For Men, Treating an Aging Face is More than Just Skin Deep...Experts Say Males are Growing Increasingly concerned with their Looks and Maintaining a Youthful Appearance

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A new southwestern-based cosmeceuticals company has announced the ambitious unveiling of a new line of skin care and anti-aging products designed and marketed exclusively to men. In what may take shape to be a true David versus Goliath story, Bio-Vel Technologies, a small, family-operated Nevada enterprise, is poised to take on the likes of cosmetic giants, Aramis, Clarins, Dr. Brandt, and N.V. Perricone.

More and more men are paying attention to their looks, and that includes not only their physical fitness and health, but also to their faces. This increased awareness of their appearance has been fueled by media coverage and reality television shows such as Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and Extreme Makeover, coupled with more intense competition in the business world to look young and up-to-date, experts say.

"Men are becoming every bit as concerned about their appearance as women are, and they have every right and every need to be so,” says Gina Gaede, CEO of Bio-Vel Technologies, which is staking its first major product line on the emerging and she hopes very lucrative men’s anti-aging skin care market.

“Men are now feeling some of the pressure to look good and meet a physical ideal that women have felt for a long time,” agrees Lenka Contreras, director of the consumer products practice at Kline and Co., an independent consulting and market research firm. “They’re buying cosmetic products, visiting day spas, and getting their teeth whitened to look more like the actors and models they see in the media.”

“A man wants something simple, strong, and that works, and he wants to buy it on familiar turf,” acknowledges Bio-Vel CEO Gaede. Bio-Vel recently launched its new Elements4Men skin care line, which the company touts as the first and only basic 3 step anti-aging skin care system exclusively formulated, packaged, and marketed for Men.

Last year, nearly 1.1 million U.S. males had cosmetic surgery, an increase of 31 percent from 2002, according to statistics from the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS). That represents a whopping 31 percent increase over 2003. And while men represent only 13 percent of the total plastic surgeries performed in the nation, that number is clearly growing, the ASAPS figures show. One Las Vegas doctor’s experience is typical of many in metropolitan areas, particularly in the west and Sunbelt states. Dr Scott Manthei, Las Vegas-based plastic surgeon for over 15 years, has seen his male patients having cosmetic surgery increase from 10 to percent to nearly 30 percent.

“A man wants something that is simple, strong and that works…”

But plastic surgeons aren’t the only ones noticing the increase in men’s concern with their faces and skin. Sales of men’s cosmetics and anti-aging skin care products are also sporting double digit gains. Department stores are noting a sharp rise in demand for anti-aging skin care creams for both genders, but especially for men’s skin care and grooming products, according to industry analysts.

Macy’s new flagship store at Dadeland Mall in Florida is opening one of the largest beauty display sections in the country, which store officials admit is due in large part to the demand for more products for men. It will feature a ‘Treatment World’ for men, offering specialty men’s products and even private consultations for their male customers. In another Florida Macy’s, the store has expanded and updated its offering of cosmetics and services for men, says Rhea Brown, vice president and general manager for Macy’s Aventura Mall store.

“We believe that a growing number of men want and are willing to purchase facial care products such as scrubs, line control creams, and moisturizers,” says Gaede. “But a lot of men would rather do without than go through the hassle and embarrassment of buying products that are packaged for women, marketed for women, and even sold in women’s cosmetics departments.”

Emerging market studies support Gaede’s theory. Hyundai, a major Asian department store chain, says its sales of men’s cosmetics have been rising sharply by 15 percent a year for the last several. Their stores have recently begun setting up cosmetics and accessories corners exclusively for men. These specialized corners help men to feel more comfortable shopping for beauty products, and are located further away from the female customers. The move is in response to a recent survey the chain conducted which revealed that four out of five male customers who bought beauty products said that the biggest inconvenience was shopping for these products in the women’s department.

Other manufacturers as well are expanding their product lines for men skin care. A plethora of men’s product lines have emerged in recent years, including such now well- recognized brands as Bulgari, Polo, Anthony Logistics, Biotherm, and Aveda. Brands that once manufactured only women’s products, such as Clarins and Lancomme have branched into the male market. Other companies that used to manufacture uni-sex products, such as Nivea, Neutrogena, Clinique, have all added men’s products to their skin care lines. Even traditional manufacturers of men’s grooming products, such as Gillette, Mennen, and Old Spice, once limited to shaving creams and deodorants, have expanded their lines to encompass such products as astringents, cleansers and moisturizers for men.

"More Men are feeling the pressure to look good"

But it’s the newcomers in the marketplace that may be the ones to shake things up and perhaps even set the pace for the big boys. With its cutting edge ingredients, masculine product names, and bold black and silver packaging, Elements4Men promises to give its competition a run for the money.

“Our products have been developed exclusively for a man’s skin. They each contain cooling and soothing ingredients, so they actually feel good when you use them.” says, Ms. Gaede. “We have taken the guesswork out of the equation, by labeling our products as Step 1, Step 2 and Step 3, keeping it basic and simple.”

Eliminate - Facial Scrub is the first step in the Elements4Men 3 Step System. This refreshing foaming scrub and exfoliant eradicates and removes toxic impurities on the skin with a soothing, cooling sensation.

Erase - Line Control, the second step in the system, is a highly potent facial serum designed to erase and control wrinkles and lines. Containing the highest concentration of Argireline available in any men’s product on the market. This fragrance free, non-oily serum will assist in the reversal of the signs of aging and the appearance of lines and wrinkles in as little as 15 days.

Enforce - Re-Generate is the final step. This non-greasy and perfume-free facial moisturizer contains Aldenine, the newest and most powerful collagen booster on the market today. Bio-Vel is on the leading edge of skin care technology, with this paramount new, lightweight face cream, which is the first and only product on the market to contain Aldenine. Infused with the healing powers of shark liver oil, and Vitamins A, C, D and E, this cream contains nearly every ingredient needed to re-generate healthy, youthful skin.

The line is handsomely packaged in silver foil tubes with black logos and lettering that can be placed out as inconspicuously at home as at the gym or health club. For more information on ordering the product or becoming a distributor, contact Bio-Vel Technologies directly at 1.866.655.4MEN or visit their website at http://www.elements4men.com.

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