Household and personal care wipes are a staple in daily routines thanks to their portability and multitasking benefits.
All-purpose cleaner and a paper towel. Cold cream and a tissue. Nail polish remover and a cotton pad…these are just a few daily essentials that can be combined in a household or personal care wipe.
Sales of household cleaner cloths—including all-purpose, furniture/polish cleaner, glass cleaner, metal cleaner and scouring cleaner—in food, drug and mass-market outlets (excluding Walmart) rose 1.5% to $265.5 million for the 52 weeks ended April 15, 2012, according to data from SymphonyIRI Group, a Chicago-based market research firm. All-purpose products made up the lion’s share of sales, with a 2.4% rise to $244.0 million (Clorox’s all-purpose SKUs brought in nearly half of the sales at $111.0 million). Moist towelette sales increased 1.8% to $780.9 million, according to SymphonyIRI, with baby wipes staying flat at $511.8 million and moist towelettes rising 3.6% to $269.1 million.
“There is an increase in convenience products like beauty wipes and portable skin care evolving,” noted Dr. Neil Sadick of Sadick Dermatology Group, New York, NY.“Corrector pens, wipes, travel systems with travel size packaging make up this trend of beauty on the go…many of these products have increased concentrations actives, which give the consumer more instantaneous gratification and the feeling of improved health.”
Tracy Ogden, a spokesperson for Amazon.com, Seattle, WA, agreed.
“In the last three years we have seen an explosion in the number and types of wipes available to consumers—and for good reason! In today’s fast paced world, wipes make previously tedious tasks easier, faster, and more efficient overall.Cleaning off the counter top is no longer a dreadful process—with wipes that are now specially designed for that exact purpose, it takes seconds to get a glistening countertop,” she said about the expanding wipes marketplace in both household and beauty.
For Professional Use
Wipes aren’t just for consumers anymore; they are finding applications in the industrial and institutional cleaning market too. In 2012, Clorox Professional Products Company rolled out Clorox Healthcare Hydrogen Peroxide Cleaner Disinfectant Wipes and Spray, a new line of ready-to-use, one-step cleaner disinfectants engineered with a patented activated hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) formula. The products are registered by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to kill 32 bacteria and viruses in 30-seconds to one minute, the fastest non-bleach contact time available, according to the company, and offer the fastest disinfecting technology since bleach.
“Healthcare professionals told us they needed disinfectants that work fast and are efficient, compatible with healthcare surfaces and comfortable for use by cleaning staff as well as around patients,” said Beata Grabowski, director of marketing, Clorox Professional Products Company. “We listened to our end users and created a technical breakthrough in daily disinfection, offering speed, compliance, value and excellent product aesthetics to help healthcare professionals fight healthcare-associated infections.”
It’s a Natural
Naturals marketers are also bulking up their offerings in the mass marketplace, as seen with new launches from Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day and Method. So, why wipes now?
“We wanted to offer our consumers an easily transportable and quick solution to clean ups in the home and away from the home,” said Pam Helms, chief innovation officer of Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day, Minneapolis, MN. “The surface wipes are an easy answer to small clean ups and a nice way to use our safe and effective products all around the house and on the go…we use the same plant based and efficacious ingredients that we use in our countertop spray formulations in our countertop wipes. They are safe for food contact surfaces and also leave a lovely garden inspired scent while in use.”
Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day Lemon Verbena Surface Wipes are biodegradable and effective on multi-surfaces, including sealed stone, laminate, finished wood, tile and linoleum.
Method also recently rolled out in its Wood for Good collection, a “complete product suite that cares for every wood surface in the home,” according to the company. The wipes have an almond fragrance.
There’s been a surge in wipe launches within the pet care market. La Fresh, a personal care wipes marketer, is making a foray into the category with a few new variations. According to Jennifer Norman, vice president of marketing, La Fresh, Chino, CA, “We decided to introduce pet care wipes because they’re such important parts of our lives. Most of us on the La Fresh team have pets—I personally grew up with six cats and three dogs! We chose to focus on dog wipes, because dogs tend to get a bit riper with activity and don’t groom themselves as thoroughly as cats do.”
The W.A.G. (Wash & Go) product line is for the traditional “happy-go-lucky” dog who lives with a loving, value-oriented family; while Divas & Studs is especially for smaller dogs, so their owners could pamper them withhigh quality, stylishly superior grooming products, explained Norman.
“Pet care wipes are incredibly handy for quick touch ups between regular baths or cleanings. Bath wipes can be used on paws after a walk to avoid tracking dirt into the house, or they can be used all over the coat for instant deodorization and shine. Ear wipes, eye wipes and tooth wipes are helpful to remove topical build up in support of healthy maintenance between vet visits. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the important bonding moments that come with every gentle, nurturing rub down,” she told Happi.
Nonwoven wipes have also become a staple in numerous personal care collections, as consumers clamor for extension of their favorite skin care product to pack along for excursions and/or add a “luxe” alternative to the washcloth, cotton pad or facial tissue often used in personal care applications.
Philosophy is branching out into skin care wipes.
