The beauty multinational opened its latest addition to its network of seven hubs in South Africa at the end of last month, with the move signalling a clear focus on both the rising trend of multicultural beauty and the local demands of sub-Saharan consumers.
Alexandre Popoff, Executive Vice-President Eastern Europe and Africa, Middle East, said: “Sub-Saharan Africa is one of the fastest growing regions for L’Oréal. Our new research arm in South Africa will solidly enable us to continually create the beauty products of the future for our African consumers, while drawing inspiration from the diverse beauty rituals and the various needs of our consumers on the continent.”
‘Cutting edge’ research
According to the company, the new centre’s mission is to “translate beauty needs and hair and skin knowledge into innovative products ranging from hair care, hair colour, relaxers and shapers to personal hygiene”.
The centre is focusing its research on skin evenness, sebum, acne, dryness, hair manageability, sensitive scalps and fragrance, L’Oréal says, using “cutting edge instruments to visualize the skin surface, the spots or to measure hair breakages”.
Through the centre, L’Oréal intends to collaborate with the scientific community in South Africa, including local universities, dermatologists, natural biodiversity centres and hairdressers.
The new centre allows L’Oréal to build on its expertise in the specific beauty needs of black women that the company has been building since opening its Evaluation Centre in South Africa in 2003.
“L’Oréal has already introduced key beauty innovations for African consumers. For example, the African Beauty Brands team has brought to the market the black oil technology for hair color, failsafe relaxers as well as skin evenness routines,” the company confirms.
Laurent Attal, Executive Vice-President of Research and Innovation, stated: “By opening this new Research & Innovation Center, we are spearheading L'Oréal Research for the African continent. We are showing our determination to go further in innovations for the African beauty market.”