CVS’ Beauty Mark Initiative Enters Phase Two

As the need for transparency crescendos in beauty, CVS has revealed 100 percent compliance to its Beauty Mark initiative in its aisles.

The retailer’s Beauty Mark initiative, which it unveiled at the beginning of 2018, vowed to have “Beauty Mark-compliant” imagery in all of its aisles by 2020. Standards for visuals mean that they cannot be “materially altered,” per a statement from CVS, and cannot alter a person’s body shape, proportion, eye and skin colors, or wrinkles.

“When we first had the research at our fingertips about the impact some of this image altering was having, it quickly helped us formulate a vision of the impact we wanted to have. We were able to take that to some of our largest suppliers first to get their feedback, and then to bring them on board,” said Andrea Harrison, vice president of beauty and personal care at CVS.

Data has also informed phase two of Beauty Mark, which is centered around bolstering self-esteem among shoppers. According to a recent survey conducted by CVS, 80 percent of subjects who saw themselves for at least an hour daily said they felt inspired by unretouched images of models, and over half of respondents said they’d prefer to eschew something they love for a week instead of posting a photo online they felt self-conscious about. Equally, a third of respondents said they have lost confidence in their appearance over the past year.

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The retailer determined that playing to the link between beauty and self-care was a meaningful way to effect change. “We already view ourselves as a self-care business, being a health and beauty retailer. I don’t know that health and beauty have ever been more inextricably linked than on the tail end of last year,” Harrison said. “As you see the message for CVS Health come to life around the roles we play for the communities we serve, it is that a big piece of their health is their self-care and their wellness.”

The shift in messaging will also affect its product assortment. “As we think about messages like beauty from the inside-out, we’ll build on supplements, because we know that piece of the business is increasingly important to the consumers. Evolved brands are both in the traditional supplement quadrant and the beauty quadrant, so you will start to see us tie the health side and beauty side together,” Harrison said.

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