Brings Viviscal, Toppik & X-Fusion to Its Personal Care Division
Church & Dwight Co., Inc., is a major American manufacturer of household products that is headquartered in Ewing, New Jersey. In 1846, brothers-in-law Dr. Austin Church and John Dwight began preparing bicarbonate of soda for commercial distribution. From those humble beginnings, Church & Dwight has grown into an internationally respected corporation serving both consumers and professionals. The famous Arm & Hammer logo symbolizes Vulcan, the Roman god of fire, who would strike his mighty hammer on his anvil. While the company manufactures many items, it is best known for its Arm & Hammer line which includes baking soda and a variety of products made with it. Today, the company has four consumer divisions:
1. Fabric Care – Arm & Hammer, OxiClean, Xtra, more…
2. Home care – Arm & Hammer, more…
3. Health & Wellbeing – Trojan, 1sr Response, Rephresh, more…
4. Personal care: Arm & Hammer, Batiste Dry Shampoo, Toppik, Oragel, Nair, Viviscal, Arrid, Waterpik, Close-Up toothpaste, Pepsodent, more…
One of the things that impressed The Hair Authority when we did our preliminary research, was the company’s commitment to operating in a responsible and respectful manner. This is clearly defined in their ‘Global Sustainability Platform” that states, “We will conduct our business so that we preserve the environment for future Generations, provide a safe and healthy working environment for our employees, and respect the communities where we work and live while promoting the continued success of our company.” This does not mean company does not aggressively pursue new products and new marketing opportunities, but it does so with a simple mission: “Our goal is to delight our customers and consumers with high-quality, affordable products.”
Hair Authority: Doing a background research, we were struck by the company’s strong values and commitment to the planet.
Church & Dwight: It is essential for us to make great products and to produce them in facilities with robust environmental, health and safety performance. We work toward this high-performance culture by adhering to well established principles defined in the company environmental and safety policies. These policies guide our environmental and safety practices and expectations, and they are implemented through the following approach:
- Accountability: Each of our facilities has a designated on-site environmental and safety coordinator responsible for monitoring and managing environmental and safety issues affecting their facility. These coordinators are closely networked to enable peer mentorship and best practice sharing across facilities.
- Audits and Inspections: Each of our facilities undergoes a third-party conducted safety audit each year, and a third-party conducted environmental audit every other year. All facilities are subject to periodic, unannounced inspections by federal, state and local environmental and safety agencies.
- Awareness: We offer regular training for all our manufacturing employees to promote awareness of environmental and safety practices and procedures. This includes an annual Environmental and Safety Conference for facility environmental and safety coordinators.
- Awards: Each year we recognized one of our global operations for exemplary environmental safety and sustainability performance. An award is presented to a representative of the operation at a Town Hall event in Princeton, New Jersey.
Authority: The company has begun to diversify away from household products into personal care, perhaps with an emphasis on anti-aging products like thinning hair solutions. Is this part of a long-term strategy?
C&D: Maintaining a diversified portfolio has been a key strategic pillar for Church & Dwight success. As it relates specifically to Personal Care, when we look to growth, one logical option is to focus on the growing trend of beauty. This is reinforced by our acquisitions of Batiste, Viviscal™ and Toppik™, leading brands in the beauty and personal care space.
Authority: Other companies like Unilever and Procter & Gamble are investing increasingly in personal care and beauty products. Is this simply a migration towards higher margin, personal products or is this an area with new needs?
C&D: Both. As a company dedicated to understanding consumer insights, we continue to evolve as trends change. These changes include but are not limited to media consumption patterns, retail landscape and influencers in purchase decisions. The Toppik™ and Viviscal™ acquisitions allowed Church & Dwight to gain new expertise in the Direct Consumer, Beauty Class of Trade and Professional Channel. Ultimately broadening the organizations capabilities and allowing our brands to evolve with changing trends and reach consumers differently.
Authority: What is the company strategy for entering and competing in this space – revitalizing stagnant brands, introducing new technologies… responding to an aging consumer, connecting with an appearance-driven, selfie generation?
