Walgreens Addresses Skin Care Needs of Women of Color

Discussion
Sep 14, 2005
George Anderson

By George Anderson

Walgreens has launched an exclusive line of skin care products specially developed by Beverly Hills cosmetic surgeon Dr. Jan Adams to meet the needs of women of color.

“Women of color haven’t been properly informed about the best way to care for their skin,” said Dr. Adams. “People with darker complexions age differently from Caucasians and
often experience hyperpigmentation, scarring and blotchiness if special care is not taken to use the appropriate products.”

The new line includes a facial cleanser, microdermabrasion treatment, face and body moisturizer, skin lightener and night replenishing cream.

“Our customers are as diverse as the communities we serve,” said Catherine Lindner, Walgreens divisional vice president and general merchandise manager for beauty and fashion.
“With the addition of the Women of Color line, Walgreens offers customers a more tailored approach to their quest for flawless skin.”

Moderator’s Comment: What does this new product line mean for Walgreens and its standing with consumers in the group designated as women of color?

The Dr. Jan Adams Women of Color Total Skin Care System is designed to meet the needs of consumers of African, Latin, Asian, Arab, Mediterranean and Native
American descent.

George Anderson – Moderator

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9 Comments on "Walgreens Addresses Skin Care Needs of Women of Color"


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Terry Soto
Guest
Terry Soto
15 years 5 months ago

While color lines and, to some extent, skin care lines targeted to women of color have been around for a while, I believe the distinction here is that a major drug retailer has decided to make it a priority to make it available through its mass channel. This is new!!! And sends a strong message to this community of women.

Historically, ethnic cosmetic and skin care lines have been made available by manufacturers, but their shelf presence and position has left much to be desired. These products have been mostly made available through neighborhood beauty supply stores and salons and in the past few years online – see http://www.blackrefer.com/beauty3.html for an example of what is available.

Now, Walgreens is saying – not only are we making it a merchandising priority in our stores, but we have partnered with an expert to make the best product available. A very strong move!!

Rochelle Newman-Carrasco
Guest
Rochelle Newman-Carrasco
15 years 5 months ago

Innovative? Not really. Insightful? Probably. And at the end of the day, it may be intriguing enough to a group of underserved women to increase traffic and sales. It’s worth a try.

Tom Zatina
Guest
Tom Zatina
15 years 5 months ago

African, Latin, Asian, Arab, Mediterranean and Native American descent? There are a lot of women that fall into this group. Makes me wonder what they have been using before the “Dr. Jan Adams Women of Color Total Skin Care System” arrived to fill the void.

Certainly this product line launch will generate some interest and give Walgreens a boost at first. It will be interesting to see how these targeted consumers evaluate the products. It will also be interesting to see how long it takes for everyone else to jump on board.

nat chiaffarano
Guest
nat chiaffarano
15 years 5 months ago

What Walgreens really needs to do is to set-up an internal Skin Care University and teach all sales associates how to demonstrate and advise customers on personalized skin care techniques, and supply helpful literature. The self-service approach to beauty care does not work. Customers crave interaction, face-to-face communication and technical wraparound support. They want to be pampered with personal attention. They should also consider setting up an in-store boutique to offer make-over services to all us aging baby-boomers who desire to still look good.

Jeff Weitzman
Guest
Jeff Weitzman
15 years 5 months ago

Of course, given the broad definition of “women of color” they used, in my comment “white” refers to skin tone, not race. Maybe I should have said “just like the light women!”

Mark Lilien
Guest
15 years 5 months ago

There have been competitive products for African-American women for generations. WG hasn’t got any special “edge” with this new line. The Unique Selling Proposition given by the doctor/founder isn’t unique at all. If WG uses heavy promotion, including sampling, and very attractive price points, the line might have a reasonably profitable life eventually. Otherwise, it will be just another “me too” mediocrity.

M. Jericho Banks PhD
Guest
M. Jericho Banks PhD
15 years 5 months ago

“Women of color haven’t been properly informed about the best way to care for their skin,” according to Walgreen’s Dr. Jan Adams. I’m sure that will come as some surprise to companies specializing in ethnic skin care such as Abre de Vie, Nubian Heritage, Annett 2 Cosmetiques, Sacha Cosmetics, Apurebeauty, MaMa Lotion, Afrikan Republic, and many others.

Dr. Adams certainly has stellar credentials and, as a black man, definitely has special insight and a heart for the unique skin care challenges of women of color. Something of a TV personality, he has recently been advertising his services as a product endorser. It makes one wonder how much he contributed to the actual science of this new skin care line. Regardless, if the line is priced to fit Walgreens’ customers and enjoys the superb marketing and advertising available from the chain, it should do quite well during launch. Time will tell whether or not it works.

Jeff Weitzman
Guest
Jeff Weitzman
15 years 5 months ago

I hardly think Walgreens is innovating here from a product standpoint–cosmetics geared toward the African-American market have been around for a long time, and if I’m not mistaken, the major cosmetics companies started doing the same recently. But this is just smart business from a retail standpoint.

I take the opposite view from progrowth’s–Walgreens is about convenience, not in-depth product knowledge. Women who want advice and sampling have a plethora of specialty cosmetics stores to choose from, most of which will carry ethnically-appropriate products. With this move, Walgreens is signaling to “women of color” that they can stop in and pick up their beauty products without worrying that they will be inappropriate for their skin type, just like the white women can. Smart.

Paula Jones
Guest
Paula Jones
14 years 11 months ago

I came across the Women of Color product line purely by accident. As an African-American woman who was familiar with Dr. Adams, I was excited to see a new product just for “women of color”. I use it on a daily basis and have seen wonderful results. I have only seen a couple of products from the line actually in the stores. I discovered the line while living in Atlanta. Being in Tucson, I haven’t seen it in any of the Walgreens here. I’m hoping I can order it online.

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