Revolutionizing Beauty: 7 Innovative Stick Formulations for Cosmetic Formulators

In the ever-evolving world of cosmetics, stick formulations are rapidly gaining traction among beauty enthusiasts and professionals alike. These compact, travel-friendly products cater to the growing demand for convenient beauty routines, allowing for easy touch-ups and quick applications, especially during busy mornings. Beyond makeup, stick formulations are making their mark in skincare with innovations like stick serums that provide a radiant glow on the go. For cosmetic formulators, this trend opens up a wealth of opportunities to create versatile, efficient, and portable beauty solutions that meet the modern consumer's needs.

The increasing demand for quick and convenient beauty routines is evident in recent statistics and product launches. Key findings include:

  • 82% of US makeup users agree that they try to make their makeup routine as quick as possible, highlighting the need for efficient and easy-to-use products.
  • 22% of global cosmetic launches featured an ease-of-use claim, the highest it has been in the past five years, indicating a significant shift towards user-friendly beauty solutions.
  • 48% of US consumers express interest in beauty and personal care (BPC) products that come in sample sizes, while 22% are specifically interested in mini sizes, underscoring the growing preference for compact and travel-friendly options.

The stick formulation trend is prominently reflected in new product launches across various categories. According to Mintel, 78% of all new stick cosmetic launches were in color cosmetics, demonstrating the high demand for convenient, on-the-go makeup solutions. This surge is not limited to makeup alone; skincare has also seen a significant increase in stick product launches. Innovations such as stick serums and moisturizers are becoming increasingly popular for their ease of application and portability. Additionally, the hair care segment is embracing this trend with products like hair gloss sticks and styling balms, offering consumers quick and effective solutions for maintaining their hair's appearance throughout the day. These developments highlight the versatility and expanding appeal of stick formulations in the beauty industry.

Innovative Stick Formulations: Revolutionizing Beauty and Skincare

From color cosmetics to skincare solutions, stick formulations offer quick, targeted application, perfect for the on-the-go lifestyle. Here, we explore some of our standout stick formulations making waves in the industry, providing innovative solutions for makeup and skincare enthusiasts alike. Let's take a closer look at these game-changing formulations.

All Over Instant Glow Highlighter

All Over Instant Glow is a multi-use, highlighting stick that illuminates eyes, face, lips, and body for a dewy glow with non-stick texture that is ideal for all skin tones. The radiant finish is due to Arcopearl FEHD effect pigments, delivering superior brightness and chroma to the formulation due to its patented layering technology.

Featured Ingredients:

  •  Permethyl 104A: Excellent film former that provides long wear, shine and skin adhesion.
  • Permethyl HPIB-6: A moisturizing, viscous polymer that increases cushion and slip.
  • Permethyl 101A: Highly emollient hydrocarbon that easily spreads and imparts a light, smooth feel.
  • Sericite PHN: Fine white gray transparent mineral powder that gives a smooth finish.
  • Chiffonsil P3-R: Spherical silica that provides a smooth, creamy texture.
  • Pearlflakes: Bismuth oxychloride based pigments pre-dispersed in carnauba wax and shea butter.
  • Arcopearl FEHD 400: Synthetic mica-based effect pigment with superior brightness and chroma.

Stay Put Eyeshadow Stick

A one-step, all day, crease-defying, skin nourishing, eyeshadow stick. Formulated to prevent creasing and to “stay put” throughout the day, while absorbing excess oil and keeping skin hydrated.

Featured Ingredients:

  • Permethyl 99A: Weightless, non-greasy, volatile emollient that promotes skin adhesion and wear.
  • Ganzpearl Sig-070: Provides velvet-like texture, enhances transfer resistance and extends wear.
  • Spheron L-1500: Microsilica bead with high oil absorption that increases slip and spreadability.

Smoke and Mirrors Lipstick

This hydrating lip color contains skin occlusive agents, keeping lips hydrated and promoting shine while adding an element of surprise using our Magicolor “color reveal” pigment technology. Magicolor series white powders reveal color on impression.

Featured Ingredients:

  • Magicolor 103P Series: Multi-layer encapsulated high-purity pigments with unique “color reveal” technology and outstanding feel and texture. High shear resistance during processing and ability to be used in pump delivery systems.
  • Royal Pearl Plus UB-17: Spherical powder that provides excellent slip and absorbs excess oil while promoting a natural finish.

