On May 10-11, Luxe Pack New York (LPNY) literally rolled out a giant red carpet at Jacob Javits Convention Center to celebrate its 20th anniversary in NYC. The creative packaging show, which features some of the latest advances for a variety of luxury CPG disciplines—but mostly Beauty—welcomed 4,758 attendees, a 36% rise over 2022, and the largest attendance growth ever according to the Infopro event organizers. At closing time of Day 1, guests toasted the event’s two-decade success with champagne and good networking cheer.
Beauty Packaging’s team spent two full days walking the aisles, attending educational sessions—and visiting with cosmetic industry packaging suppliers as we looked for trends and shared thoughts about the current state of the industry—and what the future may hold.
Show Floor Trends
One overriding movement is obviously the ever-growing range of advances in sustainable packaging. Suppliers are motivated (and in some cases, being pushed) to innovate as brands are eager to stay up to speed in order to meet consumer and retailer demand. We heard from exhibitors that it looks like a good year ahead—that projects are coming back, be it, in some cases, with more re-orders than launches.
One supplier mentioned that some brands eager for more advanced sustainable packaging, are approaching them, saying things like: “I want you to make something I know you can’t give me—but I’m going to ask anyway…” These types of requests range from packaging that’s lighter in weight to mono-material components that are “recycle-ready.”
Pumpless actuators, foaming pumps, squeeze bottles, spray-through caps… all showed suppliers’ impressive progress toward achieving lofty innovative and sustainability goals—and reducing materials used.
Some advances have even inspired fun new gestures. A number of new applicators and dispensing options surfaced during the show. Metal-free pumps, in abundant supply, take some of the worry out of recycling.
Mini vessels of various materials were also big this year, for both sampling and small-dose easy-to-travel packs. The same goes for an evolved variety of sticks and pencils.
Eye-catching deco—often using metals or metallized materials—that meets sustainability constraints, was also front and center, with suppliers achieving captivating luxe looks via highly evolved structures, digital print techniques and embellishments.
Ecovadis is no longer the only sought-after accreditation. It has been joined by a number of other sustainability certifications—including the United Nations (UN) lifecycle assessment, Sephora’s Clean + Planet-Positive brand program, B Corp, RecyClass, the Paris Agreement, EWG verified, Quantis, SPICE and others—have gained momentum.
Here, we bring you the highlights from many of the suppliers we spoke with during the two days of the LPNY event. The companies have been grouped by leading categories in which they excel—but many are proficient in a number of areas.
K Laser Technology highlighted its Viridian Eco-Paperboard at Luxe Pack New York. It’s a holographic paperboard that eliminates laminating plastic, resulting in “a fully renewable, sustainable, and recyclable product.” The innovative printing materials eliminate the plastic film previously required to print specialty, metallic effects on paper and paperboard packaging.
At Oliver, beautiful packaging examples highlighted the company’s capabilities in cartons, particularly decorative techniques on cartons, and labels on bottles. One standout was LilyAna, a skincare brand that offers a range of products made from natural and organic ingredients. The brand is known for its commitment to creating products that are effective, gentle and affordable. All packaging is SFC and fully recyclable.
Scodix recently completed a verified Life Cycle Assessment by Sher Consulting and Training, according to April Lytle, regional marketing manager, North America. The process analyzed the main environmental impacts throughout the entire cycle of production while also comparing Scodix’s process to traditional analog hot stamping over different methods of print quantity. According to Mark Nixon, VP global sales & marketing, Scodix, their processes are 7X more efficient than traditional methods. In terms of climate change, Nixon says printing a B1 page with Scodix “saves 13kg CO2e compared to the traditional method.”
In-Mold Labeling (IML) is Cosmetic Specialties International’s (CSI) most premium decoration technique. Alexi Smith, regional sales manager, East, says labels are pre-printed onto a thin layer of polypropylene, the same material as the lid, and placed into the injection molding process, where the label becomes fused with the lid. This results in a high-end finish that doesn’t scratch or peel away. Benefits of IML include: fully recyclable—with no need to remove the label; premium decoration, with photo-quality graphics “without limitations;” and disruptive technology–all Made in the USA.
DWS Engraving highlighted their laser engraving capabilities, and unveiled their patented laser coloring process even on leather. DWS helps luxury brands create a unique in-store & e-store customer experience through product personalization. Their laser engraving station allows brands to customize a wide range of products and materials.
Dropper aficionado Virospack exhibited a wide range of dropper solutions and closures—from mass to very premium. Also of interest was their use of tubular glass for minis. The minis are produced in-house with a variety of closures. Their high-end appeal and size make them ideal for samples, AM/PM treatment boosters, makeup, kits and more.
