ELIZABETH ARDEN MARRIES TWO TRENDS IN GLOBAL LAUNCH: BUDGET ESTIMATED AT $6 MIL FOR HYBRID SKINCARE PRODUCT

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Unilever's Elizabeth Arden Inc. is undertaking its first global launch, fusing two big skincare trends: pore cleansing adhesives and transdermal vitamin treatments.

Called Visible Difference Pore-Fix C, the adhesive strips for nose, chin and forehead follow successful new Biore products from Andrew Jergens Co. and Unilever's Pond's Clear Pore Strips.

Pore strips, now about a $100 million business, are expected to become a $300 million category by the yearend.

A SKIN TREATMENT

Arden's entry differs from those by Biore and Pond's in that it will be sold in department stores and doesn't just clean but treats the skin with vitamin C, working like a transdermal delivery system, according to Ron Latham, exec VP-global marketing.

Since there have been no upscale adhesive pore patches, some department stores have been selling the mass-market products to meet consumer demand.

Transdermal vitamin C patches, inspired by smoking-cessation patches, are now about a $50 million business in department stores, according to industry estimates. They're being expanded into the mass market also, where they could grow to a $500 million business by 2003, according to industry observers.

UP TO $6 MIL

Mr. Latham would not disclose ad spending for the Arden product, but industry executives estimated the outlay will be about $6 million globally.

A print ad created in-house reads: "The quick fix for the pores. Visible Difference Pore-Fix C. . . . introducing the only cleansing strip that cleans and treats with vitamin C."

The marketing mix includes heavy sampling in stores, including specialty stores, following the success of Calvin Klein in sampling fragrances in record stores.

Pore-Fix C also will be sampled in the jeans sections of department stores.

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