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Transformational Textures Wow Consumers


Simple chemist's tricks can help companies capture consumer's attention.

Beauty and personal care is a competitive category, and experts like Belinda Carli, director of the Institute of Personal Care Science, suggest that a product with transforming texture—think a powder that becomes a foaming cleanser with water, a facial mask that changes from white to pink after application or moisturizer in stick form that spreads easy when applied to the body— can help a brand to rise above the fray.
A transforming texture delivers that “wow factor” that captures consumer’s attention, and “then if you have a fantastic product, they are going to want to buy it, use it and share it with there friends,” she told attendees during her discussion at the In-Cosmetics North America marketing trends session during the opening morning of the show, which was held in New York City.
Carli started her discussion by looking products that can be activated by water, including powder to foam and oil to milk.
A benefit of a powder to foam, according to Carli, is that the formulation does not require preservatives because the consumer adds the water. Key ingredients to consider during development of a powder to foam are powder surfactants in anhydrous form, slip agents and gelling agents, the latter of which help provide a creamy foam that consumers associate with luxury.  When formulating an oil to milk product, Carli reminded the audience that it is important for chemists to incorporate waxy emulsifiers with high HLB.
Accordng to Carli, brands should also consider the semi-sold to cream transformation in which a product starts with a butter-like texture that becomes a spreadable cream when exposed to the temperature of the skin. This formulation could be used in areas such as skin care and in color cosmetics, such as a cheek color or foundation stick.
Carli also provided a quick overview of transformational masks. Her examples included a cream to foam mask, crème to scrub mask and warm to hot mask.
These are "simple chemist’s tricks” that provide consumers with the sense that the product is working, she said.