Thursday, September 11, 2014Focus on French Launches

Very expensive creams...

© L'Observatoire des Cosmétiques

What luxury cosmetics brand doesn't have its own? We thought we had already reached price limits, but this fall, they are soaring a little more. If they happily exceeded 200 euros in 2013, this year, not a"premium" anti-ageing care at less than 300 euros! 340, 480, 537 euros… the 5-star creams of the back-to-school season pulverize all the records… They definitely do not know the crisis!

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Getting value for your money

A debauchery of cardboard, sheaths, wedges, under-cases, over-cases… boxes"cupboard" gilded with hot gold, notices that resemble books: the least we can say is that these luxury treatments are not ecological! Packaging, on the other hand, is often exclusive moulds that evoke jewellery or sculpture. Real art objects designed by renowned designers or architects. Expert applicators often accompany them, accompanied by learned gestures that women quickly forget after having experienced them once ! One thing is certain, when you buy this type of precious care, you really have the impression of offering your skin a very beautiful gift and this undoubtedly participates (even very subjectively) in their effectiveness. Because the price positioning of these creams obeys to a niche marketing that seduces, from one end of the planet to the other, a public of consumers with mature skin, fifty-somethings (and more) with high purchasing power refusing in general (but they can also associate them) the acts of aesthetic medicine and preferring to"invest" on the pleasure. One could"psychologize" at will on the why of the"it must cost me, otherwise I do not credit efficiency", but that is not the point here. These women want the best, in terms of scientific innovation, sensoriality, beauty of packaging… and of course of results, but also of services (individual appointments, discovery of care within the framework of an institute protocol, etc.).

Precious ingredients that make you dream

Premium anti-ageing care takes care of all the signs of ageing (wrinkles, sagging, pigmentation spots, lack of radiance, etc.). They stage emblematic assets of the eternal female, which are pretext to tell beautiful stories. Among these, flowers play the first role. It is well known, they are irresistible in the female imagination. Rose naturally for Lancôme (it's her emblem), but not just any rose. The rose Lancôme was created in 1973 by Georges Delbard, one of the greatest rose growers in the world. It is grown in France in the Loire Castles region (in Absolue L'Extrait Concentré-Élixir de Régénération et de Rénovation Ultime, 30 ml, 385,50 €). Rose again, this time from Granville for Dior Prestige (Le Nectar de Nuit au nectar de rose de Granville, 30 ml, €408.50, October 1st). Flowers again for Guerlain with its exceptional orchid (Orchidée Impériale Le Concentré de Longévité Régénérant Intense, 30 ml, 440 €, from 1 October), or for Chanel with Golden Champa PFA, from the Himalayan golden flower (Sublimage L'Essence, 30 ml, 365 €, on 3 October). Other brands focus on pearls (Life Pearl Cellular Essence Helena Rubinstein serum, 40 ml, 420 €), precious metals such as platinum (Cellular Essence Platinum Rare for the Eye Contour La Prairie, 15 ml, 315 €), or saffron pistil (Red Gold Cream Yves Saint Laurent, 50 ml, 325 €).

Surfing on aesthetic medicine

It is the spearhead of Helena Rubinstein and her priceless treatments designed in partnership with LaClinic-Montreux, founded in Switzerland in 2002 by Doctor Pfulg (plastic surgeon). The purpose of this association? Develop cosmetic alternatives to cosmetic medicine, such as injections, lasers… Latest, Re-Plasty Prescription (2x15 ml, 475 €, from early October) which combines serum and individual high concentration dose, for a"tailor-made cosmetic intervention". With the help of a medical device (Skinprofiler) that allows a complete exploration of the skin (micro-relief measurements, wrinkles, pores, dermal and epidermal spots, melanin and hemoglobin…), the brand can develop a precise and personalized diagnosis, to prescribe an appropriate care. It is the consumer's responsibility to mix her individualized dose of high glycolic acid, rhamnose, hyaluronic acid, Pro-Xylane, LHA… in a universal serum according to her needs. This new treatment benefits from a"VIP treatment" since it will be necessary to make an appointment by phone and perform the skin analysis.

Technology concentrates

The"crème de la crème" concentrates the pinnacle of the anti-ageing cosmetic expertise of luxury brands. The active ingredients thus benefit from exclusive extraction and crystallization technologies (Giorgio Armani), encapsulation (the so-called"reverse micellar" technique which places water droplets filled with saffron in a rich oily medium, thus protecting the power of the active ingredient until it is applied to the skin for Yves Saint Laurent), polyfractionation of molecules (allowing the creation of ultra-pure cosmetic active ingredients in Chanel), or"Fermogenèse™" (high-pressure cellular dissociation) for Lancôme. This physical process, more respectful for the active than a thermal or chemical process, allows to break and fractionate the cell walls of the native Rose Lancôme cells, to obtain fragments 5 times smaller than an intact native cell. The result is better bioavailability for the skin and a strong sensory impact that brings more softness.

The apogee of sensoriality

What about the galenic? It is necessary to recognize that with this care, the techniques of formulation reach summits:"nesting" textures with metamorphosis, emulsified gel which is transformed into velvety veil, serum-gel-oil, elixir cream, gelled oil… Fine texture and extreme comfort are completely reconciled. The perfumes, on the other hand, are worked as authentic high perfumery compositions. The application of the care becomes a great moment of pleasure. That's the least we can expect.

Black is still popular

Mysterious and a little"rupturist" (it does not seem obvious at first sight to apply a black cream on his skin, the worry of"graying" his complexion is present in mind, even if the color melts and quickly becomes transparent), black care (texture and/or packaging) intrigue and surprise. Two brands exploit these enigmatic assets: Givenchy and Giorgio Armani. The first has just released the second generation of Black Care (Black Cream Care, 50 ml, 340 €), this time with two active ingredients from seaweed (Golden Sap is now added to Black Sap). The second launched in 2014 its serum in the Crema Nera Extrema range (30 ml, 360 €), also based on marine resources. Lancôme also uses this shade for Absolue L'Extrait Concentré-Elixir, which is packaged in a black glass bottle topped with gold.

But to date, the most expensive cream in the world (Kanebo Cosmetics Sensaï Ultimate Cream, 50 ml, 730 €) has not yet been supplanted, even if Valmont is getting closer (Élixir des Glaciers Votre Visage Pink Edition, 50 ml, 537 €, an ephemeral creation that dresses in bright pink for the holidays, available from November). Let's bet that this will be the case for the start of the 2015 school year!

Ariane Le Febvre

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