New Skincare Brand La Fervance Combines Luxury Positioning And Clean Formulation
La Fervance combines the penchant for natural ingredients of founder Melissa Obeid’s native Australia with the cultivated luxury of her adopted homeland France.
The high-end clean skincare brand is kicking off with a single stockkeeping unit, the multipurpose Eclat Extraordinaire, priced at 195 euros or $218 at the current exchange rate. The product is developed in France with ingredients from both France and Australia such as mountain pepper, licorice myrtle, wild rosella, kakadu plum extract, buruti oil, Australian wattle, seawater from the French coast, hyaluronic acid and 23-karat gold dust.
“We realized that, to do luxury to the utmost degree, it had to be done in France because France is the mecca of prestige cosmetics,” says Obeid, mentioning the requirements for beauty products in Europe are stricter than other jurisdictions. “It’s the most regulated in the world, which is the reason why we wanted to produce in France because, if one can produce in France, one can enter markets everywhere.”
Obeid first lived in France during the 1990s, when she left Australia to attend the Paris Fashion Institute. She later returned to Australia, only to move back to France in 2016 for what she thought would be a short sabbatical. That sabbatical has turned into a stay in the country that’s lasted until today. Her Paris address has afforded her access to beauty industry resources that might have been difficult to tap from Australia.
La Fervance, which translates to “fervor” in English, incorporates European-made glass packaging, keepsake coffrets hand-crafted in France, and bespoke perfumes created in Grasse meant to foster wellness. The brand’s boxes are constructed out of Forest Stewardship Council-approved materials. In addition to its eco-friendly packaging, La Fervance’s restrained product rollout is part of its sustainable approach.
“We realized that, to do luxury to the utmost degree, it had to be done in France because France is the mecca of prestige cosmetics.”
“Some brands have too many products, and so many of them become obsolete and unnecessary,” sayd Obeid. “The more products in a collection, the greater the impact on the environment. Our strategy is to keep it simple with excellent ingredients of the highest quality that can perform many functions, thus eliminating the need to have so many products.”
Prior to La Fervance’s debut at the end of last year, Obeid, who’s straddled the fashion and beauty industries in her career, prepared a slew of products for the brand. However, she opted to release one to start for environmental reasons as well as to be clear about the brand’s luxury message and ensure she didn’t spread its resources too thin.
“We decided to launch with one product that was a standout,” says Obeid, explaining Eclat Extroardinaire is a “high-performance beauty balm that can be used as a moisturizer, treatment mask or overnight mask.” She shares that a series of independent clinical tests shows consumers have seen improvement in lift, hydration and wrinkle reduction after four weeks of slathering it on.
Obeid sought a third-party certifier to further distinguish La Fervance and give it an outside stamp of approval that would resonate with savvy clean beauty shoppers. After extensive research, she landed on COSMOS, the standard designed to promote organic agriculture, environmental protection, human health and green chemistry.
“Our strategy is to keep it simple with excellent ingredients of the highest quality that can perform many functions, thus eliminating the need to have so many products.”
“Cosmos certification is extremely stringent…They have to certify every ingredient. They have to certify the manufacturing processes, the manufacturers, the storage, the packaging, the materials, everything,” says Obeid. She continues that the certification process was time-consuming and expensive, but ultimately worthwhile. With the COSMOS seal, Obeid emphasizes La Fervance can “guarantee to the consumer that we are who we claim to be.”
The brand is set to unveil a second product in the spring of this year. It’s currently pursuing retail partnerships. Obeid believes upscale stores with a focus on clean beauty could be good fits for La Fervance. She’s in talks with retailers in the United States, where clean beauty has been surging. The United Kingdom and Australia are distribution targets, too.
“Perfection is our benchmark in everything we do,” says Obeid. “We have a lot in store for 2020, and we’re excited about making a positive impact within the luxury beauty segment.”