Kao-owned TWANY seizes opportunities in Japan’s fast-growing feminine care sector

By Hui Ling Dang

- Last updated on GMT

TWANY&me's two-step regimen seeks to help make it easier for consumers to incorporate feminine care into their daily routine. ©Kao
TWANY&me's two-step regimen seeks to help make it easier for consumers to incorporate feminine care into their daily routine. ©Kao

Related tags Kao Feminine care femtech Japan Kanebo

Japanese brand TWANY is set to launch a new product series seeking to meet consumer demand in the feminine care category, which it says has been experiencing “significant growth” since 2020.

A brand under Kanebo, a member of Kao Corporation, TWANY is set to debut its first feminine care series named TWANY&me in November.

TWANY is one of the eight regional strategy (R8) brands that Kao has identified to focus primarily on the Japan market.

“Between 2020 and 2021, there was significant growth in the Japanese feminine care market. This period is commonly referred to as ‘Femtech Gannen’, or ‘the first year of the Femtech era’.

“In 2021, the domestic market value reached JPY63.5bn (USD426m), with consumer goods making up 70% of it. Sanitary and skin care products were a significant portion of the market and are expected to continue to experience high growth rates in the future, based on a survey conducted by Kao,”​ Junichi Sasaki, Brand Manager of TWANY, told CosmeticsDesign-Asia​.

In addition, an awareness survey held between October and November 2022 among women in their 20s to 40s found that 93% of respondents were interested in intimate care, although 86% of them have not used any products in this category.

The reasons included a lack of knowledge, difficulty finding the products in stores, and the feeling of discomfort about discussing about the topic with others.

“The truth is that many women are interested in taking care of their intimate areas, but have yet to do so because they are unaware of the specialised products that can help or because they feel hesitant to seek advice or make purchases.

“TWANY&me caters to women who experience discomfort and anxiety related to their skin, body or mind, but struggle to manage or accept it as a temporary situation.”

The launch line-up consists of two products for the cleansing and moisturising of sensitive areas. The two-step regimen seeks to help make it easier for consumers to incorporate feminine care into their daily routine.

Specifically, the Delicate Care Wash utilises a “form-fit formula” that consists of fine, elastic and dense foam, which “fits perfectly” to the uneven surfaces of the intimate zone, locking moisture while washing away impurities that cause odours and stickiness.

Made from botanical extracts, this body wash claims to be allergy-tested and gentle enough to be used even on children’s skin.

The Delicate Care Cream is a body cream designed to protect skin in the intimate parts that tends to be dry and delicate.

The “smooth coat formula” replenishes the skin’s moisture-protecting barrier function, prevents moisture from evaporating, and keeps impurities such as menstrual blood, urine and vaginal discharge from adhering directly to the skin. It also helps reduce friction with underwear.

Both products are blended with fragrances that alleviate unpleasant odours, and to induce a calming effect on the user. For instance, Delicate Care Wash has a clear geranium and white floral scent, whereas Delicate Care Cream has a soft lavender and floral scent.
The TWANY&me range will be available at cosmetics specialty stores and general merchandise stores across Japan, as well as Kao’s e-commerce platform My Kao Mall, from November 11.

Product development under way

Prior to the launch of TWANY&me, a website called Female Terrace, created in collaboration with industry experts and femtech companies, will go live in October.

The website serves to provide consumers with information that address problems unique to women, which may be difficult to obtain by their own efforts. 

“Our first focus is educating women about proper care for their intimate zones. We offer a wealth of information, including details about the unique characteristics of these areas and data on women who take care of them. We understand that addressing these concerns alone can be challenging, and we are here to help,” ​Sasaki said.

Going forward, the brand plans to expand its product portfolio to include skin care products specifically for acne and rough skin during the luteal phase, and hair care solutions for those experiencing hair loss due to hormonal changes before and after childbirth.

It is also in the midst of developing products for women struggling with menopause symptoms, such as hot flushes, sweating, and irritability.

Our goal is to empower Japanese women to prioritise feminine care by providing them with quality products and accurate information. We also aim to offer comprehensive support throughout the various stages [of life] to improve their overall quality of life.”

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