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Markets & trends

Polishing the crisis...

“In difficult economic times, the nail polish category is going well and offers growth opportunities,” tells Siegfried Prive, Durlin’s General Director to Premium Beauty News. Could nail enamels replace lipsticks as a symbol of low cost self-indulgence during the crisis?

Premium Beauty News – In a difficult economic context, nail polish seems to be doing very well?

Siegfried Prive – In these times of uncertainty, nail polish has a lot to offer in terms of attractiveness.

First of all, it is a pleasure-product with a low price positioning, therefore, affordable for everyone.

We also notice growing interest for this product, coming from major brands, a movement first started by the greatest designers, opinion leaders. This opens the way to a very dynamic offer on products with concepts very much linked to fashion in order to answer needs from beauty addicts. A good example of the connection between product and fashion is the offer on black and green trendy shades.

Today, from, the feminine magazine, local or international, to the TV show, movie star, or even football player, no one takes a chance to ignore polish.
Media visibility on polish has never been stronger.

The product, through its target has rejuvenated, because even the younger ones and their tribes have monopolised polish. Obviously it is a promising sociological phenomenon for brands looking for growth engines.

Finally this pleasure-purchase gesture requires a diversified product offer and some brands have understood the evolution of a polish that switched from a more static and classic image to an offer always on the move in a universe built on fashion and glamour.

Premium Beauty News - Can you give us an idea, in terms of volumes, of the nail polish global market? How is it developing?

Siegfried Prive - Some experts evaluate the global market to 3.5 billion bottles and the reduction in sizes seems to have reached a limit.

A first evolution comes from the fact polishes are more accessible: while the concept of manicure service to the consumer was very popular in the distribution network of Beauty or Nails Salons in Asia, in the United States, in Russia, we notice that a variant, the Nails bars, is growing and developing in Central and Southern Europe which were traditionally self-service areas for polish. Of course this contributes to increase product accessibility.

New packaging vectors - pens, and then patches, which attract another kind of customers; help improve availability and product attractiveness.

A second evolution is linked with the stimulus offer. A classic management of a range as wide as 12 to 20 shades using umbrella brands targeted on homogeneous consumers, plus a few healthcare references has changed to more dynamism. Brands tend to be more open to the use of promotional or seasonal products, with a very short shelf life, which regenerates the offer and stimulated the interest of the end-user consumer.

Some brands renew their ranges with promotional one shot offers for which shades, formulations, texture are not the only variables of innovation or of differentiation, but for which the packaging and secondary finish may also change very quickly, every 3 weeks for example. Different segment of masstige and private labels have rushed into this trend.

This evolution regarding the frequency of launch generates gains in market shares for brands internally or externally organised to reduce delays and marketing costs, which reinforces the notion of partnership with manufacturers like Durlin.

Premium Beauty News - Today, what is the nail polish user looking for?

Siegfried Prive - Consumers are looking for novelty or product differentiation. Manufacturers like us usually respond with technological innovation and performance.

Recently we have introduced in our formulations a patented polymer originally from the eye lenses industry. We have also reformulated our polishes with a less occlusive film, which increases exchanges with oxygen to allow the nail to breathe better, while improving the functional performances of the product.

Along with high technological-value-added innovations, our expertise has intensified on synergisms with innovating packaging suppliers. But today, it is also our capacity to listen and anticipate fashion trends, linked with high creativity that helps us meet market expectations.

Beyond consumers’ expectations, product is also impacted with new regulations, which widens our field of expertise and quality service customers are looking for.

Premium Beauty News - Do these changes impact your production tool?

Siegfried Prive - The increasingly short life span of products and the higher number of launches have led to a reduction in the average size of production batches. But above all
brand’s demand is clearly aiming for a full service product, with greater expectations in terms of capacity and quick response from R&D.

The faster pace in industrialising innovations generates better integration between the teams of our customers, our R&D and production.

Each year our investments are planned to answers these new needs as well as the evolution of regulatory framework. This is to ensure the safety of our staff, of our installations and of our supplies to our customers.

We notice that these environmental, safety constraints but also the will to reduce expenses, prompts industrial transfers from our customers to their sub-contractors, which exemplifies Durlin’s acknowledged added value.

Our industrial investments have developed in all our factories worldwide, thus in 2 years time, we doubled our capacity to offer turnkey products.

For example on the Bergerac site (France) we have invested in the automation of our production lines in order to supply very quickly large quantities and offer high quality products, we have also increased our capacity on some sites with semiautomatic processes to meet requirements calling for flexibility and diversity.

In parallel, our investments also concern quality control and our labs and R&D teams, always very active due to the frequency of new launches.

Our legal department is also strongly structured in order to deal with the evolutions of different markets.

The progressive enforcement of REACH and growing environmental expectations have given us a chance to re-examine our approach on raw material and manufacturing process. Durlin already certified ISO 9001 version 2008 has already applied to comply with new standards on Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) in cosmetics.

Interview by Jean-Yves Bourgeois

© 2009 - Premium Beauty News - www.premiumbeautynews.com
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