Canadian Cosmetic Cluster Team
Uniting Canadian Cosmetics and Bringing it to the World
This edition of Industry Voices features the voice of Anna D'Amore. Anna is the owner and founder of Truvi Beauty. Truvi Beauty is skincare that is dye/colour free and does not use artificial fragrances. Their products are not tested on animals and have been formulated to help with helping many skin situations. Anna is a professionally-trained brow guru, skincare specialist, master makeup artist, medical aesthetician & product formulator. We asked Anna to share her story and voice her industry opinions.
1. What inspired you to get into the cosmetics industry?
The admiration of the beauty industry began at a very young age. It started with makeup brushes in my hand and the feeling of magic when unleashing confidence and pure joy from my transformative work. This was all because of the creativity produced through makeup! Yet, I knew more was missing. I needed to dig deeper to have a hold of the industry full circle. It was with full attentiveness (and lots of questions) with a colleague that I was working with side by side backstage during a large Fashion show in Toronto, Ontario. She was an aesthetician & makeup artist. Her care for the skin and advice peaked an interest in me in the cosmetic industry even more than ever. It then progressed to aesthetics for me and how unbelievable it was to continue to help in the transformation of one of our most beautiful organs, our skin! Pure joy from day one of my career, which now has me formulating & creating to strengthen the Truvi Beauty Brand.
2.What kind of impact do you want to have on the industry?
My goal for Truvi Beauty is to impact as many people as we can. We want to help individuals build confidence. We want to promote inclusivity for all skin situations and to educate that beauty has a purpose. It is more than skin deep. You can strengthen one's confidence, through wellness and that someone can feel great in the skin they were born in. Truvi Beauty means true to life. We need to embrace that being true to what our skin situation is today. With a little help from a good skin routine, we can make a change for tomorrow. Be kind to your skin, it will thank you.
3. What is the most difficult aspect of running a business in Canada? Any advice to cosmetic startups?
I believe it's worldwide that we experience negativity no matter what industry one is in. This challenge is everywhere. I feel very blessed to be producing in a country that has access to amazing raw material-facilities/labs to create a dream into reality. Health Canada's guidelines lookout for the well-being of our communities and the end-users. The guidelines also benefit the manufacturers. As things evolve in the industry, these guidelines too must be adjusted and be implemented. This can be costly. My advice is to continually learn, do your due diligence and research and more research!
4. What is your opinion on sustainability in the cosmetic industry?
This is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the industry right now. Companies are trying to reduce and head to zero waste. Some companies have shown us already! To be ethical and eco-friendly, try to be cruelty-free, vegan, non-toxic, free of palm oil, and have packaging that is thoughtful to our environment. Try to produce cosmetic products that have a very low impact/harm to the environment from the start to finish. More work needs to be done on the part of sourcing the raw materials and packaging that can sustain the product safe for use. Nature has done the work for us, we need to go back to that as much as we can.
5. How important are ingredients in cosmetic products? Do you keep up to date with innovations in raw materials?
Yes, ingredients are crucial. They are the backbone of the industry of cosmetics. We have to look at the where and how. Where does it come from, and how is it prepared for us to use in our brands. Together with the cosmetic scientist and labs, we need to ensure our formulations are safe and effective. Keeping up-to-date on the research is a constant priority.
6. What is one thing that you could change in the cosmetics industry?
To ensure that NO animal testing is done in all parts of our world, #crueltyfree and #noanimaltesting. We also need to strengthen the confidence in as many people as we can, to have them feel comfortable that companies are not adding ingredients that would cause one any harm.- ie lead and other toxic ingredients. Can you imagine how great it would be to never worry about toxicity in our products!
The cosmetic industry is fast-paced. Innovations are being developed daily. How do you keep up? Following the right industry source will give you a complete 360 look at the cosmetic industry across the supply chain. We have taken the top 10 cosmetic industry media sources to give you an up-to-date look at the cosmetic world.
