Tag Archives: traducteur cosmétique

Translating the concept of empowerment in beauty

Empowerment marketing took the world of advertising by storm when, instead of simply pointing out inadequacy to create a need for a product, it showed that we can sell that same product in ways that make us better people and the world a better place.

Most areas of business quickly joined the growing movement and beauty is no exception.  Empowerment-related vocabulary has seeped into the brand communications of many cosmetic companies, at least in English.

Just in the last few months, we’ve had to translate copy for products such as:

  • eyeshadows with “empowering shades”, created by makeup artists inspired by a “new generation of empowered women”;
  • hair dryers “packed with hair-empowering design duality”;
  • skincare touting its radical new approach to help “empower the skin”;
  • lip color that promises its wearer to “reveal who she truly is – an empowered girlfriend living a life full of happiness, love & success on her own terms”;
  • and brow enhancers that “empower her to become the woman she was meant to be” …

These are just a few examples of how decisively “empowerment” has become part of the beauty landscape.

Culturally, most languages have yet to adopt a single term for so many different contexts, a single term serving as a beacon of hope, a call to action to take control and surpass one’s own expectations – a push button of sorts that can be used to elicit a sense of feel-good transcendence.

In French, for example, there truly is no easy way to translate the above messages with a single term that would carry the same weight as “empowerment” in English.  Mademoizelle online may be promoting the use of “empouvoirement” but, for now, the term does not have the same rooted presence in the French language.  It is also nearly impossible to apply without raising eyebrows…

What translators are forced to do is resort to paraphrasing, which in and of itself is exactly what they must do.  The one thing they should not do, however, is ignore the importance that this term and this concept hold for American brands.

It can be argued that translating / transcreating beauty copy also requires an equal measure of localization to the target audience, which may or may not harbor the same level of concern for underscoring the possibility for human growth, for a woman’s right to live her life to the fullest and to feel strong and independent.

But as a translator you cannot skip over, blithely ignore or wish this part of the message away – especially when it reflects brand values and identity.  We must remember that exposure to foreign values and new ideas can be enriching and mind-opening even when buying hair gel (and why not?)!

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MEET OUR CLIENT: Nuori, reinventing the concept of freshness in beauty

Beautyterm is proud of its collaboration with Nuori, a new Scandinavian beauty brand hailing from Denmark. Founder Jasmi Bonnen, who previously worked for L’Oréal, has an approach to skincare that borrows from the world of food. She says that fresh is better and more effective:

‘We can offer consumers two distinct benefits: higher efficacy of ingredients and purer formulas.’

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Many natural beauty brands have been in fact eagerly embracing this new philosophy.

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Click on image to read an interview with Jasmi Bonnen

The brand makes fresh, small batches of products every 12 weeks.

The minimalist line, designed by New York agency NR2154 is stamped with two dates: a start-using-by date and an expiry date.

Once products pass their dates, they are removed from the shelves and replaced with a fresh batch.

Jasmi plans to experiment with the freshness theme with a series of limited releases featuring seasonal ingredients.

 

 

Beautyterm Interview by PRIMERTBR

Do you want to know more about Beautyterm? Why and how the company came into existence? Why is translation and localization important to building brand awareness? How does globalization, research and development, and advertising impact the role of the translator?

Click on this link and read the PRIMERTBR interview with Beautyterm founder Agnes Meilhac to get your answers!

Primer is an industry publication addressing and analyzing public policy and business topics defining the future of the beauty industry.

PRIMERTBR Interview with Beautyterm April 2015

PRIMERTBR Interview with Beautyterm April 2015

MEET OUR CLIENT: Joëlle Ciocco

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The Parisian-born biochemist and L’Oréal Paris Global Facial Expert Joëlle Ciocco is the woman who treats the faces of France’s movie stars and prominent personalities including Catherine Deneuve and Juliette Binoche. Her brand is one of the top elite beauty names in France, exemplifying the best of French niche luxury skincare.

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Click on image to read interview with Joëlle Ciocco

MEET OUR CLIENT: Fleur de Santé

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With over 35 years delivering specialized skincare products to women of all ages and skin types, Laboratorie Fleur de Santé brings out the ‘Natural Beauty’ in each woman.

Fleur De Santé was founded by Knut Wulff, a prominent beauty expert who began to mix and make skin care products based on natural healing ingredients in the 40’s. Fleur de Santé has developed beauty products based on natural active botanical ingredients for more than 30 years and today offers a wide range of innovative, high quality beauty products, developed to suit women of all ages and skin types.

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