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GCI Reports From HBA

By: Jeff Falk and Leslie Benson
Posted: September 8, 2008
GCI at HBA 2008

GCI continued to expand its presence at HBA, hosting the second Fragrance Business Conference and marking the launch of its redesigned website.

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Update Sept. 11, 12:20pm EST

Alcan Packaging Beauty, a division of Alcan Packaging, introduced several new cosmetic packaging innovations during HBA in New York City, September 9-11, 2008, reflecting the importance of convenience in regards to the applicators accompanying makeup products. Italian and French-born creative director Michel Limongi and his team welcomed the press for an exclusive glimpse into the Alcan’s new launches just before lunch this morning.

Limongi, who began his career as a makeup artist in his mother’s beauty salon at age 12, still works closely today with end users of cosmetic products, as well as big beauty brands and makeup artists, to determine solutions to cosmetic packaging issues. Without affecting cosmetic formulas themselves, he focuses on the customer’s experience when applying cosmetics and examines the tools they use—as well as their daily regimens—during workshops held around the world, which foster open discussions about real women’s needs when it comes to beauty.

During these creative meetings, Limongi gathers feedback about brands from consumers and then presents solutions to the Alcan innovations lab in Paris, France. Once the center provides him with the blueprint for his ideas, he speaks with beauty brands first-hand about how to implement such convenient and brand-specific tools for future finished product launches.

Limongi’s discussions with international women of various ages have spurred new packaging launches from Alcan this year, including Sliding Brush, 90 Degrees Compact, Cream Dispenser, Banana Maker, Bubble Stick and Notch 2. Specifically, brainstorming sessions about bronzer and blush applications gave Limongi the idea to create Sliding Brush, a large, fluffy high-grade goat’s hair brush in a plastic bell-shaped holder that can be interchanged with other hair types (even synthetic), which attaches to a powder palette. The reusable, refillable invention can be customized for brands by color, shape and usage, with branded, glittery charms or ribbons attached to the luxury item. There is even a mirror on the back.

Other 2008 HBA packaging launches by Alcan include the comfortable 90 Degrees Compact case that resembles a cell phone for easy grasp while applying makeup in the subway, for instance, which also features a panoramic, horizontal, curved mirror attached for working on the eyes, as well as drop-free applicators. “It’s all about elegance,” Limongi said. Of the brands who have already signed onto the technology, Guerlain has shown interest in a travel kit case version. Also, with eye shadows and brushes included, Alcan offers 90 Degrees Compact via turnkey service for brands interested in putting their name on the product. Customization, however, is also available.

Next, Limongi introduced Cream Dispenser, a roll-on alternative for greasy sunscreen lotion tubes and other creams. In addition, the end user can benefit from Banana Maker, a new spherical eye shadow brush that, when used above the eyelid crease while the eye is still open, can create a lift effect, according to Limongi. “We want to make their lives easier,” he added. Thereafter, Limongi presented the launch of Bubble Stick, also highlighted in this year’s Mintel innovations pavilion at HBA. The new packaging option to the alternative lipstick module allows for the attachment of a lipstick case’s bottom and lid with beveled or flat edges, various colors and branded charms, for a teen-aged appeal.