May 20 2023  |  Fragrances, Cosmetics, Skincare & Haircare

Moroccanoil launches "Airy Moisture" campaign and enters the Chinese market

By Laura Shirk

Moroccanoil will enter the Chinese market in Q2 2023 with its “Airy Moisture” campaign; Airy Moisture will replace the brand's Hydration line in Asia

According to a report by Research and Markets, trusted source of market data and statistics, the global travel retail market is expected to grow to US$111.02 billion in 2026 and at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 12.8% with perfumes and cosmetics as the most profitable category. For an update on the resilience of the category and contributing factors of its growth, Global Travel Retail Magazine spoke with Sebastien Levi, Vice President Global Travel Retail at Moroccanoil. We also covered the global haircare and beauty brand’s expansion in travel retail, sustainability efforts and multi-sensory experience.

The general impression across the beauty industry is that the prioritizing of self-care and at-home treatment will continue to trend upward as it transitions from recovery to growth. This impression is observed at every brand level of the market. Driving the strong recovery of brick-and-mortar retail, Levi says once consumers had the chance to return to shopping in-store, they did so in “striking” fashion. Since consumers are becoming more accustomed to switching from channel to channel throughout their shopping journey – benefitting from brand variety in retail and digital convenience – it is important that travelers are given a reason to shop duty free. In addition to price advantage, the channel draws shoppers because of its exclusivity.

An expert in haircare

A leading brand in the cosmetics category, Moroccanoil has claimed a top spot in the haircare segment and with the launch of its Body range expanded its footprint. Levi explains there is a willingness among key operators to “play” within the haircare category and the brand embraces this point of view – even if it leads to greater competition. With the support of brand components like the addition of hair brushes and styling tools to its product range, Moroccanoil drives category innovation. Following a successful trial at Brussels Airport and Tel Aviv Airport, this move has reinforced Moroccanoil as an expert in haircare. The company is also looking at introducing electric tools such as hair dryers to its range to allow the category to “express itself.”

Right now, Moroccanoil is concentrating on how it can further personalize the consumer experience and provide a more exclusive offer in travel retail. In addition to exploring the potential to develop hair services and touch-up stations in the channel, the brand is in the process of expanding its portfolio sets to deliver a full hair and body routine.

As the company’s largest airport in terms of square footage and sales per passenger, Levi says the dedicated retail space in Brussels offers the total brand experience and communicates the DNA of the brand directly to consumers. While there is interest in duplicating this model in the future, Moroccanoil recently opened a flagship store in Panama maximizing the space available.

Tapping into the Chinese market

Continuing its successful run, in partnership with Sephora, Moroccanoil will enter the Chinese market in Q2 2023. The late arrival is due to the brand’s refusal to compromise its core values, work ethics and PETA cruelty-free certification. When asked about the launch and the brand’s plan to tap into this growing market, Levi points out that considering the situational change in animal testing, the reopening of China and Moroccanoil’s new “Airy Moisture” campaign it is perfect timing. Consisting of an exclusive formula, Airy Moisture has been crafted with local hair needs in mind and will replace the brand’s Hydration line in Asia.

Following the launch, Moroccanoil will consolidate its brand image in China and create regional opportunities to push the category; Levi says this will open new doors for the brand. During the second half of this year, Moroccanoil will focus on its growth in Hainan and potentially shift its focus to mainland China in 2024.

“Airy Moisture is our first local development in Asia, which proves the region’s importance to the brand. This campaign will have a major impact on Moroccanoil’s overall presence in travel retail,” he comments.

Sustainable production and brand consistency

Speaking about Moroccanoil’s sustainability efforts and practice of responsible consumption, Levi notes that it is a journey for the brand to become more sustainable in its products, its operations and in its community.

Along with the fact that the brand’s main factory in Tel Aviv, Israel, is 100% solar-powered, Levi highlights its partnership with Oceana, the largest international advocacy organization centered on ocean conservation. In the short term, the team would like to create a single-page showcard to post at every point of sale in travel retail to showcase its sustainability efforts and credibility. This information would be digitally accessible via QR code at a later date.

“How do we talk to the consumer about our efforts? This is a big question internally because we want to be candid about our efforts, while there is still work to be done,” says Levi.

Multi-sensory brand experience and new scents

Playing to three of the five senses (sight, touch and smell), Moroccanoil’s multi-sensory experience causes the consumer to transport. More than its brand image and the texture of its products, Moroccanoil is most identifiable by its signature scent, which is the common thread across its collection. The argan oil-infused beauty brand understands the notion of selfcare is not strictly about the quality of the product – and its confirmed results – but also the type of experience it offers.

Gearing up for the release of its Body range, which includes body lotion, shower gel, hand wash and hand cream, Moroccanoil experimented beyond its Fragrance Originale to create five new scents: Ambiance de Plage, Ambre Noir, Bergamote Fraîche, Oud Minéral and Spa du Moc and recreate five different “voyages.”

“The way we launched our five new scents, it’s about relating to a place and a moment in time. It’s not a surprise that the greater a consumer is transported, the better their reception. This is what people are looking for from our brand,” he adds.

Based on the brand’s guide to its Moroccan-inspired scents and Levi’s input, the following is a summary of what type of transportive experience each one has to offer:

  • Fragrance Originale (to a sparkling Mediterranean vista)
  • Ambiance de Plage (to a warm summer day on a Mediterranean beach)
  • Ambre Noir (on a walk through a Moroccan marketplace or a dry, earthy landscape)
  • Bergamote Fraîche (to a citrus grove by the Mediterranean Sea)
  • Oud Minéral (to a driftwood-strewn beach on an overcast morning)
  • Spa du Moc (to a Hammam Spa in Marrakesh)

Looking ahead, Levi is optimistic about the future, Moroccanoil has reached its 2023 targets one year ahead of schedule and will continue to prioritize personalization, exclusivity and the full haircare experience in travel retail.

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