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A Feel for Innovation

By: Nancy Jeffries
Posted: September 2, 2008, from the September 2006 issue of GCI Magazine.

As consumers search for products that make hair shiny, silky, clean, soft, manageable and healthy, the emphasis on cleansing, conditioning and treatment has become more important than ever.

The global hair care market grossed $50.94 billion in 2005, according to Euromonitor. Growth will continue to result from an emphasis on product development, as manufacturers strive to offer consumers sophisticated value-added products. “Antiaging, antipollution and sun-protective products will enjoy higher levels of penetration, as skin care benefits are increasingly incorporated into hair care products,” according to Euromonitor. Color maintenance, vitamin and protein-enriched products, diverse needs and male-specific hair care segments also will continue to make gains.

Consumers Looking For Benefits

Today, men and women are increasingly looking at the product’s benefits while perusing retail store and salon shelves. The need for these benefits is challenging formulators to new scientific breakthroughs and the use of innovative combinations of ingredients.

Ingredient suppliers are meeting the demands of the marketplace with new product offerings. According to Erik Gyzen, Dow Corning’s major market strategy leader for hair care, the company is offering six new silicone-based formulations for leave-in conditioners, developed at its research and development laboratory in Shanghai, China. The company says leave-in conditioners help to restore moisture in the hair and minimize damage caused by external factors. Silicones, a major focus of today’s treatment materials, improve conditioners by providing shine, split-end repair, silky conditioning effects and moisture retention.