Pyratine: Rapid Validation for The Skincare Line to End All Lines

Pyratine: Rapid Validation for The Skincare Line to End All Lines


Pyratine came to Facet looking for a way to increase brand and product awareness in the premium cosmetic and cosmeceutical space. Competing with other anti-aging and moisturizing products, the all-in-one Pyratine compound was positioned as a jack-of-all-trades that made it seemingly difficult to sell directly to customers without a consultation. Pyratine reached out to Facet to gain an understanding of opportunities to reposition the brand, and how to approach the direct-to-consumer market.


Pyratine’s digital strategy needed a complete retooling. The brand had taken multiple hits over the last 3 years and, at least in the United States, was almost unknown in consumer circles. Online sales were not a primary source of income for the business with most sales moving through physician/clinician supported channels. Facet worked on establishing foundations and rapid market validation to qualify the opportunities available to Pyratine going forward.


Pyratine, at the core, is an extreme moisturizer so there were also medical applications for burns and scaring. Pyratine is, and has been primarily, marketed toward Rosacea patients. Other uses for the product like eczema and burn relief were only touted by physicians.

Pyratine products appeared to perform as advertised. With Pyratine’s patented compound, results in clinical trials and user tests were extremely positive. The product was put through extensive testing to confirm its efficacy with different skin types, cosmetics, and other relevant environmental variables—so it was very stable and safe for use. 

The price of the Pyratine product was extremely high where customers were asked to trust without having a physician to educate on the benefits of the Pyratine system. To bridge that gap in the D2C market, while keeping physician buyers happy, the price for the XR line needed to remain at their existing levels so XR was often discounted online to generate D2C sales. This led to a consumer discount trap that drove sales through frequent, steep discounts. Add to the mix Pyratine’s extremely technical approach to communicating the product to consumers and you have a product that does not make itself an easy sell


Audit the Brand

Facet conducted a comprehensive Digital Strategy Workshop over the course of 2 days working directly with Pyratine leadership to determine the current state of the brand. We heavily relied on our User Story Mapping techniques to address how customers from all channels purchase and were able to determine a market validation strategy.

Validate the Market

After reviewing what brand equity was available, we dove into the planning phase to determine a strategy that would allow us to answer a hard question: is the brand irrevocably damaged in the D2C market?

We settled on using PPC advertising (Facebook & Google Search) to cast the widest net in a short timeframe. Due to updated pharmaceutical advertising standards, we spent a substantial amount of time trying to work with Google’s guidelines so that we could drive a greater number of impressions. In the end we succeeded. We were able to also run similar testing on Facebook and collect enough data that we could reach a conclusion…

The brand had been damaged beyond repair for the D2C market — we recommended a completely new brand, repackaged, and built from the ground up


Reputation and brand management was a sunk cost — we recommended a number of initiatives including shifting online sales to Amazon as an existing marketplace with an entrenched customer base, new product photography, new branding & pricing for the D2C market, a continuity program, brick and mortar presence (Ulta Beauty, Target, CVS), and the utilization of influencers to provide targeted product education.