The Dr. Devgan Scientific Beauty skincare line has grown by 500% in a three-month period during virus-related closures.
By Tonya Johnson
Shelter-in-place has been a time when “we’ve stayed at home, watched our Botox treatments wear off, and our hairs turn gray,” says Manhattan-based plastic and reconstructive surgeon Lara Devgan, MD, MPH, FACS. Inability to get professional aesthetic services during the COVID-19 pandemic has created a need for other strategies to fill the void, she says. Using an at-home skincare system is one solution.
Market research reports bear this out. Skincare manufacturing companies are booming in the United States. According to the Consumer Market Outlook report published by Statista.com, the Skin Care segment is the biggest and fastest-growing category within the Beauty and Personal Care market. The worldwide market revenue is expected to increase to $157 billion in the U.S. by 2023.
Many clients with pent-up demands for aesthetic services have enjoyed the convenience of online shopping to find safe and reliable products. In the wake of a global health crisis, “people everywhere have become much more thoughtful about their spending decisions,” Devgan says.
With numerous beauty formulas being promoted on the Internet each day, the process of finding quality skincare products can be overwhelming, said ASCP Skin Deep magazine editor Mary Barthelme Abel, in her Associated Skin Care Professionals Fine Lines magazine article, “Investing in You.” The good news, she reported, is patients can visit skincare professionals who offer home-care remedies designed to support the unique skin, health, lifestyle, and aesthetic treatments received in the office.
DR. DEVGAN SCIENTIFIC BEAUTY
Devgan, who has been in private practice since 2013, is the founder and chief executive of the skincare line Dr. Devgan Scientific Beauty. With a focus on the face, eyes, and breast, she is most known for the concept of facial optimization, blending both surgical and non-surgical approaches. Approximately 85% of her clients are female.
“What I try to do for my patients is to create subtle but impactful changes that will preserve the feeling of their facial identity,” she explains. “I’ll do a combination of different procedures—such as a blepharoplasty, a temporal brow lift, and a neck lift.” In the same sitting, she may also help the client achieve goals through facial contouring using injectable fillers or sutra suspension thread lifting, and then resurface the skin with lasers and topical skincare.
“I started my skincare line as a way to bring some of the benefits of in-office treatment to the privacy of people’s bathrooms and dressing rooms. I really believe that there’s a huge body of research that supports the clinical efficacy of the variety of medical-grade ingredients, and if more people knew about them, they would be using them,” Devgan says.
The Dr. Devgan Scientific Beauty line has grown by 500% in a three-month period during COVID-19 closures. Devgan attributes the spike in sales not only to the people consumed with self-care regimens but also to those who are now more receptive to the concept of authority over (social media) influence. “It’s been a really powerful moment of inflection for the line!”
During the pandemic, the company unveiled a major product launch on the Sephora website—and the products sold out in the first day. Bestsellers include Platinum Long Lash, Platinum Lip Plump SPF 30, Hyaluronic Serum, Vitamin C+B+E Ferulic Serum, and Peptide Eye Cream.
“They truly represent the marriage of science and beauty,” she says. “Our lip plumping gloss is formulated with medical-grade ingredients to create a visible hydration pinkness and enlargement of the pink lip, by one to two millimeters, so it gives people the feeling of lip augmentation with injectable fillers, in the form of a clear liquid gloss.”
Devgan has concentrated on allowing people to experience some of the freshness they formerly achieved from in-office treatments such as lasers, chemical peels, and micro-needling, in the comfort of their own homes. “We’re using social media, our commercial website, and traditional media to provide more information to patients about self-care routines,” she says. “The products have become really popular because they’re harnessing the emotion of people wanting to feel more confident using ingredients that are actually beneficial. The feeling of a couple of millimeters of additional eyelash length is enough to make somebody feel extra gorgeous!”
Devgan is featured regularly in national and international news publications, and she publishes in scientific journals. She also produces a widely syndicated podcast, Beauty Bosses, and maintains a blog.
Chaneve Jeanniton, MD, FACS, an oculofacial plastic surgeon who owns and operates the Brooklyn Face & Eye holistic boutique in Park Slope was fielding questions about eye creams from her patients every single day. That’s why she launched her signature skincare collection, epi.logic, in the fall of 2019. “There was a gap in my patients’ skincare regimens, so I decided to take on some of the most common skincare concerns,” she says.
Jeanniton, who serves on the teaching staff of the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai Hospital for the clinical and surgical education of its residents; specializes in cosmetic eyelid surgery and minimally invasive facial rejuvenation. Her patients are predominantly females in their mid-20s to mid-60s. Injectable fillers have traditionally been the most sought-after treatment at her practice, but now far more patients are seeking blepharoplasty procedures. “I think that the anxiety and feelings of frustration from being in lockdown have sublimated into a desire to act out on self-indulgences now that restrictions have lifted (in some areas),” she says. “Patients that were previously on the fence about undergoing procedures are now enthusiastically embracing the opportunity to better themselves.”
Her epi.logic brand has flourished during the shutdown, and sales have blossomed as a result. Not only has that momentum endured, she says, but the recent social impetus to support Black-owned brands has also bolstered sales.
She describes epi.logic as designed to “wholly embrace the experiential, sensorial element of skincare without sacrificing clinical efficacy.” According to the company, scientifically-backed active ingredients are combined with natural botanicals for a luxurious self-care experience. “The vibrant colors and aromas are all characteristics of botanical ingredients without any artificial fragrances or dyes added,” she says.
Approximately 10% of the brand’s sales come from in-office purchases from patients, whereas 90% are external to the practice. Lately, she’s had trouble keeping the Even Balance CoQ10 Facial Toning Formula and Daily Dose Vitamin C + Multivitamin Defense Serum on the shelves. “Even Balance is receiving attention for being a gentle, hydrating, non-stripping toner that brightens and plumps skin. It’s a cross between a toner and an essence, and it seems like the skincare aficionados are enjoying the hybrid option,” Jeanniton says. The Daily Dose antioxidant serum receives great reviews for addressing hyperpigmentation.
Eye Contact 360 Night Repair Cream is manufactured to address major concerns of the eye area, such as fine lines and dark circles. The formulation focuses on delivering rich hydration and gentle forms of vitamins A, C, and E for antioxidant support. She created The Total Package Fortifying Facial Moisturizer to find a remedy that satisfied her patients’ qualms of being unable to find a sufficiently, hydrating moisturizer. This was achieved by blending humectants, emollients and occlusive ingredients—all components of a well-balanced moisturizer — into“The Total Package.”
Epi.logic’s community has embraced the products, as consumers continue to spread the word on social media channels about their results. The brand has been favorably reviewed by beauty editors at Cosmopolitan, Allure, Elle, and Essence magazines. Vogue named the brand’s Daily Dose as one of the best antioxidant Vitamin C serums for a brighter complexion. “This positive media coverage has boosted sales tremendously,” says Jeanniton. “I never could have predicted the joy that comes from hearing a consumer say she feels the need to repurchase a product so there’s no chance she will have to be without it.”
What does it take for a plastic surgeon to launch a successful skincare line?
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Tonya Johnson is associate editor at Plastic Surgery Practice.