The growing microsegmentation of the hair care market is leading to increasingly tailor-made and functional products, a trend that is typified by the re-launch of the France-based Ales Group's sun care protection oil, Huile Capillaire.
The product has been re-packaged and re-launched under the company's Phyto brand to take advantage of some of the leading trends in the industry at the moment - naturals and anti-ageing.
"This product was actually first launched on the market back in 1975 and essentially created the category for hair care sun protection as it was the first product of its kind on the market," said Ales Group spokesperson Sandra Laurent.
However, the fact that the market for such niche hair care products is growing at a faster rate than ever before, partly off the back of the increased awareness of the ageing effects UV rays can have on skin and hair, is leading to a rekindled interest in this product and a plehtora of imitators.
As well as the trend for UV hair protection, the product also taps into the growing market for natural products, which is triggering a big demand for formulations based on natural ingredients.
Being based on olive oil, an ingredient that is both completely natural, as well as having a strong association with protection and general health properties, the product is also well positioned to tap into the naturals trend.
Further to this the product also benefits from extracts of Calendula, Willow oil and Rosemary to provide comprehensive protection against the harmful effects of UVA and UVB rays, allowing the hair to remain soft and shiny even after sun exposure.
As well as protection the product is also said to provide extra conditioning for fragile and delicate types of hair as well as helping to preserve natural hair colour.
A well-known product in France where it is widely available in chemists and larger retailers, the re-launch of the product is likely to see it expanded into a wider-reaching international market.
"The product is most likely to be re-launched in key western European markets first, followed by the North American markets," Laurent added.
Although the product was first launched over 30 years, it is ironic that it can now tap into a bigger potential market than ever. Euromonitor's Claire Briney points to the fact that it is the 'micro segmentation' of the hair care market that is leading to this growth opportunity, as companies increasingly launch products with higher levels of active ingredients and functionality.
This is particularly true of the hair care segment, where products have been launched with UV screens, anti-ageing, curling and straightening functionality.
Briney points out how packaging innovation is also helping to drive the market, with single serve packaging, increasingly ergonomic designs and innovations in closures helping to drive the market - a factor that Ales is hoping to take advantage of with its re-designed packaging.