One of Verescence’s showstoppers was their “stacking minis” fragrance bottles, providing consumers with a mix-and-match option for blending fragrances on the skin. Low-profile pumps accentuated the 15ml lightweight, beautiful bottles. The collection of perfume bottles shown was manufactured for OUI Juicy Couture Play, a collection of perfumes to wear alone or layer.
Michel Levisse, vice president of sales, R&D, innovation & marketing design, said challenges included how to develop a deep push-up—the inward dome in the center of the base—and have a perfect fit with the top and bottom plates in order to stack one bottle on top of the other.
At General Bottle, Rod Vilencia, director of creative development, said the company had solved “a riddle that had been plaguing the cosmetic business for some time”—an inner bottle made of glass. They now offer a 30ml glass-in-glass bottle that can be separated and recycled. Or—the refill can be recycled while the outer bottle can be retained and refilled.
Wheaton allows consumers to smell a fragrance without opening the packaging. This special technique, called Perfumed Screen, was on display at LPNY. It works by mixing the fragrance with the screen-printing ink. This offers a totally new sensory experience, in which you can smell the perfume through the outer packaging.
SGD Pharma Beauty & Care
SGD Pharma has expanded its product range of vials for cosmetics and fragrance products, with new premium, pharmaceutical-grade mini-sampler tubular vials for use as fragrance samplers.
They also recently launched the Eclipse 50ml refillable glass jar—which gives consumers the opportunity to hygienically replace the inner pod with new product. The reusable outer glass jar comes in two shapes which share the same neck size and can be paired with the same inner pod, caps and protection disks.
Baralan showcased a new range of glass bottles, the Lilibet Series, at Luxe Pack New York. With a modern design, the new series “blends the charm of a circular shape with the strength of a square profile.” In addition to being functional and adaptable to different product types, its slim shape also makes it aesthetically impactful. Featuring various capacities and neck sizes, the seven-bottle series is available in smaller sizes from 6- to 12ml, and in larger ones ranging from 15- to 30ml.
PGP Glass manufactures premium stock and custom-designed glass packaging for the Beauty & Personal Care, Pharmaceutical, Specialty Liquor and Food markets. In addition, it provides various decoration processes (spray, screen printing, hot stamping, metallization) that enhance customers’ glass packaging. At LPNY, PGP Glass featured bottles for nail polish, foundation and perfume, and jars for skincare.
ABA Packaging continued to highlight their aluminum packaging options, which include aluminum bottles and cans; aluminum caps and jar packages; and aluminum tubes. Mike Warford, ABA Packaging’s director of business development, told Beauty Packaging, “These aluminum packaging products continue to be well-received by the beauty and fragrance industries due to the excellent packaging properties they offer, and of course the positive eco benefits related to unlimited recycling and the overall ease of recycling.”
Also celebrated at the ABA Packaging booth was the 75th anniversary of their aluminum bottle and can manufacturing partners from Spain, Envases Group. ABA serves the North American market as Envases’ exclusive agents as they continue to work on new ideas together.
New High Glass
New High Glass, known for its wide range of high-quality packaging options—including glass—introduced new in-house decoration services, such as color spray, spray frosting, and screen printing on its stock glass bottles and jars.
In addition, Dave Desai, vice president of sales & marketing, showed us one of their latest introductions: 100% “infinitely recyclable” aluminum tins and closures, manufactured in Italy. Digital printing decoration is also done in Italy.
OX Solutions in collaboration with Tubex Cans premiered a new aluminum line for aerosol cans and bottles. Benny Calderone chief growth officer stated, “The cans are produced in state-of-the-art EcoVadis certified facilities and feature high percentage PCR aluminum from a secure supply chain and sustainable deco options inclusive of inks, coatings, and varnishes.” Calderone further commented, “The star of the show was the 50ml botte designed for use with standard pumps, droppers and closures.”
Colorscape by C-Care is a collection of innovative hair color & care formulations ready to go for clients seeking speed to market. C-Care CEO, Cornelius Grupp stated, “The innovative formulas developed in-house can also be customized for focused marketing by brands.” Manufactured in the USA, Colorscape is available with stock or custom packaging.
Through OX Solutions, Tubex tubes highlighted a new 95% PCR MonoRefill range for the Monotube line. The team was excited to present new capabilities for the Monotube as a fragrance refill displaying the recently launched product by French luxury brand La Bouche Rouge.