C&D: Church & Dwight has a history of acquiring niche brands that are either #1 or #2 in their respective categories. From there, we strategically invest behind those brands and leverage our strong distribution footprint to make products more widely available to consumers and drive greater brand awareness.
Authority: Recent investments have included hair fibers and hair growth supplements. Was this because they were available at the time, or is this part of a broader strategy?
C&D: Fine or thinning hair can be a source of embarrassment, for men and women. Whether the cause is hereditary, hormone related or from extensions or weaves, over 80 million men & women, which is 26% of the U.S. population, suffer from hair loss/thinning hair. By the age of 40, over 40% of Men and Women will experience significant hair loss. The Hair thinning consumer is extremely engaged in the category because of the emotional toll it can take on their personal life. As an example, 79% of hair loss sufferers said it made them feel less happy than they could be. As a leading consumer goods company, we are seeking best in class solutions to meet consumer needs. Additionally, the acquisition of Toppik™ and Viviscal™ is consistent with our strategy of acquiring #1 or #2 brands in growing categories.
Authority: Did you choose hair care because it is one of the first signs of aging, or because hair “frames the face “and is a lifetime commitment?
C&D: As we’ve seen, more and more consumers are adopting a comprehensive approach to beauty and anti-aging, combining topical products with a healthy diet and now supplements to achieve their best results, the Toppik™ and Viviscal™ portfolios are right in line with consumer behavior. These products help Women and Men address their thinning hair to help regain their confidence.
Authority: Are there any other hair care categories of interest; for example, laser therapy?
C&D: We have recently acquired Flawless and Finishing Touch brands (“Flawless”) from Ideavillage Products Corporation. Flawless is the market leader in women’s electronic hair removal products. Flawless will be our 12th power brand and is a rapidly growing business. The acquisition is consistent with our strategy of acquiring #1 or #2 brands in growing categories and represents a powerful addition to our existing specialty hair care portfolio which includes Batiste dry shampoo, Viviscal™ hair thinning supplements and the Toppik™ hair fibers.
Authority: 40 % of your consumer product sales now come from new innovation products – what is the company’s vision for 2020?
C&D: Innovation continues to be a big driver of our success. In support of our long-term strategy to drive revenue and earnings growth, we have launched new products in several categories. In the household products portfolio, we launched ARM & HAMMER CLUMP & SEAL CLOUD CONTROL cat litter that eliminates 100% of dust, keeping dander in the litter box in an allergen-free light scent with a 7-day odor control guarantee. ARM & HAMMER Plus OXICLEAN laundry detergent launched FADE DEFENSE combining stain fighting power with clothing protection to brighten and protect against fading for vibrant whites and bright colors. OXICLEAN launched DARK PROTECT laundry booster for dark and black fabrics that incorporates anti-fade technology, cold water solubility, and OXICLEAN stain fighters. In the personal care portfolio, WATERPIK launched SONIC-FUSION, the world’s first flossing toothbrush combining the convenience of a sonic toothbrush with a water flosser in a single device. VITAFUSION and L’IL CRITTERS launched USDA certified organic gummy vitamins. BATISTE launched a Hair Benefits line with a hydrating dry shampoo for dry hair, and a volumizing dry shampoo for fine hair. NAIR launched LEG MASKS hair removal, a first for legs, with natural clay, seaweed, and charcoal. ORAJEL launched toothache strips with a patent-pending innovative strip technology that targets pain by adhering to teeth and gums for instant, long-lasting, better tasting, targeted relief. TROJAN launched THE EDGE condom designed to excite and elevate the experience with changing sensations and both inside and outside lubrication.
To learn more about the company’s most recent hair care acquisitions, The Hair Authority contacted Britta Bomhard, Executive Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer. Ms. Bomhard has been Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer since January 2016, prior to which she served as General Manager, Europe since 2013. From 2005 to 2013, Ms. Bomhard served in a variety of Marketing and General Management assignments at Energizer. Prior to Energizer, Ms. Bomhard worked for Wella AG and GlaxoSmithKline in their marketing organizations. Ms. Bomhard currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Cott Corporation, a leading North America and European water, coffee and coffee extracts, tea and filtration solutions service company.ppik™
Hair Authority: Toppik™ is the brand that launched and perhaps drove the hair fiber category. Church & Dwight acquired Spencer Forrest, the maker of Toppik™ in 2016. Why did you choose hair fibers as your first investment in hair care?
