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When Summer Fades, Skin Concerns Remain

By: Abby Penning
Posted: August 31, 2011, from the September 2011 issue of GCI Magazine.
  • Sun damage can raise a myriad of skin issues, but in a densely populated market, brand targets need to be known in order to develop a good strategy.
  • Sun care products that multitask—and therefore include reparative ingredients, as well as SPF, moisturizer and other skin wellness benefits—continue to rise.
  • Consumers are encouraged to develop good sun care habits early, although this isn’t always the case. An increasing number of younger consumers are mimicking the habits they see displayed by the sun-damaged baby boomer generation.

As summer fades into fall and people begin to seek less time out in the warm sunshine, thoughts are also beginning to turn to any damage skin may have taken on during the sun-drenched summer months. Male and female, young and old, any ethnicity or race—people consistently tend to overexpose themselves to the sun—leading to inflammation, sun spots, wrinkles and fine lines, and further damage that consumers seek to address with skin care products.

“When it comes to the market for sun care, nearly every [consumer is a target consumer]. Everyone has damage associated with sun exposure, so sun care needs to be a daily concern, a regimen,” says Gwen O’Hanlon, vice president of sales and education, Darphin. “We want consumers to evolve with our brand, so we want to develop products that are available to them at every stage of their skin’s life, because skin does change. It’s sort of like clothes—what looked good 20 years ago might not look as good now or be so fashionable, and as skin evolves and its concerns change; you want to make sure you affect positive changes with the appropriate products to encompass the entire journey.”

Noting the evolution of concerns that might results from sun damage, Adam Geyer, MD, a consulting dermatologist for Kiehl’s, says, “Often, when we think about the skin as it is chronically exposed to the sun, we focus mostly on the expected increase in lines and wrinkles. However, we have come to recognize that one of the most significant indicators of the health of skin is the evenness of its tone.” Whatever the concern, post-sun skin care is a big market, and brand owners seeking to benefit from it are wise to rely on its strengths—protecting skin with SPF products and repairing damaged skin.

Taking Action

“Post-sun and sun damage repair products cover a wide spectrum of products,” comments Geyer. “These include soothing products for sunburn/damage relief, DNA repair products and products to reduce the chronic effects of UV exposure.”