Research and innovation

The L’Oréal group was founded by a researcher and continues to make major investments in Research and Innovation. The group is open to the world and the markets, and its scientific approach puts its customers first.

Research and Innovation

Research and Innovation

For L’Oréal, science and beauty products are a combination of expertise and sensitivity. The fields of research and innovation are not purely creative but also based on an understanding of customer needs and a view of the cosmetics market now and in the future.

L’Oréal’s research and innovation teams constitute a multicultural community that includes a large number of disciplines (over thirty specializations) in every branch of science and this trend is set to grow in the future. These teams are driven by a shared enthusiasm: inventing and perfecting innovative high-performing cosmetics, contributing to the well-being of men and women all over the world. They achieve this by forever exceeding the boundaries of life- and materials-sciences without ever losing sight of what their customers want.

L’Oréal’s Research and Innovation is divided into 4 main branches: advanced research (developing knowledge in the major scientific fields related to L’Oréal’s business and the creation of predictive evaluation models), applied research (creating formulae and developing new product concepts), development (developing new formulae for providing the brands with safe, innovatory products) and support functions (regulatory affairs, patents, customer surveys, etc.).

Advanced research

Advanced Research teams create and develop performing and sustainable actives. By feeding the group métiers with new products, their work allows L’Oréal to take up the challenges of innovation and sustainable development.

L’Oréal researchers are looking for:

  • Improving their knowledge in many scientific fields (biology, biotechnology, biophysics, chemistry, physics, physical chemistry, modeling…)
  • Being open to the world through what we call “open innovation”
  • Creating from upstream new models for evaluation of the actives safety and performance, by using very varied tools and methods (from numeric to reconstructed skin)

Applied research

L’Oréal Applied Research teams create the prototype formulas of the actives stemmed from the Advanced Research. They also select the formulas that lead to new cosmetic properties or improve those already existing. Responsible for the right technology transfer with the Advanced Research, they study the behavior of the ingredients stemmed from the “local” research or suggested by the group’s suppliers, by approaching them as “product concepts”. After a complete evaluation, they can then hand over to the development teams the job.


Development teams work out new formulas and make sure that the best performing products will be available for the markets in the best safety conditions for both consumers and the environment. They provide the brands with a constant stream of innovative products and make for them recommendations for use based on the regulatory specificities of the different countries where the group is established.

Support functions

They include:

  • Analytical evaluation, safety and global efficiency evaluation of raw materials and formulas
  • Knowledge of the different regulations for the product validation and communication and the establishment of regulatory records.
  • Industrial protection of the discoveries made within the group
  • Resources management (projects, teams, budgets…)
  • Consumer insights