Founded in 1880, the German brand is one of the most recognisable names in hair salons around the world.
“Wella is a professional salon brand, meaning we sell technical products to salons as well as retail our products in salons,” said Wilmer Ryan Cu, marketing director of Wella Asia Pacific.
“The brand has been around for 140 years and it’s safe to say it’s a brand our mums and grandmas know. But we are now on a quest to deliver more relevant products to younger consumers through the most relevant channels,” he told CosmeticsDesign-Asia.
The company was driven by the change in consumer lifestyles and habits as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Of course, times are changing. Now we see a lot more consumers shifting to doing treatments at home rather than going to a salon. We see that habit even with maintaining hair colours, for example. And in general, hair is the new skin,” said Cu.
With a large young population, Asia is a particularly important for the company. In line with this, Wella developed Duo Energy, an Asia-exclusive line that protects hair from hard water.
Wella claims that this range of five products can remove up to 43% of copper ions that have been deposited onto hair.
“Wella is a brand with a strong professional heritage – that’s a point of difference for us. This line was created specifically for Asia knowing that many Asian shower every day, even multiple times a day,” said Cu, adding that the company has a regional research and development team based in Tokyo.
Wella has also developed a line-up of colour-depositing hair conditioning masks that can help consumers maintain hair colours and extend the time they need before their next salon visit.
In addition to hair care products, the company has also observed opportunities in the hair styling segment with its Sebastian range of styling products that have hair care properties as well.
Beyond its current innovations, Cu teased that the company is set to introduce a range of products next year that will help with hair breakage.
In addition to developing more relevant products, the company has also worked on making the brand accessible by expanding online through e-commerce. The next step for the firm is to expand offline, including in travel retail.
This year, the company exhibited for the first time at Tax-Free World Association (TFWA) trade event in Singapore, which took place in May.
“We are on a journey to take our brand into offline channels. We are also looking into travel retail. We also have a presence in some airports such as Frankfurt, but we are exploring travel retail for Asia as well,” said Cu.