The Indian bridal market is estimated to be at a whopping figure of about $38 billion. As the bridal season is full of potential and opportunity, hair and beauty experts work hard and tirelessly to capitalise on it. Salon India brings you the upcoming and innovative trends in hair, make-up and skin care that are critical for the success of the bridal market
It’s that time of the year again when not only is the monsoon season brimming with an abundance of business opportunities, but the bridal season, the biggest prime time in the year, is also around the corner. On cue, hair and beauty experts habe begun to don their thinking caps, pull out their magic wands and come up with new offerings, which are innovative and can be customised to suit every client.
These days a wedding is no longer a simple ceremony that binds families and two individuals in holy matrimony.Instead it is a loud and raucous affair where one is trying to outdo the Joneses. The experts – hair stylists, make-up artists, fashion designers and wedding planners – are the only ones who after capitalising on this season, can afford to sit back and relax. With more than 2,000 high-end weddings taking place in India, there are multi-day extravaganzas that are mind-boggling in their dimension. What this means for the couple in question – the bride and groom – is that they have varied and new looks of make-up and hair for each day of the celebration. Obviously the bride-to be would have a wish list of what needs to be exclusive, fresh and not ever tried before. We spoke to several brands and salon and spa owners on what is it that they are launching this season which is novel for the couple. Excerpts from the interviews follow…
Expert speak: Make-up
Says Arpita Saha, Owner, Sristy Beauty Clinic & Training Centre, Kolkata, “The Porcelain make-up effect is going to be in demand for bridal make-up. Salon professionals can look at it as the latest in the forthcoming bridal season. The main inspiration behind its predicted popularity will be its soft and glossy look.” The main advantage of this effect is that it goes in tandem with the latest High Definition (HD) enabled make-up products. So the bride looks bright and attractive, not only in her public appearance, but also in her photographs and videos.”
The main challenge is in the precision of using this make-up. The overall effect diminishes the challenge. Even the choosy clients are going to change their minds. Since a trained professional setup can only provide this effect, the future looks bright. It is important to train the salon staff because otherwise the precision work and satisfactory effect is not possible.
Says Sukirti Patnaik who runs two salons by the name of Indulge in Bhubaneshwar and Cuttuck shares, “The upcoming bridal season is about simplicity and a youthful glow. The traditional bindi, lipstick and eyelashes will be the highlight along with contouring for a sharper look. Bridal transformations will take on a new dimension with the light use of base making the skin look supple, moisturised and bright.
Highlighting will also be subtle.” The inspiration for this look comes from customer expectations and demand of clients. Clients today are bored and wary of a caked look that chokes the skin. They want to look themselves. The wedding photographs are a memory for a lifetime and they want to look their age. Shares she, “While the bindi defines elegance, a lipstick give a youthful pout, the eyelashes create drama for the photographs and contouring for the extra oomph factor. As every artist is unique, they create looks based on market demand and the latest trends in fashion with a pinch of their creativity. So for me, the make-up products contribute to 50 per cent of perfection and the other half comes from my experience and creativity. I am a fan of brands like the Bees Wax based foundation, Bobbi Brown Gel Eyeliners, Dior and MAC lipsticks and the 8 Hour Cream from Elizabeth Arden.”
Elaborating further, she says, “I believe, a make-up artist is not tied to a single technology. We constantly reinvent and there are always our all-time favourites. In my salons different make-up artists have their own kits consisting of products with which they are more comfortable. Many salons use air brush make-up, permanent hair extensions, HD make-up etcetera, but at the end of the day, it comes down to the skills and comfort level of the artist.”
There are challenges, too. “Being in a Tier II city, I come across brides who are unaware and so have neglected their skin for a long time. There are issues of pigmentation, dehydration, dryness, uneven skin tone and more. So the prepping regime and making sure that the make-up stays in place, is a real task. The other challenge is motivating customers and their families with a conservative outlook, to accept new styles. We have been trying this through consultation and pre-bridal trials, but the challenge still remains,” shares Patnaik.
The opportunity that has come out of this season can be divided into business and creative opportunities. Says patnaik, “Beauty and make-up, like other services, are a result-oriented business. From a business perspective, the results that we have given to our clients are generating bookings six to nine months in advance and almost all our bookings are through referrals from brides, their families and friends. In terms of creative opportunity, my experience is helping clients build confidence to push the envelope to accept newer make-up looks and styles. This in-turn is letting us showcase our creative best and upgrade the market to the next level.”
