How product kits fit into the world of cosmetics

Give me an overview of what your company does around construction kits.

We work directly with Sephora and support the creation of Sephora Favorites. Sephora will create the line-up of the brands then we take over the project from them. On the brand track, we coordinate all product deliveries.

We work with Sephora on the design, on the packaging. Everything is brought to our Texas warehouses where it is assembled.

They make several different kits throughout the year. Advent calendars are huge these days. Schedules are really important, sustainability is very important. Everyone is constantly trying to figure out how to improve it, because there are so many factors that everyone is looking at.

CosmeticsDesign spoke to Sue Kelly, vice president of customer relations at packaging supplier Vivabox, about how the kits are fitting into the cosmetics and personal care industry.

What is the value for a brand to make a kit?

It makes a huge difference in their sales. If you are a new brand at Sephora and there are thousands of brands, how do you get noticed? If you’re a skincare product and you’re in the store, you’re one of hundreds, while if you choose to be in this kit, you’re one of 10.

Sephora Favorites sell out so fast that your customer tries your product. The turnover that the brands participating in the kits are very good, they see their investments pay off quickly.

How do you try to balance sustainability and luxury aspects?

We do it in different ways. We switched to 3d printing, we tried to make it as recyclable as possible. But another element is reuse. We find that if we make sachets and stuff like that, then consumers get a second use out of it, it’s not just waste. Even with the boxes, we try to make them so people want to keep them on their dressers or in their closets to get organized.

If we can’t be completely recyclable, we try to be completely reusable.

What do you think are the challenges in building cosmetic kits right now?

Supply Chain. Usually, we’re such a well-oiled machine, but with China’s delays, everyone has the same issues. When you have to wait for a brand, when a piece is missing from a kit, the whole kit has to stop.

The last two years have been difficult, but we always manage to do it, it’s just more difficult. This made the delay longer, which is unfortunate as we want it to be as fast as possible.

How valuable do you think the kits are as consumers are more interested in making DTC purchases?

They are important because, especially with the Sephora Favorites kits, you can try multiple products. Sephora is really unique and does that and they really were the creator of the multi-brand kit.

It was amazing how many people responded because they could get the sample. Often people don’t want to enter the store anymore, so they can order these kits. They can try on several products, figure out which one they want, and then they’ll usually come back to buy a full-size product.

However, in the perfume business, they make a lot of kits that have a redeem feature. You try all of the scents and you can swap them out for a full-size version of any of those scents, and it really worked.

Donovan B. Sanford