L'Oreal anti-ageing ingredient aims at mature market

By Louise Prance

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Older women, Cosmetics, L'oréal

The consumer power of the lucrative baby boomer generation is still
going strong - with L'Oreal hailing its new innovative ingredient
as the way forward in anti-aging care, announced in its 2006
report.

Jean-Paul Agon, Chief Executive Officer suggested in the report that the company had invented a new 'revolutionary' anti-aging molecule, Pro-Xylane that will be used in many of its products. The 'green molecule' is made from sustainable resources and is found in a Lancôme product called Absolue Premium BX, a line that is aimed at treating a variety of ageing symptoms in mature skins, caused by hormonal fluctuations and sun exposure. Targeting the growing trend for anti-aging products, the company has supported this ingredient launch by using an older female role model, Diane Keaton, to endorse its report. Using older celebrities has become a favourite amongst many cosmetic and personal care manufacturers who have become aware of the potential spending power of the pre World War II generation. The report placed great emphasis on the 'huge potential market' in a section titled 'The new seniors', which posted figures that suggested that women are increasingly using anti-aging creams at an older age. "As children of the consumer society, the new seniors have had a style of life which has been more hedonistic than that of their elders and don't have any intention to renounce their habits simply on the pretext of age, "​ the report said. The use of Keaton's image demonstrates that L'Oreal is focused on this trend within the industry, following the use of a male face for the first time on the company's 2005 report. The new direction with the anti-aging ingredient, and endorsement, follows findings that showed the peak age of beauty product consumption had increased considerably from 1996. With older women now becoming prime users of age-defying lotions and creams. The peak age in 1996 occurred between 40 and 60, which, by 2005, had shifted to between 40 and 70. Around 40 per cent of 65 to 69 year olds suggested they used an anti-aging cream in 2005, compared to just 20 per cent in 1996. Until now, older women have largely been ignored by the media in terms of beauty care, however, as more and more women increasingly become aware of the benefits of younger looking skin, more and more manufacturers are adapting product lines to suit. Earlier this year Unilever adapted its marketing campaign to tap into the 50 plus age group. The global campaign was initiated using photographer Annie Leibovitz and promised to feature ˜real' older women, complete with age spots, curves and grey hair. "Dove seeks to create an attitudinal change in the anti-aging category -- from negative and fear-driven to affirmative and hope-driven,"​ said Kathy O'Brien, Dove marketing director.

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