It's time for sun care to come out of the dark.
According to suppliers polled by SN, supermarkets can better compete with mass merchandisers by changing the way they handle sun care products. This can mean everything from offering a larger variety of products to creating more shelf space and visible displays.
"There is opportunity with sun care or related products," said Robert Burkland, executive vice president of Panama Jack, Pompano Beach, Fla., at the 1995 Exclusively HBA Trade Show last month in Chicago.
Panama Jack sells a variety of traditional and specialty sun care products, including Baby Sunblock with sun protection factor 45, Sport Sunblock in SPF 15, 30 and 45, Kids Sport Sunblock in SPF 15 and 30, and Sunless Self-Tanning Lotions.
Banana Boat Skin and Sun Care, Stamford, Conn., offers a full line of specialty sun care products as well, including Faces, a sunblock stick with SPF 30. It also features a Sunless Self Adjusting Tanner line, which includes lotion without SPF, spray without SPF or lotion with SPF 8. This year, Banana Boat is offering two new SPF 50 stockkeeping units: Sport 50 and Active Kids 50, as well as several different Aloe After-Sun lotions and its new Baby Aloe After-Sun lotion.
Another sun care company, Schering-Plough, Liberty Corner, N.J., which makes Coppertone, offers Coppertone Kids, Water Babies, Aloe After-Sun Moisturizing Lotion and Aloe After-Sun Gel. Coppertone also has revamped its line of upscale self-tanning products, introducing Coppertone Moisturizing Self Tanner in new light/medium and dark tanning intensities and Protect & Tan Lotion, an advanced sun protection lotion and self-tanner.
Creating special areas for these kinds of sun care specialty products will help focus more attention on the entire sun care segment, said Lora Ingerman, sun care product director at Schering-Plough.
"We're recommending that these items be merchandised separately from general purpose products," she said. "They're a high-growth item that attract a specific consumer."
Some of Schering-Plough's accounts have cross-merchandised Water Babies sunscreen in their baby care sections, Coppertone Kids in toy sections, and Coppertone Sport with tennis balls and other sports merchandise. By doing so, retailers show that sun care products are not just for the beach.
"We're trying to get consumers to use these products whenever they're outdoors, whether they're playing tennis, golf, gardening or biking," said Ingerman.
Phyllis Salzman, product manager at Banana Boat, said specialty products are ideal for target marketing. They can be geared toward people who are concerned about protecting themselves from "incidental sun exposure," or sun damage from normal outdoor activity.