Editor's Spotlight

Can overseas indie brands change the pace of beauty?

By Deanna Utroske contact

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / (plej92)
© Getty Images / (plej92)
The independent beauty movement is truly global, as evidenced by the international spectrum of exhibitors at IBE LA last month. But a subset of indie beauty brands from abroad aren’t just going global, they are inviting consumers to be patient, seek balance, and think long term.

It’s not uncommon for the cosmetics and personal care industry to be described as fast-paced. And plenty of brands and market forces encourage consumers to seek out immediate results, instant benefits, and gratification at the speed of Instagram; while manufacturers and product developers are easily caught up a cycle of innovation premised on everything that’s new, now, and next.

A trend is emerging among a subset on indie brands, brands that are based overseas and attracting the attention of US consumers ready to slow down their beauty regimen and find a healthy equilibrium.

As the ‘about the founder’ page on the Forest Rhapsody Skincare site notes, “I believe that a healthy skincare routine should not swing like a wild pendulum. There is a precious middle ground, and our formulas are specifically designed to gradually and consistently improve the health and wellness of your skin, allowing it to seek and more importantly, maintain that beautiful equilibrium.”

Skin care with sustainable results

CJ Zhan founded her Singapore-based brand Forest Rhapsody Skincare in 2016 and first launched product in November of last year.

Speaking with Cosmetics Design at IBE LA last month, Zhan says that Forest Rhapsody is the “yoga of skin care,”​ explaining that consumers are “not going to see immediate results [but rather] use small doses over a period of time…to get sustainable results.”

The current Forest Rhapsody Skincare product portfolio comprises only 3 products: dew drops – enzymatic cleansing gel, thousand petals – flower acid resurfacing mask, and green nectar – marine hydrator (formulated with kelp and chlorella). Read more about the marine beauty trend on Cosmetics Design here​ and here​.

Forest Rhapsody products are meant to blendable, allowing consumers to combine products to create something new: for instance 1 scoop of the thousand petals mask with 2 pumps of the green nectar hydrator to create a cream cleanser, according to Zhan.

And Zhan tells Cosmetics Design there are further Forest Rhapsody Skincare products—a cleanser and a moisturizer—the works.

A life of balance and longevity

Michèle Evrard founded the brand Cosmetics 27 in 2009, bringing her background in pharmacy and her experience in the beauty industry to skin care.

“Longevity is what counts,”​ emphasized Evrard in conversation with Cosmetics Design at IBE LA last month. The brand's portfolio is currently 12 products deep and they can be “blended or layered” ​according to each customer needs and preferences. “The products,” ​explains Evrard, “become your ingredients,”​ in the same way that food products in the pantry are ingredients for a meal.

Cosmetics 27 is about balanced skin care not about individual identity markers, the products are age-free, gender-free, skin type-free; and the popular Baume 27 Bio-Energizing Repair Balm can be used day or night.

As Evrard explains on the brand’s ecommerce site, “I want to provide accurate and adapted responses to very simple needs. My philosophy has been founded on the concept of Homeostasis, the capacity to constantly maintain the organism equilibrium. Our skin can lose through the years its capacity to self-regulate. Cosmetics 27 are precisely aimed to help the skin to self-regulate, and consequently to self-regenerate.”

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