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Illuminating Natural Beauty

By: Liz Grubow and Valerie Jacobs
Posted: October 26, 2012, from the November 2012 issue of GCI Magazine.

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EdenSong Essentials, a natural skin care brand, promises to deliver food-grade, edible skin care and body care products using 100% raw, organic and chemical-free ingredients. And anti-aging skin care brand IO Beauty offers a potent antioxidant serum that can be both applied topically and ingested. The “beauty booster” can be drizzled over a favorite yogurt or mixed into any drink for added flavor, introducing a new benefit territory to the category. Also, brands claiming to be “gluten-free” or “vegan” have found an increasingly prevalent way that beauty mimics and is inspired by food.

Transformational and Spiritual Benefits

Going beyond functionality into higher power or spiritual benefit spaces is another emerging trend that will continue to drive new platforms for beauty growth. Brands are beginning to address the need and desire for self-actualization and holistic, transformative experiences. This also feeds the push toward multi-expressive product development, aiming to help consumers achieve their deepest desires: harmony with nature, elevated consciousness, heightened sense of self, and an ability to live life present and fully engaged in the moment.

India Hair-Yurvedics, a hair care line from I.C.O.N., captures the essence of health and beauty by incorporating ancient practices and the restorative oils of moringa and argan to provide healing, strength, luster, well-being and tranquility. The products are also infused with the fragrance of amber to invoke past, present and future peace. Kings & Queens, from Korres, is another brand that blends the ancient and modern to set itself apart in the naturals landscape. The brand stretches beyond positioning solely on natural ingredients and plant-based botanicals by evoking a sense of time, place, myth and legend, delivering an overall sensual and indulgent experience with ingredients such as malachite and lotus.

In shaping the future of natural in beauty, brand owners will continue pushing into new territories to appeal to evolving consumer demands and to differentiate brands and products in the marketplace. With the increasing awareness and access to diverse natural beauty products, consumers will remain influential in driving the growth of this category of beauty. The shift toward multi-expressive naturals suggests there are more opportunities to come, and as it evolves, the landscape will extend beyond beauty products and services into more diverse and dimensional experiences.

Liz Grubow is vice president and group creative director of LPK Beauty. In her 20-plus-year career, Grubow has helped develop and manage brand identity programs for some of the world’s most successful beauty brands—including Pantene, Olay, MAX Factor International and Cover Girl.

Valerie Jacobs is a group director for LPK Trends and a design forecaster focusing on the development of trend analysis for LPK client brands. Jacobs is also a professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Design, Architecture, Art and Planning, and is a guest lecturer for the In-Store Marketing Institute, Design Management Institute and the Industrial Designers Society of America.

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