Interview with Tina Müller, Member of the Henkel Sustainability Council for the Cosmetics/Toiletries business sector

In 2010, you commissioned a comprehensive study on beauty. How are you making use of the results?

Tina Müller: On the occasion of Schwarzkopf’s 111th anniversary, we initiated the “Beauty is Hair” trend study. We want to understand the globally changing needs of our consumers – especially those of our female consumers, since most purchasing decisions are still made by women. The study clearly showed that the needs of female consumers and their views of beauty are in flux all over the world. The various cultures, age groups, and lifestyles demand an individual approach and products that are just right for them.

Did the study also give you insights into the topic of sustainability and its significance for your various product categories?

Tina Müller: Our study shows, above all, that beauty, personal well-being and hygiene are basic human needs in all parts of the world. Our products help to fulfill these needs individually – and by doing so make an important contribution to society per se. The aim of our product development is to contribute as much as possible to this. To me, this includes our brands’ engagement in charitable projects such as the new Schwarzkopf initiative called Shaping Futures. Moreover, our shampoos, shower gels, hair sprays, skin creams and hair colorants are used in more than a million of households every day. Through our innovations, we utilize this great potential to directly foster the growing trend toward environmentally and health conscious lifestyles in daily life. We support this trend in many different ways – for example, by using renewable raw materials or ingredients derived from controlled organic crops, by further improving the biodegradability of our products , and by minimizing the packaging as much as possible.

Will you make use of the social and ecological aspects of your products more intensively to address consumers – that is, for advertising – in the future?

Tina Müller: For us, a truly good product must combine product performance with ecological and social improvements. We have made it our business to achieve this balancing act by offering products that provide superior efficacy as well as skin compatibility. They contribute to hygiene, but also to beauty. Furthermore, we use high quality ingredients that are obtained in a responsible manner.

This internal commitment is, however, not necessarily the focal point of our approach to consumers. After all, the success of our personal care products is based primarily on their relevance for consumers. They want effective and compatible products, and so our advertising concentrates on these aspects. If we also want to point out improved ecological performance, we have this confirmed by an external body, as is the case with our Ecocert-certified soaps and toothpastes.

My Report
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