BB: Toppik™ began in 1981 as a direct-to-consumer company creating cosmetic solutions that disguise
fine or thinning hair. Over the past 35 years, the brand has helped millions gain the confidence that comes from the appearance of fuller hair. We have expanded our product line to incorporate a range of products that help men and women who are struggling with fine, thinning, or damaged hair. Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers instantly transform the appearance of fine, thin, thinning or limp hair with natural Keratin protein that clings to existing hair, hiding signs of hair loss. The Toppik™ line has expanded to include support tools for flawless Fibers application, as well as hair care and hair styling products to build volume and give the look of thicker, fuller hair to all hair types. The acquisition of Toppik™ built upon our existing hair care portfolio including Batiste Dry Shampoo. The Toppik™ acquisition broadened Church & Dwight’s capabilities in the Direct Consumer, Beauty Class of Trade and Professional Channel, allowing our brands to evolve with changing trends and reach consumers differently.
Authority: How is Toppik™ different from other brands?
BB: Not all fibers are created equal. Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers are derived from a natural source, the premium Keratin nearly identical to human hair which allows the fibers to blend naturally and undetectably. The natural Keratin used by Toppik™ has an innate static charge that ensures Fibers adhere to any hair type. Imitators made of lower-grade sources like cotton, plant-based materials and rayon do not have this natural static charge. Consequently, there is nothing attracting them to the hair, so they tend to clump, shift or fall onto the scalp and look unnatural resulting in a texture and appearance that lacks in comparison to premium fibers found in Toppik™. Toppik™ innovative technology allows the Fibers to resist wind, rain and perspiration.
Authority: How important is it to give customers the instant satisfaction of fuller hair and scalp coverage?
BB: In this world we live in, consumers want instant gratification and immediate results. There are many products that work over time, like hair growth supplements such as Viviscal, but consumers often want immediate results, and that’s what XFusion/Toppik™ delivers.
Authority: What would you like the public to know about hair fibers? What are some common misunderstandings?
BB: How easy Fibers are to apply and how natural the results can look! I think people are intimidated, thinking that they aren’t going to be able to apply them well themselves at home, which couldn’t be further from the truth. I think people have a misconception that Fibers are going to look ridiculous, like “hair in a can,” but technology has evolved beyond that now. Fibers look and feel like real hair because they are almost identical in every way to real hair.
Authority: Why should every hair studio stock a hair fiber?
BB: Bringing up the topic of a client’s thinning hair can be uncomfortable for stylists and clients. Having an open conversation is essential. We have found salon professionals are eager to tell their clients what they need for their faded color or suggest a trim for split ends. But when it comes to discussing thinning hair and hair loss, it can be sensitive. However, thinning hair is a topic most people would rather talk to their stylist about than their doctor. Knowing that stylists want to provide the very best solutions to their clients makes Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers a perfect fit for any Man or Woman who suffers from thinning hair or loss to walk out of the salon feeling confident.
Authority: Are hair fibers a replacement or a companion product to other thinning hair solutions?
BB: Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers are a great stand alone or complement to any hair thinning therapy. They are an instant solution to conceal hair thinning and loss creating immediate results. Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers can be used while waiting for the results of other solutions and can continue to be used to enhance the results of alternate hair thinning remedies. Together, they offer the perfect complement to your hair loss treatments and procedures, giving patients the short-term and long-term solutions that they need to fight the effects of hair loss and boost their confidence.
Authority: What is the difference between fibers available only through licensed professionals and fibers sold online direct to the public?
BB: Our salon-quality XFusion Fibers have been professionally calibrated and tested based on stylist and colorist feedback to perfectly match your client’s hair. XFusion offers a full range of 9 shades to match virtually any hair color, while many other fiber ranges fall short. Plus, XFusion offers a selection of proprietary tools, such as our patented Spray Applicator, to make applying even easier.