At Plastube, Stephane Beauchemin, vice-president sales & marketing, said the biggest highlight of LPNY was “the ability to connect with the largest crowd of potential customers in the past three years.” Product offerings included an upcoming 2024 partnership with Italian-manufacturer Giflor, to offer low profile caps in North America. These caps enable a reduction of up to 50% of the total weight of the tubes (caps also available in PCR and PE). Plastube also presented PE mono-material tubes (tubes and caps are made of PE); and a sustainable tube containing up to 80% of PCR material (tube & cap included). The supplier continues to promote its digital printing capabilities, which Beauchemin says have been growing in popularity and demand over the past 4 years.
“Sustainable, recyclable, digital” was the message at Montebello, where their “fully recyclable” Blue Loop technology stood out. The tubes go in the same stream as the bottles. Blue Label replaces ABL materials with plastic barrier laminate. Montebello can also do all the digital printing—including now, with metallic inks.
Neopac debuted mono-material double barrier tubes with a high-percentage of PCR, that are ideal for personal care products. Made with 60% EU food-grade, PCR content, Neopac’s latest sustainable tubes are the company’s first PCR level Polyfoil barrier tube offering. The tubes can be decorated with a variety of methods.
Paper Tube showcased a push-up paper tube. Made from FSC-certified paper and recycled, compostable and naturally biodegradable materials, the tube is ideal for natural deodorant, sunscreen and solid cosmetic and skincare products. The tube is recyclable and reusable.
PUMPING IT UP
HCT showed their new Squeeze Collection at LPNY. The collection features three new pumpless dispensing components that utilize fewer part counts than their traditional options, making them a more sustainable choice. These new fun gestures work for a variety of formula formats from powder to foaming liquids. All the products in the new Squeeze Collection share the need to squeeze to dispense product. The patent pending Oval Air Pump utilizes a soft silicone actuator to dispense liquid; a new tube innovation requires the user to squeeze the tube to elegantly disperse powder, and a new foam bottle allows the user to dispense a foaming liquid formula by squeezing the bottle, rather than using a traditional large foaming pump. These packaging solutions allow you to dispense formulas like serums, oils, dry shampoos, bath and body products, cleansers, etc., by adding new gestures to your favorite products.
At LPNY, Lumson focused on showing their ability to innovate using the sustainability pillars as one of the foundations of their products. This approach, they say, “will be more and more effective in supporting our customers with their sustainability objectives.” Lumson continues to drive dedicated research in this area and expects to publish their first sustainability report at the end of this year.
Taesung displayed its 100% PP Mono Cream Airless pump. The easy-to-recycle pump is mono-material and made from 100% PP—and is available in a variety of sizes from 30- to 100ml.
Trimas Packaging premiered its Singolo Dispensing Pump. The innovative 2cc single-polymer dispensing pump, which is designed for the beauty and personal care market, is fully recyclable, sustainable and highly customizable.
Jiapack’s airless bottle is metal-free. Designed for skincare products, the pump is made of PP material and contains no metal spring, making it easily recyclable.
Tirrit showcased a metal-free mono pump. Made from PP, it comes in a variety of sizes, including 24/410 and 28/410, and is ideal for skincare, shampoo, lotions and more.
OCEAN-BOUND PLASTIC FLOWS
Seacliff Beauty is using #tide’s premium material to create high-quality packaging made from 100% ocean-bound plastic. The final PET, PP, HDPE, and LDPE outputs are fully customizable and can be applied to a wide variety of skincare, cosmetics, and hair care products.
According to Seacliff’s CEO, Vonda Simon, #tide has built a strategic partnership with Norwegian tech company, Empower to keep track of #tide’s ocean material flow through every step of the journey.
At Elcos, Michelle Joo, vice president Elcos America, showed Beauty Packaging their new twist-up refill airless system. EAP-400RK features an airless pump with a non-metal glass refill. It’s both refillable and recyclable—“and consumers won’t have to struggle to get to the last drop of the product.” The airless pump is made with 100% recyclable materials. The refillable pods aim to limit single-use containers to reduce waste.
BodyPak received LPNY’s coveted and competitive Green Award this year. The recognition was for the company’s refill roll-on with a unique flip-top design, that can be used direct to skin—and refilled by pouring in liquid contained in a pouch. Sam Oliver, founder and president, said the all-PP mono-material roll-on can be refilled numerous times and has a predicted two-year lifespan. Numerous other refill jars are available.
Coradin’s refillable mono-material ampoule is available in 15- and 30ml in virgin PP, recycled PP and bio-circular PP. The ampoule is refillable and reusable. It comes with a square or round cap and is ideal for applications in skincare, hair care and makeup.
CAPS TOP IT OFF
Saphired featured a spray-through fragrance cap innovation. A refillable fragrance also allows for a travel size. The actuator is integrated into the pump and the pump can be removed from the full size and placed on the travel size. The cap also fits both.
