Unilever’s Annual Beauty and Personal Care Virtual Event: #WhatsNewWithU

Day 2

Breaking Limits

Head of Public Relations, Influencer Marketing, and Digital Engagement for Unilever North America, Casey DePalma and Dove’s Self Esteem Educator and Empowerment Speaker, Dre Brown introduced themselves and described this session as motivational and focusing on the individual. It was sponsored by Degree’s Purpose Program.

Professional surfer, Life Coach and Adaptability Advocate, Bethany Hamilton kicked things off by partnering with Degree to inspire courage and confidence to move more. Movement is an important part of her life, and she wants to encourage others to overcome the fear and judgement that may hinder them from moving.

Degree made a $5 million commitment over the next 5 years to empower young people with the confidence to move with their Breaking Limits program. It is a global initiative for those that face the greatest barriers in being active and provides them with access to coaches and mentors.

Chiara Grillo, Senior Global Brand Manager of Innovation and Engagement at Degree, explains that Degree’s mission is to provide equitable access to products and experiences needed to move to create a more inclusive society. This year they launched the beta program, Degree Inclusive, which designed the world’s first inclusive deodorant for people with visual impairments and motor disabilities.

Following the recent NCAA policy change that allows college athletes to monetize their name, image and likeness, Degree signed on 19 students onto the Breaking Limits Team. The team is comprised of a diverse group of students, across a variety of college sports to motivate others to break limits every day.

Lastly, they launched their Trainers for Hire program. According to a study, 81% of people with disabilities don’t feel welcome in fitness spaces. This is partly due to the lack of representation of disabled trainers and coaches. Degree recently kicked off their Trainers for Hire campaign for more representation in the fitness industry, and a call for companies to have more trainers with disabilities. With the help of 5-time Paralympic medalist and motivational speaker, Blake Leeper, they held an inclusive pop-up spin class in Madison Square Park.

Blake Leeper led us through a motivational growth mindset workshop, helping us to break our own limits. He started the workshop by sharing his story.

On August 31, 1989, Leeper was born with a congenital birth defect, Fibular Hemimelia, causing him to be born without legs. Nevertheless, his parents still had joy and instilled positivity in his life. “My parents decided to do two things, and the two things they decided are what saved my life. The first thing was o stick together as a family; as a unit, through the good, the bad, the ugly. ‘We are going to be in your corner fighting for you.’ And the second thing, ‘we’re going to keep a positive attitude toward the whole situation.’ The power of positivity, as cliché as that may sound sometimes, is so powerful.”

One of Leeper’s favorite quotes is from Coach Lou Holtz is, “life is 10% of what you’re dealt with and 90% how you deal with it.” His 10% was being born without legs, but he still has 90% to wake up every day with a smile on his face and to be one of the fastest men in the world. His failures and disappointments throughout life helped to prepare him for where he is now.

When Leeper participated in his first Paralympic games in London 2012, he spoke with confidence to his family and told them when he wins, to meet him at a certain area. After the games were all said and done, he managed to come out with a bronze and a silver medal. “Speak greatness into your life and manifest your destiny,” said Leeper.

Let Your Hair Down

Jessica Grigoriou, Brand Performance Director for TRESemmé and Suave Hair, discussed new consumer hair habits over the past year and introduced new product innovations.

The pandemic and lockdown last year has forced and empowered people to learn how to take care of their own hair and buy their own hair care products as salons and barbershops were closed. Hairstyling has also made a comeback as the world began to open. Consumers started to look for more styling products after taking a long break and getting back into their regular routines. Grigoriou announces new product lines from Nexxus, Dove, TRESemmé and Suave, as well as a new brand launching at Walmart next year.

Nexxus’ new Ultralight Smooth collection caters to those who have frizz prone hair and are looking for extra strengthening benefits. This collection was made to smooth hair without feeling heavy for 72 hours and contains almond protein to strengthen hair. It comprises of a shampoo, conditioner, and hair serum. They will be available to purchase in stores by January 2022.

TRESemmé plans to expand on its Keratin Repair Pro Collection system by adding a new leave-in treatment to its existing shampoo and conditioner. It is designed to repair split ends, helping the hair to look healthier.

They will be launching two new Pro Collection ranges, including the Beauty-Full Strength Pro Collection, which is designed for users with fine, flat hair, who are looking for volume but also to correct damage. It includes a shampoo, conditioner, and leave-in treatment. They are launching the Purple Blonde Collection, made to cancel out the brassy tones in bleach blonde hair with their purple perfecting technology. It includes a purple shampoo and conditioner.