Authority: What are the latest technological advances in hair fibers?
BB: We’re seeing a rise in thick, natural brows thanks to celebrity trends. The Toppik™ Brow Building Fibers Set uses the same natural keratin found in our Hair Building Fibers for a look that makes even the thinnest eyebrows instantly thick, full and natural-looking. Brow Building Fibers last longer than eyebrow powder and look more natural than eyebrow pencils or gels. This 3-piece kit includes a Brow Shaping Wax to shape eyebrows, Brow Building Fibers and a custom dual-end brush for wax and fibers application, making this the best eyebrow makeup for full, natural-looking brows.
Authority: How is XFusion different from Toppik™?
BB: Toppik™ began as a small company that created multiple cosmetic solutions for thinning hair. The most popular product—sold to millions of men and women—is Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers. In 2005, XFusion by Toppik™ was created—the first and only salon-exclusive line of products to cosmetically address stylists concerns for their clients with fine or thinning hair.
Authority: Do you provide special hair-fiber education/support for professionals?
BB: We provide various platforms of education for our hair fibers. Our eLearning course called “Hair Thinning Essentials” is an online curriculum that goes through everything from hair science/anatomy to solutions for hair thinning and loss. There are step by step application instructions for the hair fibers included in the course. Additionally, we have medical professionals who are trained in Toppik™ Hair Building Fibers and will speak on podium at medical conferences about the product and application techniques. Finally, our dedicated Professional Sales Representatives are available for local Lunch and Learns for support and education.
Authority: What should men and women with hair loss know about Xfusion when they visit their stylist?
BB: XFusion is completely safe for all hair types and works amazingly well with hair transplants. No matter what your condition, if a client feels concerned about visible hair loss, XFusion will change the way they feel about themselves every time they look in the mirror. Colored fibers are made of pure keratin protein—the same protein that makes up human hair—to offer a completely natural solution to thinning hair. “Charged” with static electricity, they bond securely to natural hair to stay in place all day and night. It comes in nine natural color shades and is undetectable even to the trained eye. XFusion Keratin Hair Fibers are an affordable daily solution for thinning hair.
Authority: Should XFusion application become part of a regular salon styling visit, or is it designed to be taken home?
BB: Both. For the best experience we recommend an initial application by the stylist to show the client how to apply for the best coverage and natural look. Once hair building fibers are applied, they stay securely in place giving natural looking thickness and fullness until the next time the hair is washed. It is compatible with all hair products but works best when used in conjunction with the supporting XFusion line of products.
Authority: Church & Dwight acquired the Viviscal™ brand in 2017 from Lifes2good Inc. What attracted you to this hair care product?
BB: Viviscal™ is more than just a brand, it is a disruptive business model with a significant presence and influence in Consumer, Professional and Retail Channels. It is a brand that understands hair thinning, positioned as a premium, drug-free efficacious alternative to medicinal hair growth brands. Viviscal™ has been researching hair loss for over 20 years. The efficacy of Viviscal™ dietary supplements is supported by ten published clinical trials and has been endorsed by KOLs, stylists and celebrities. As a brand that specifically targets Women, in a male-oriented category, Viviscal™ is a proven solution to help Women who experience hair thinning and loss regain their confidence.
Authority: Today, Viviscal™ is the #1 brand of hair growth supplements. What makes Viviscal™ special?
BB: Viviscal™ is a system for thicker, fuller hair that is based on powerful nutrients found in nature. We are not just any drug-store biotin supplement, we are advanced hair health. Unlike ordinary Hair Skin and Nails supplements, Viviscal™ is specially formulated and clinically proven to promote hair regrowth. Viviscal™ users saw a 32% increase in the number of hairs and a nearly 40% decrease in hair shedding and loss in just three months.
Authority: What is AminoMar®? Has it been tested?
