More than 5,000 cosmetic industry (and CBD) professionals gathered at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 11-12 to learn about the latest packaging and formulation trends and components.
According to the organizers of the co-located shows, attendees were up 12% over last year. On one side of the expansive show floor, MakeUp in LosAngeles welcomed 138 exhibitors, while on the other side, Luxe Pack LA hosted 114.
Despite previous years of the event’s location in the more offbeat, atmospheric Santa Monica Airport’s Barker Hangar, attendees and exhibitors alike appreciated this year’s starker, though wide, organized aisles and easy show floor flow. Nearly everyone Beauty Packaging spoke with praised both the new venue and the quality and knowledge of the visitors.
While 61% of exhibitors were from North America, international representation included 19% from Europe; 16% Asia; 2% Middle East; and 2% South America. Taking place in the shadow of the newly spreading coronavirus crisis, a number of expected exhibitors and attendees were unable to make the trip; periodic talk surrounded the impact of supply chain interruptions caused by quarantines.
Conferences and Special Features
Once again, a vibrant conference session—a joint program between Luxe Pack and MakeUp In…— drew a crowd throughout the two days, with a 40% increase in conference session attendance over 2019.
The debut of the Turbo Talks “Green” Tour was deemed successful with 16 exhibitor participants. Due to its success, Luxe Pack will bring the concept to its New York show.
A new experiential display called “The Exploratorium” was also well-received. This feature showcased a selection of newly launched retail products created by this year’s Luxe Pack exhibitors. This display, too, will make the move to Luxe Pack New York.
Show Floor Trends
In today’s new packaging normal, sustainability dominated, with nearly all suppliers offering options from PCR to light-weighted (or less) materials to bio-resins to mono-materials for easier recycling. Glass made a larger splash then usual as more brands are choosing the material touted as “endlessly recyclable” for both cosmetics and fragrance. (Still, all recyclability hinges on local municipalities’ capabilities.)
With speed-to-market remaining an essential for brands small to large, customizable stock packaging continues to expand, with many luxury lines and embellishments now offered.
Reusable and refillable were also among the sustainable solutions presented by many suppliers. Interesting jars, bottles, lipsticks and palettes can be used over an extended timeframe, by simply slipping in new cartridges, pots or pans. Key to the acceptance of refillables is consumer ease.
As has also become the case, a variety of suppliers highlighted packaging geared to CBD products, from vials to child-proof caps and closures. In beauty, collagen-boosted formulas seem to be on the rise.
One exhibitor told Beauty Packaging’s publisher, Jay Gorga and me: “Everyone wants to talk about either sustainability or CBD.”
JSN Cosmetic Packaging, a 35-year-old company based in Irvine, CA, specializes in the manufacture of plastic tubes in monolayer low-and medium-density materials, as well as 5-layer coex. Live from the show floor, see the video Q&A: PCR and Sugarcane-Derived Tubes at JSN
Augmenting customary materials, JSN offers a choice of either plant-based resin or a percentage of PCR in their conventional tube manufacture. In addition, JSN told Beauty Packaging the company has recently invested millions in their new co-extruded Aura tube process, which can be decorated in “eight-to-limitless colors, and can also feature a metallic look.” As a closure manufacturer, JSN produces most of its tube closures in house and now offers varying percentages of PCR in their own closures and for others.
There was a lot of interest in packaging geared toward CBD. All manufacturing, molding and deco is done in the U.S.
Montebello featured a variety of packaging, from tubes to cans to aerosols—all made of aluminum. Rigid aluminum tubes with mushroom caps were receiving lots of attention, according to Kathy Mercer, director of sales.
Flexible aluminum tubes with octagonal caps were also popular for high-end creams and cosmeceuticals containing CBD. A child-resistant closure is available in laminates.
Mercer said one trend she is seeing is people looking for the “raw, crinkled silver aluminum look.” She said whereas Montebello used to be asked to cover up the raw look, now they’re asked to make it obvious—even on aerosol cans.” She explained, perhaps it makes aluminum’s eco-friendly properties even more obvious to consumers.