TRESemmé also plans to fill consumer’s desires by launching a hairstyling product line. TRESemmé Global Stylist and celebrity hair stylist, Justine Marjan joined to explain and demonstrate the new One Step Stylers collection. They are multitasking hairstyling products that help to give a soft and smooth style, while making a hair routine easier. They are great for a variety of textures and include one for Volume, Texture, Waves, Smoothing and Repairing.  They all provide 5 key needs for each hair type including heat protection. All TRESemmé products will be available in January 2022.

Marian demonstrated using one of the stylers in her own hair, “As you can see I have naturally really thick, frizzy hair but was able to get a really smooth, shiny, glossy result with the Smooth Styler. I would highly recommend,” said Marjan.

Dove is expanding their Hair Therapy collection that is inspired by skincare ingredients. First is their Strength and Fullness Boost sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner, ideal for thin, fine hair that needs extra strength and fullness, also formulated with retinol and serum.

Next is their Rescue and Protect range made to strengthen internal hair bonds, seal spit ends, and provide nourishment by being formulated with ceramides and peptides. It consists of a sulfate-free shampoo and 1 minute serum conditioner. The range will be available in late December.

Dove is also launching styling products under the Hair Therapy line, and to help explain celebrity stylist and Dove’s Global Hair Stylist, Mark Townsend joined the session.

“I love a two-for, Two-for-one will get me every time and these products do some serious double duty of treating the hair as you style it,” said Townsend. Dove’s 7-in-1 Miracle Mist is formulated with vitamin C and amino acids to repair damage, smooth hair, and restore shine. It is a leave-in conditioner that has detangling and heat protecting properties. “Dove doesn’t test on animals, but I can tell you the miracle mist was heavily tested on the Olsens. They’re always my little muses,” Townsend shared.

The Defrizz and Define Leave-in Cream is made with hyaluronic acid for smooth, defines waves and curls with natural movement. “This is my biggest obsession cause it helped me fall in love with my own wavy hair.”

The Brilliant Gloss Repair and Ceramide Serum is a leave-in gloss serum made with ceramides for shine and smoothness. Specifically made for damaged and color treated hair. Townsend showed a video he filmed using the gloss serum on a client.

Suave is expanding their Pink line to add the Vibrant Sulfate-Free Color shampoo and conditioner. They are formulated with an amino acid complex to moisturize and prevent color fading. It is currently available in Walmart nationwide.

Celebrity hairstylist Ursula Stephen joined to describe and demo Suave’s new hair styling range. There are five products in the line, the Thickening Cream, made to heat protect and make the hair appear thicker; Anti-Frizz Smoothing Serum, created to repel humidity; Root Lifting Volume Boosting Spray, meant to add volume at the roots of flat, thin hair; Flexible Definition Wave Mousse, perfect for crunch-free curls, and frizz control; and the Glossy Finish Shine Spray, made to add shine and tame ways.

She showed a video of her demoing the Root Lifting Volume Boosting Spray on a client. Stephen loves to use the mousse on her box braids after a few weeks to take the frizz and add shine.

Unilever unveiled their new brand bhs., which stands for beautiful hair and scalp, that targets hair dandruff. The line is sulfate-free, color-safe, and formulated with salicylic acid to exfoliate the scalp and free it of flakes. This line has shampoo and conditioner for many hair types. There is a specific formulation for color-treated hair, curly hair, brittle hair, damaged hair, frizzy hair, and itchy scalp. The brand will be launching at Walmart in February 2022.

Uncompromised Style

Cara Sabin, CEO of Sundial Brands joined Tina Knowles-Lawson, entrepreneur, former salon owner, and mother of superstar entertainer Beyoncé to discuss the state and future of community hair salons and barbershops as people become more self-sufficient in taking care of their hair, especially after the lockdown during the pandemic.

Ms. Knowles-Lawson has partnered with Shea Moisture to support salon owners to pursue their dreams. These salons really rely exclusively on the business in their surrounding community, and COVID-19 disrupted that income. That is why Knowles-Lawson helped Shea Moisture to create the Shea Moisture Salon Innovation Fund, which will provide $50,000 in grants to find black, licensed stylists to help them grow their businesses. “The scholarship can really help people that have really suffered during this time because, I’ve talked to so many salon owners who have been affected greatly, and they are just trying to rebuild,” Knowles-Lawson said.

The hair salon is more than a place to get your hair serviced, but it is also a place where you go to laugh, cry, and discuss hot topics, especially in the black community. “The hair salon is that meeting place, it’s where you fellowship and talk about things, make connections and network. Networking is such a big part of it.” Knowles-Lawson recalled a time when she had an opera singer as a client who traveled the world. This woman inspired a young Beyoncé to believe that she could achieve that dream.

