MAC taps into consumer desire for realistic role models

By Louise Prance

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Baby boomer Academy award for best actress

MAC Cosmetics is to tap into the growing trend for products aimed
at the older female baby boomer generation with the launch of a new
cosmetics range in collaboration with veteran actress Raquel Welch.

The global introduction of the firm's 'Raquel Welch Beauty Icon Collection', which is set for February 2007, will make the actress the fourth Beauty Icon, following in the footsteps of Liza Minelli, Diana Ross and Catherine Deneuve.

This latest move by MAC heralds a backlash from an influential company within the cosmetics industry against unrealistic advertising campaigns that use models who are deemed to be perfect, and is focused on portraying a healthier, more accessible image for the older generation.

A survey released last year by YouGov showed consumers have started to point the finger at marketing and advertising campaigns conducted by the beauty industry featuring unrealistic female images for giving them a low opinion of themselves.

MAC's new range will focus on bright colours for the cosmetic products and packaging that are said to represent the actress's love of shading and her 'ability as a make up artist'.

The company said it started the 'Icon' range in 2003 in order to pay tribute to the many cultural icons. Welch was selected by the company as the fourth icon due to her 'international film star status' and for her representation of 'the diversity of ethnicity in terms of her heritage'.

As the first of the baby boom generation begins to reach retirement age, many individuals are looking for ways of maintaining a youthful and healthy appearance. And they also have the financial means to do so, having a far greater disposable income than previous generations.

Indeed, the use of both Fonda and Keaton, and now Welch, in influential advertising campaigns reflect the growing importance of older woman to cosmetics companies.

L'Oreal were amongst the first to capitalise on this trend early last year. During that period it signed up Jane Fonda and Diane Keaton, both older Hollywood actresses.

The firm signed sixty year-old Diane Keaton to represent the Age Perfect Pro-Calcium skin care line, launched last July. The deal saw Keaton promoting the line's restorative Hydrating Cream and Age Perfect Skin Supporting and Hydrating Make-up.

The move came just weeks after the Paris-based cosmetics giant signed Jane Fonda, 68, to promote its Pro-Calcium's sister product Age Re-Perfect Pro-Calcium, in Europe.

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