Isohanni added that to avoid stripping skin of its natural moisture, the most effective beauty wipes are formulated without alcohol. Lumene’s wipes, big at CVS stores, are enriched with soothing, 100% organic Arctic linen seed, which gently cleanses and calms even the most sensitive skin.
Also in drugstores, Alba, St. Ives, Aveeno, Burt’s Bees and Yes To are bulking up their beauty offerings with wipes SKUs. Alba is set to debut two new SKUs this summer—Alba Botanica Natural Acnedote Clean ‘n Treat Daily Cleansing Towelettes, pre-moistened, acne-fighting wipes that clean away oil, grime and makeup, treat and help prevent acne all in one easy step; as well as Natural Hawaiian 3-in-1 Clean Towelettes, said to wipe away makeup, clean pores and balance the skin with no greasy residue and “triple action” with pore-purifying pineapple and papaya enzymes that break through oil and dead surface cells for a deep down clean. Aloe and awapuhi tone and nourish to refresh and refine pores without tightness, according to the company.
The Alba acne wipes are formulated with maximum strength 2% salicylic acid medicated acne cleanser and natural willow bark extract to stop pimples at the pore level, while licorice extract and witch hazel help neutralize acne-causing bacteria and combat oily skin. Parsley extract cleans deeply and acts as a natural oil blotter. Both wipes are biodegradable and feature 100% vegetarian ingredients.
Burt’s Bees is expanding its Sensitive skin line to include Burt’s Bees Sensitive Facial Cleansing Towelettes with Cotton Extract which are said to gently remove makeup, dirt and oil to cleanse and tone naturally in one easy step. Distinctly formulated with cotton extract to soften skin, rice extract to moisturize and aloe vera leaf juice to soothe, this towelette leaves sensitive skin feeling velvety-smooth without a tight, dry feeling. The natural cloths are forest Stewardship Council Certified and ideal for the eco-girl on the go, according to the company.
St. Ives is also branching out into wipes with its new Scrub-Free Exfoliating Pads, touted as being the first mass-market exfoliating pads with alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs). Formulated with natural lactic acid, these pads are said to produce smoother, younger-looking skin in seven days.
Aveeno’s product offers the softer side of skin care with its Ultra-Calming wipes, formulated with ingredients such as the exclusive Feverfew PFE, a natural, calming ingredient related to chamomile.
According to Aveeno, it is the first in a new skin care ingredient class called AOI Boosters—a potent combination of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories with unprecedented breadth and depth.
Meanwhile, Yes To Cucumbers Eye Makeup Remover Pads are round, pre-moistened products made from calendula, chamomile and cooling organic cucumbers, of course.
A new contender this season to the wipes area is Johnson & Johnson’s Visine, the first and only wipe from the trusted eye drop brand. According to J&J, Visine Soothing Wipes are an all-new way to cleanse and soothe around the eyes. These soft, moist pads gently clean around the eye area, removing debris and irritants like dust and pollen. They even gently remove makeup (including waterproof mascara) for clean, fresh, makeup-free eyes. With eight moisturizers and a cooling ingredient, they soothe the eye area without the rub, said the company. A gentle cleanser (coco-glucoside) derived from coconut and fruit is a key ingredient.
A Prestige Touch
David Booth, vice president, global marketing, Philosophy, Phoenix, AZ, sees opportunity for the expansion of personal care wipes in the prestige marketplace as well.
“I think more than ever, consumers are looking for results. If a product truly delivers on its promises, this is seen asthe ultimatevalue,” he told Happi. “Today’s skin care consumer is willing to spend a little more money on a quality product that actually performs. I’ve heard from so many consumers that they’ve been talked into buying the wrong productfar toomany times, andthey are tired of wasting their money and time. Let’s not forget thatthey don’t have any room left in their medicine cabinet to house all the ‘mistakes’ they’ve purchased. Multi-tasking products can save time and are always a plus.”
Philosophy recently released Clear Days Ahead Treatment Pads. The pre-moistened pads feature salicylic acid that gently removes dead skin cells without scrubbing to keep pores clear and help prevent future acne breakouts. Glycolic and mandelic acids help improve the appearance of large pores, discoloration and post-acne scarring for a more refined, even complexion.
“Cleansing wipes are a must have for anyone with a beauty regiment. They are a staple for every toiletry bag and generally the number one choice for cleansing because they are so convenient,” said Marcia Kilgore, founder of Soap & Glory, London, whose beauty brand has had presence in both mass and prestige at different stages (the line is currently sold at Sephora).
“The main benefit of beauty wipes is the convenience,” she explained. “They are liquid free, so easy to use on the move and great for travel. You can even use them in a stain emergency on your clothes!”
Soap & Glory’s Off Your Face Cleansing Wipes contain a chamomile and mint “aromacological” mix, as well as Poreshrink-RS, an acid free exfoliator that helps reduce dead skin cell build-up.
“A lot of beauty wipes can have a high alcohol content, but the acid free element noted here makes ours quite low,” Kilgore noted.
