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Application and Execution

By: Jeff Falk
Posted: November 8, 2007, from the November 2007 issue of GCI Magazine.

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“We listen to our customers. Many of these innovations, even if they don’t know it, are given by our customers themselves,” said Vivier. “We listen to what they [want]. In France, especially, there is much competition—always pushing for innovation and [points of] difference. They want something that the other one doesn’t have, and we are pushed to always deliver something new.”

Suppliers have been responsive and supportive as the volume and demand for eco-friendly materials grows. Innovations to make these materials more user-friendly are anticipated, and suppliers and packagers are already integral in supporting a natural brand’s message, understanding the appropriate utilization and feasibility of materials made from renewable resources and recycled materials—or simply using materials that are recyclable, when appropriate.

There are cases in which packaging such as PLA isn’t compatible with a product. In these cases, packagers and suppliers provide valuable counsel, educating stakeholders regarding other environmentally friendly options. Because eco-friendly packaging, as a whole, is in its relative infancy, its increased use requires continual research and education.

The Challenge of High Tech

While consumers have shown strong interest in natural color cosmetics, eye color, mascaras and eye liners have been more innovative in terms of color and effect than other products in the segment, according to a July 2007 study of the market’s potential conducted by investment banking firm The Mercanti Group. (It is important to note that natural cosmetics for eyes, though not as prevalent as in other color segments, are available.)

Mascara is a complex product due to the many variables in both formula and application.