BEAUTY CARE

Q&A: The ‘magic’ touch with Mezei Jefferson of Softsheen-Carson

BY Antoinette Alexander

With a history that goes back more than 100 years, Softsheen-Carson’s Magic Shave has become a legacy brand within the African-American male grooming segment. To learn more about the brand’s history and its new Bump Rescue Skincare line, Drug Store News recently talked with Mezei Jefferson, director of education for Softsheen-Carson.

DSN: After more than 100 years, Magic Shave was reformulated and revamped with a new look. Can you elaborate?

Jefferson: Magic Shave has been the pioneer in men’s depilatories for more than 100 years. With that said, in 2013 we decided to re-introduce their iconic men’s shaving brand Magic Shave. Keeping its classic, unique formula — available in both a powder and cream form — Magic Shave continues to remove men’s facial hair while reducing the occurrence of razor bumps, revealing a smooth, clean and razor-bump-free face.

To stay at the forefront of men’s grooming needs, Magic Shave has improved its convenient cream shave lineup to be faster-acting with a new fragrance and a cool new look. The new, reformulated Magic Cream Shave now “works in four minutes and lasts for four days” — a key shaving benefit for today’s on-the-go, busy man. Consumers also will enjoy the updated “fresh scented fragrance,” an herbal blend of mint and basil. Lastly, the new Magic Cream Shave packaging has been upgraded with a cool, contemporary-yet-classic feel.

DSN: Can you tell us about the new Magic Shave Bump Rescue Skincare line?

Jefferson: The history of Magic really is for the African-American man, but [also] really any guy who shaves and is prone to razor bumps. … The purpose of Magic Shave was to allow men to get a close, smooth shave without the use of a razor so they wouldn’t get razor bumps. As we continue to expand the brand and listen to our consumers’ needs, we are proud to introduce the new Magic Shave Bump Rescue Skincare Line, a range of three skin care products formulated to help men visibly reduce the look of razor bumps. The [Magic Shave Bump Rescue Skincare] line includes an exfoliating cleanser that will visibly reduce the appearance of bumps and also has charcoal to absorb excess oils and exfoliate the skin. … Then we have a moisturizer, and we made ours a 2-in-1 moisturizer. This product really is replacing our previous Bump Rescue. … So, with the 2-in-1 moisturizer you get the benefit of the Bump Rescue, and then you also get the moisturization. … Then the final product is a spot treatment [for acne or razor bump breakouts]. Magic Shave Bump Rescue Skincare Line visibly reduces the appearance of bumps, fights blackheads, helps prevent new acne blemishes and diminishes the look of ingrown hairs.

DSN: What makes these products unique and different from the competition?

Jefferson: Obviously, the first thing is that it is coming from Softsheen-Carson. We have our Ethnic, Hair and Skin Institute in Chicago. This comprehensive system is built around cutting-edge technologies and contains such key ingredients as salicylic acid, charcoal, zinc and allantoin to deliver smoother skin. [Plus], there’s not a lot of product out there that is dedicated to the African-American male. The launch marks an exciting entrance to Magic Shave’s journey into the skin care category.

DSN: Are there any new marketing initiatives in the works for the Magic brand?

Jefferson: You will be seeing a lot more from Magic. We are going to do different events around the country, and people will really be able to get out and experience the brand.

DSN: How can retailers better reach the African-American male shopper?

Jefferson: I think for the African-American male it is [about] product location. It has to be in the section they are going to in the store because men are not always going to want to walk through the shampoo aisle and the hair color aisle to find what they are looking for. The packaging, imagery and location are all really big when you’re targeting a male shopper. Also, they have to use it somewhere or see in somewhere because in the African-American community, barbershops are like the meeting place.

DSN: What are some challenges currently facing the men’s grooming segment, and how can Softsheen-Carson help retailers overcome those challenges?

Jefferson: Men want something quick and easy, and if there’s a dual purpose for it, that’s even better because they aren’t going to spend a lot of time. And I think the education piece of it really is key. … They need to really understand that there are other alternatives out there, or they need to understand how good grooming and good skin care will make a big difference. That’s why with our campaign this year we have a variety of different men from all walks of life to try to resonate [with consumers].

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CCA Industries sees loss in fiscal 2013

BY Antoinette Alexander

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — CCA Industries, a manufacturer and marketer of health and beauty aids whose portfolio includes Plus+White toothpaste, Bikini Zone shave gel and Gel Perfect UV-free gel nail color, posted a loss during fiscal 2013, but expects to benefit from its outsourcing agreement with Emerson Group in 2014.

For the fiscal year ended Nov. 30, the company had total revenues of $38.85 million, and a net loss of $6.19 million compared with revenues of $53.78 million and a net income of $465,452 for fiscal 2012. Basic and fully diluted losses per share were 88 cents for fiscal 2013 compared with earnings per share of 7 cents for fiscal 2012. 

Total revenues for the fourth quarter of 2013 were $6.06 million compared with $11.37 million for the fourth quarter of 2012. The net loss for the fourth quarter of 2013 was $4.23 million versus a loss of $352,929 for the fourth quarter of 2012. Basic and fully diluted losses per share were 60 cents for the fourth quarter of 2013 versus a loss of 5 cents in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012. 

The large loss in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2013 was due to lower sales of the company’s nail color brand and diet brand, combined with higher reserves for returns and inventory related to the nail color brand.

"As previously reported, we do not anticipate those substantial losses continuing in fiscal 2014," said Richard Kornhauser, president and CEO. "We believe CCA is well positioned for fiscal 2014 due to the outsourcing agreement with the Emerson Group, which significantly lowered our costs. The company is investing some of this savings into a more robust media advertising campaign for fiscal 2014, which should promote the growth of our brands. We expect to start realizing the savings from the outsourcing agreement beginning in the second quarter of fiscal 2014.”

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SoftSheen-Carson launches new Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage line

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Ethnic hair care brand SoftSheen-Carson has introduced its new Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage line, a range of treatment products designed to reduce breakage, restore and revive strands and support hair growth.

Featuring an exclusive anti-breakage recipe, the new Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage collection is designed to help strengthen strands by reducing breakage, helping hair grow up to four inches a year, the company stated.

"For women of color, hair length is a badge of honor but a frustration to achieve, as damaged hair challenges its growth and breakage threatens her ability to proudly shine," said Mezei Jefferson, senior manager of education, SoftSheen-Carson. "We’re excited to introduce this innovative care system formulated to revitalize and nourish distressed strands, help strengthen the hair’s fiber and ultimately help hair grow."

Singer-songwriter Marsha Ambrosius, Jefferson and celebrity Chef Roble at the launch of the Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage Collection at No. 8 in New York City. (PRNewsFoto/SoftSheen-Carson Laboratories)

Comprised of four products, the Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage treatment line includes:

  • Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage Root-To-Tip Mender – Helps prevent split-ends before they start and leaves ends resilient, healthy and strong (suggested retail price is $9.99);
  • Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage Tension Release Wash – Soothes dry scalp and hair while rebuilding hair elasticity (SRP $9.99);
  • Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage Strength Restoring Conditioner – Replenishes hair with nutrients to stimulate hair growth (SRP $9.99); and
  • Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage Super Softening Hair Butter – Moisturizes and reconstructs damaged hair for a shiny finish (SRP $9.99).

Au Naturale Anti-Breakage treatment collection has no drying alcohol, no mineral oil, no petrolatum and no parabens.

The Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Breakage and Au Naturale Anti-Shrinkage lines are specially formulated to address the unique needs of naturally curly hair textures.

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