At Cameo Metal Products, one of LPNY’s 20-year exhibitors, CEO Anthony Di Maio, showed us a new coating process for caps, called eco-coat, explaining, “It is a more sustainable option, as it uses less energy and chemicals to produce, creating a smaller carbon footprint than other metal closures in the marketplace.” This finishing option is available on all of Cameo’s stock size closures available in satin finish colors silver and gold.
Inoac showed their expanded line of thin-wall bottles—now available in 100ml. Al Lustrino, president, said they want to expand the line, which can be run in Eastman chemically recycled materials as well. The company is also now doing extrusion blow molding (EBM) and offers a wide variety of in-house decorating. A large range of materials is available.
Allstar’s Eileen Wang, vice president, sales & marketing, said they were getting lots of attention around their eco-friendly recyclable polyethylene and polypropylene lines of bottles. Squeezable bottles, from 15-50ml, were ideal for dispensing lotions, toners, etc.
At Yonwoo/PKG, Eric Csaszar, sales manager, showed us an example of what he said was “thoughtful” packaging. A 100% recyclable jar has a “beefed-up” disc closure to make it airtight. Great for treatment pads, a small tweezers is included so you can just grab an individual pad. A piston in the bottom “lifts” the pads in the jar. Made of PP and PE mono-materials, the jar can be simply tossed in the trash.
SR Packaging highlighted mono-material EBM airless bottles at the show. The design has an airless PP pouch (with a less than 2% EVOH barrier) inside the rigid PP exterior wall. It conforms to U.S. and European packaging design regulations, entirely recyclable without disassembling. It is available from 30- to 250ml with “unlimited shaping potentials.”
A wide array of metallic packaging was on display at Anomatic. One of their latest: Through a partnership with Novellis, they have developed an eco-alloy, with a minimum of 60% PCR and 30% PIR.
Novapax machinery enables customers to make a wide variety of packaging options, including very thin-wall, lightweight jars using 100% PCR. Especially interesting was the “harmonica bottle” dispensing system. There’s a pouch inside lined with silicone, which holds the product. Heavy-wall and thin-wall multi-side small bottles were also cool.
At Pretium, soft-touch double-wall jars (lid and jar) were made of PP #5.
APPLICATORS ARE SPOT-ON
Known for their innovative applicator and dispensing packs, Cosmogen was a first-time exhibitor at LPNY. Priscille Allais, president & CEO, pointed out a number of products, including their new Maxi Squeeze’N Detox Removable, ideal for shampoos or detox scrubs. It’s an ergonomic applicator “as optimal as possible” to improve the formula efficiency. Working to increase blood flow to the scalp, it promotes stronger, healthier hair. The applicator can be re-used once the bottle is empty. The sustainable, recyclable bottle can be made of monolayer PE, PCR or bio-based material. Squeeze’N Detox was recently chosen by Drybar.
Quadpack was drawing attention with its new Shapestick, an innovative dispensing system in a panstick-like format. Thanks to its design plate, the formula is dispensed via twisting a personalized cap—with either a swipe or a stamping gesture—that can be customized to tell a brand (or other) story. It’s ideal for high-viscosity skincare and makeup formulas and can make a fun impact on social media. The 100% PP (also available in PCR PP) is airtight, refillable and bottom fill.
Another applicator from Quadpack, Skin Up Centered, is a gentle makeup applicator that delivers a soft, tactile sensation via a pillowy soft surface, with the product loaded in the center.
APC Packaging’s patented Mono-Material Dropper System was a hit among attendees, as it fit the requested parameters for a mono-material package with pizzazz. According to Jennifer Lehto, senior business development manager, the mono-material dropper was created “to ensure a beautiful experience that has a positive impact on the environment.” Being mono-material allows for easy disposal as the entire package (dropper and bottle) can be recycled together as one unit. In addition to coloring the bulb and dropper collar, the pipette can now have transparent colors or tints added.
CARTONS, PAPER, PULP GO CUSTOM
Neenah showcased paper-based, sustainable solutions for brands of all sizes. The supplier offers a variety of in-stock products to support brands with their packaging needs, while also offering a wide range of custom capabilities, allowing brands to create their own signature look.
Procos introduced “a new generation cardboard box”—designed and manufactured in Europe with no plastic or metal parts. This eco-friendly box is made solely of materials sourced from sustainably managed forests, showcasing Procos’s commitment to sustainability and responsible sourcing.
Rissmann highlighted a two-piece slipcase rigid box at LPNY. The insert is made from paper pulp, but features a unique look that is created by throwing live flower petals in during the molding process. The company can also add recycled cigar leaves into the mold for eye-catching results.