BB: Only Viviscal™ dietary supplements contain the proprietary AminoMar®® marine collagen complex, plus a blend of vital nutrients that nourish thinning hair and promote existing hair growth* from within. In the 1980’s, a Scandinavian professor studying the Inuits discovered that their great hair and skin were the result of their fish- and protein-rich diet. He isolated the key protein molecules from the Inuits’ diet and, from these origins, AminoMar® was created. Since the professor’s discovery, Viviscal™ has been tried and tested worldwide. The efficacy of Viviscal™ is supported in ten published clinical studies, including the most recent double-blind, placebo-controlled scientific research program, which was designed exclusively to study women’s hair growth* supplements. The study demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in hair shedding and a statistically significant increase in hair thickness over a six-month period.*
Authority: What would you like professionals to know about Viviscal™ Pro?
BB: Viviscal™ PRO is a 100% drug free, clinically proven dietary supplement that effectively promotes existing hair growth in women or men. It is backed by 10 published clinical trials proving its efficacy with no known side effects. This combined with its endorsement by celebrities, models and stylists has made it the #1 selling hair growth supplement.
Authority: What is the difference between the Consumer Viviscal™ and Viviscal™ Pro?
BB: Viviscal™ PRO is sold exclusively by licensed professionals in salons, spas, and medical offices. Many people may already be familiar with Viviscal™ from seeing TV commercials, hearing about celebrity users, or just from word of mouth. However, there is a difference between the Viviscal™ products available professionally and those available in retail stores. Viviscal™ PRO has higher levels of the proprietary ingredient, AminoMar® and the addition of Apple Extract Powder, L-Cystine and L-Methionine.
Authority: There is a lot of misinformation about hair care, particularly when it comes to supplements/serums. How can you educate the public and build the trust necessary for Viviscal™ to prosper?
BB: There are many dietary supplements available to help nourish hair growth. But for many, if you look closely at their claims, you’ll find that their research is thin and often not conducted on their own formulas, but on their individual active ingredients. The most clinically proven dietary supplement that you can recommend to your clients is Viviscal™ PRO dietary supplement. Viviscal™ PRO is a 100% drug free, clinically proven dietary supplement that effectively promotes existing hair growth in women or men. Viviscal™ PRO is backed by over 25 years of research and development.
There are many topical shampoos, conditioners, and serums that help boost hair volume and make hair look healthy. These products offer a variety of ingredients and claims. Although there are some topicals that claim to create hair growth, there are also lines that have purely cosmetic effects for hair thickening and densifying. Viviscal™ PRO offers a complete range of topical hair care products called Thin to Thick that promote thicker looking hair with a proprietary complex called Ana:Tel™. The Thin to Thick range includes a shampoo, conditioner, and a volumizing leave-in elixir. Ana:Tel™contains clinically tested ingredients from natural sources, including pea sprouts, that help make hair look thicker and healthier.
Authority: How can the Hair Authority help you build consumer trust?
BB: We have a strong anti-diversion policy and can track down unauthorized resellers thru product codes. Our products are only available through licensed medical and beauty professionals.
By committing to our policies and adhering to the professional guidelines, we can continue to build consumer trust that our products are authentic, non-expired, and backed by our company guarantees.
We started this interview by stating that Church & Dwight is a company with a conscience. And we’d like to end on the same note. The following is taken from the company’s website – “We feel strongly that, as a member of the communities where we operate, our success should be shared. To that end, in 2005, we established the Church & Dwight Employee Giving Fund, Inc. (EGF), a workplace giving program that primarily supports charitable organizations in the communities in New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania. In the years since its inception, the EGF has become a cherished part of our culture. Through 2018, the EGF has awarded about 1,800 grants totaling over $11 Million to charitable organizations throughout the areas where our employees live and work. Each year, we invite our employees to dedicate a portion of their paychecks to the EGF. We encourage employee donations by offering employees additional time off depending on their level of giving, and matching all employee contributions dollar for dollar, with no cap. Through our annual grant process in 2018, the EGF awarded $1.2 million to 183 deserving organizations in a variety of areas, including animal rescue, disadvantaged youth, domestic violence, education, health, homelessness, hunger relief, military services, preservation of the environment, services for the elderly, and the visual and performing arts.”