Earlier this week, Repêchage hosted its 19th Annual International Conference in NYC’s swanky Park Hyatt hotel and kicked off the day with a bang. Celebrating its reach across 45 countries around the globe, guests from 18 of those countries (think: Antigua, Dubai, Russia, Italy, India, Ghana and the US) started the day by proudly parading their respective countries’ flags across the conference room. After the inspiring procession concluded, soprano Meredith Lustig, an opera singer and Julliard graduate, took to the stage to sing a gorgeous rendition of “America the Beautiful.” The skincare brand finished the opening ceremony by showcasing a humorous video they captured at the International Beauty Show where they asked and stumped interviewees on questions from how to pronounce its name to what the meaning of the brand’s name is to where founder Lydia Sarfati hails from.
The morning’s presentations began with Dr. Samuel Shatkin, owner of Aesthetic Associate Centre for Plastic Surgery, who spoke about why wrinkles form and ways to keep them at bay. He pinpointed both intrinsic culprits such as DNA and extrinsic offenders like sunlight, diet and the environment, noting that we’re in control of the extrinsic factors. “We can’t forget about what we do on a daily basis to our own skin,” he says. He highlighted a study done on identical twins which demonstrated how the twin who, for example, was exposed to smoking, excessive time in the sun or a stressful divorce had an astonishing amount of more wrinkles compared to the twin who led a healthier lifestyle. “Damage can be slowed by changing lifestyles,” Shatkin explains as he offered up skincare solutions and dietary suggestions for wrinkle reduction. Think: Using Repêchage Mineral Face Shield to protect against environmental factors; cutting out sugar, smoking and alcohol; drinking more water; using Repêchage Hydra 4 Red-Out for its anti-inflammatory and hydration benefits; and trying non-surgical rejuvenation such as exfoliation, collagen induction, removal of pigmentation and botox. “Aging is inevitable but we can affect how we age and what’s we’re going to look like,” he says. “[As doctors we can help you], but it’s also got to be about what you do the other 362 days.”
Next seaweed Queen Sarfati took to the podium to discuss an overview of the Repêchage brand, highlighting the company’s dedication to its partners and its mission to ensure its standards remain at the top of the skincare game. “You can control your inventory and guarantee client results,” she says. “[Our products] take away that Russian roulette.” She then showcased the benefits and proven results of standby services and products in the Repêchage repertoire (the 4-Layer Facial, Biolight Facial, Vita Cura, Fusion Express Bar Masks and Seaweed Body mask, to name a few) and then introduced the brand’s newest innovations: Biolight Luminex Mask, a 15-minute express facial packed with glycolic acid, laminara digitata, kaolin clay and chamomile extract, which can be used alone or as an add-on service; and Triple Action Peptide Mask, a sheet mask infused with 4 peptides, laminara digitata, aloe and sweet almond oil that can be used at home or as an in-salon express treatment. “We are a pioneer and trailblazer when it comes to innovative skin care products,” she says. “Seaweed is the miracle of all things we do at Repêchage. Anyone who uses Repêchage can see the difference [in their skin], and that difference comes from seaweed.” Sarfati also spoke about the company’s marketing efforts and its new full-floor Lighted Retail Display, adding, “You need to keep marketing fresh and relevant.”
Allure Africa founder and CEO Dzigbordi K. Dosoo next presented “Out of Africa: Beauty, Wellness and Lifestyle.” She spoke about how she grew her business from the ground up, first starting with the bare minimum while running a salon business in her dad’s living room to growing her company into a mega successful lifestyle business group and becoming one of Africa’s leading talk show hosts and CEOs. But her success was met with many bumps in the road and at one point she even thought about calling it quits. At that time she leaned on Sarfati for advice who told her not to give up. “I grabbed a pen and paper and sucked every single word she said,” says Dosoo. “I realized who I had become. Millions of Africans were looking at me to be a strong woman. So [at that moment] I knew I was going to go back and be better than I was before.” Dosoo offered attendees some words of wisdom from what she learned in her experience: Do it even if you’re afraid—don’t run away from fear, look at it in the face; humanize your brand—tell both the joy and pain of your story as people want to see your stories and connect with them; and lean on your signature—find you, everyone has a distinct signature that makes them unique. She wrapped up her presentation by comparing the beauty business to a story about a gazelle and a lion and how it’s always evolving with someone either ahead of you or behind you. “It’s about how you progress. You have to keep running and most importantly, never give up,” she says.
The day concluded with Repêchage’s President’s Awards where winners were crowned for the Inspiration Award, Rising Star Award, Award of Excellence, Award of Education and Award of Overall Excellence. A teary Sarfati gushed over how proud she was of each of the winners as well as her team, family and the Repêchage family: “We’re inspired by each and every one of you!”
[Image by Molly Church]