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Nail Care Knows No Bounds
By: Nancy Jeffries
Posted: October 13, 2008, from the March 2006 issue of GCI Magazine.
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Consider the spring 2006 collection from Essie Cosmetics, designed to capture the energy and culture of the Cayman Islands. With colors like Heavenly Sunset, a rosy mauve; My Private Cabana, semi-sheer blush; and Sandy Beach, a translucent toffee, paradise is as close as the nearest salon. In addition to polishes, treatments to moisturize the hands and feet now are infused with a variety of beautifully fragrant and naturally emollient ingredients that provide refreshment. Two new Essie Smoothies Hand and Body Lotions bring emollients plus treatment benefits to hand care. The Pear & Fig Smoothie has a clean scent of blossoming fig and pear, inspired by the southern gardens of France. The Aloe Rich & Fragrance Free Smoothie is an unscented lotion for men and women with delicate skin. Soothing aloe, plus oils and vitamins A and E to moisturize and oxygenize, are abetted by shea butter to heal, lubricate and protect. It also contains alpha hydroxy acids to exfoliate and increase cell turnover for smooth, radiant skin.
Mindful of the changing marketplace, Essie created a new treatment for men that is an all-in-one product designed to meet men’s nail care needs. The Man-e-Cure is a non-shiny, toluene and formaldehyde-free nail protector for men who care about the appearance of their nails. The matte finish protector may be used in combination with Essie’s cuticle pen for manicured hands and feet. The product allows men to have well-kept nails without the shine of clear polish or buffing.
While technology has assured the quality of on-trend products in nail salons, there are criteria that must be met unequivocally in this market. Polishes must be durable, long lasting, available in fashion-driven colors, and supported by innovative value-added treatments—often including massage, exfoliation and antioxidant emollients.
Essie Weingarten, president of Essie Cosmetics, Ltd., addressed some of the challenges salon formulators face in creating nail salon products. “Polish needs to be long-wearing, chip-resistant, and it should dry quickly (but not too quickly, so smudges can be fixed),” said Weingarten. “Often, nail salons are the source of trends and treatments that, as in the skin care arena, may begin at the spa and translate to the retail environment. Salon owners don’t aggressively retail the products that they use.
Consumers want to purchase the products that they use and like, so these products move over to retail.”