She also believes that the salon is all about camaraderie. Clients get to meet other people from all walks of life and might find similarities in one another and form a bond. The same goes for barbershops. She compared hairstylists to therapists. Clients feel comfortable pouring their soul to them because of the intimate touch they have. This is an important relationship in the black community, as many people don’t have access or believe in therapy, so this became their outlet. “For some reason, they [stylists] just have this knack for understanding emotional turmoil, so they can sympathize with you, and it just means the world; and in the black community sometimes that’s the only therapy you’ve got,” explained Knowles-Lawson.

Shea Moisture partnered with 1000 barber shops and beauty salons to help them restore their businesses after COVID-19. They launched a campaign called ‘Shots at the Shop’, which promotes vaccine education and helps small salons that want to convert their places into vaccination sites.

To help salon owners adapt to their new reality, Knowles-Lawson recommended that they try to rely on product sales if clients are not coming in like they used to. Try to provide lessons on how to take care of hair at home. This could provide another source of income rather than just relying on hair services. She also suggests providing discounts and other incentives so that customers come into the salon more.

The perception of natural hair has evolved over the years in society and in the black community. What once was deemed as unkempt, and unprofessional is now being seen as beautiful. Society is trying to end hair discrimination with the help of the CROWN Act, and the black community is learning how to embrace and love their hair in its natural state. Ms. Knowles-Lawson experienced this transformation firsthand through her granddaughter Blue Ivy, who was ridiculed on social media as a young child for wearing her natural tresses. Sadly, the majority of it came from the black community, but she tells her granddaughter than she contributed to a movement because throughout the years the black community has started to embrace their curls, coils, and fros.

Shea Moisture is releasing some new innovations like their Advanced Raw Shea Butter Deep Moisturizing Collection. This collection is 92% more moisturizing than their original Raw Shea Butter collection. It includes a shampoo, conditioner, deep conditioning mask, detangler, and leave-in conditioner. The collection will be available this December.

Shea Moisture is also releasing a line of styling gels. Under the Coconut and Hibiscus line, there will be a Defining Styling Gel and an Edge Gel. Also, under the Jamaican Black Castor Oil line, there will be a Strong Hold Styling Gel and an Edge Gel. They are all formulated without alcohol to prevent drying out the hair and creating a crunch. These products will also be available this December.

Shower Your Body With Love

Director of Marketing Dove and Dove Men+Care U.S., Leslie Miller, introduced the new body care innovations that Dove has created to amplify your shower routine.

Dove’s goal is to create products that work for a variety of skin needs with premium ingredients and technologies. Dove’s new ‘Body Love’ collection prioritizes body skin and encourages consumers to show the same love to the body as many do to the face. The Body Love collection includes two pre cleanse shower butters and five serum infused body cleansers that are inspired by facial routines. It was formulated to provide softer, healthier looking skin, which starts with hydration. Crafted with active moisturizers like fatty acids, and glycerin, that help to lock in moisture. 4 out of 5 cleaners include a 10x moisture boost complex that helps to enhance the skin’s nature moisture barrier.

The collection was designed to incorporate a two-step moisture routine, which includes the pre-cleanse shower butter, which deposits an extra boost of hydration into the skin with a concentrated combination of active moisturizers, while it gently cleanses. Then you follow up with the body cleanser, which re-cleanses and locks in the nutrients from the butter. The routine is similar to applying a serum, then a moisturizer to lock in the serum’s benefits.

There are 5 variants in the collection.

  • The Moisture Boost shower butter and body cleanser is great for anyone who’s main skin concern is dryness or dehydrated skin. They contain hyaluronic serum and moringa oil to help the skin hold on to that moisture.
  • The Age Embrace shower butter and body cleanser are formulated with peptide serums and pure glycerin for anyone who is looking to target signs of aging.
  • The Acne Clear body cleanser comprises of 1% salicylic acid and bamboo extract to help clear and prevent body acne.
  • The Radiance Renew body cleanser includes vitamin C serum and exfoliating minerals which help hydrate and illuminate skin.
  • The Sun Rehydrate body cleanser is made with a vitamin E serum and aloe extract to soothe and refresh skin.

On the Move Again

Dawn Hedgepeth, Vice President of Unilever’s Deodorants and Skincare Business, and Megan Rapinoe, American Professional Soccer Player and Schmidt’s Partner, discussed all things deodorant and antiperspirant, highlighting Unilever’s new offerings.

