Technology, nature and a digital dialogue is what will propel beauty into the future, according to recent trends discussed at the second annual Cosmopack International Business Forum and Exhibition. Held at the Hilton Midtown Hotel on September 16 and 17, the two-day event attracted executives from companies representing the entire supply chain (raw materials, machinery, counter-manufacturing, packaging) and put the spotlight on the different protagonists within it, from mass market to niche luxury products.

According to Dino Tavazzi, Chief Executive Officer of BolognaFiere Cosmoprof Spa, the organizers of Cosmopack, the industry has become more transparent regarding ingredients, production and finished product with “leading manufacturers investing significant resources to find cutting edge ingredients inspired by nature and linked to eco-sustainability.”

The future of packaging is trending to come from nature by studying nature’s best ideas and then imitating these designs and processes all while respecting the environment.

Concerning cosmetics products, the real future of the beauty and personal care category “will be driven by a much deeper knowledge and a two-way dialogue with its consumers, and it will be based on digital communication between brands and customers. All these characteristics will define the success of a product and can influence retailers in picking up beauty products,” Dino said.

The event featured a retail panel moderated by WWD’s Peter Born presenting Walgreens’ Marcia Gaynor, Beauty Collection’s Shawn Tavakoli and Shen Beauty’s Jessica Richards. The experts discussed topics including packaging, product assortment and the changing role of retailers as brand incubators.

“After the most recent recession retailers can’t be incubators any more. We used to be able to do this bit now to build a brand that is not already in the consumer eye is much more challenging,” said Shawn of Beauty Collection.

A presentation by Sophie Maxwell, Futures Director for Pearlfisher, discussed the power of personalization and how it will create the future of optimized beauty. She cited several leading pioneers of individualized beauty including: L’Oréal’s recent partnership with San Diego-based bio-printing specialist, Organovo, which is pioneering the future of 3D printed skin which cane be used to test products; Bite Beauty Lab which offers personalized lipstick formulas; Selfridges Fragrance Lab which customizes fragrances based on one’s preferences; Skin by Modiface, an app that uses skin mapping technology; Korea’s Way Personal Skincare Companion, a device that pairs with an app on one’s smartphone to give a comprehensive analysis of one’s skin and suggest recommendations; Australia’s SkinDNA, which uses micro-chip technology to uncover skin aging patterns from one’s DNA before they even appear; and the UK’s Geneu, a company that uses DNA profiling to identify each individual’s skin care needs for personalized serums.

A new Cosmopack feature allowed attendees to see the next innovations in beauty during a trade show like exhibit, which included a special Innovation circle.