The last BBN of the year! Let’s start with LUSH who accidentally gave money to a (AMENDED)  ‘so-called’ anti-trans group (please see further reading HERE).  They’ve finally apologised after a lot of blustering. However, the amount of money donated by mistake is nothing like the scale of the also accidentally paid out $900 million by financial services company Citigroup to a multitude of Revlon lenders who now don’t want to pay it back.

I’ve noticed that The Hut Group has taken over the e-commerce for Omorovicza… based on nothing but intuition I feel it may be a prelude to sale. THG is actively acquiring and likes privately owned brands.

If you missed the furore over Purito SPF, a quick explanation. Purito is a Korean brand and SPF is a highly popular product for the Asian beauty market in particular. Their Centella Unscented SPF50 tested at SPF19 which is obviously much lower than the claim. Purito suspended sales, loosely blaming their manufacturer, Nowcos, who, in 2018 received an FDA warning for failing to reveal procedures for manufacture resulting in ‘significant violations of current good manufacturing practice’. The big thing of note here is that, put to the test, I can would not be at all surprised if SPF claims are being flouted left, right and centre, particularly in the SPF/Make Up category. SPF needs regular re-application and we don’t, as a habit, regularly reapply foundation. I’m as guilty as the next person of forgetting that particular rule. At the time of writing, the Purito drama is still being played out.

If you are on Instagram, both Look Fantastic and Bobbi Brown (surprisingly) have a string of complaint comments about poor service, non-delivery and refund/returns problems. Because of social distancing, warehouses are having no end of issues fulfilling orders which I suspect is at the heart of the problems but it would be easier for all if they could put their hands up to it and explain what the problems are. Everything is difficult right now but customer service needs to step up hugely at this stage to explain fully – honesty really is the best policy and a happier customer is one that knows what’s going on.

In much happier news, Dolly Parton is launching a fragrance line. It’s with Edge Beauty Inc, which also owns ScentBeauty who have a fragrance with Cher. Founder of Edge, Steven Mormoris, is quoted as saying he would like the industry to break the pattern of creating derivative scents of best-sellers. Amen to that. They’re partnering with Firmenich for all fragrances so I think they mean business.

CHANEL is in hot water in China – two of their Asia exclusive products have earned them a penalty for violating regulations. Ingredients and results were found to be misleading with an investigation revealing ingredients for ‘anti-freckle’ were not found in the formula despite the claims. They’ve earned a $30,000 fine and may not continue to advertise the products.

In trends (nail art is making a come-back by the way!) made-for-Asia brands is on the up with Beiersdorf launching a premium fermented tea line, Chaul, exclusively in Korea. Asia is the biggest and most desirable market for beauty and almost all brands are scrabbling for presence. The savviest way to do it is to create exactly for the market, both in aesthetics and ingredients. ‘Innovation Hubs’ are popping up across Asia – Chaul (based on the name for tea – cha – but confusingly, also the name of a town in India) comes from Beiersdorf’s Korean hub, and Shiseido (Japanese) are not far behind with their Chinese-centric hub built specifically to innovate for the Chinese market.


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