At a time when the industry is buzzing over the skinification of hair, a salon hair-care brand is taking the opposite tack.
Number 4 is leveraging its heritage in premium hair care to build out its skin-care portfolio — most recently to include a body wash. Rolling out in October is the Number 4 Soothing Body Wash, following on the heels of a Number 4 Lumiere d’hiver Body Lotion that bowed earlier this year, joining the brand’s Fleurs de Temps and Hydrating lotions.
Founded in 2010, Number 4’s products are vegan, gluten-free, sulfate and sodium chloride free and paraben free hair and skin products. Every product also has color protecting and antiaging ingredients.
“We’ve been doing a lot of consumer outreach to meet their needs,” said industry veteran Toni Wells, the brand director for Number 4. “Many said they love our hair care and asked us to go into body-care products so they had something gluten- and paraben-free for the entire body.” Beyond the requests, Number 4 had a full load of hair-care choices, but the company saw opportunities in body. “We like to say we have one product that does 20 things, instead of 20 that do one. We have enough inventory for hair so it makes sense to do what we’ve done in hair for the body.”
The body wash will retail for $39 and be sold throughout Number 4’s more than 600 salons, the Birchbox store in Manhattan, Thompson Alchemist in Manhattan and online. The formula features Vitamin C and Oat Extract to moisturize, hydrate and cleanse skin with a subtle fragrance of Linden Blossom, Trembled Gardenia and Sheer Bark Wood.
The body lotion extension was also the result of consumers asking for choices with the signature Essentials fragrance used in the hair line. “People wanted a body lotion to go with their hair-care experience,” Wells said. She noted that 80 percent of all products purchased are based on scent. “It is like the new car smell. We wanted to make sure people could have the feeling of our scent on their bodies. Number 4 receives huge compliments on our product fragrances. The Essentials Collection is a fan favorite.”
Beyond the better-for-you and sensorial aspects, Wells said Number 4’s mantra is to duplicate the salon experience at home. “We were really ahead of the trend on this one,” said Wells, whose résumé includes roles at Redken, Sebastian and Pureology. “It is one thing to buy a product, but what you are buying today is the experience, especially for Millennials. Moreover, discerning consumers demand performance and frequently share and study reviews. Packaging sells once, performance sells it over and over again.”
Number 4’s extension comes at a pivotal time for the professional sector. While salon hair products are growing at a 3 percent clip, according to The NPD Group, many clients are cutting down on the frequency in visits, prompting more demand in buying salon products for home use. Compounding that is growing interest in professional grade skin products, NPD reported.
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