At the Glossy Forum in Manhattan on Thursday, legacy brands and independent upstarts, and executives across a wide range of beauty categories and retailers, came together to discuss “the new face of beauty.” There is so much happening in the space, from the move to clean and natural products to the shift from digital-only to omnichannel; the industry is at a crucial moment of change.
We gathered some of the best comments of the day, including those centered on beauty buzzwords like “community” and how to capture and engage that audience. Additionally, we talked with executives about the move to cleaner beauty, and how they are seeing the pendulum shift from fast, fast, fast product to quality and more measured growth.
Building a community is paramount
“Community, to me, is peer-to-peer conversations — real conversations, not necessarily through a blog or influencers. The more engagement we have with real people, without [them] getting paid, the better we can understand who they are, where they are and what their interests are.”
“Our community crosses all channels, demographics, walks of life. We keep the things that are interesting to them alive on the site and in the conversation. We like to educate them, or we take them on an adventure to teach them where we are coming from. It’s really about repeating the mantra and getting to know them.”
“Community is such a buzzword, but there are different levels of community: We’re a fragrance brand; our brand is part of a larger community — the beauty community, whether that’s on social or where we are, here today. We are also part of the fragrance community. And as a brand, we have our social community that we are engaging with. Beyond that social community, we also have a more personalized community. Within brands, there are different ways to engage.”
“When you look at the Rodan + Fields community, they are highly educated, and they have families or kids, but they’ve chosen to do this, and we love giving them the choice.”
“We have several hashtags we have created for IG. We love masking with our followers, talking about what masks they are using it and where they are doing it — is it on a train or plane?– and breaking down those barriers around what skin care should be”
“Beauty overall is over-indexed with a female consumer. But through the close communication with our customer base, we see that men use it; they are experiencing or learning about Tula through their wives and girlfriends.”
The movement to cleaner beauty
“I think it will take years before the the U.S. is where the E.U. is, in terms of health protective measures.”
“I think people are realizing that, like the food movement, people are not going to go back and ask to have [unsafe] things put back into products”
“We are learning new things every day about what science can contribute to — not just skin, but also skin health and also the microbiome. We are very excited about the opportunities around that.”
Quality versus speed
“There is less intent in certain P.D. [product development], where people are reacting to Instagram and social media, instead of the quality of the product or instead of what the customer will want.”
“We’re really known for speed to market, honestly launching on average two products a week, but you’ve probably seen with Glossier and their Lash Slick mascara launch, they did this whole thing around: “It doesn’t have to be fast, it has to be right” — and I thought it was really powerful when I saw that message. I think we are going to see a shift in the market where it’s not just about speed, but it’s about getting it right. Sometimes when you go too fast, you lose the message.”