Birkenstock, the brand known for its comfy sandals, clogs, and slippers, is venturing into skin care. The new development may seem to be coming out of left field, but the company's well suited for it: The products it's creating have one of the same ingredients as its footwear.
The company's shoes are made of cork oak, and the skin care products get their anti-aging effects from suberin, which comes from cork oak extract, Birkenstock's CEO Oliver Reichert told WWD. "That’s how the whole project started. We then took our time in terms of developing the whole natural cosmetics range, with product quality coming first at all times with a team of experienced experts." Birkenstock's signature cork has also found its way into the cosmetics' packaging.
Reichert told Fashion Network that the new initiative is part of Birkenstock's broader focus on well-being, which also led it to launch a bed collection. Many skin products have "chemical ingredients that can irritate the skin or even damage it," he said, according to a Google translation. "This has prompted us to think about a healthy product concept in this segment as well."
A Birkenstock subdivision called Birkenstock Cosmetics is manufacturing the 28 products that'll make up the Birkenstock Natural Care line. It'll include a collection of cleansers called Naturally Fresh Cleanse, moisturizers known as Naturally Ageless Repair, and hyaluron-based skin and lip products under the name Naturally Pure Prevent. In response to a growing number of men seeking natural cosmetics, three of the products are geared toward male consumers.
The products' ingredients also include arctic moss, argan oil, and baobab. They cost between $17 and $74.
Birkenstock has already debuted some of these new creations at the trade fair Biofach 2018, including a leg and foot oil, moisturizing foot cream, revitalizing shampoo, and facial moisturizing toner. It plans to roll out the full collection this fall online and in stores in the U.S. and Asia.
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