On training of make-up artists, she says, “Training of the staff is a continuous process. Trends change overnight and we need to keep up with not only the change, but also make progress. But again, every artist has an in-born talent and they know what they can tap into. The same look can be achieved using different products, technology and application procedure. So the creativity of the make-up artist and the end-result is what should drive the process.”
Hair is fast becoming an obsession with everyone across all ages, both male and female. Even though clients are willing to try different hair styles and colours, they are increasing looking at the expert to provide an opinion and a consultation-based is approach is appreciated for a new look that blends with the client’s personality and their physical look. Hair stylists with the right knowledge, right attitude, decent communication and someone who constantly upgrade their skills, will have a bright future in this industry.”
Reveals Neha Modi, Director, B’Desir Cosmetics Pvt Ltd, “We’re really excited about the fact that Indian brides are eager to experiment with their ‘d-day’ look! They’ve broken the shackles of the old gold-and-red palette and are opting for unconventional make-up colours like copper and silver. It is definitely in sync with the au-courant royalty-inspired fashion and jewellery trends.”
“Temptu uses the air-brush technology for make-up application. Unlike the traditional way of applying make-up with brushes, sponges or finger tips, this technique allows the product to get layered on to the skin evenly and flawlessly. The Temptu gun that sprays the product, be it a foundation or blush in liquid form) is easy to use, literally controlled by a trigger,” shares Modi.
Temptu is the only airbrush make-up brand in India that uses a silicon-based formula for its products. This special formula sprays evenly onto the skin, without caking up and leaves a gorgeous sheen on the surface. The shades can be mixed and matched in the pot of the gun to match the skin tone. This lightweight formula is perfect for the hot and humid weather and stays on for long hours. All Temptu products are water resistant. About the availability of Temptu, says Modi, “We are present in over 7,500 salons across the country including some of the giants in the industry—VLCC, Lakme, Naturals, Affinity, Looks Salon, to name a few. Renowned make-up artists like Vidya Tikari, Meenakshi Dutt, Namrata Soni, Marvie Ann Beck and Indra Ahluwalia use only Temptu kits.”
On the role of edutcaion and the resultant challenges, says Raunak Khandelwal, Director, Temptu India, “We wouldn’t call it a challenge, but as with anything new, education plays a vital role. Therefore, artists and users who have been applying make-up the old way were educated through demonstrations and with practice they have picked up the technique within a matter of days. In fact, we have got an overwhelmingly positive response from our excited customers.”
The benefits of the airbrush make-up technique was established decades ago, in the 1950s and made its way into Hollywood. Ever since, it has been the popular choice of make-up application in the west. With the onset of the unforgiving HD cameras, it was inevitable that the airbrush make-up would make its way into the world of beauty and fashion in India. The artists are relieved of direct contact with the skin, they are positively happy with the even, flawless finish that the Temptu airbrush technique renders on to the skin. Another major benefit that the artists have is that each Temptu kit can be used for a minimum of 150 make-ups, which means the cost to the makeup artist is only `200 per face! Imagine the profit when a single make-up package at a salon is anywhere between `5,000 to `50,000! Shares Modi, “The future of make-up is to be au naturel! The younger generation is moving away from over-the-top to the more natural, akin to skin kind of make-up. They seem more comfortable in their skin and prefer highlighting their features.”
Experts speak: Skin care
Says Charvi Gupta, Head Research and Product Development, Lotus Herbals, “This bridal season, professionals can look forward to Lotus Professional’s Preservita Advanced Fruit Marmalade Facials. An innovative and exotic line of real fruit marmalade-based facials, this product will change the way the market perceives fruit facials. This range has five exciting facials that includes: Advanced Bearberry Marmalade Facial – for whiter, brighter skin, Advanced Kiwi Fruit Marmalade Facial – for younger looking skin, Advanced Vino Grapes Marmalade Facial – for glowing, radiant skin, Advanced Papaya Marmalade Facial – for blemish-free skin and Advanced Pineapple Marmalade Facial – for sensitive skin.” Talking about the inspiration behind the creation of this products, says Gupta, “Around 40 to 50 per cent of facials that happen in a typical salon in India are fruit based as they are considered safe, natural and effective by aestheticians and consumers, alike. However, nobody is aware of the quantity of fruit in these ‘fruit based products’. Therefore, we thought of introducing unique and highly effective products keeping it as close to nature as possible.
