iS CLINICAL (Innovative Skincare), a US-based skincare brand famous amongst Hollywood celebrities and social media influencers, with a presence in Canada, Russia, Ukraine and Poland, has now launched its range of skincare products in India. With Leader Medical Services Pvt. Ltd. as their partner in the country, the launch event on February 27 at Mumbai’s Sahara Star hotel marked a demonstration of their famous ‘red carpet’ Fire and Ice facial for the guests and journalists alike.
LuxeBook took the opportunity to interview Bryan John, President and CEO and Alec Call, Vice President and COO of the company to understand what goes behind building a luxury skincare brand from scratch, taking it to places while dealing with the market challenges and creating a legacy of doing something good.
“Luxury brands are born out of meeting a need.” believes Alec, who has a background in financial operations and business management and currently serves on the President’s Council of the National Breast Cancer Coalition. “Brands like Rolls Royce and Louis Vuitton were started to meet a need in the market, which they tackled by creating something with the finest they had.” Bryan previously served as Director of Skincare for the Kronos Group (Kronos Institute), one of the world’s premier anti-ageing research and treatment facilities and has a background in genetics and chemistry. The duo started iS CLINICAL a little before 2002 to “expand and demonstrate their life lessons and personal experiences,” says John, who co-founded the company without using any venture capital investments, banks’ or any loaned money. “This financial independence allows us to use the best pharmaceutical grade raw materials, so many other companies will not invest in simply because they’re too expensive.” Their cruelty-free products have result-oriented formulas that don’t just feel nice and smell good but also deliver results.
Perhaps this financial independence and a drive to “create a legacy of doing something good” is what makes them one of the most loved skincare brands by A-list celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow, Halle Berry, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Jessica Alba and Michelle Keegan who swear by the brand’s Fire and Ice facial.
“The facial was developed so we could give someone an intensive treatment almost as effective as a peel, which polishes the skin and brings it to life. And so we designed that with Hollywood in mind because that’s where we are located. It was designed specifically around the Oscars and the red carpet season. A lot of the actors who are big fans of our products were asking for a treatment that could really exfoliate their skin, restore the glow and one could see the difference right away without any associated down time,” says John. No wonder it has also been voted as ‘Celebrity Facial Of The Year’ by InStyle Magazine as bookings for this procedure start many months in advance before the awards season every year.
What seems to work for them is the “organic social media love that we get from so many celebrities and influencers from around the world, and I think that speaks for itself just like the products speak for themselves,” says Alec. He tells us about the 2.6 billion social media impressions the brand created last year in the US without having paid for any endorsements.
Selling a range of clinical skincare products, which restore the skin’s natural properties in a market like India which is saturated with on the shelf beauty products takes some convincing to do. They think the media and specifically social media are the biggest educators, which help people understand the importance of products that are value-for-money and work well for their skin. One of the major beauty trends according to John is the “move towards environmental friendliness and more science-based skincare products. Celebrities and women in general are opting for glowing, natural skin rather than wearing makeup.”
For a primary target audience of females aged between 25-45, they offer products for a four-step procedure that involves cleansing, treating, hydrating and protecting the skin. Treating various skin issues like hyper pigmentation, ageing, scar tissue or enlarged pores, they plan to expand their brand in India as much as possible because “I know that Alec and I have enjoyed our visits here (to India) immensely and that has been more of an influence.”
iS CLINICAL products are retailed on their own website (isclinical.com) and other online platforms like Amazon.com, skinstore.com and dermstore.com.