Skincare & Color Cosmetics
Color Cosmetics packaging and formulations lined the airy walls of Cosmetic Design Group (CDG), a WWP company. Biodegradable glitter formulas for lipstick, face & body, and eye shadow offer “glamour with responsibility,” according to Alison Kohlenstein, executive vice president, CDG, who added, “Our goal is to thread sustainability through everything.” Watch the video Q&A: At WWP’s CDG, Biodegradable Glitter, Freeze-Dry Cubes and More
CDG’s Radiance Cube utilizes freeze-dry technology to preserve skincare ingredients within a cellulose cube, at their most potent and efficacious state. Once the freeze-dry cube is dispensed into the Nutrient Solution, the contents are solubilized and re-activated at their maximum efficiency and ready to be applied to the skin.
The formula includes sodium hyaluronate, collagen and a wrinkle-fighting peptide. Just pump to release Radiance Cube and shake well to mix skin ingredients. Once fully dissolved, apply serum over the entire face.
iTiT Cosmetics highlighted lipsticks, from matte to gloss, lights to brights. Plumping formulas were an added benefit for lips and cheeks. See the video Q&A: Plumping Formulas for Lips and Cheeks at iTiT Cosmetics
For Color Cosmetics, HCT Group offered their EMA Palette as an excellent option for brands looking to upgrade their line to feature a more sustainable packaging story. Its mono-material design can be filled directly, allowing it to be easily recycled after use. Also available was HCT’s Eco PET Lipstick made from 100% PET and which can be easily recycled after use.
In showcasing their full-service capabilities, with their latest innovations in packaging, paired with both formulas and brushes, HCT Group put an emphasis on skincare, from ingredients and formulations to the packaging. Many of the eco-friendly, clean beauty, clean packaging options are offered turnkey.
A number of refillable options were also offered. A 100% polypropylene (PP) 30ml dropper is designed for recycling; with a mono-material design, consumers can easily recycle at the end of use. A refillable jar made of PMMA houses an easily refillable PP jar. A Refillable Airless Pen combines cutting-edge airless technology with HCT’s globally patented Cooling Tip Technology, providing a component that is ideal for eye, lip, and targeted treatment products. Once product is used, the PP bottle can be easily removed and replaced.
Gloria Ryu, vice president of Innovation and Marketing at KDC/ONE, which recently merged with HCT Group, told Beauty Packaging “For this year’s Makeup in LA innovation, we focused on what we are calling the X-Factor—leveraging skincare and hair care technology into makeup formulas to deliver exceptional multi-benefit performance and eco-charged sustainable solutions for skin and hair including low water and low rinse formulas, as well as a collection of biocellulose pencils that provide a more conscious alternative to plastic.”
KDC/ONE offers a full range of custom formulations, turnkey and manufacturing solutions for makeup, skincare, hair care and personal care.
Darren Eade, president of sales at Kemas USA, said the supplier has over 10 years’ experience in developing mono-materials. In LA, they offered a 100% PET mono-material lipstick. Eade commented on one of the industry’s greatest dilemmas, saying, “The hottest topic on everyone’s mind is sustainability, but it’s difficult to have a great sustainable story and a luxe product at the same time.”
FusionPKG unveiled new sustainable packaging with a focus on green airless and PCR. Also, FusionPKG BeautyLab, the turnkey division, showcased a lineup of CBD products, as well as clean skincare and color formulations.
They received the Millennials’ Favorite No. 1 Innovation Tree award for the B.Y.O.S. (Bring Your Own Skin) balm foundation in their patent-pending Top Secret compact.
FusionPKG also presented the Amp Dropper, which they call “a major breakthrough in dropper technology.” It features a modern dispensing system for skincare and color formulas with a flexible button at the bottom of the package, for controlled dosing, minimal air exposure for sensitive formulas and single-handed dispensing.
Geka launched a sustainable, genderless beauty collection called “Break the Rules,” which includes three travel-size packages. For example, bottles are made of 100% PCR-PET, produced out of PCR-PET-A bottle scraps.
For the caps, Geka uses 100% PCR-PP, produced out of PCR-PP scraps. The eyebrow brush is made of Geka`s new exclusive EOSgreen fiber—a bio-based fiber consisting of 100% renewable raw materials derived from the castor oil plant. Founcealer, a liquid enriched with inka nut-oil and cannabis sativa seed oil is a dual-purpose foundation and concealer in one.
