Big Names in Beauty Shift to Skincare

Prior to the appearance of the coronavirus, celebrities had been increasingly entering the skincare category, a much less crowded segment of the beauty industry than color cosmetics (eye color, lip color, blush, etc.). The presence of celebrities in the beauty category in general, and the skincare segment in particular, has not waned at all since the pandemic began, with a continuous stream of famous faces entering or expanding their presence.

In fact, the focus on skincare has intensified. Consumers have stayed mostly at home for nearly a year and need to look good, for the most part, only for Zoom calls. When they do go out, many are following the health protocols and covering their faces, reducing the need for cosmetics outside of mascara and other products for the eyes. Meanwhile, frequent mask wearing tends to cause skin irritation and acne. All of these factors have pointed celebrities, licensees, and consumers in the direction of skincare over cosmetics.

To underscore this trend, the past couple of weeks have brought new developments related to major skincare programs from three of the biggest names in celebrity beauty, all of which have been introduced or announced during the pandemic:

  • Coty closed its purchase, announced in June, of 20% of Kim Kardashian West’s KKW Beauty for $200 million. Part of its plan, as previously announced, is to help KKW launch into skin care, among other new categories, in 2022. The KKW team will be responsible for communications (especially to Kardashian West’s social media followers) and the creative aspects of the assortments, while Coty will focus on new product development.
  • Jennifer Lopez, whose long-established fragrance franchise is among the best-selling celebrity scent programs ever, is launching her skincare label, JLo Beauty, at Sephora and Amazon on January 14. The line, marketed by Ascendant Beauty (a joint venture between Lopez and Guthy-Renker), was first announced in early December and is already available on the JLo Beauty site. Products include a variety of creams, serums, masks, and moisturizers, as well as a bronzer/highlighter and a dietary supplement formulated for healthy skin.
  • Fenty Skin, the skincare brand extension of singer Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty cosmetics line, is expanding into new retail channels after its global debut in partnership with Kendo Brands earlier in 2020. The products, which like Fenty’s cosmetics are formulated for all skin tones and types, will now be sold through Sephora, Boots, and Harvey Nichols stores, bringing the product into 30 countries. The assortment includes a cleanser, serum, sunscreen, and gel-cream, along with a starter set comprised of the first three of those products.

These three big names are notable, but they are not alone in entering the skincare segment of the industry. Alicia Keys, Venus Williams, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, and Angela Basset, among others, have also dipped into this segment of the industry in recent months.

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