"We wanted to completely rethink the consumer experience for luxury skincare products. So we decided to divert the lipstick from its original form and adapt it to totally innovative, solid, water-free, yet highly sensorial skincare formulas that can be taken everywhere in a handbag," explains Piergil Fourquié, a Parisian designer and co-founder of the brand.

A brand new format for skincare products

Maison Dakōta proposes a never-before-seen product line: premium solid and nomadic skincare products. "If more and more hygiene and toiletry products can be found in a solid format, skincare products are still rare in this galenical form and almost non-existent when you go upmarket," underlines Eva Jouët, co-founder of the brand and also Sales Director of Premium Beauty News.

Anhydrous solid formats indeed have the advantage of making saving on the weight of water in the products. In addition to its environmental benefits, this solution allowed adapting it to people on the go.

"We wanted to extend the use of skincare products beyond the bathroom to allow women to protect their skin, anywhere, anytime," adds the founder. "As a starting point, we took the real needs of consumers to come up with a solution matching their expectations".

Maison Dakōta takes its name from Native American hunter-gatherer peoples of North America’s plains and forests. "We wanted to pay tribute to these peoples who, in their traditional way of life, only took from nature what they strictly needed, who were aware of being part of a whole, alongside animals to which they paid homage through totems," explains Piergil Fourquié.

With this in mind, Maison Dakōta devised a refill system that would limit the consumption of resources and reduce packaging waste.

Innovative natural formulas

In a similar vein, the formulas were designed to combine ease of use and efficiency in an ultra-compact format.

"The ideal of sobriety has influenced the entire development process," admit the two co-founders. "This led us to do less, but better, to get to the essence thanks to concentrated actives, sometimes even obtained through upcycling."

Free of water, natural formulas can also do without preservatives while maintaining maximum shelf life. These are all choices that involved taking up many technical challenges.

"The project was an ambitious and difficult to implement. The natural and anhydrous formulas made the filling of the stick particularly difficult," explains Eva Jouët. In particular, it was necessary to find a company capable of carrying out the project within the budgetary constraints of a start-up. This was quite a challenge, as Maison Dakōta was keen to have products that were 100% made in France.

"Fortunately, the market is changing and suppliers are aware that a large part of the activity is moving towards young emerging brands. The project was technically difficult, but supporting young innovative start-ups is one area where manufacturers really have the opportunity to differentiate themselves," she points out.

A pre-sales campaign in September

The French brand is now starting its meetings with its customers, through a pre-sales campaign on the Ulule platform from 22 September 2022.

"This is the culmination of many months of research and development. We recently presented our range, with four innovative products. The first feedback is positive. We now have to bring it all to fruition," conclude the two founders.

The range consists of an Eye Contour, made up of 98% natural ingredients, including a moisturising upcycled coffee oil rich in antioxidants; a Face Care (98% natural) to apply on blemishes for an absorbing and mattifying effect and an immediate corrective effect, made up of upcycled avocado to regulate sebum secretion, volcanic perlite and Candelilla wax; a nourishing and protective Lip Balm, 100% natural thanks to a blend of natural waxes, vegetable oils and shea butter, and finally a solid Pink Pepper Perfume (90% natural), alcohol-free and rich in plant-based emollients.

And to match the container with the content, the packaging of each product displays the totem animal to whose protection it is entrusted: the eagle for the eye contour, the bear for the face care, the owl for the perfume and the wolf for the lip balm.