Pantene Goes Natural with Nature Fusion


Can a brand as scientific as Pantene also be natural? Procter & Gamble claims it can. The packaged goods giant has launched a new Pantene hair care collection called Nature Fusion, and a campaign that touts the collection's naturally derived nourishing properties.

Nature Fusion, which hits shelves this month, taps into the natural trend while leveraging the brand’s scientific claims. Ads breaking this week highlight the brand’s promise of delivering "softer, shinier and stronger hair."

One TV spot, via Grey, New York, opens with Top Chef host and former model Padma Lakshmi asking the question: “Think only a salon brand can unlock nature’s power? Well I’ve discovered something new.” The ad then shows a cassia flower engulfed in a honey-golden capsule, representing Pantene merging with nature.

“We think that consumers who enjoy natural ingredients also deserve high quality performance, so we’re thrilled to be able to offer women a hair care collection that actually does what it promises,” Craig Bahner, vp and general manager of P&G North American hair care, said in a statement.

Nature Fusion comes in two varieties: Moisture Balance shampoos and conditioners that are made with ingredients such as cassia, ginger and aloe vera extracts; and Smooth Vitality, which includes bamboo and grapeseed extracts. Both retail for $3.99. A leave-in Fusion Smoothing Crème is also part of the collection and sells for $5.99.

The new collection is P&G’s latest attempt to reinvigorate sales of its slowing beauty brand. IRI data, ending the week of December 28, shows Pantene sales dropped 11.82 percent to $217 million, compared to the year-ago period. Conditioner sales, likewise, fell 13.76 percent to $157 million. Both the shampoo and conditioner markets are growing slowly, with shampoo sales down 2.30 percent, and a 2.77 percent drop for conditioners.

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