The flocked applicator is made of recycled flock and designed by makeup artist Michele Burke. An eye product features transparent, jelly brow serum for perfected hold. A glossy lip moisturizer is included.
Asquan offers a wide range of color cosmetic solutions and, at the show, Henri Tinchant, president and founder, said they “are adding more skincare options, including a lot of sustainable solutions.” Tinchant explained that they are focusing on three basic areas in this regard: PCR, mono-materials and refillable/reusable. He said they also offer bio-resins.
Cutting-edge Korean skincare formulations were front and center at YonwooPKG, where Earl McCurdy, VP sales, talked about turnkey OEM production, from formulation to packaging—and demonstrated a number of products, including face and eye masks, micro-needling patches to dispense hyaluronic acid, freeze-dried technology, a dissolvable collagen eye patch and Vitamin E boosters.
McCurdy also said they are getting ready to apply all technologies using CBD. See the video Q&A: Cutting-Edge Korean Formulations at Yonwoo/PKG
Lumson continues building their eco-friendly compostable, recyclable materials, according to Emanuele Mazzei, CEO, Lumson USA, and “has optimized existing lines using mono-materials and other materials.” All-PP lipsticks have been added to Lumson’s offerings, and Mazzei said they are molding in “a new generation of PLA that maintains the integrity of the formula.” See the video Q&A: Lumson Continues Building Eco-Friendly Product Lines
An airless jar in PET is also available. In addition, Mazzei said Lumson is “optimizing most processes to meet the requests of the market.” Lumson is preparing to launch an all “green” catalog incorporating whole families of products made entirely of recyclable and eco-friendly materials.
At APC Packaging, Robert Bulla, director of engineering & innovation, showed Beauty Packaging two new patent pending sustainable products: an airless refillable system and a refillable jar. See the video Q&A: APC Packaging Presents Two New Sustainable Products
The refillable system uses polypropylene throughout and can be used with PCR to reduce the carbon footprint and environmental impact. The airless design allows a package total of up to 75% Polypropylene PCR to be incorporated. Bulla said that incorporating a disposable and replaceable inner cartridge is APC Packaging’s newest innovation toward sustainable packaging.
Designed to be user-friendly, the system was designed to utilize a simple push of a button to release the inner assembly which allows the customer to easily replace only the inner bottle and then easily slide and snap back into position. It will be available in 30- and 50ml versions. The patent pending refillable jar system will be offered in 15-, 30-, and 50ml sizes. APC also launched its new Color Cosmetics catalog at the show.
The focus at Nest-Filler was also on sustainable airless components, focusing on recyclability, according to Alex Park, managing director of sales. Refillable components were also offered. Another focus was to limit the use of plastic, such as with dual components like a 2-in-1 day/night cream.
One highlight at Virospack was the DuoMix—a new powder-dispensing system for two-component extemporary products. The package is for mixing powder with liquid formulas or liquid with liquid, with a novel design and a greater capacity.
Joanna Milne, key account manager, Virospack, explained that it is the ideal proposal for high-grade formulas, keeping the two components intact until the moment of usage, in order to maintain the integrity and potency of the formula after mixing them.
The new Duomix Twist & Shake is ideal for cosmetics that need greater capacity of one or both extemporary products thanks to its new design with a reservoir cap of 3ml capacity and a larger integrated piston with twist. Milne said it offers “intuitive, easy and comfortable usage.” Upon the first use, twist the cap to open the reservoir.
Once the reservoir is opened, shake the bottle to mix both components; dispense. All parts of the full pack are totally customizable. Virospack was awarded a MakeUp in LA Innovation Tree award for best innovation in skincare for their child-lock dropper, which the supplier says is ideal for products containing CBD.
Coverpla has expanded their skincare line with additional shapes and sizes and with dropper and pump options. They have also added a cosmetics line with lipstick and nail polish bottles. A new lightweight eco-friendly bottle makes points across the entire supply chain. Gilda Cutri, vice president of operations and business development, Coverpla, told Beauty Packaging that Coverpla offers hundreds of different caps, enabling customers to customize their fragrance.
Wista Packaging’s airless systems are all mono-material, 100% green polyethylene (sugarcane-based resin). Even the spring in the pump is 100% green polyethylene. Since the whole system is a mono-material, it can all go in the same recycling bin, with no need to disassemble.
