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Roux Profile: Innovation Leads to Longevity

Posted: August 7, 2007, from the August 2007 issue of GCI Magazine.

“The definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over and expecting different results,” said Ben Franklin. Companies in the beauty business know the truth of that saying. Without innovation, they will not succeed long-term. True innovation comes when companies strike out in new directions, shaking up how products are developed to match consumer trends. “Innovation has been the key to maintaining the Roux business for 75 years,” said Dan Easton, vice president of sales and marketing for the professional systems group at Colomer USA, of which Roux is a division.

“From the first color, Fanci Tone Tint, created in 1932 to our newest product, Violites Bleach, Roux continues to introduce innovative, necessary products in the marketplace.” Longevity in the beauty business depends not only on products that meet consumer needs, but also on the ability to read the trends, noting the fads and building on those with real staying power.

Roux introduced its first full-coverage formula in 1932, which was later transformed into Fanci-Tone Tint. The company introduced Lash and Brow Tint in the 1950s, Fanci Full Rinse Temporary Color and Cream D’Lite in the 1960s, Clean Touch Color Remover in the 1970s and Fanci Full Mousse in the 1980s, all of which capitalized on trends in hair color. “As trends changed, Roux also changed. Today, it is important to provide products that will produce the desired results while also maintaining the integrity of the hair,” said Easton.

From the bleach blonde of the ’70s to the healthy hair trend of the 21st century, Roux matched trends with formulas that have staying power. At the same time, changes in ownership have taken the company into different directions, creating paths for growth.
The company was purchased by Revlon in 1978. As a result of the acquisition, Roux added the Realistic Perm collection to its family of products. Eventually, the company was purchased by Colomer USA, a beauty company created for professional products. The first priority for Colomer is reintroducing Roux with new packaging and imagery.

“In order to stay in business another 75 years, Roux must continue on the path of innovation. We are currently working on new product launches and will continue to be inventive in the future,” said Easton. Innovation meets imagination and creativity to define Roux’s path. For this company, evaluating its product offerings and marketing strategy present growth opportunities.