LVMH Recherche creates, in Saint-Jean-de-Braye, the beauty products of tomorrow

LVMH Recherche crée, à Saint-Jean-de-Braye, les produits de beauté de demain

The Helios site hosts LVMH Research, in Saint-Jean-de-Braye.
LVMH Recherche has existed sinces 1981, but it’s in 2013 that all the researchers came together in one place: Hélios. A huge triangular building, with, in the center, a vast atrium where the light penetrates in great waves. And, all around, numerous laboratories where scientists in white coats work.A huge central and bright atrium.

“Our mission is to create and develop exceptional beauty products for the brands of the LVMH group. We are working on various innovation topics for the next three to ten years, nourished by our entrepreneurial culture and thanks to our in-depth knowledge of the market and consumers. We are a company within a company, with real autonomy. Houses use our services if they wish. Our R&D adapts to their DNA. We go to the end of perfection, with many tests and raw materials “whatever it costs”, details Bruno Bavouzetdoctor in physico-chemistry and chairman of the LVMH Research economic interest group.Bruno Bavouzet, Chairman of LVMH Research.

Helios was built behind the Dior factory in Saint-Jean-de-Braye. Since 2013, the center has grown a lot. It now accommodates 450 of the 650 employees of LVMH Research. The 18,000 square meters are well occupied! In addition to the administrative staff, it is mainly researchers who work for the sixteen houses specializing in perfumes and cosmetics of the LVMH group: Dior, Guerlain, Givenchy, Stella McCartney, Fenty beauty by Rihanna

A wide variety of research

Extensive research is at the origin of a few dozen patents per year (for an undisclosed turnover), whether on future consumer trends, virtuous packaging, bio-based products, the fight against aging… Biologists, botanists, formulators, chemists, toxicologists, data scientists… and support functions, the specialties are varied and recruitment is constant.

“For example, we need prospective marketing, to predict major trends in the world, such as doctors in skin biology. We are therefore carrying out a lot of very specific activities, in collaboration with Harvard, the Cira

in Japan, Pasteur…, concerning various subjects such as stem cells and their regenerative power”, specifies the president. Other expertise: materials science, in order to find, for example, “how hide skin imperfections without showing

? Or how to have a product that lasts very long, perfectly, even if it’s hot, while remaining comfortable…”

I love… without alcohol Among the iconic products

taken from the Helios test tubes, notably include Dior’s Total Capture, using the regenerating power of stem cells, but also longoza, a plant from Madagascar. Or the Abeille royale range from Guerlain, based on honey and its healing properties to repair the skin. Latest addition: J’adore parfum d’eau, with the scent of the bestseller praised by actress Charlize Theron, but without alcohol, thanks to a “nano-emulsion” of micro-droplets of water. Sustainability and sustainable development are a strong focus for LVMH Research: “This is a shift that we took several years ago, in line with the ambitions of the LVMH group. Some skincare products are now 98% biosourced.

For packaging, we work on recycling, biosourcing, refills. This requires measurements: CO2, our impact on biodiversity, water, resources… It’s very complicated, but it’s an opportunity to develop new technologies. Work on plants requires the creation of new sectors to produce them without phytosanitary products, to know how to extract the right active ingredients, target the right natural molecules…”

Towards personalized products? Otherwise, Hélios has helped 78 cosmetic start-ups to be created,

thanks to its Cosmet’up incubator, and hosted five of them. Including La Bouche rouge which moved its production a little further, in the same town, to the former site of Caudalie. Today, this incubation role, in conjunction with the Cosmetic Valley, has been transferred to Beauty Hub, in Chartres. Digital and beyond artificial intelligence are also a priority for the company, as Bruno Bavouzet explains: “data processing, thanks to thousands of tests for each product, allows us to understand complex systems. This opens up horizons, perhaps, to personalization

notably.” The full interview with Bruno Bavouzet can be found this Thursday, November 10 in our regional economic supplement, in the center ofThe Republic of the Center

, on the theme, this month, of the beauty sector. Also read: articles on the Cosmetic Valley, news from Nuoo and BRGM in the service of cosmetic research.

Carole Tribout.

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