Neo By Nature aims to new horizons all the way to Antarctica

Neo By Nature aims to new horizons all the way to Antarctica

Eva Lagarde

After a successful rebranding at the end of 2023, Neo by Nature is now aiming further afield and just released a partnership with the French Polar Institute at the ends of the world.

Neo by Nature is the story of Paulin and Hector, two cousins from the south-west of France, who embarked on an adventure: transforming water into shower gel. The two visionary cousins merged their shared passion and environmental values to create a unique cosmetics brand with the promise of healthy cosmetics with sensorial, avant-garde formulas that encapsulate a blend of naturally super-powerful active ingredients in an iconic refillable bottle.

Hector Sentilhes & Paulin de Montbron - co-founders - Neo By Nature

Specific development 

Following an 18 months development phase and a successful crowdfunding campaign on Ulule, Neo by Nature launched into the french market in September 2021 with selected retailers or DtoC. The focus of the product was on high quality fragrance and effective and enjoyable shower gel formulas.

Neo By Nature claims to have 20% hydrating actives (similar to a face cream) in its 25gr formula that is rehydrated at home by the consumers.

The rebranding follows a successful fundraising campaign of 1.2 millions euros achieved in April 2023, and since then the brand has been very active at promoting the adoption of refillable beauty with a more luxurious approach. 

The new formulations are a triptych of ingredients with:

  • Hyaluronic acid for hydrating and firming the skin. Here, Neo By Nature, chose a hyaluronic acid with small molecules for easy skin absorption.
  • Inulin, a prebiotic for hydration and nourishment
  • Aloe Vera for healing properties. It also offers  a veil of softness over the skin and keeps moisture

The brand is mostly addressed to GenZ, with 33 to 44 year olds representing about 50% of its customer base. The return purchase (or refill) represented 40% of overall purchase for the first version, and are now at a striking rate of 75% on its second version following the rebranding and reformulation. Consumers have now also a strong interest in the membership models, where users get their shower tablets delivered monthly, bi-monthly or tri-monthly. 

Changing lives at the ends of the world

Since February, the brand has been officially supplying the French Polar Institute (in Antarctica) teams with their eco-responsible shower gel, with the aim of facilitating waste management and reducing the amount of plastic packaging, as well as offering researchers a clean and effective alternative, by guaranteeing them an ultra-moisturising care product that respects their skin, which is often badly treated because it is subjected to extreme temperatures and icy winds on a daily basis.

Antarctica, located 2,700 km south of Australia and 1,200 km from USHUAIA in Argentina, it is a land that is difficult to access, hostile to humans and considered to be the coldest place in the world. The storms are formidable and the conditions precarious for all the explorers who venture there, but also for the researchers who live there.

This is the home of the French Polar Institute and its two polar stations, where researchers study biodiversity and climate change, among other things. Although the living conditions are extreme, the researchers live to the rhythm of the storms and the supply ships, essential for their survival and for carrying out their mission, which cross this ocean of ice only twice a year.

While the question of supplies is essential, so is that of waste treatment! The products are consumed, then the packaging is stored for several months before being sent back to Australia in the summer to be processed. This is a real logistical challenge for the French Polar Institute.

In an environment with such extreme living conditions, it is essential to be able to adapt to local constraints, which are different from those encountered elsewhere in the world. The aim of the French Polar Institute is to study and better understand the environment while respecting the places they occupy as much as possible.

So Hector and Paulin responded to a call for quotes from the French Polar Institute based in Antarctica to support the environmental cause and try to make life easier for the researchers. Neo by Nature made sure that the shower gel formula was biodegradable and free from harmful particles, so that it would be compatible with the local filtration system developed in collaboration with the European Spatial Agency.

β€œ The Symbolisme for us was powerful, because waste management in the Antarctic is a logistical headache, and in our daily lives, we often forget that waste and its treatment pose real challenges. We too often imagine that the problem stops once the product has been sorted and disposed of in the right coloured bin” expresses Hector Sentilhes.

β€œMore than just a cleanser, Neo by nature shower gel has been formulated above all to deeply moisturise and nourish the skin, thanks to the powerful active ingredients it contains, such as hyaluronic acid, aloe vera and inulin,” explains Paulin de Montbron.

The collaboration is set to last 1 year. That's 365 days during which the young French start-up Neo by nature will have met a major challenge: to be the only shower gel brand present on every continent in the world.