Act Your Age: Are indie skin care brands for kids leading the beauty market back to demographic segmentation?

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / (Chinnapong)
© Getty Images / (Chinnapong)

Related tags Indie beauty brands Indie beauty expo kids Puberty Demographics Baby care

Several independent skin care brands exhibiting at last week’s IBE NY tradeshow are targeting young consumers according to their age or life stage. There was a brand for collegiate women, one for tweens edging in on puberty, and another offering organic skin care for newborns. Here, Cosmetics Design looks at a selection of these new niche brands.

For 3 or 4 years now, beauty makers, marketers, and trend forecasters have been talking about consumer psychographics, about needs-based products, lifestyle brands, and concept shops rather than about consumer age or life-stage. But the variety of kids’ brands exhibiting at this year’s Indie Beauty Expo in New York City may be a signal that this sort of market segmentation will be short lived.

Organic luxury skin care for babies

In 2014, Gudrun Wurm founded Little Butterfly London​, an organic luxury skin care for newborns and mothers.  The brand’s product portfolio comprises about 15 skin care, body care, and bath products, most of which are either for mothers or for babies. But the ‘fall into dreams’ massage oil from Little Butterfly London is intended for both adults and infants.

The brand’s baby-specific product line includes other massage oils, a bath milk, body wash, body lotion, an anti-pollution face cream, and a nappy (diaper) change cream.

“Pregnancy and early motherhood are fleeting times when women should be able to treasure, indulge and pamper their incredible bodies,” ​believes, Wurm. And the brand she’s built is intent on bringing luxury, certified organic skin care to the baby care market in and beyond Europe.

Products formulated for tweens and teens

TBH Kids is a new brand from Fairy Tales Haircare founder​ Risa Barish. It’s an affordable personal care brand with products for the face, hair, and body—a collection of product developed specifically for generation alpha, today’s tweens and teens dealing with the realities of puberty. (TBH is a social media initialism for “to be honest,” as in #TBHpubertysucks.)

There is shampoo made with nettle, cedar bark, and sage. Conditioner formulated with quinoa (a key ingredient in the Fairy Tales collection) and jojoba. There are just 3 body care products in the TBH Kids’ product portfolio: body wash, lotion, and deodorant. And the skin care offerings include a cleanser, wipes, and 2 spot treatment products.

Barish spoke with Cosmetics Design on camera at this year’s IBE NY event; so watch for that interview with more info on TBH Kids to go online in the coming days.

The brand girls grow up with

Sisters Bunny and Taran Ghatrora founded Blume​ in 2016 “to de-stigmatize periods and create the next generation of confident, tenacious and conscious women,” ​according to the brand’s ‘Our Story’ page.

At IBE NY last week, the brand was showing face wash, acne oil, deodorant, and a topical essential oil blend used to address period cramps. Like many direct-to-consumer brands today, Blume offers its products for sale one at a time as well as on a monthly subscription basis (a model that makes particularly good sense for a brand that also sells pads and tampons).

Skin care for collegiate women

Higher Education Skincare​ is a brand for girls and women age 17 – 25, Deborah Nash, founder of Higher Education Skincare, tells Cosmetics Design. The brand’s small collection of products is meant to be a simple, age-appropriate skin care routine (cleanse, exfoliate, hydrate) for women at university.

And the brand has given all of its products names meant to reflect both the college experience and the product’s function: there’s Cheat Sheet makeup removing wipes, Pre-Req skin cleanser, Grinding Away scrub, Easy A resurfacing pads, Cram Session lotion, and more.

Nash and her colleagues believe there’s an opportunity, beyond the brand’s ecommerce platform, in the college retail space for Higher Education Skincare to reach college-age shoppers in need of personal care that meets their particular life-stage and lifestyle needs.



Deanna Utroske, Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.

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