Most Popular in:

Cosmetics Treatments

Email This Item! Print This Item!

The New Alchemy of Multitasking Makeup

By: Emily Katz
Posted: March 28, 2011, from the April 2011 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.
makeup client at skin care facility

As a little girl of 3, I recall climbing up to my mother’s vanity and pulling out a beautiful crystal-encrusted lipstick case that a friend had just brought from France. I wanted the lipstick, which smelled of roses, within that case. I’ll never forget it. It was then that I must have realized the power of makeup. Not only did I love applying it to my lips, but the scent also sent me to the moon. A love of makeup was born within me, and it was the harbinger of recognizing that lipstick wasn’t just color—it held a world of magic.

Flash forward decades later … lipstick still captivates me; it is chock full of all kinds of good stuff for your lips and is getting more advanced in staying power and benefits. There’s new magic afoot here.

The quest for efficiency and youth

Currently the quest is for the ultimate in multitasking cosmetics, particularly in a culture obsessed with efficiency and youth. Consumers are seeking a means to get as much done as possible, while wanting to simplify and streamline. In fact, according to a recent NPD Group Inc. report, approximately 86% of makeup-users have used a makeup product that contains a skin care benefit in the past year. This idea culminates in personal care products that are a hybrid of convenience, results and color all in one. Herald the arrival of an amazing array of color treatment combinations and multitasking/multipurpose products, such as powders that finish makeup and act as sunscreens; primers with benefits for aging skin, oil absorption and sebum control; and tinted sunscreens. “[Combining color and skin benefits] is becoming a research and development necessity, and is already a consumer demand with significant point-of-product differentiation,” explains Casi Morris, owner and principle of Casi Morris Consulting, a Los Angeles-based independent consultant, developer and formulator of skin care and beauty products. “The economy has placed a burden on most Americans’ spending, so consumers have chosen to cut back on nonessential personal care products, such as eye shadows, primers and illuminators, and spend on items that necessitate a critical part of their daily regimen.”

This trend has been in effect for a number of years and is steadily taking over what could now be construed as commonplace makeup. “It started 10 years ago with an emphasis on anti-aging in beauty; with all the potions and serums available, it is only natural that color would want a piece of the pie. Pure color is a hard sell these days, but I really believe that skin care benefits should only enter into it when it makes sense,” explains Cristina Bartolucci, vice president of innovation at Roberts Cosmetics and co-founder of DuWop Cosmetics. This isn’t just lipstick. Foundation sales have been as recession-proof as lipstick this time around, even though lipstick has historically been the benchmark of sales in a bad economy. Now, with foundations that offer additional benefits, they are working to become a leader in international sales. This is due in great part to skin care benefits that consumers desire, derived from active anti-aging and skin-enhancing ingredients.

A caveat: Some key words and phrases to watch out for include: “Ellicit an anti-aging effect on skin,” “light-capturing” or “reflecting.” It’s important to be informed about the actual attributes of a product. Does it truly interface with the skin as an effective anti-aging/wrinkle-reducing ingredient, or does it just create the effect or illusion of that desired result? There’s a difference. It’s important to ensure you are knowledgeable about this so you can truly educate your clients about it.

What clients should seek