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Everything Old is News Again

By: Nancy McDonald and Salvador Pliego
Posted: June 5, 2009, from the June 2009 issue of GCI Magazine.

page 2 of 6

Nancy: But you’ve had this same message for a long time. Please consider: Consumers are simply savvier these days; more discerning. Their expectations of beauty products have considerably escalated, given the immediate and perceptible effects of treatments such as Botox—though, perhaps a little unrealistically.

Innovation is of critical importance, now more than ever. Isn’t that clear in this environment?

Salvador: Of course manufacturers are looking for the innovative breakthrough, the holy grail—the one unique thing that makes them different from the others. However, that may not be so important for consumers—in some cases, it may not even be desirable. There is a company in Colombia, South America, that is marketing products using human semen, which is rich in protein. Certainly a point of difference in the industry but a question mark for the consumer.

Nancy: However, a distinct point of difference in ingredient vehicles and deliveries is of key importance in the beauty industry—especially now. Not since Ponce de Leon explored has the fountain of youth been so rigorously sought. That search calls for innovative technology.

Salvador: The ingredient offering must still be realistic. Does the consumer really “get” some of the industry’s new techno-babble? Is it meaningful to them? Do they actually care?