In this episode of our exclusive Clean & Ethical Beauty video series, we dig into the specifics of ‘getting the message right’ on beauty and personal care products.
Dr. Mojgan Moddaresi, managing director of Personal Care Regulatory – a bespoke regulatory and compliance service working with a range of global cosmetic and personal care companies – kicks things off by providing the regulatory context for clean and ethical beauty in the European Union (EU).
Aleni Mackarey, chief operating officer of Base Beauty – a creative agency working with numerous beauty brands to develop tailored and growth-boosting marketing strategies – then provides insight on exactly what considerations must be made when marketing clean and ethical to consumers.
Cut clean – be ‘truthful, honest and fair’
With extensive knowledge and experience on EU cosmetics regulatory compliance, Moddaresi says industry has very clear regulations and guidelines to follow when making any claim or communication to the consumer.
Speaking in the episode, she says the term ‘clean’ is best avoided, in favour for alternative ways of describing exactly why a product is ethical or sustainable.
When building this communication around a product, she says brands in the EU must ensure it is “truthful, honest and fair” – fitting into the six guiding principles found within the Technical Document on Cosmetics Claims (legal compliance; truthfulness; evidential support; honesty; fairness; and informed decision making) of making claims under the EU Cosmetics Regulation No 1223/2009.
“It is definitely very important to look at these six important principles on what the claim should be and how [brands] have to make the claim,” Moddaresi says.
Consumers are craving ‘transparency and honesty from your brand’
Mackarey’s work with leading beauty brands in North America has seen her agency establish a very clear picture of consumer desires when shopping for clean and ethical beauty products that she says brands must also consider carefully.
Speaking in the episode, she says that whilst clean beauty remains a “grey area”, there is still plenty of opportunity to engage with consumers and get the right message across.
“I think while it’s very difficult to define this category right now, it doesn’t have to be as difficult to get the message right in your marketing (…) The consumer is really craving transparency and honesty from your brand, and you can still deliver that. You know what’s in your products, you know what you can offer, and you know what stories you can tell. So, focus on the things you can share (…) rather than the things you can’t define.”
Interested in the wider clean and ethical beauty business picture? Take a look at Episode 1 where we consider 'why it matters', then get a deeper understanding on what brands are up to in the space in Episode 2, and delve into the lab with insight on formulation in Episode 3.
Clean & Ethical Beauty: The experts
Dr. Mojgan Moddaresi, managing director of Personal Care Regulatory
Dr. Moddaresi is a regulatory expert and director of at Personal care Regulatory Ltd. She is a pharmacist in training (PharmD) with a PhD in cosmetic science. She has extensive experience in different formulation and regulatory roles in pharma, biopharma and cosmetic industries. She is a Fellow of Royal Society of Biology (FRSB), and a chartered biologist (CBiol), full member of society of cosmetic scientists, UK and British Toxicology Society.
Personal Care Regulatory Ltd is a regulatory service company based in the UK and EU (Ireland), providing bespoke regulatory support (compliance, claims) to independent brands.
Aleni Mackarey, chief operating officer of Base Beauty
Aleni Mackarey has spent her entire career growing beauty and wellness brands. She loves that this industry provides a platform that empowers people to feel beautiful in their own way and provides them with the tools needed to highlight their strengths.
In her current role as chief operating officer at Base Beauty Creative Agency, Aleni manages the agency’s daily operations, oversees new business initiatives and identifies strategic brand partnership opportunities. She is routinely featured as a guest speaker at industry events and summits and is also the executive producer of the Where Brains Meet Beauty podcast series, which features founders, leaders and change makers within the cosmetics industry.
Aleni graduated from Lafayette College with a degree in English and Theatre before earning her Master’s degree in Administration and Higher Education from Marywood University. Aleni is currently pursuing her PhD in Strategic Leadership.