Online Exclusives

Fun in the Tub with Belly Buddies

February 7, 2007

MZB merges bubble bath and toys with a kid pleasing package.

Tubby Time Fun

MZB merges bubble bath and toys with a kid pleasing package.

By Joanna Cosgrove
Online Editor

For kids, bath time is the most fun when there are lots of toys and lots of bubbles. But for parents, finding a product at retail that safely delivers what their kids crave can be a daunting proposition.

Next month Belly Buddies debuts.
In March, MZB Personal Care, a Long Island City, NY-based manufacturer of children’s bath accessories, will launch its innovative “Belly Buddies” bubble bath product line, which features a bottle that houses a water squirt toy for kids to play with while they bathe. The squirt toys are molded in the shape of licensed characters: SpongeBob Squarepants, Dora the Explorer, and Disney’s Cinderella and The Little Mermaid’s Ariel princesses.

Billed as a two-in-one product, the line is positioned as a “bath-time product that kids will love and parents will trust.” The Belly Buddies bubble bath formula is “skin-soothing” and clinically tested for mildness and to have “superior foaming action,” according to MBZ’s Amy Alperin, vice president, personal care.

“The bubble bath is specially formulated for children so it’s gentle on their skin. Plus it has a great foaming action that provides long lasting bubbles in the tub,” she said. “We work with Cognis on our bubble bath blend and they are one of the leading surfactant suppliers in the world.”

Ms. Alperin said that although the bubble bath formulas are gentle and safe for children’s eyes when used in the recommended quantities, the bubble bath formula is not clinically tested to be tear-free. The formulas also underwent testing to confirm the hypoallergenic claim.

Ms. Alperin said during the past year, MZB Personal Care has been committed to enhancing its product design and adding value to its products because the must reassure moms on safety and trust. The company’s enhancements include improved fragrance and enhanced foaming action, as well as formulation coloration adjustments to make the products more vibrant and appealing to consumers.

She added that the company reaffirmed its commitment to safety by having all of its formulas undergo stability testing as well as USP 61 Microbial Limit test and USP 51 Preservative Effectiveness testing at Consumer Product Testing Labs.

New Directions

MZB’s foray into personal care products was a long time in the making. The company has amassed 55 years designing and marketing successful timepiece brands such as Elgin, Gruen, Waltham and Sharp. During that time, the company licensed some of the world’s most recognizable brands, including Disney, Nickelodeon, NASCAR, Care Bears, Hello Kitty. Five years ago, MZB branched into personal care products, tapping into the segment with the strategic partners like Disney and Nickelodeon, with the goal of delivering product innovation, sensibility and business savvy.

The MBZ Belly Buddies lineup is currently limited to four characters and scents: Snorkelberry (berry scent) SpongeBob, Strawberry la Fresa (strawberry scent) Dora the Explorer, and Dream Bouquet (floral scented) Ariel and Cinderella. Alperin said MBZ plans to roll out additional Nickelodeon and Disney characters over the next few months.

The products will be sold at leading mass market retailers including Wal-Mart, Target, Rite-Aid and Kmart, bearing a suggested retail price of $4.19.

For more information about MBZ and the Belly Buddies lineup, visit


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