The name Florence Nightingale Graham might sound very unfamiliar to some but believe it or not that's the real name of Canadian-born American businesswoman, Elizabeth Arden. While working for her brother in his lab, Arden was very involved in the chemical and scientific aspect of cosmetics. She worked tirelessly to promote better ways for woman to use cosmetics and to disassociate the word makeup with lower class activities. Arden paved the way for how we perceive and use cosmetics today, she built a healthy reputation.
In 1909, she partnered with another beauty culturist named, Elizabeth Hubbard and began preparations to open her own salon. Their partnership didn't last long but nevertheless Arden pushed forward with the idea and came up with her own trade name, Elizabeth Arden. She then opened her first beauty salon in 5th Avenue, NYC and called it Red Door.
By 1929, Arden owned over 150 salons across the US and Europe becoming one of the wealthiest, most prominent businesswomen at the time. After her death, the company was sold over to many different companies. In 2003, one of those companies re-branded Red Door and simply named it Elizabeth Arden.
Today, Elizabeth Arden is owned by Revlon and it's still one of the most sought-out high-end brands for skin care, color-coordinated makeup, and fragrances.
Let's take a look at one of their longest-running skin care collections, the Ceramide Collection. This collection has gone through a lot of packaging changes but for the most part, as far as I can tell, the formulas haven't changed that much. They mostly combined products to simplify usage and unified the packaging look to give it a feel of consistency.
Ceramide is a molecule found in our own skin that partners with other skin components to build a water-impermeable layer that protect us from too much water loss (dehydration). As we age, the water supplies in our skin decreases resulting in dry skin prone to lines and wrinkles. The collection itself has been around for quite some time and the single-use ceramide capsules are still as popular as the day they came out.
Based on what we have here currently available in BuyMeBeauty, the part of the collection that's been discontinued could be broken down like this:
This part of the collection is pretty straightforward. Single-use Time Complex Capsules with ceramide extract for an instant, younger-looking result. With a little research you can still find TV commercials from the early 1990s promoting this capsules. The shape and size of the capsules haven't changed much through the years but with new technologies, the formula has become more nature friendly.
The case was a great to-go size and it was designed to fit in the cup of your hand for easy handling. The transparency allowed to notice right away when you were running out.
Many different Time Complex creams were also launched at the time including; for eyes, face and throat.
The packaging has more or less remained the same until recently, when the whole collection got a complete makeover– probably encouraged by its new father company, REVLON–. The new packaging is consistent with the rest of the products in the collection and offers a variety of sizes and portability. Notice the Red Door is now very prominent and part of the logo, something they've made sure to promote well in recent years. This product is currently being promoted by actress Reese Witherspoon.
ULTRA LIFT & FIRM - 2012
The Ultra Lift & Firm sub-line introduced Ceramide foundation and a variety of face creams with a new jar design. The round cap is gone and instead we have a flat surface. The shape is still concave and semi-round with the golden color trade mark of Arden. The Ultra Lift & Firm Makeup formula was less dewy than other foundations but very long-lasting and had a good selection of skin colors.
The Ultra Lift & Firm Moisture Cream was a high-quality, anti-aging moisturizer. An upgraded version of their previously launched face and eye creams, changed to a bigger size and different design. More product, same effective formula with an added SPF protection. We're now getting into the multi-purpose world where one product can do what three can.
PLUMP PERFECT - 2015
As they kept releasing new ways to apply Ceramide to cosmetics the Plump Perfect sub-line was introduced. With these products they went back to their original oval design with round caps. New eye and face creams reminiscent of the Time Complex ones were re-introduced. The new formulas were longer-lasting and very easy to carry but they didn't beat the multi-functionality of the Ultra Lift & Firm Moisture Cream.
New creams in tubes were introduced as well. Specific for targeted areas such as fine lines or hands, they included moisturizer, SPF, and more. All in different sizes with similar packaging color to match the sub-line.
A new Plump Perfect Makeup Foundation was launched with more skin-matching shades, just like with the Ultra Lift & Firm Makeup this new foundation also had the Ceramide Triple Complex. This new foundation offered more colors –some colors just had a name change– and had a more dewy consistency.
A great big deal of products has been launched under the Ceramide collection, not necessarily attached to the previously mentioned sub-lines. Some of the stand-out ones we have here in BuyMeBeauty are the Ceramide Moisture Network Night Cream, Creamide Lash Extending Treatment Mascara, and Ceramide Purifying Cream Cleanser.
The Night Cream shared similar package traits with the Plump Perfect sub-line and had a blue round cap that clearly spelled "night".
The Treatment Mascara was very interesting. Elizabeth Arden isn't too famous for their mascaras but they do have a few currently selling in their online store. In my opinion, this Ceramide treatment was sort of like a test and it was actually a very nice mascara; clump-free, long-lasting, and tended to stick you lashes in groups for a rather dramatic look . The tube was very thin, taking you back in time when mascara tubes came all in the same long and thin tube.
Then we have the Purifying Cleanser, similar to the Plump Perfect exfoliator but with a much more volatile formula. This cleanser's still available today with a completely new package that matches the rest of the Ceramide Collection. It will cleanse and exfoliate while moisturizing your skin to a velvety-soft finish.
We've already discussed in a previous blog post some of the reasons why companies decide it's time to change their inventory. Elizabeth Arden's continuous packaging re-design seems to be the main trigger for some of the drastic changes we've seen in their Ceramide Collection.
In the culinary industry, the way a dish is presented is as important as the the way it tastes. In the cosmetics industry is no different. The way the Ceramide Collection is presented today is much more appealing than it has ever before. The Red Door symbol, so iconic for a brand that started out as a beauty salon with that name, seems an appropriate connection to its humble beginnings. It's a luxurious brand that offers outstanding beauty results.
While this brand might not be in everybody's budget you can always count on us to get you the best discounted prices!
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