Also at Sephora, Josie Maran’s beauty line is expanding to include the new Argan Cleansing Treatment and Cleansing Cloth, a purifying argan oil-infused cleanser paired with a double-sided cleansing cloth that goes beyond removing makeup and dirt to lightly exfoliate skin as well. The cloth’s muslin side buffs away dead skin cells; the microfiber side removes impurities.
Fellow Sephora shelfmate and Greek brand Korres’ proposal for oily-to-combination skin is pomegranate. Its global bestselling Pomegranate Balancing Cream-Gel is now accompanied by three new cleansing products, including a cleansing wipes SKU. Designed for makeup removal as well as a portable facial wash, the wipes are rich in antioxidants and are said to help tighten pores while also toning and refreshing the skin.
Dr. Dennis Gross Skin Care is bulking up its skin care stable with Alpha Beta Glow Pads for Body, touted as the only exfoliating and anti-aging self-tanner with active Vitamin D that smoothes bumpy skin and helps reduce hair growth. This unique formula is delivered through a textured towel, while vitamin D provides a natural glow. Capislow helps reduce shaving frequency by minimizing hair texture and length. AHAs tackle keratosis pilaris while naturally derived BHAs address body acne and breakouts. Microencapsulated DHA and soy proteins deliver color.
What’s Next for Wipes?
There is still a lot of room for more brands to enter into the wipes market, according to Ogden of Amazon.com.
Lemon verbena wipes from Mrs. Meyer’s
“Now that it’s summer, we are seeing a spike in SPF wipes on Amazon.com,” she told Happi. “I also believe that wipes will continue to grow in popularity as an on-the-go solution because you can throw them in your purse, backpack or pockets.”
When asked if she’s seen an increase in convenience products like beauty wipes and portable skin care, Nancy Mills, an industry manager of consumer products, Kline & Company, Parsippany, NJ, had a contrasting statement. She told Happi, “Kline does not observe an increase in convenience products; in fact consumers’ skin care regimen of products is actually increasing as they apply one or two serums underneath their moisturizing product.
“However, there could eventually be a backlash against using so many products—sothe future mightsee more convenience products that could do everything from correcting skin damage to protection from the elements.”
Fellow research firm Mintel predicts a modest gain in sales of baby wipes this year. In its report “Disposable Baby Products,” Mintel predicted that sales of baby wipes/moist towelettes will grow more than 5% to reach $940 million this year. In contrast with the diaper segment, baby wipes/moist towelettes are used well beyond infancy and early childhood and can even be useful for adults, which means better prospects for growth than diapers.
Mintel also noted that there is an opportunity for expansion in wipes in the household category, as the presence of children younger than 18 in the household, perhaps not surprisingly, is a key driver of the cleaning products market. An interest in timesaving products, as might be expected, increases with the number of children in the household. Conversely, wipes could also be positioned as ideal for empty nesters who are downsizing their homes and simplifying their lives. Wipe marketers could use this life change as a trigger to encourage older adults to rethink long established cleaning habits, said Mintel.
So, from the very young to the very old, there’s a wipe that serves its purpose, and a new product around the bend to fuel this burgeoning marketplace.
Little Busy Bodies has a 'Kandoo' Approach
• Little Busy Bodies, the maker of Boogie Wipes, and Nehemiah Manufacturing, the marketer of Pampers Kandoo, are joining forces to leverage their “shared expertise in children’s products and a commitment to improving their community.”
Little Busy Bodies, founded by CEO Julie Pickens, has grown into a $10 million company in just five years, starting with its debut Boogie Wipes, a gentle saline wipe that was created to soothe children’s stuffy noses. Boogie Wipes are now sold across the US in more than 50,000 stores including Target, Toys R Us, Walgreens and Walmart.
Nehemiah Manufacturing, which was started by two Cincinnati entrepreneurs aiming to build a business while also building their local community, markets the Procter & Gamble product Pampers Kandoo. The pair grew product sales of the flushable wipes and body care products by 40% in one year and 60% to date, while also building a new manufacturing facility that employs and trains residents struggling to find work, according to the company.
Little Busy Bodies, LLC, which had been based in Beaverton, OR, is now running its operation from Cincinnati.
Huggies says 'Aloha' to 'Cute for a Cause'
• One of the most popular wipes brands, second to private label products, Huggies Natural Care Wipes’ sales rose 9.2% to $107.4 million this year, according to SymphonyIRI. Now this summer, it is helping babies everywhere dress “Cute for a Cause” with new limited edition Huggies Little Movers Hawaiian Diapers and complementary wipes. Available through July, for every pack of Huggies Hawaiian Diapers and Wipes purchased, the Huggies Every Little Bottom program will diaper a baby in need for one day.
Limited-Edition Huggies Hawaiian Wipes will offer a fun, tropical-inspired design, allowing mom to stylishly accessorize, according to the company.
Through Every Little Bottom, the Huggies brand has donated more than 60 million diapers and will continue supporting this cause as the Founding Sponsor of the National Diaper Bank Network (NDBN). In 2012, Huggies Every Little Bottom will donate 20 million diapers in the US to the NDBN and 2.5 million diapers to Food Banks Canada.