2008–beauty industry insiders will remember this as the year that the landscape of their industry was to change via the introduction of Nestlé’s Beauty From Within drink Glowelle. The hype of the nascent category graced all the industry pubs and began to trickle into consumer awareness.
Ready, set, go!
Instead came fizzle and then failure. Among the duds were beauty beverages, chocolate for beauty, even beauty popsicles.
The problem was that the American consumer wasn’t ready. Most Americans can barely make the connection with what they eat influencing how they feel, let alone look.
So why has beauty from within, or nutricosmetics, performed so well in Europe and Japan? Those cultures accept that what we put into our bodies affects how we feel and look much more than the American culture. (This American mindset might harken back to post WW2 when a rich populace cottoned to convenience foods that rose generations of consumers unaware of what ‘clean’ food is and its health and beauty benefits.)
Before we go any further, let’s define beauty from within: Botanicals and functional ingredients in food and beverages that help the skin, primarily by fighting inflammation, combating free-radical damage and building tissue. For example,
- Botanicals: green tea, ginkgo, fruits
- Vitamins: C, D, E
- EFAs: DMAE, sea buckthorn
- Functional ingredients: lycopene, CoQ10, Ha, lutein
A major bonus of beauty from within products: They benefit the entire skin organ, not just one area, as topicals do. A major disadvantage: They usually take about 1 month to 3 months before benefits are experienced.
Here we are in 2012 and beauty from within remains virtually nonexistent in the US. All the big beauty players, L’Oreal, Estee Lauder, Unilever, seem to be waiting to launch products, waiting for proof that Americans are ready and willing to buy. Some signs they might be:
- Products like EmergenC and Vitamin Water have taught Americans that nutrients in a drink can have a beneficial effect on health.
- A 78 million Baby Boomer population (the richest we’ve ever seen) that want alternatives to Botox and surgery.
- The concept that what we put into our bodies affects how we feel and look has never been more understood among consumers.
So what will it take to get beauty from within to resonate with shoppers?
- Science. A beauty from within product backed by science will go a long way in building consumer trust. Branded ingredients, such as GanedenBC30, are ideal here. They have cache and science.
- Smart marketing. With a new category like beauty from within, the package has to explain what the product is and its benefits and usage.
- Healthy products. Please don’t go for the lowest common denominator with cupcakes laced with green tea and call them Complexion Savers. Dark chocolate, maybe, but not junk food, smart consumers will see right through it.
- A topical product packaged with an ingestible can go a long way to getting consumers comfortable with the concept. They get the instant gratification that a topical delivers while at the same time taking a beauty from within product.
- Convenience. The beauty from within product needs to be convenient meaning something that’s easy to integrate into one’s daily regimen. Forget cocoa for example. No adult is going to consistently drink a cup of hot cocoa everyday. Instead, think: a pack you add to water, a nutrition bar or even gum.
- A hefty marketing budget. Because the success of a beauty from within product relies on consumer education, mucho marketing dollars are necessary to reach and sell consumers.
Ready, set, go?
Essentially, it’s up to the manufactures to make a go of beauty from within. Ingredient companies like Ganeden offer science-backed ingredients like its probiotic GanedenBC30 for beauty from within foods and beverages and topical ingredients like Bonicel, that can be added to companion topical beauty products.
The beauty from within ball is in the manufacturer court and the sport is awaiting a winner.