Inside-out beauty: Neutrogena blends AI, customization, and wellness with gummie launch
Last week, Johnson & Johnson-owned skin care band Neutrogena edged into the growing nutricosmetics market with the launch of its ‘Nourished x Neutrogena Skin360 SKINSTACKS’ product at CES in Las Vegas.
The joint venture between Neutrogena and Nourished began in mid-2022 and was founded on a “shared mission based on health, science, and technology,” said Desiree Dowe, director for future of skin health at Neutrogena.
“Our research found that 76% of our customers wanted holistic products that work from the inside out and this seemed like a natural partnership.”
Developed using over 10,000 facial databases
The new product was a customized skin care supplement that used AI technology to cater to specific needs. Consumers had to visit Neutrogena’s SKINSTACKS website and take three selfies so its ‘Skin360’s’ AI technology could assess their skin’s smoothness, radiance, clearness, and presence of fine lines and wrinkles. Next, they answered questions about their current skincare routine and future goals to calculate their skin’s exact needs. The technology then recommended a specific blend of nutrients designed to improve the skin’s quality and meet the consumer’s skincare goals.
“Our scientists worked together with Perfect Corp on the technology,” shared Dowe. The complex skin analysis algorithm used more than 100,000 skin pixels to analyze over 2,000 facial attributes and was developed using more than 10,000 facial databases across ethnicities, skin types, and ages (from 7 to 70 years old), with 10+ types of lighting.
The made-to-order, seven-layered gummie supplement was printed using 3D technology and a 28-day supply then arrived within 14 days of ordering, at a cost of $49.99. This model was already perfected, as Nourished had been using 3D printing technology to create its holistic full-body health supplements since January 2020.
The Neutrogena-Nourished product had been launched into the US market for the first phase and if successful would be sold in other countries.
“We have been very excited with the reception at CES so far. People seem to understand how it empowers consumers,” said Dowe. “It’s the first phase and a chance to gain consumer interest. We will then assess if we are going to take it further.”
Clinically trialed for ingestible pathways
The inside-out beauty supplements came in five variants: Ageless, Clear, Hydrate, Glow, and Resilient, with each including a core blend of nutrients vitamin C, vitamins A & E, selenium, vitamin D3, and zinc, with two bonus nutrients based on specific skincare goals. Examples included biotin, astaxanthin, iodine, or specially designed ingredients like hydocurc & black pepper: curcumin combined with black pepper to help with its absorption.
“We have only chosen ingredients that have a beneficial outcome for the consumer, as scientific validation is at the route of everything we do,” said Melissa Snover, CEO at Remedy Health (the parent company of Nourished). “We researched over 1,000 different ingredients and then narrowed it down to 14 that were clinically trialed to work through an ingestible pathway for the specific skin care goals. All ingredients are used at levels that are proven to be clinically beneficial at the exact level we have used them.”
The product was also 100% plant-based, sugar-free, and housed in plastic-free, sustainable packaging. Flavor options were customizable: watermelon, peach, tangy cherry, tangy green apple, or mixed berry, and could be changed with every order.
“We recommend that our customers check back in every three months to see if they need a different blend, as skin changes with the weather conditions and stages of life,” said Snover.
A savvier breed of consumer
The innovation was launched to cater to the growing need for ‘beauty-from-within’ nutricosmetic products designed to appeal to increasingly educated consumers that understood the link between lifestyle factors and skin conditions.
“The Neutrogena consumer is very involved in skin care. They know so much about it and want to add value to their daily routine. They are also considering their lifestyle factors such as sleep, nutrition, and exercise,” said Dowe.
Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Caroline Robinson MD FAAD had also noted this growing trend among her patients. “A lot more of my patients note how lifestyle factors impact their skin,” she said. “People are much more curious about this now than they once were.”
Indeed, data from Transparency Market Research predicted the global market for nutricosmetics to rise by 7.7% CAGR between 2022 and 2031. And by 2031, the global nutricosmetics market was predicted to reach a total value of US$9.81 billion.
Increasing demands for customization
The launch also catered to the growing trend for customization using AI technology, which was increasingly being trialed by larger players, such as Colgate Palmolive’s recent test-and-learn exercise.
“Consumers today desire products that are tailored to their specific needs, so customization is becoming more common,” said Sofie Willmott, sector head for health & beauty at GlobalData Retail. “Brands such as Function of Beauty, which offers personalized hair care, have risen in popularity in response to rising demand and major global companies such as L’Oréal and Shiseido are investing in technologies that facilitate personalized beauty products, to ensure they can cater for increasingly-demanding consumers.”