“The technology used is special as it preserves the fruit in its natural form to give optimum vital benefits to skin for a healthy, lasting effect.”
Lotus Professional’s Preservita Advanced Fruit Marmalade Facials are available at all the leading salons across India and Nepal.
“After understanding that there is a latent need for trustworthy, highly effective fruit-based facials, our biggest challenge was to develop a delivery concept for such a product. This advanced product is technical in nature, yet simple enough for the consumer to connect with it.
I think with a population of 1.2 billion people, the future and opportunities in the skin care category is huge,” says Gupta.
Shares Vidur Kapur, Managing Director, O3+ brand of skin care products, “As every bride wants to look and feel ‘the best’, we are launching the concept of ultimate luxury on the skin, a feeling of being flawless for long month. The luxury Diamond and Gold facial is incorporated with light therapy too.” The inspiration behind its creation was a simple thought – that a bride cannot run to the parlour often after her wedding, “So our motivation towards a longer lasting facial incorporated with some daily easy steps towards care morning and night was how this facial was conceived,” says Kapur. This exclusive treatment shall be available with all O3+ signature salons across India. Dedication and the desire of beauty therapists to give her client the best is a segment that we see growing, a consumer and service provider both recognises quality and result, so we feel our luxury segment growth is on an escalation path.”
There is lots for the therapist to learn like the special technique to drain out toxins via massage and puffiness under the eyes, too. Moreover, they claim to be using using the purest form of Optic Caviar that provides intensive brightening with it’s micro delivery system.
Says Kapur, “The future of skin care in India is bright as O3+ is dedicated to providing India with the latest trends in the international beauty industry. Moreover the salons need to come forward to willingly accept these new trends and emphasise on trainings and education for the staff.”
A few of the bridal special facials are the Age Lock Vitamin C Booster, Deep Concern Brighten up Cleansing Gel, among others.
Shares Presley Coelho, Cheryl’s Cosmeceuticals, “In this upcoming bridal season the professional can look forward to a path-breaking offering from Cheryl’s, namely, the O2C2 Radiance Facial and the corresponding home care with O2C2 Radiance Lotion.
Cheryl’s O2C2 Radiance Facial is like yoga for the skin that uses oxygen to deliver a huge boost of freshness and brightness to the skin and also comes in a very simple and easy-to-use kit. Both the products, O2C2 Radiance Facial and O2C2 Radiance Lotion, have been formulated and introduced keeping in mind the requirements of the skin care professional to cater to the demanding aspirations of brides to drastically alter the appearance of their skin and to look their radiant best for perhaps the most important day of their life.”
Cheryl’s uses a unique technology, which is the infusion of Oxygen and Enzymes into the skin that instantly lightens the skin and enhances its glow. Perhaps for the first time in India, Cheryl’s has combined a cleanser and deep cleanser (scrub) in one product, which forms part of the facial routine. This cleanses the skin and also considerably enhances the lightening appearance of the skin by significantly exfoliating epidermal dead skin and cellular debris. This new technology used enzymes to exfoliate dead skin and improves the skin’s ability to reflect light while Oxygen that is infused deep in the skin’s cells gives it a bright, energised and radiant appearance.
The challenge is that facial radiance needs proper and healthy balance of oil and moisture that blends together to create a medium for the optimum reflection of light. The main challenge was in creating products in the facial that not only lightened the skin, but optimised the glow by maintaining a healthy oil and moisture balance. Another challenge was formulating a corresponding product for post-treatment home care that would lighten the skin while at the same time increasing its firmness and smoothness to reflect light. The result was the O2C2 Radiance Facial and the O2C2 Radiance Lotion for home care.
“In creating this product line, we have emerged richer in knowledge and understating of our clients needs and the opportunities that are created when a company is responsive to the requirements its clients. This product line has also given birth to new ideas regarding the new products that will be formulated in the near future to complement O2C2 Radiance Facial and enhance its appeal to all sections of society.
“Training is an integral part of Cheryl’s DNA and all therapists are given comprehensive training before using any of Cheryl’s products. In using O2C2 Radiance Facial Kit and O2C2 Radiance Lotion, the therapist will gain a comprehensive knowledge of skin types and skin conditions as the facial is suitable for all skin types including sensitive skin. They will also obtain a thorough understanding on the topic of radiance and glow, the procedure and steps to enhance glow, the obstacle to glow and home care maintenance for retaining daily glow.