This edition of Industry Voices features Jillian Baker of TAMA Cosmetics. TAMA Cosmetics is unique because of the high percentage of natural shea butter in its products. They invest in natural and affordable shea-based bath and beauty products sourced through an ethical and environmentally friendly supply chain.
1. How did you get into the cosmetic industry? Tell us your story.
A bit unconventionally, I started out distributing TAMA Cosmetics because of the social empowerment story. My day job brought me to Ghana a couple of times a year. I became friends with the TAMA team in Tamale and was always stuffing my suitcases full of their amazing shea butter products for friends, family and colleagues back home. One day, they were ready to enter the Canadian market, and suddenly I was on board to lead the way! Since then, I’ve become more passionate about helping Canadians deal with the dry winter air—it’s the worst! Shea butter is a great salve for most things in life.
2. What were the challenges in starting your cosmetic business?
The main challenge has been finding our market niche in an already saturated industry. As a start-up and social enterprise, TAMA Cosmetics was lucky in that we secured funding to do some market research, which was a big help. However, it’s a constant push to secure the market: both e-commerce and retail. We were devastated in 2020 not only dealing with the pandemic disruptions but also with the closure of Ten Thousand Villages here in Canada. Luckily Ghana is faring pretty well, all things considered. The second challenge is shipping: air freight is exorbitant and sea freight takes a long time.
3. What was the experience of importing raw materials into Canada?
Once the market is secured, it’s an easy adventure! Some challenges pop up, but rewarding to see the supply chain grow. Our women shea collectors are paid a fair price as well as the other employees of the the Shea Butter Village. Once you are assured of the quality of the product, the process becomes more simple.
4. Did you experience more hardships with import during Covid-19?
Yes. Ghana closed its commercial air and sea traffic for the summer of 2020. The impact of this was was tough as we were scarily low on inventory. Luckily, the borders opened things up again in September. We were able to resume importing our products. Prices have also gone in up the past year.
5. How do you connect with clients? Is it hard to have an online presence?
Social media is a great connector, so we’ve pushed that a tiny bit and are planning more there. We send out emails to our subscribers. We are on Shopify , a platform that makes engagements and fulfillment very simple. We are looking to tell more of the TAMA story on Instagram and our website.
6. What is one innovation that you would bring to the cosmetic industry if you could?
Paper packaging for oils and lotions would be great! We value sustainability, and I’d love to see more options for green packaging. At TAMA we reuse as much as we can with shipping. For our wonderful cosmetics that are processed up in the north of Ghana, it would be great to contribute to a world that will work for the next generations.
Canada ranks top affordable country for beauty products. Check out Cosmetify for more information.
The Canadian Market is worth 15 Billion Dollars. The skincare market is 40 percent of the entire cosmetic market. Facial products achieve 900.2 million in sales with hands & body products sell second at 282.1 million.
The average Canadian spends on average skincare of 22 dollars a month to the expense of 264 CAD a year. Skincare items are the 2nd most purchased items after haircare. Most commonly the average Canadian consumer shops a few times a year (30.84%), with 22.65% shop monthly, and 15.73% shop a few times a month. Only 4.17% of consumers shops a couple of times a week and 6.44% shop weekly. Products need to be affordable within that range of 20-30 dollars and last a month.
Consumers prioritize family and friends in terms of cosmetic suggestion. Consumer reviews are the 2nd most prioritized step. Unlike personal care items like shampoo, toothpaste and deodorant, skincare products do not have as many loyalties from the Canadian consumer. This means consumers are more eager to try new products. As much as 55% of Canadians believe in research and how it is making better products. Canadian also see Mass-market brands are viewed as just as effective as premium. Shopping trips made specially to get certain products as much as 50%. Price is also an important factor of Canadians with 50% look at price to decide a purchase. Natural products are not a big factor.
Simplicity is preferred over innovations.
Statistics provided by Statista and Euromonitor.
Canadian Cosmetic Cluster Team
Uniting Canadian Cosmetics and Bringing it to the World