Murmure: From a ballet dancer's dream to French-made beauty brand

By Cassandra Stern

- Last updated on GMT

Developing products like the Mellow Mallow Cleanser is a " long process, but it's worth it to make sure we're only bringing la crème de la crème to our customers," shared Murmure co-founder Emily Klein. © Luis Alvarez Getty Images
Developing products like the Mellow Mallow Cleanser is a " long process, but it's worth it to make sure we're only bringing la crème de la crème to our customers," shared Murmure co-founder Emily Klein. © Luis Alvarez Getty Images

Related tags Skin care brand R&D botanicals

Indie skin care brand Murmure has seen noteworthy success since launching late last year, including recently having its best-selling Mellow Mallow Cleanser named a Marie Claire Awards finalist.

In October 2023, former ballerina Emily Klein took her passion for beauty, design, and natural ingredients to new heights by co-founding Murmure, a French-made indie skin care brand. Klein, who danced with The American Ballet Theatre for a decade, transitioned from ballet to beauty with a clear vision: to create products that combine the elegance of ballet with the artistry of French skin care.

We spoke to Klein to learn more about the inspiration behind the brand launch, the R&D process that led to Murmure's best-selling Mellow Mallow Cleanser and other botanical skin care products, and how the brand's product collection fits into current skin care trends. 

The inspiration behind Murmure

"Performance weeks often meant washing my face up to four times a day," recalled Klein, and "our season at the Metropolitan Opera could involve as many as three performances daily, requiring frequent removal of heavy stage makeup." This experience led her to develop the Mellow Mallow Cleanser, a product designed to remove makeup and impurities without stripping the skin of its natural oils.

Murmure was born out of a collaboration with Klein's husband Jonathan and their friend Nicolas, a French pharmacist specializing in botanical substances. They were inspired by the lifetime research of Jonathan’s godfather, Jean-Paul, a renowned herbalist. "We started the R&D with the idea to create a skin care line that combines Jean-Paul's botanical discoveries, modern ingredients, and the artistry of French savoir-faire," she explained.

The science of beauty 

The Mellow Mallow Cleanser exemplifies Murmure's innovative approach, and its formulation features the Mallow flower, known for its natural purple hue and mucilage content, as well as contemporary actives like Hyaluronic Acid.

For products like Murmure's best-seller, the R&D process "starts with an idea of a texture, a color, a scent and an effect," Klein shared. From there, "we then collaborate closely with our R&D team, providing them with a detailed brief," she said.

The subsequent formulation process involves months of rigorous testing to ensure stability, safety, and efficacy. "It's a long process, but it's worth it to make sure we're only bringing la crème de la crème to our customers," Klein stated. 

Trends & future directions

Murmure is riding the wave of a skin care market that currently favors streamlined routines and multi-functional products. "The market is clearly shifting away from simple/single active formulations in favor of streamlined skin care routines," noted Klein, and French skin care is also experiencing a resurgence, with brands like Typology, La Roche-Posay, and Caudalie gaining prominence.

Looking ahead, Murmure's R&D will continue to explore underused functional extracts and natural scents. The brand is committed to developing innovative products that marry efficacy with a luxurious user experience, and Klein hinted at an exciting new product in the pipeline. "Our team in France has been working tirelessly to develop Murmure’s newest product," she shared, which is "a pre & probiotic moisturizer unlike anything you’ve ever tried" that is set to launch next month.

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