When dermatologist Richard Bottiglione developed the brand Dermatologist’s Choice nearly 40 years ago, he sought to deliver doctor-worthy skincare results to his patients without forcing them to make inconvenient and sometimes costly trips to his office.
Article published by Beauty Independent on July 17, 2019 by Kimberly Arnold.
In the decades since its launch, the brand kept delivering on its promise of skincare results, but its packaging showed signs of age. To reach a new generation of customers and suit its aesthetic preferences, Dermatologist’s Choice has reimagined its design and distribution. On July 7 in San Mateo, Calif., the brand entered The Market @ Macy’s, the department store retailer’s pop-up concept featuring merchandise from entrepreneurial companies, and brought a refreshed façade in tow.
In collaboration with designer Rachel Wilson, Dermatologist’s Choice has transitioned to sleek white, silver and blue packaging from old-fashioned, pattern-heavy blue, gray and white packaging. The secondary packaging spotlights key ingredients and the brand’s extensive experience. Prior to unveiling the revamp, Dermatologist’s Choice gave sneak peaks to retail buyers at Indie Beauty Expo Dallas in May. Beauty Independent parent company Indie Beauty Media Group operates IBE.
“Even large retail buyers gave positive feedback agreeing that we were moving in the right direction and said it was a huge upgrade from our more medical-looking utilitarian packaging,” says Bottiglione’s daughter Gia Scope, head of marketing and sales at Dermatologist’s Choice. “Even when I pressed them for more feedback on what we could improve, they emphasized it was the right packaging for a retail space.”
In addition to updating the aesthetics, Dermatologist’s Choice updated its packaging functionality. It’s putting formulas in tubes with flip caps for easy access that will be available later this year. While the exteriors have changed, Dermatologist’s Choice’s raison d’être hasn’t. It remains focused on proven skincare ingredients.
“There are certain limitations in terms of strength, but I’m as close to the maximums as I can be. My Ultra Anti-Aging Cream is 15% non-neutralized glycolic acid. It’s the competition to Retin-A. There’s no one in Macy’s that sells that.”
“Through our more modern look and increased efforts to educate the customer on our tried-and-true clinical ingredients such as our flagship non-neutralized glycolic acid, we have seen successful growth and helped many people achieve healthy glowing skin,” says Scope, emphasizing Dermatologist’s Choice’s products pack a potent punch.
Bottiglione chimes in, “There are certain limitations in terms of strength, but I’m as close to the maximums as I can be. My Ultra Anti-Aging Cream is 15% non-neutralized glycolic acid. It’s the competition to Retin-A. There’s no one in Macy’s that sells that. I wanted products that do real things.”
Dermatologist’s Choice’s broad product range includes cleansers, toners, sunscreen, peel pads, lotions and body care. A standout product, its Pre-Bath Oil is supposed to be applied before a bath or shower and intended to hydrate skin without leaving an oily residue. According Bottiglione, it’s a favorite of patients suffering from eczema.
He says Dermatologist’s Choice’s target customers are women between the ages of 30 and 60 “looking for skincare that is at the next level and that they can apply to see noticeable results within a short time after using it. She is mostly on the go, busy with life and needs to be able to count on her skincare to do its job. I created Dermatologist’s Choice to provide fast, effective, clinical solutions for my patients’ skin concerns.”
“By partnering with Macy’s, we’re able to meet our target customer where she loves to shop. We share mutual values in providing our customers with superior products and the highest quality of service.”
After learning his patients were unable to receive the skin treatments he’d been prescribing due to scarcity, Bottiglione worked with cosmetic chemists to formulate skincare free of irritants like synthetic fragrance in 1978. He began selling the products to his patients and the public in 1981. The brand has been carried by dermatology clinics throughout its home state of Arizona and sold nationally on its website.
Now, Dermatologist’s Choice believes it’s ready for retail prime time. Macy’s is the first major test of its reinvigorated retail proposition. Scope says, “By partnering with Macy’s, we’re able to meet our target customer where she loves to shop. We share mutual values in providing our customers with superior products and the highest quality of service.” Dermatologist’s Choice is currently working with Macy’s to secure further Market locations for the fall.
Aside from Macy’s, the brand’s retail wish list includes Nordstrom, Ulta Beauty, Bluemercury and Dermstore. “Education is a very important part of our brand,” says Scope. “At the very start, Dr. Bottiglione listened to his patients and recommended products that would provide them with personalized results. By partnering with these retailers, we can ensure the customer will be recommended products that will provide real solutions for each of their skin needs. Customers can directly communicate via in-store or online chat with a skincare expert to educate them on the benefits of ingredients and recommend the best products for his or her skin.”
While Dermatologist’s Choice has an ample assortment, it continues to build on its product portfolio. The brand is releasing travel-friendly sizes to supply what Bottiglione describes as “real results on the go.” A lip treatment, dark spot corrector and eye cream are in the pipeline.