water is the source of life; microflora balance is fundamental to health, and regenerative medicine aims at achieving the ultimate mystery of cell regeneration.
“The bottom line is that we are positioning ourselves not only as the largest beauty chain in Asia but also as an R&D and production company,” said Chao.
Last year, the company began working with Boston University and General Biologicals Corporation (GBC) to develop a patented antibacterial ingredient called P113+.
“We are particularly focusing on a patented antibacterial ingredient called P113+, which includes Histatin, the most efficient antibacterial protein in the human body. Histatin can inhibit bad bacteria very gently and effectively, while helping to retain good bacteria and to maintain the balance of the human flora,” said Chao.
Additionally, the company will leverage its partnership with Shanghai’s Tongji University, which helped to co-launch the Lifeng Regenerative Medical Research Institute.
“[The Lifeng Regenerative Medical Research Institute] is doing some important research work, namely on the extraction, preparation, and storage at very low temperatures of adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells and exosomes,” said Chao.
This approach will focus on products other than topical skin care products, like the company’s own bottled water, Babulong Natural Mineral Water, which it claims is rich in trace elements that are beneficial for the body.
“It is a unique, naturally alkaline, water with a pH of 9, rich in minerals and trace elements that are essential for the human health. This water was awarded a Grand Gold Quality Award, the highest distinction, by the Monde Selection jury in Brussels, Belgium,” said Chao.