In the age of Indie Brands popping up in every store and online shop, what makes SkinCatering so different?
In the beginning, the fact that we were "all-natural" made us different and honestly, more difficult to clear the path for ourselves, because in 2012 consumers weren't really concerned about things being natural or clean. They wanted the big-name brands with all their anti-aging innovations. The TV commercials with celebrity endorsements and airbrushed magazine ads blasted all of us with information telling women what we needed. No one knew what ingredients did what and consumers got excited at the mention of words like "botanical" and phrases like 'infused with shea butter."
All-natural beauty was associated with hippy, farm-market brands and homemade concoctions that where thick, greasy, and smelling of patchouli.
Our elegant clients in business suits wanted products that smelled clean and applied like silk. Younger clients weren't going to spas to learn of brands outside of the mall shops with pretty smelling sprays and mineral-based makeup.
Consumers seeking a cleaner brand went to beauty counters in Department stores and stand-alone retail shops to purchase products with bottles that had labels made in green imagery, bamboo caps, and brown or matte-white bottles. All this marketing was geared towards making the brand look plant-based for a product that was anything but.
So, how do you combat those attitudes and marketing dollars when you're a boutique brand just starting out? At that time we used black bottles with slick black labels to differentiate ourselves from the "Farm and Garden" look.
That worked well for us ... until Farm To Spa became the trend.
We swapped black for white bottles and began looking at ways to try to position our competitive natural formulas in this world where space was opening up for the Indie Brand.
All-Natural, organic - those terms were being tossed about easily now and consumers wanted it. Performance wasn't at the forefront of their minds - they wanted ingredients that they could pronounce and understand what they meant.
Enter the era of the well-informed consumer, educated by ingredient websites, beauty bloggers, and social media influencers.
They know what they demand but still, do they know what they are getting?
Product Development in the Indie Brand Era
"Today, product development is marketing-driven. Most indie brands are really just marketing teams that use raw material and third-party manufacturers as their R&D teams.
Indie brands analyze global trends and competitive products, then send concept briefs with key ingredients and benefits to third-party manufacturers for development. Today, product development is more centered around meeting a retailer’s "clean" list and being "free of" than it is about efficacy." - Karen Yarussi-Kin, Global Regulatory Associates (Global Cosmetic Industry Magazine)
Lucky for us, Clean Beauty is OUR arena and where we shine! We are spa girls who thrive on educating our client, and we have this beautiful product that is all-natural, clean, AND PERFORMS.
SkinCatering is an Indie Brand in that we aren't owned by a bigger company and we use raw materials. But that's where the similarities begin to fade away. Our product line is designed by aestheticians with real clients, who understand how your skin works with products. We don't just slap a number of exotic ingredients together with intriguing names and fancy benefits.
Kim reads medical journals. Leanne pours over research. Big discussions take place over what needs to happen with this product for the user. Our clients actually use the product before it launches so we have real feedback.
We review what is trending and how beneficial those trends really are - should we be using that? Should YOU be using that? If it's counterproductive for your skin, you won't see us hop on the band-wagon for the trend. #sorrynotsorry
WE formulate, WE manufacture, and the products REALLY WORK.
We mean it when we say
Leanne & Kim"
on the back of our bottles.
We aren't just any ol' Indie Brand. We're YOUR Indie Brand.