Two new sponges, both infused with CBD oil, were a hit at The Penthouse Group. The CBD is infused directly into the formulation during the foaming process, and will last throughout the lifetime of the sponge. Patent-pending, they are available in any standard size, shape, color or texture. Various deco is available, including laser and pad printing. Other infusions such as green tea, bamboo, charcoal and hyaluronic acid are also available.
Priscille Caucé, president and CEO, Cosmogen, showed Beauty Packaging a number of new and unusual applicators, including eco-responsible products. The GL’Less Brush Set, for instance, is an attractive set whose patented design boasts a no-glue ferrule. The handle is beechwood, the tuft, PBT—and the ferrule, paper and string. A new green brush is available in dark and clear wood. Numerous brow applicators with formulas had features such as comb-on and on-off shutoff systems. A variety of tubes are now available in PCR resin or sugar cane.
Brushes, bags, tools and more were in abundance at Anisa International. Showcasing the latest in patent-pending technology, the Star Fiber Collection is their newest addition to the New Naturals Collection of fibers that are designed to mimic and outperform animal hair.
Named for both its five-sided shape and its stellar performance, Tamar Garabedian, senior director of business development and sales, Anisa International, told Beauty Packaging the Star Fiber technology is “revolutionizing powder application.”
The multi-faceted structure maximizes negative space within each point by picking up and depositing powder formulas with minimal product fallout and product waste. Great for loose powders and eye shadows, the collection includes eight brushes, and all are fully customizable.
Anisa International’s Decades Collection mimics influential fashion trends of the past, showcasing makeup brushes and skincare tools with textiles, silhouettes and color palettes that recall the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s.
Deco on bottles and cartons stood out at UT Packaging, which offers solutions from components to full turnkey services. Jinesh Mehta, CEO and managing director, told Beauty Packaging that 70% of their business is in the U.S. He also said that they now offer lower MOQs for easier customization on turnkey products. See the video Q&A: UT Packaging: From Components to Full Custom Turnkey
The focus at QRS was on complete turnkey service, with development of all aspects of packaging, formula, filling, packing and shipping, enabling its customers to focus on sales and distribution.
At Anomatic, Steve Rusch, VP marketing & business development, showed Beauty Packaging their new stock line for lip care and a range of glass jars with one- or two-piece metal lids, for skincare. The recyclable lids are available in three sizes. See the video Q&A: Anomatic Presents New Eco-Friendly Stock Ranges
Big news at East Hill Industries were Sulapac 50ml bi-injection jars, which are 100% biodegradable and now work with water-based formulas. The jars are biodegradable within two years, and use no microplastics. They can be decorated, silkscreened and labeled in a variety of ways—and hot stamping is now available at the supplier’s in-house decoration center in Dallas, TX.
In addition, East Hill offered sustainable solutions including sugarcane resin tubes to their line of in-stock tubes. Refillable plastic jars were described as ‘very user-friendly.’ “Consumers can buy the pod with the cap—and just pop them into the base,” explained Chris James, vice president of sales, East Hill.
Metapack, a first-time Luxe Pack LA exhibitor, showcased its expertise in designing, engineering and manufacturing. Products included perfume caps, engraved plates, travel pursers, makeup/solid-perfume compacts, candle lids and more. They are extending their sustainable packaging options, largely in zamac, adding more luxe stock items, including refillable stock. A solid perfume stick can be customized in any way.
Cosmopak presented two collections at the show. The Stock Deco Collection consisted mainly of empty stock components in different finishes to showcase Cosmopak’s capabilities. The only components Cosmopak filled in this collection are the Magnetic Vial and Lash Control component.
The Terra Collection was an expansion of Cosmopak’s expanding eco-friendly packaging offerings, with PCR options, refillable jar and airless pump, paper and glass. “This collection is filled completely with Sephora compliant ‘clean’ formulas,” explained Syeira Simon, product development & formula innovation manager. Refillable lipsticks are also available.
A balance between eco-friendly and luxury was the message at Epopack, including sustainable PET heavy wall bottles and jars, 100% PCR PET bottles and jars, and PP/AS/PETG airless bottles. Products can be highly customized with attachment options and a variety of decoration services. The supplier also offered all sizes of airless bottles, droppers and sprayers in 100% PCR PET.
