The Stories Behind the Top Five Chinese Beauty Startups
For the first time, NX NIVEA Accelerator has launched the accelerator program for the top 5 startups from Shanghai, China. Since June 2019, NX is supporting beauty startups from Seoul, South Korea and has since achieved a leading market position there.
After the successful cohorts in Seoul, South Korea, NX has expanded the program to Shanghai China in collaboration with Chinas’ leading e-commerce platform Tmall from the Alibaba Group. This co-incubation focuses on indie brands, beauty technology, personalization and digital platform business models. Through the program and the strategic partnership with Beiersdorf, the startups will get access to Beiersdorf’s global network with over 160 subsidiaries and over 140 years of expertise.
“We believe this expansion will create innovation in both markets and lead to synergies between Beiersdorf and disruptive beauty startups in China,” said Yang Hu, Venture Development Manager at Beiersdorf Korea.
Out of more than a hundred potential candidates for the new Accelerator program, the NX jury has selected the following startups in China to be the first top 5 based on their business potential, innovation and team skills:
1. LAKELAB — AI and Data Driven Skincare
Year of establishment: 2019
CEO: Liang Wu
LAKELAB is a beauty brand that develops skincare products by leveraging consumer data and community reviews with AI technology. The initial consumer base comes from the beauty and skin care vertical platform “You look so good today” (https://c2h4.org/) with 11 Million users, which has abundant of skin test data, product reviews and product database.
The core formulator team behind LAKELAB’s all have experience from working at international skin care industry giants, as well as more than 7 years of R&D experience.
Founder Liang Wu hopes to maintain a close connection with users not only through their app, but also trough products that can solve real skincare problems. The team believes that by providing high-quality products and scientific skincare guidance, consumers skin can be truly improved.
“I hope to help users relax, find balance, restore energy, and have more confidence in the future, just like walking by the lake. This is the reason why we name our brand LAKELAB, we want to combine the relaxation and scientificity” — Liang Wu, Founder & CEO
2. Basic Lab — Minimal Clean Skincare
Year of establishment: 2018
Basic Lab is an advocate for skin care minimalism, as each product of the brand has no more than 12 ingredients. It solves the issues for consumers of long ingredient lists with difficult chemistry terms.
Founder & CEO of Basic Lab, DongLi, previously successfully founded two food startups. While working in the food industry, she was wondering “Why can’t skin care products be as clean, simple and safe as fresh milk?”. With her experiences, she decided to build a beauty brand named Basic Lab, hoping to make products that are loyal to the basics: not excessively packaged, safe, easy to use, and convenient. Ingredients are in the center of the brand. Basic Lab focuses on minimal but highly efficient and safe ingredients. Consumers are informed about the ingredients and the purpose, which creates a trusted relationship.
To ensure the best quality, founder DongLi decided to take an extra step and independently purchase all product’s raw material as well as independently develop formulas in their own laboratory.
“We look forward to involve our customers to the minimalist skin care routine with us. From today on, you don’t need to take excessive concern of skin care, and live a self-care with our products.” — DongLi, Founder & CEO
3. MOJA — Generation Z Natural Skincare
Year of establishment: 2020
CEO: Sylvia Wang
MOJA is a new indie skincare brand targeting Generation Z with pure, highly effective formulas. The skincare products contain probiotics, ectoine, fullerene and other emerging ingredients matched with trendy ingredients like niacinamide and selected natural plant essential oils to provide consumers with pure formulas for outstanding efficacy and a healing skin care experience.
The name MOJA stands for “My Own Joyful Adventure”. The brand encourages contemporary young people to be more present in a fast-paced and high-stress environment, to open their eyes to explore life, and enjoy their own simple happiness.
Founder & CEO Sylvia has many years of experience in top global beauty groups, managed international product development and local marketing. With her brand she wants to create a moment for customers to relieve stress and be happy physically and mentally, while meeting the needs of skincare.
“We encourage consumers to enjoy the simple blessings of life by using our product. That’s why our interaction content on social media not only talk about product and brand, but also be a place where Gen-Z can communicate their emotions” — Sylvia, Founder & CEO
4. Turflan — Scientific Skincare
Year of establishment: 2014
Founder : Dr. Linlin Ye
Turflan is a scientific skincare brand offering treatments focusing on classic, effective clinical technologies. The intention behind is to provide the highest cost-effective products based on extensive know-how in R&D and manufacturing. The skincare concept of Turflan is about high-efficiency by having one main ingredient, supplemented by a natural ingredient, plus an effect-enhancing ingredient to achieve 1+2>3, and create a state of skin balance.
Turflan was developed in cooperation with the Boston Cosmetics Research Institute and by founder Dr. Ye, who is a R&D engineer and MIT skincare expert. For her brand Turflan, she has streamlined the formulation and insisted on exploring more possibilities for the distribution of ingredients, creating a balanced skin and returning scientific skincare to its essence.
“Turflan was developed through years of skincare expertise and extensive scientific research. We use advanced technology and innovative formulas to make simple ingredients richer and skincare most effective.” — Dr. Ye, Founder & CEO
5. 2XY — Genderless Skincare
Year of establishment: 2020
Founder : Allen Meng
2XY is a gender-neutral skincare brand inspired by ingredients found in nature. The brand name 2XY is derived from the combination of male and female chromosomes in genetic, since the product philosophy is based on the genderless concept.
2XY uses high-tech physical technology to extract pure natural components, fusion of biological clock regulators, white rose germ stem cell essence, brown grape algae extract and other luxurious technology components. Specializing in the proportion and combination of plant extracts, brings the synergistic effect, regulating healthy skin from the inside out.
The brand founder Allen Meng was working as an engineer before he switched career to work in the beauty industry in his 40s because his daughter suffered from skin problem when she entered puberty. After a long journey of acquiring knowledge and doing research, he was able to help his daughter and now wants to share this experience with a wider range in order for others to find confidence.
“Everyone’s skin needs to be cared for, and everyone’s heart is worthy of comfort. Make a product that is natural, simple, and truly effective, and let it be the person who knows you best “ — Allen Meng, Founder & CEO
These are the five startups that were carefully selected by NX NIVEA Accelerator to start the first ever accelerator program in Shanghai, China. Beiersdorf together with China’s leading eCommerce platform Tmall support and develop the startups to shape the future of skincare and provide consumers with tomorrow’s skincare. This presents another milestone towards the goal of becoming the leading beauty accelerator program in Asia.
“Our goal is to become the leading beauty accelerator in Asia by 2022. By teaming up with local innovators, we accelerate the process to identify and develop visionary beauty concepts, unlock growth potentials and win with skin care in line with Beiersdorf’s business strategy C.A.R.E.+.” says Jacek Brozda, Head of Ventures and New Business at Beiersdorf Korea and Co-Founder of NX.