“The future is bright for the skin care industry in India. Skin care products are gaining wide acceptability and are now getting the attention they deserve as they are perceived as solutions to skin care concerns like dullness, dry skin and uneven skin tone. For example face washes or cleansers are the preferred option to soap as they are safer and give better results.
Says Megha Sabhlok, Brand Director, Just Herbs Organic Skincare claims to have created several bespoke organic pre-bridal skin care regimes that are tailor-made to suit the bride and groom’s skin type. For example, our six step ‘cream-free’ organic skin care regime for oily and combination skin uses only cool and light textured gels made from certified organic ingredients. This can be further customised to target specific concerns such as blemishes, pimples, marks and more, after a consultation with us.” The inspiration comes from the belief that everyone’s skin is unique and needs special care customised to their specific needs and lifestyle and more so, just ahead of such a special day in one’s life. “In addition, we found that while several salons offer pre-bridal packages there are hardly any treatments that one can consider completely safe to use. Just Herbs Organic Skincare regimens use no parabens, sulphates or mineral oil and are made using certified organic ingredients. We use the highest possible concentration of certified organic and wild crafted, harvested from their natural or ‘wild’ habitat, for food or medicinal purposes, ingredients in every treatment, and use cold-pressed, certified organic plant oils as the base wherever possible,” shares Sabhlok.
Explaining further, she says, “The idea behind these skin care regimes was to give the bride and groom a completely customised experience and most of all, bring about results in a safe manner. Given the diversity in Indian skin types, designing regimes was quite challenging. A lot of salons have started to approach us and a few have already introduced these to their clients. Our regimes are very different from regular salon products. For example, we don’t have toners in our facials, but aloe vera gel to tone and prepare the skin, a lot of our organic masks need mixing with foodstuffs such as curd, lemon juice etcetra, which is a totally different way towards salon facials. The therapists will learn how great results can be achieved for their clients without relying on harsh chemical based skin care.
The future of the Indian skin care industry is expanding rapidly and is set for explosive growth. Shares Sabhlok, “With increased levels of pollution, stress and the heightened need to have a flawless skin, skin care on the whole, is a sunshine sector. Within that, we are particularly optimistic about the growth in safe organic skin care that targets specific concerns. Most people think that natural products are not as effective as chemically formulated ones. But that is changing. Skin care brands with formulas that are effective, safe and target specific concerns will come out tops.”
Anand Srinivasan, Manager, Branch Operations, Kama Ayurveda, shares, “The latest skin care trend that one can look forward to from Kama Ayurveda is Ayurvedic Cosmeceuticals. A range of topical cosmetic and pharmaceutical hybrids intended to enhance health and beauty through ingredients that influence the skin’s biological function, the recent launch, from Ayurvedic Cosmeceuticals, is the Nalpamaradi Thailam which is a skin brightening Treatment. Prescribed in Ayurveda as a natural skin illuminator and de-tanning oil for face and body, we recommend it as a bridal beauty treatment and comprehensive skin care routine.”
The inspiration behind this product’s creation is ‘Varnya- Youthful Radiance’. An important group of herbs called Varnya have the ability to enhance the radiance or bright complexion of the skin. If the skin does not have a healthy glow, or Varnya quality, then it is not considered youthful in Ayurveda. Varnya herbs include turmeric, vetiver, gooseberry, Indian madder, Indian sarsaparilla and Ficus family and so on.
“Nalpamaradi Thailam is an age old formula and the real challenge lies is finding the right quality and availability of raw materials at the right time. The desire to look young prevails in the majority of us. The latest trends in beauty, health and wellness sectors, are giving rise to a new realm of possibilities by fusing cosmeceuticals with Ayurveda,” shares Srinivasan.
Elaborating further, he says, “Consumers worldwide are going green and this is especially true in the cosmetics market. Over the last few years, growth in the market for cosmetics has been driven by products that use natural or herbal components. The market share of natural-based products has been increasing gradually. Companies are increasingly feeling pressurised to focus on sustainability and reduce their environmental footprints. Consumers are more aware and are becoming conscious of the ingredients that go into the products that they use and are averse to chemicals that are known to cause side effects. On the supply side, companies are engaging in advanced research of plant-derived peptides, encapsulated actives, active plant stem cells, complex extraction processes, and clinical testing to deliver products that are acceptable to the well-informed customers.
