Therapeutic skin care brands are increasingly moving beyond their traditional market of consumers who have problem skin and are positioning themselves to compete against mainstream skin care brands.
The reverse is also happening; as many 'standard' skin care manufacturers are also creating therapeutically-positioned ranges, with cosmetics giants Beiersdorf, Unilever and Shiseido all joining in.
Euromonitor points out that these new launches are indicative of a trend for skin care companies to shift towards more general, all-encompassing products that will appeal to the widest possible number of consumers, as opposed to the considerably narrower market of those with sensitive or problem skin types.
“A diverse product portfolio is key for growth in a still uncertain and erratic market,” states the market research firm.
According to Euromonitor figures, skin care remains the most important category in value terms within beauty and personal care, almost a quarter of global sales in 2010.
However, growth is beginning to slow, with sales largely concentrated in mature Western markets and in turn, these consumers are streamlining their skin care regimes and cutting back on non-essential purchases. As a result, diversification has become a key trend among skin care players.
Out of the niche and into the masses
Europe-based Beiersdorf has aimed at positioning its well-known therapeutic skin care brand, Eucerin, as a product for everyday use, in the US.
Eucerin is best known for treating very dry, problem skin; however, Euromonitor points out that the most recent innovations are aimed at all consumers, for daily use.
The brand has also been extended into the lucrative anti-agers market with the launch of the its Hyaluron-Filler range. The tactic of using the brand's name in medically-positioned skin care to appeal to a far wider consumer base has enabled Eucerin's brand share to successfully grow in North America.
From mainstream to therapeutic
Over at Unilever, the company has done it the other way round. It has attempted to tap into the therapeutic skin care industry, by adapting one of its existing successful ranges.
This has seen a range of ‘therapeutic’ body lotions launched under the popular Vaseline brand name.
Vaseline is strongest in general purpose body lotions, but, with these launches, it is deliberately directly competing against therapeutic skin care brands, claiming that its new lotions will deliver more moisture.
A whole new brand
Never afraid to be different, Shiseido has adopted a different strategy altogether to target this market, by creating a new brand for these products.
The Japanese skin care player has created a new brand called Ihada aimed at treating dry skin caused by inflammation, and targeting women in their 20s, 30s and 40s.