Blemish and Pore Stick

Treat blemishes with this exfoliating treatment stick. Encapsulated salicylic acid combined with exfoliating charcoal beads gently clarifies skin to treat and perfect. Soft focus ingredients instantly smooth and blur imperfections.

Featured Ingredients:

Contour Stick

This contour stick helps you achieve a perfectly defined look by darkening areas of your face to help enhance your natural features to create a flawless finished look. Bismica and Bismica MAX pigments provide color and great adhesion, while Arcopearl Matte delivers superior mattifying and sensorial properties that leaves skin feeling soft and looking smooth.

Featured Ingredients:

  • Estogel Green: Rheology modifier that is an oil gelling agent that provides a unique sensory property.
  • Spheron P-1500: Silica bead with moderate oil absorption that increases slip and spreadability.
  • Bismica pigments: Mineral compounds offered in a wide variety of color that may be blended to produce the perfect shade with soft, subtle luster.
  • Bismica MAX White: Mineral compound with high colorant load (70%) that creates an intense color impact. Excellent long wear properties and easy dispersability.
  • Arcopearl Matte: Synthetic Mica delivers a superior matte finish while adding enhanced sensorial properties. It contributes to a smoother appearance and contains low levels of impurities.

Cooling Caffeine Stick

This cooling and soothing caffeine-infused stick energizes and perfects skin. Encapsulated caffeine glides on skin to help de-puff eyes and invigorate while soft focus ingredients smooth and blur imperfections instantly.

Featured Ingredients:

  • Biogenic Caffeine 210: Caffeine modified with an oligomer complex to increase solubility and stability, 50% active.

Glide N/ Glow Face and Body Water Stick

This multi-tasking stick gives your face and body an instant glow with combination of Arcopearl™ Sparkle 411-N and 511-N that glides on with a soft, smooth feeling. NXT SOLV 420, a plant derived emollient, provides a light feel with great spreadability that is also biodegradable. GreenDiol™ is a natural alternative to Butylene Glycol that provides moisturization and that is an excellent humectant, dispersant and has booster preservative properties.

Featured Ingredients:

  • GreenDiol: Natural alternative to Butylene Glycol with excellent humectant, dispersant, and booster preservative properties.
  • Arcopearl Sparkle: Synthetic mica-based effect pigment with superior brightness and chroma compared to the competition.

Essential Guidelines for Formulating High-Quality Stick Cosmetics

Formulating effective stick cosmetics requires careful consideration of several key factors to ensure product stability, usability, and performance. Here are some essential guidelines for developing high-quality stick formulations:

  • Base Composition: The foundation of any stick formulation is its base, which typically includes a blend of waxes, oils, and emollients. The choice of these ingredients affects the texture, stability, and application of the product.
  • Melting Point: The melting point of the formulation must be high enough to prevent the product from melting in warm conditions, but low enough to ensure smooth application on the skin.
  • Consistency and Glide: Achieving the right balance of hardness and softness is crucial. The product should glide easily without crumbling or feeling greasy.
  • Active Ingredients: Incorporate active ingredients that provide specific benefits, such as antioxidants, moisturizers, or UV filters, depending on the product's purpose.
  • Color and Pigmentation: For color cosmetics, ensure uniform pigmentation and stability of colorants to provide consistent and vibrant results.
  • Preservation and Stability: Formulations should be tested for microbial stability and resistance to oxidation, ensuring a long shelf life.
  • Packaging Compatibility: Select packaging that protects the formulation, maintains its integrity, and allows for convenient application. Stick components should be compatible with the product to prevent issues like sweating or shrinkage.

Following these guidelines helps create stick formulations that meet consumer expectations for performance, convenience, and durability.

The rise of stick formulations marks a significant evolution in the beauty and skincare industry, offering unparalleled convenience and versatility for consumers. These products cater to the growing demand for quick and easy application, fitting seamlessly into busy lifestyles. From innovative color cosmetics to targeted skincare solutions, stick formulations provide effective and efficient options for beauty enthusiasts and professionals alike. By following essential formulation guidelines, cosmetic formulators can create high-quality stick products that meet consumer needs and stand out in the market. Embracing this trend opens up new opportunities for innovation and growth in the ever-evolving world of cosmetics.