14 : 02 : 20 : Weekly Debrief

need to know
sector - food & drink
type - need to know
Need To Know
category - design
sector - health & wellness

This week: Desert X comes to Saudi Arabia, Faace masks for period skin, intimacy-enhancing sleep products, food storage solutions for consumers’ eco-concerns and vibrant homes for Flat Agers.

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14 February 2020

Author: The Future Laboratory

Image: Cyan Skincare, US


Falling Stones Garden by Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim at Desert X Alula 2020, Saudi Arabia. Photography by Lance Gerber

1. Desert X puts Middle Eastern art in the spotlight

Saudi Arabia – Desert X’s latest exhibition has opened in Saudi Arabia, bringing site-specific contemporary art to the Middle East’s youngest travel destination.

A collaboration between Desert X and the Royal Commission of Al-Ula (RCU), Desert X Alula takes place in an ancient oasis in Saudi Arabi, bringing together the voices and creativity of local artists from the surrounding regions.

Featuring artists such as Mohammed Ahmed Ibrahim and Rashed Alshashai, the exhibition captures some of the geographic and social factors that have shaped the history of the Saudi Arabian desert. Each creative has responded to the landscape with a unique approach; Alshashai’s project acts as a contemporary monument, inviting visitors to enter its pyramid shape and appreciate the contrasting colour profile, which stands out against the neutral desert tones.

This year’s Desert X is positioning Saudi Arabia as a centre of exchange for ideas and a cultural hub for the region. Having only recently opened up to global tourism, we explore this kingdom and its future travel opportunities further in our Saudi Arabia Travel Market.


2. Faace is one-stop skincare for periods

UK – Faace is a range of low-maintenance and affordable face masks, created to improve skin affected by periods, tiredness, sweat and other life stressors.

With three main products – Period Faace, Sweaty Faace and Tired Faace – were created to target ‘skin disrupted by life', resulting in one-step skincare that tackle dryness, shine or lacklustre appearance. In a nod towards the backlash against complex, multi-step skincare routines, the brand’s website notes: ‘We live in a straight-talking ‘it is what it is’ society but somewhere along the way skincare got complicated.’

With marketing similar to lifestyle brands, the brand is working to create a sense of community around skincare, using Instagram for open skincare discussions with Generation Z and Millennial consumers. Faace has also created a range of accessories, including socks and hair grips labelled with its three Faace types, available to buy in bundles according to skin needs and users’ personalities.

By catering for women’s skin concerns, Faace is tapping into the themes of Lifestage Brands – personal care companies helping to alleviate the biological inconveniences of being a woman, whether in adolescence or menopause.

Love Sleep by This Works, campaign by ODD

3. Love Sleep is night-time self care for sensuality

UK – This Works is promoting the bedroom as a sanctuary of relaxation and intimacy with a range of self-care products that promote sensual touch.

Created as an antidote to digital connectivity, the products and supporting campaign for its Love Sleep range encourage people to switch off in order to turn on, focusing on self-care in relation to skin-to-skin touch and sensual exploration.

Recognising that both men and women experience deeper sleep after sexual intimacy, This Works has introduced a collection of products including a pillow spray, a seduction candle and a roll-on balm to encourage relaxation, created with ingredients such as ylang ylang and patchouli. As part of This Works’ campaign to promote the Love Sleep range, it undertook a national survey, and found that more than half of Britons admit that a device – whether it be a smartphone or tv screen – is the last thing they see before they close their eyes at night, yet the same number would like to enjoy more sex than they now have.

As we uncover in our interview with artist Lucy McRae, there is growing space to encourage touch between humans, in light of the pleassurable oxytocin hormone that's released in such moments.

4. An eco-kit for future food shoppers

US – Ancillary Equipment has launched a campaign to promote a more sustainable future around food and drink retail, bolstered by a kit of re-usable bags and bottles.

Its stripped-back Econyl sling bags, dry goods sacks, hemp tote packs and liquid receptacles can be purchased by making a pledge of £150 ($195, €179) to its website. According to Ancillary’s site, they are designed for ‘the collection and transportation of ARM [alternative route to market] food items and liquids’, with the platform also providing a directory of 290 bulk or dry goods stores in countries such as Austria, Hungary, Taiwan and the US.

The eco-focused company has created the kits to encourage thought and conversation about the supermarket chains and convenience stores that consumers come to accept as the norm. Available exclusively through its stripped-back website, Ancillary’s emotionally charged website copy also provides browsers with insight into the climate crisis.

As we explore in our Re-usable Packaging Market, growing concern about the environmental impact of plastic packaging is driving innovations in re-usable and refill concepts among retailers and FMCG brands.


Ancillary Equipment
Bayit Balev, designed by Amit Studio, Tel Aviv

5. A retirement home redefined for Flat Agers

Israel – Tel Aviv-based Amit Studio has designed a chain of private, upscale retirement complexes that upend traditional notions of elderly living.

The Bayit Balev development is a five-storey residence created with colourful details and a focus on socialising and leisure activities. Amit Studio was tasked with bringing its public areas to life – including the lobby, dining room, swimming pool, gym and a synagogue – using cobalt blue tones in the gym and vibrant purple carpet and seating in the on-site cinema. It also features textures like velvet to create spaces that feel modern and homely.

‘The challenge was to design a retirement home that does not look elderly, but rather create spaces with a contemporary modern feel, yet at the same time are warm and indulging,’ studio co-founder Gali Amit tells Dezeen.

The design of the space reflects the burgeoning Flat Age mindset of people aged over 65, who are increasingly active, healthy and looking for brands that refuse to typecast people by age bracket. For more on the older influencers defying stereotypes and changing the narrative on ageing, read our dedicated listicle.

To future-proof your world, visit The Future Laboratory's forecasting platform LS:N Global for daily news, opinions, trends, sector specific insights, and strategic toolkits.


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