USA-based manufacturer of caps and jars, Colt’s Plastics, is in the midst of transferring to its third generation of ownership, with Jay Bentley now on board. Bentley told Beauty Packaging that he will be “taking the company to the next level,” via an internal modernization project, which includes mold building to reduce lead time. Now offering a wide variety of PCR caps, they will be adding Polypropylene luxe caps.
Neenah’s sustainability manager, Kristen Duncan, told Beauty Packaging, “We are beginning to have more in-depth conversations with customers around responsible fiber sourcing. We have all kinds of customers who are looking for alternative fibers, and we’re always looking for solutions to match their initiatives.”
Neenah has several core pillars for sustainability, including responsible fiber sourcing, investing in conservation efforts, and offering an extensive selection of recyclable products. Duncan said 68% of paper gets reused—which is much more than plastic (4%).
Sustainability is key for Verescence, and at Luxe Pack LA, the supplier highlighted its latest launches, including post-consumer recycled glass, Verre Infini Neo, Sculpt’in technology, Metal’in technology and more. An elegant Tom Ford foundation bottle featured beautiful deco with silkscreening on four sides, and pad printing. The Ariel fragrance bottle in watery blues was also striking.
At Baralan, Caroline Baranes, global marketing and business development manager, told Beauty Packaging, “Everyone is asking for glass—especially for families of products—the same style of line with different capacities, and different accessories—such as one with a pump and one with a dropper.” She added that customers preferlightweight glass. On the whole, Baranes said Baralan is leaning more toward recyclability than biodegradability for their eco products.
Premi, which specializes in primary packaging development and production for the fragrance, skincare, makeup and home fragrance markets, debuted the Minimania Collection in LA—it’s a new collection of 100% recyclable and customizable glass jars for makeup. From a brief to a 3D rendering, Premi’s technical department offers custom solutions ready to be produced by first analyzing the process limits.
Beauty Reverse is a small round glass jar that enables the consumer to see the color on top, rather than on the bottom. Air Glass Slim is a double-screw refillable bottle. “It’s all about making it easy for the consumer to refill,” said Alessandro Prestini, CEO of Premi.
Bormioli was showcasing their Eco-Line and sustainable frosted effect. The perfume and skincare bottles and jars are made with less glass and less emissions. The Anti UV treatment and the eco-frosting are two additional and contemporary treatments offered. They all have a threaded neck which makes them refillable and completely recyclable by waste separation.
Elcos showed new glass pumps in a capsule shape, available in 30- and 50ml, which can be disassembled for easy recycling.
Angel Beauty’s booth was filled with sustainable goods, with many sampling options ranging from mini spray vials, mini plug vials and up to 12ml travel size sprays and roller ball units. Many are delivered turnkey.
On display was the Henry Rose sampling discovery kit with 5 SKUs, to complement Michelle Pfeiffer’s sustainable Henry Rose fragrance launched in Fall 2019. According to Jim McNeil, VP of sales & marketing, Angel Beauty executed all of the primary packaging. All materials are biodegradable/recyclable. The minimum amount of plastic was used. Angel Beauty also fills and assembles in a solar-powered plant.
A full range of sheet masks was on display at TaikiUSA, where a sustainability story also reigned. Jim Perry, president/CEO, emphasized: “Masks now serve a skincare purpose, rather than being a novelty item.”
Hydro-Burst is made of woven material that is separated from the essence and housed in a burstable sachet. Just fold and burst—and the non-woven material activates/transforms into a moisture-jelly sheet mask. The clean formulation is comprised of ingredients that are 98% derived from natural origins, and are rated 1-2 by the EWG (Environmental Working Group).
The next Luxe Pack event is now re-scheduled for Sept. 15-16 in New York. (Rescheduled from the original dates of May 5-6, due to Covid-19. The next MakeUp In… event is currently scheduled for June 18-19 in Paris.
See Next: More Video Q&As, Live from the Show Floor
Frédéric Fekkai Talks About His New Eco-Haircare Launch
Smashbox’s Jill Tomandl on Trends, 3D Lipstick and More