Commenting on the future, he says, “Indians have been traditionally inclined toward natural products for their beauty needs. While consumers in the rest of the world have to be educated about the benefits of natural herbs, this knowledge has been in India from generations. The need is for companies to translate the ancient Ayurvedic recipes into modern easy to use formats with superior quality.”
Reveals Gayatri Kini Sali, CEO,Thalgo India, “Today brides and grooms give topmost priority to radiance when it comes to the skin care. This bridal season Thalgo introduces the Source Marine, a new range that maintains the skin’s quality, radiance and hydration for 24 hours.” The inspiration is the philosophy of the company to offer every woman in the world unparalleled professional treatments with a strong brand signature – expert massage techniques, salon and home care products containing high concentrations of active ingredients for increased effectiveness. Says Sali, “For more than 40 years, Thalgo has been the leader in professional marine cosmetics. Our Research Laboratory has created an exclusive marine ingredient: Sève Bleue des Océans, developed through a unique process involving encapsulation and polarisation to ensure deep cellular hydration. It gives client’s a unique treatment for all those special occasion where the clients do not have time for multiple sittings, but wants the overall best and very important a maintained result on their skin.”
On the future of the skin care industry, says she, “With people getting more demanding and aware of various brandd around the globe, the skin care market India shows great potential. Many international brands are now coming into the Indian market which will bring in more innovation, technologies and opportunities that will benefit the industry in many ways.”
Dr Blossom Kochhar, Founder, BKGC, says, “For this bridal season, salon professionals can look forward to Blossom Kochhar Aroma Magic range of salon kits, namely, Bridal Glow Facial Kit, Pearl Facial Kit, Gold Facial Kit and Silver Facial Kit. All these kits are a seven step process, which enhance the natural glow, lighten blemishes, detoxify skin and calm sensitive skin. Being the keepers of people’s faith, the range was devised to deliver meaningful, effective results that have positive, healing effects on the body and soul. Says Dr Blossom Kochhar, “Our dream for a beautiful tomorrow gives us the freedom to create concepts, products that are original, authentic and emotionally connected with people. We have created the products on the pillars of Aromatherapy. Blossom Kochhar Aroma Magic range of products are 100 per cent free of parabens, harsh chemicals, alcohol, artificial fragrance and colour. The products are available across India to nearly 10,000 salons, parlours, retail and beauty stores.
“The challenge was to be in acceptance with our sustainability model as using artificial ingredients in formulation is an easy path, but I am proud that none of the sustainability values in which we believe in, were compromised with. We investigated a dozen ingredients, raw materials for packaging are renewable and we do not test our products on animals.
“The therapists need to know the art of massaging. Since the ratio of the products to be used, is already pre-packed in the sachets, they do not have to worry about the exact amount to be mixed together, thus, providing ease of use for the therapists.
“What we apply should be as healing and natural as what we eat. Using scientific beauty products damages the skin in ways we cannot imagine. People are getting aware of the harm caused by these products and the popularity of Blossom Kochhar Aroma Magic confirms it,” says Kochhar.
Expert speak: Hair care and styling
Raaga Professional Pro10 Express is the world’s first 10 minutes colouration technique. The breakthrough innovative product helps stylists to quickly deliver the services with this technology, at the same time the clients need not spend so much time to get their hair coloured in salons anymore. Brown shades are totally in this season ranging from dark chocolate to honey blonde with global highlights in gold or copper blonde for black hair and soft red or soft browns. Faiyaz Shaikh, Artistic Educator, Matrix India says, “New hair colour and style trends emerge at the brink of the bridal season. As a leading professional brand, stylists look forward to inspiring new cut and colour looks from Matrix. This bridal season, we are very proud to launch the ‘Caramel Twist’ look currently being showcased by our colour ambassador, Drashti Dhami.
The inspiration behind it is the Caramel Twist technique is inspired by the concept of a twist with two tones. The look showcases an interplay of dark and light tones of SoColor warm brown shades. The colour is placed in a way that accentuates ones features and delicately blends into a dark caramel base, revealing hidden colour accents as the hair moves and work beautifully for both updos and open hair styles.
Says Shaikh, “The technology used Matrix SoColor formulas have been developed with the path breaking Kera-Protect Technology which protects the hair’s keratin during the colouring process. Kera-Protect Technology creates the perfect foundation to enhance colour’s long-lasting vibrancy and beauty.
“The challenges lay in the design process as it’s always exciting and very inspiring. It is always a challenge to develop a trend setting look that appeals to a wide client base.”