Speaking exclusively to Cosmetics Design, UK training manager Julia Stewart revealed the rationale behind the Japan-headquartered multinational’s rejection of consumer trends in favour of investment in R&D.
“We feel that if we were to create products that respond to market trends, then we would never be innovating and creating something entirely new,” Stewart explained.
"We know the different skin concerns and we cater to them, rather than catering to the trends necessarily popular in the industry. It’s very much research-focused: our product development is an after-effect of research, rather than of trends."
History of research first
Stewart puts the company’s rep for market-first innovations down to this policy of leading product development with lab findings instead of following the trends.
“For over 140 years now, we’ve been globally known for bringing entirely new technology to market, such as Ultimune, which was a culmination of 20 years of research into our skin’s natural defense system and became the world’s first ever immunity-care,” she said.
“We have over 1,000 researchers working solely on Shiseido group products and we invest millions of pounds back into research every year because we believe that for us to launch a product, we need to be confident that it does exactly what it says it will. That is a really important part of our philosophy.”
Consumer trust, brand identity
The key benefit that comes from this approach is the consumer trust the brand can build around their product offering, Stewart believes, allowing for a strong brand identity in the marketplace.
“Our approach for research led development really comes from our focus on creating results driven skincare that our customers can trust,” she concluded.