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Q&A: Making a splash — Hollis Brookover, Morningside Products

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Hollis Brookover, founder and CEO of Morningside Products, the makers of bath-and-body products under the Originals and Simple Originals brand names, talks with Drug Store News about the company and the bath-and-body segment at mass. Morningside is a certified women-owned business enterprise headquartered in Boise, Idaho.

DrSN: What made you decide to enter the bath-and-body care business?

Brookover: I found that there were a large number of entries in the category, but none of the items seemed to address my own personal needs. I wanted products that had healthy ingredients that I could feel good about using every day with great fragrances and packaging that looked good when it was displayed in my home; and yes, I wanted these products at a reasonable price. … So I recognized the niche, and Morningside Products was born to provide safety and quality at a great price.

DrSN: What are the biggest challenges facing the bath-and-body segment at mass? 

Brookover: The emergence of the specialty-bath-and-home-retail segment, as well as the explosive growth of day spas, have created additional channel-shifting pressure on the mass market. … This has created a nice opportunity for traditional food, drug and mass to capitalize on by offering higher-quality products, with the convenience of eliminating an additional stop for busy consumers.

DrSN: How can Morningside help retailers overcome these challenges? 

Brookover: Our Originals brand was designed with this opportunity in mind. The ingredients and packaging are equal or superior to any specialty store or spa product, and the retail price point is substantially below what a consumer would find at those outlets.

DrSN: Your package features information about “Every Child is an Original.” Can you elaborate?

Brookover: “Every Child is an Original” is a foundation that funds projects that serve to enable America’s youth to gain the tools they need to succeed in life and compete in the world economy. For every Originals or Simple Originals product that a consumer purchases, a portion of the proceeds are donated to the foundation. It is my way of giving back and offering consumers the chance to do the same.

DrSN: What’s new for 2010?

Brookover: We have updated the packaging on both the Originals and Simple Originals lines to better communicate the products attributes and freshen up the brands’ appearance. We are working on some great new line extensions … and are having good success in building our distribution base at retail.

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