Rapinoe partnered with the Schmidt’s brand last year for a campaign that really spoke to her and defied stereotypical beauty norms. She also enjoys their products’ natural ingredients. She excitedly dropped the news that Schmidt’s is launching a spray deodorant. The spray format is very popular globally, and Unilever is excited to introduce aluminum-free options to the U.S. market. “To be honest, I really love it… the application is great, it’s super easy, it dries really quickly, and it doesn’t leave that visible residue. That is really important to me, often times I’m going from training right to something else and I don’t have time to let everything dry,” Rapinoe said. The spray deodorant has 48 hours of odor control, leaves no residue, contains 98% natural ingredients, and it uses ozone friendly propellants.

Dove and Dove Men+Care created a new water-based antiperspirant to help restore underarm skin to its best condition. The new formula contains 6x more humectant moisturizers compared to their Dove Advanced Care range. This makes it the most moisturizing antiperspirant in their range.

Unilever took inspiration from Degree’s campaign encouraging more people to move to create a 72-hour motion sense nonstop protection, using the biggest technology in years. Degree’s technology is meant to move in sync with the body all day long for all-day protection and burst of fresh scent every time you move. The antiperspirant is available in stick and spray formats for both men and women.

Axe is moving into the natural space after market research showed that Gen Z guys are into more natural formulations. Axe’s new formulation has 100% natural origin scents and no aluminum or parabens. 32% of teen guys are skeptical that natural products won’t work as great as the conventional products they know and love. This new collection offers 48 hours of odor protection and the smoothest gliding natural stick.

All these new brand innovations will be available in January 2022.

Sensorials, Scents and Shave

Global and U.S. Brand Director of Axe, Mark Lodwick introduced the session by sharing about some of the new products from the men’s brands. He started off with Axe and Dollar Shave Club. Their new innovations are inspired by the evolution of male grooming needs.

Axe is a very social media savvy brand, so much so that they created a Doge body spray can for Doge Day, inspired by the satirical cryptocurrency ‘Dogecoin,’ earlier this year. This resulted in an almost immediate sell out.

Axe is releasing their new fresh collection, featuring natural origin scents. This is a response to men wanting more natural products, as mentioned in the previous session. Along with their new natural deodorant sticks, are shower gels with corresponding scents.

Axe was inspired to create a capsule Axe scented clothing line with streetwear designer KidSuper. This was encouraged by the research that said that 80% of women and 50% of men intentionally smelled their absent partner’s clothing. It will feature 4 pieces of clothing including a beanie, t-shirt, unisex underwear, and a letterman jacket. They will be infused with Axe Cool Lotion fragrance.

In the shave category, Dollar Shave Club will be releasing a new shave gel, to join their popular shave butters and creams in 2022. It gives a smooth glide, safe for sensitive skin, and made with shea butter, aloe, and vitamin E.

Wade Menendez, master barber and Shea Moisture partner, explained the new shave collection Shea Moisture is releasing, available this Fall/Winter season.

There are 8 products in the collection:

  • Double Edge Safety Razor, great for shaving at skin level and preventing razor bumps.
  •  Invisible Line Up Gel, applies clear and perfect for getting an accurate shave and line up, unlike other shave creams and butters which can make it hard to see exactly where you are shaving.
  • Smoothing Shave Butter, great for men of color who have course, curly hair to condition and soften facial hair and skin.
  • Post-Shave Repairing Cream contains antibacterial agents to prevent razor bumps and irritation after shaving.
  • Daily Moisturizing Face Lotion, great for moisturizing the face that keeps the skin matte and not too oily.
  • Pre-Shave Softening Oil conditions the hair and skin and preps before shaving, interchangeable with the Smoothing Shave Butter.
  • Pre-Shave and Daily Cleansing Balm cleanses the skin before shaving to get rid of dirt and bacteria, also leaves skin soft and fresh.
  • Daily Exfoliating Pads, great for getting rid of dead skin cells and discoloration on the skin, leaving a smoother texture.

Senior Scientist at Unilever, Rick Casini talked about Dove Men+Care’s new additions to their naturally derived body washes.

Next year they plan to add three new varients/scents to their plant-based body wash line with 92-93% naturally derived ingredients and are biodegradable.

The line includes Awaken, with tumeric and ginger root; Inner Peace, with holy basil and hemp seed oil; and Wind Down with ashwagandha and white lavender. They all contain their adaptogen herb complex to help protect skin from environmental stressors.

Casini believes the best part about these new washes are the surfactants in them that remove dirt, oil, sweat, and grime while minimizing the damage done to the skin. This was demonstrated by an experiment comparing the new body wash, along with other leading brands, and dish soap. The experiment revealed the plant powered body wash to be as gentle as water.


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