Hybrid products in formulation and packaging

In partnership with Lumson

We are witnessing a progressive evolution in the world of products moving towards formulas that are increasingly complex and “hybrid”.

The line between various categories of products is becoming more and more blurred, like in the case of make-up and skin care where skin can benefit from the perfecting qualities of make-up and at the same time, reap the rewards of a treatment.

Even in the world of packaging, new requirements have resulted from the pandemic – safety and ergonomics – opening doors to new solutions able to answer the current market demands and, most importantly, anticipate future ones.

Are consumers looking for products that offer a variety of benefits and are immediate and easy to use? Lumson, a leader in primary packaging, has been working on cosmetic “clusters” (ex: make-up) for some time with solutions that combine aesthetics, safety, and practicality; solutions that not only improve the look of make-up products but that also preserve skincare formulas as told by Romualdo Priore, Marketing Director in this interview.

Let’s talk about hybrid products: what are they and when did they come about?

To truly define the term, it’s necessary to refer to the first hybrid cosmetics, that is cosmeceuticals, a series of products launched in the 90s with “both cosmetic and pharmaceutical properties”.

Today, the cosmetic industry is very active in innovation and in particular over the last few years, many products have been created, giving life to new “hybrid” categories: I’m referring to new formulations, for example thixotropic mixtures, or formulas that start out as powder and turn into liquids thanks to micro encapsulation etc., or others.

We can also talk about “hybridization” when referring to new products on the market that lay claim to certain features: in this case, formulas that, besides colour, offer skin benefits. However, in all circumstances, the products always act as adjunct or “support”, that is, they don’t replace or take over the role of skin care products.

What are products that best represent this new generation of cosmetic hybrids?

The products that lend themselves to this double function of “make-care” – make-up and treatment in one – are, most of all, make-up products. Claims in this regard have multiplied for foundations, primers, highlighters etc with the addition of active ingredients and benefits that are characteristic of skin care products. But it’s important to note: this doesn’t mean that they replace skincare products.

Why are they multiplying? Is there a connection with the pandemic?

Over recent months, or better yet, over the last year, beauty routines have changed, we’ve seen growing attention towards skin care and consequently, a reinterpretation of make-up products in terms of “make care”, or in other words, colour and treatment.

The first confirmation of this comes from Google Analytics which shows a strong focus on cross contamination in beauty as has actually already happened in other categories such as food or homecare products, but this phenomenon is also noted in the names of new launches which add other features to the product name like “serum” or “prep foundation” or other benefits that until recently, would have been used with skin care.

Even brand new names have come up like Fococealer – a hybrid concealer and foundation or Illumicolour – a tinted moisturiser with illuminating effects. We could say that the pandemic accelerated this transformation process.

Will the future be increasingly more “hybrid”?

Cross-contamination among categories is a trend destined to grow and it’s certain that, in the future, new hybrid cosmetics will be introduced and there will be categories that are increasingly more transversal. It’s the market that’s asking for it: consumers are looking for solutions that are easier and faster to use and that, at the same time, impart more benefits and greater safety.

New combinations and contaminations are also of interest in the world of packaging and product dispensing systems. I’m referring, for example, to new categories based on the pairing of safety and ergonomics: developed to answer to new consumer trends, in turn, they’ve opened doors to the development of new products.

In the future, the lines dividing the various categories will become even more difficult to define. The same “hybridisation” mechanism pertains to cosmetics packaging as well: at Lumson, we’ve being working on clusters for some time because we strongly believe in the “care” segment in reference to both the world of skin and that of make-up.

New projects and R&D are moving in this direction: new designs, innovative materials, and decoration systems studied to enhance the product within and protect it from contamination risk. And a variety of new innovations are coming soon in the spirit of aesthetics and design, functionality and safety.

Featured Companies

Lumson (more information, website)