Sundial, Unilever’s Platform for New Voices
New fund seeks to bolster emerging brands
Sundial Brands and Unilever unveiled the New Voices Fund Sunday at a brunch in the Breakers’ Magnolia room alongside two rising CPG stars benefitting from the effort.
The $100 million New Voices Fund is aimed at fostering emerging brands — with a focus on those run by women of color — offering entrepreneurs access, capital and expertise to help their companies thrive. In terms of access, the fund offers connections to help develop an upstart’s enterprise structure, and the capital component offers companies financial support to build, grow and scale a company.
“New Voices is set up to say, ‘We’ve done well, but that’s not enough; we’ve brought change, but that’s no enough, we can’t stop here,” Richelieu Dennis, Sundial Brands founder and CEO, said to a crowd that included executives from the Emerson Group, Unilever, Ulta Beauty and Sundial Brands. “Given the challenges that we went through, I can say that we wouldn’t be standing here today if we didn’t get the access you gave us and the expertise you gave us. The capital piece was hard, and we figured that out, but even if we had gotten just that capital, without your expertise and without you giving us access, we wouldn’t have gotten anywhere.”
At the event, Dennis was joined by Melissa Butler, founder and CEO of vegan and cruelty-free lipstick company Lip Bar, and Beatrice Feliu-Espada, founder of natural feminine hygiene brand the Honey Pot. Butler’s brand launched in 42 Target stores in February and is set to expand to roughly 450 in the fall. The Honey Pot hit 1,000 Target stores this month. However, Feliu-Espada noted that the journey to success wasn’t easy, and she struggled to secure funding to scale up her company.
“Even when you’re dealing with investors, you’re going to hear a thousand ‘noes’ before you get to a ‘yes,’” she said. “The challenge [of raising funds for the launch] was the uphill battle of finding the capital even though you have the best damn problem in the world”
Butler echoed Dennis, noting that capital is one piece of the whole, with expertise and access constituting the missing parts for brand success, even one that has wide appeal.
“Our challenges have been how do we scale, how do we get the proper advisors, how do we get that access to capital, how do I translate my authentic relationship with my customer into sales without having that back-end or that front-end support?” she said. “Oftentimes as a small business owner, I don’t know if something is specific to me as a small business owner, as a black woman or if this is just how business goes — what is the standard in this industry? Just knowing ‘this is what you should expect’ will be invaluable for us.”
Leave in conditioners moisturize, nourish damaged hair
Suave Professionals Avocado and Olive Oil Smoothing Leave-In Conditioning Cream
Infused with 100% natural avocado and olive oil, the product leaves dry, frizzy hair soft and smooth for up to three days — even in 95% humidity, the company said. The conditioning cream is formulated without dyes and leaves tresses feeling 10 times smoother than when nonconditioning shampoo is used. The leave-in conditioning cream currently retails at Walmart stores and online for the suggested price of $2.49.
OUAI Leave In Conditioner
This multitasking leave-in hair mist is designed to condition and detangle alongside thermal protection to reduce frizz and flyaways for smooth, silky hair. The spray contains amino acid blends to fortify hair structure, tamarind seed extract to promote hair hydration and hydrolyzed proteins to protect against damage from heat styling, while providing a velvety moisture barrier. OUAI’s Leave In Conditioner currently retails for $26 at Sephora and theOUAI.com.
SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Yogurt Hydrate Multi-Action Leave-In
Formulated with Manuka honey to provide moisture and boost shine and yogurt extract to nourish hair and mafura oil to manage damage control, the leave-in hydrates, reconditions, strengthens and smoothes locks. The product protects brittle hair from heat up to 450 degrees, while fighting frizz. It is ideal for hair that’s prone to breaking, snapping or splitting, Sundial Brands said. It retails for $11.49 at Ulta Beauty.
L’Oréal Paris Elvive Total Repair 5 Protein Recharge Leave-In
L’Oréal’s Elvive line is designed to prevent hair damage and revive locks and combat protein loss in hair. The formula, which contains almond and protein, recharges hair fibers to prevent damage from daily wear and tear, the company said. The leave-in cream can fight a year of damage from over 200 brushes, 100 flat irons and one bleach setting in just one use, L’Oréal said. It retails for $6.99 nationwide.
Kristin Ess Weightless Shine Leave-In Conditioner
This product contains Zip-Up, a strengthening complex comprised of Kerabead microcapsules and such ingredients as chia seeds, pea protein and marine algae. The technology is designed to “zip up” split ends, while targeting weak areas of hair, smoothing the appearance of damaged cuticles and protecting from environmental stressors and color fade, the company said. The leave-in conditioner retails for $10 at Target stores and online.
Going big in beauty
DSN beauty director launches headfirst in showcasing the booming category
Welcome to Inside Beauty.
This is the new and expanded section of Drug Store News that will focus on the power of beauty products and the role they play at mass retailers across the country. As you will see in this and future issues, our Inside Beauty team is dedicated to bringing the industry the most up-to-date trends, new product information and insights to help retailers run arguably their most important category in their stores.
Personally, this is an exciting opportunity. As the new beauty director at Drug Store News, this gives me the chance to get more involved with a category that I have long respected as an engine of growth at retail and one that has deep personal meaning to me. It also allows me to more closely bond with my 11-year-old daughter, who has made it totally clear that she not only wants to help, she expects to be a key resource for me with some articles and opinions.
But the beauty market is a complex one and I am well aware of the hard task of staying ahead of the trends in a category that prides itself of rapid product introductions and changing styles. So, one of the first actions I took when I was promoted to this role was to call several industry insiders for insights on what to watch, read and follow in the industry and how to help our editorial team summarize all of this information into articles that will help mass retailers stay on target with this fast-moving category.
Frankly, I was totally overwhelmed by their suggestions. There is a dizzying amount of content out there. Besides the traditional consumer magazines, I found that Twitter and Instagram are quickly becoming my best friends as I try to stay educated on the market. Did I mention the blogs in this industry that are gaining more and more sway over younger shoppers? I am totally amazed how these sites are impacting sales in the beauty category and the importance retailers must place on them.
To further understand this market, I googled “beauty trends 2018” and up popped Mintel’s Global Beauty Trends 2018 developed by their global beauty and personal care analyst team. Four main trends are covered in the report. Here is their introduction:
“The term ‘natural’ will expand to include locally-sourced and technologically enhanced ingredients, products, and services as brands look to overcome environmental challenges. Consumers will demand personalized beauty defined on their individual terms, and brands will embrace inclusivity by looking beyond age, gender, sexuality, and body type. Brand persona will become paramount as more consumers expect to see their values reflected in the products they buy and the companies they support. Finally, digital technology will drive unprecedented customization of the shopping experience.”
I highly recommend reading the full report at mintel.com/personal beauty care. This Mintel report and insights from NPD and Neilson were shared at a Cosmetic Executive Women event in New York that I attended in February. I learned that avocado is the fastest growing ingredient in beauty, consumers feel it is “my beauty my rules” — meaning they are in charge of defining beauty — and there is no room for error with social media, as roughly 50% of followers will unfollow if the brand makes a mistake in their eyes.
More than ever, I am a fan of all things beauty, fashion, and personal care. I look forward to seeing many of you at the upcoming NACDS Annual meeting and learning anything and everything about this critical category at retail. And, please don’t be shy with me. If you have any insights or trends to share feel free to write or call — firstname.lastname@example.org or (312) 440-0516.
Catherine Stephany, Drug Store News, beauty director