Among Balance’s offerings, were secondary packaging options made with pulp. Small dimensional square structures that had been constructed for Glossier, housed solid perfumes in what is an easily identifiable sustainable pack.
Max Solutions showcased PaperFoam, an eco-friendly, biodegradable and compostable alternative to plastic packaging inserts made from potato starch. Injection-molded, fully customizable and lightweight, the supplier says, “PaperFoam epitomizes next-gen.”
Knoll Printing & Packaging
Knoll Printing & Packaging featured a variety of sustainable solutions from setup boxes and novelty calendars—many made of pulp-based materials, and also ticked the luxe packaging box (no pun intended). One standout was Penhaligon’s Debut British Tales Luxury Collection, in which the coffret combines FSC paper and board, with Knoll Ecoform Molded Pulp.
For the exterior of this set, the New York-based supplier—with international manufacturing sites, including a new state-of the-art facility in the Philippines—utilized Knoll Ecoform molded pulp, which has been shaped to the iconic Penhaligon’s bottle. The interior features an FSC Paper & Board platform, which securely holds eight 10ml Penhaligon’s fragrant delights.
Knoll Ecoform is a plant material made from bamboo, wood and sugarcane fibers. The material is certified recyclable in the paper recycling stream, and can be molded, cut to order and color matched.
Luxe paper packaging supplier Fedrigoni, which recently opened a plant in the U.S., offered 5 papers for luxe packaging—all with variable percentages of PCR. “Alternative” fibers such as “fireproof” and “waterproof” are available.
TPC Printing & Packaging
TPC Printing & Packaging, a long-time exhibitor at LPNY, showcased many new designs and innovative techniques in their portfolio of cosmetic & fragrance, spirits and health & beauty luxury packaging. The overwhelming theme of the company is the production of eco-friendly and sustainable packaging solutions.
TPC will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2024 under the guidance of 3rd and 4th generation ownership/leadership. The company specializes in high-end folding cartons, shaped canisters and rigid boxes. According to Joseph A. Schmissrauter III, president, “TPC leads the nation in unique digital decoration processes featuring the largest Scodix installation in North America.”
Pusterla’s CalEco insert, which was on display at LPNY, allows clients to invest in individual pulp cavities instead of full sets, giving them the flexibility to change arrangements year to year without paying for new pulp tooling each time.
CalEco is a 3-layer insert: The bottom layer is comprised of a chipboard or corrugate platform to hold the pulp cavities in place; the second layer is comprised of the individual pulp cavities; and the third layer is comprised of a printed mask for a beautiful, high-end finish. The combination of the 3 layers keeps the products held securely throughout shipping and display.
Luxe Pack’s 2023 In Green Awards
Luxe Pack In Green Awards recognize two exhibitor companies out of dozens of entries, and are determined by a panel of judges, in two categories: (Category 1) Best Sustainable Product/Solution Design; and (Category 2) Most Responsible CSR initiative.
This year’s winner in Category 1 was BodyPak. The recognition was for the company’s refill roll-on with a unique flip-top design.
In Category 2, the winner was Avient Corporation, for its program to reduce greenhouse gases by 2030.
Making the Rounds with Designer Marc Rosen
Every year at LPNY, international acclaimed packaging designer Marc Rosen joins me for a trip around the show floor. His sharp eye for design, shape and materials always adds an interesting perspective. Here are a few things we noted this year—in the Luxe and Sustainable category:
At the super luxe end of offerings, Seidel showcased a luxe, metallic, round swivel lid jar for La Prairie. It uses a refillable push release top to replace the pod.
Bosk Bioproducts, a Quebec City-based materials producer, drew us in with its free-flow lava-look-alike material, which can be produced in a variety of forms, from sculptural to linear. The free-flow design was 3D printed. According to the supplier, the bioplastics can be used for anything that petrochemicals can be. The material can be colored, is compostable in less than 84 days, durable on countertop, and refillable.
Packtory uses Bosk’s certified bio-based and compostable material—called REGEN—for its new stock jar. The REGEN material is lightweight and durable like plastic, but is compostable at end-of-life. According to Claude Desmarais, business development manager, Bosk, REGEN’s registered trademark makes it instantly recognizable as a compostable product.
Zhejiang B.I. Industrial especially caught Rosen’s attention with its display of luxe fragrance bottles. Terry Zhang, department manager, told us that many had been achieved for their Dubai market. B.I. provides full-service metal and plastic packaging, as well as manual hand polishing. Rosen commented that the bottles were among the most creative packaging he had seen at the show.
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