Dear Maelove Family,
On behalf of everyone at Maelove, I want to thank you for your love and support of Maelove through this - yet another - roller coaster of a year.
As I have done for the past 3 years, I am writing this yearly update to share with you the challenges we faced, how we overcame them and what we hope to bring you in 2022.
Navigating supply chain disruptions
Supply chain disruptions continued to present challenges in 2021.
Every aspect of our supply chain still takes much longer than it did pre-pandemic, and unexpected delays continue to pop up in our production and transportation networks. As a result, you might have noticed sporadic inventory shortages on our website.
We’ve spent a great deal of effort improving our efficiency over the years and will continue to pursue ways to further streamline our processes. We’ve improved our inventory forecasting from once every 3 months to once a week in order to respond quickly to changing situations, and these upgrades allowed us to avoid extended inventory shortages.
While most of these disruptions were happening behind the scenes, some of you may have noticed irregular shipping inconveniences on your end. Fortunately, the shipping situation, while still messy, is getting better.
In our 2020 year-end letter, we had mentioned that we started trucking packages to USPS on our own so that you can get your packages faster. Unfortunately, USPS stopped allowing us to do this in 2021, but we're hopeful that we'll resume our own trucking sometime in 2022 so that we can save another day or two in total shipping time to you.
On average, (when we aren’t operating on unusually high order volume), it takes our fulfillment team 1-2 business days to process and assemble each order, and USPS picks up packages each weekday morning. For example, if you place your order at 5pm on Monday, your order shipment might be ready by early Tuesday afternoon, but USPS would retrieve the package on Wednesday morning.
Once the package enters the USPS delivery network, it typically takes 1-4 business days to deliver to the West Coast, 2-5 business days to Mountain and Central time zones, and 3-6 business days to the East Coast. Occasionally, a package will become stuck in transit and arrive outside of these timeframes, but these occurrences are still uncommon (about 1 in 80).
What seems to be a widespread problem has been the unreliability in package status updates. On some occasions, customers were not receiving their first shipping status update until after their packages had already been delivered. It appears that packages are not being scanned at each intermediate USPS transit point like they’re supposed to, perhaps due to the time pressure from increased shipping volume.
In response to this, we’ve researched utilizing alternative carriers such as Fedex and UPS. While their tracking systems are far superior to USPS, the overall shipping times and package loss rates were actually worse than USPS.
To end on a high note, it seems like USPS services have been improving lately. We’re hopeful that in 2022, fewer customers will have shipping related issues.
Spreading the word about Maelove
Since the beginning of Maelove, we've been fortunate to have had doctors and aestheticians try our products and mention them on their social media and to patients and clients. We're thankful that in 2021 we received tremendous support from these influential experts.
Some doctors, to name a few, who have featured us this past year are Dr. Strom / @dermarkologist, Dr. Greeney / @swolemd, Dr. Tomassian / @dr.tomassian, Dr. Walter / @denverskindoc, Dr. Porcher-Fennell / @drspf and Dr. Puza / @drcharlesmd
And we've received continued love and support from amazing beauty experts such as Angie at @hotandflashy and Elle Leary at @ellelearyartistry.
We’re thrilled to announce that a new product we released in 2020, the Moonlight Retinal Super Serum, is becoming a major hit including being awarded the Best Retinol Serum of 2021 by The Zoe Report.
When we launched Moonlight in the fall of 2020, we sold out within 6 days. By the time we were able to restock in May 2021, the waitlist grew to over 40,000 people. As of today, Moonlight is fast becoming a favorite among customers, doctors, beauty editors and influencers alike.
How we apply customer-led innovation to benefit you
You ask, and we actually listen. We believe the best aspect of being a direct-to-consumer brand is that we speak to you directly and get unfiltered feedback from customers on a daily basis, such as an overwhelming amount of requests for irritation-free retinoid products. These feedback and requests resulted directly in the creation and launches of our Moonlight and Stargaze serums.
In 2021, we introduced two brand new products to our line: the Super Smooth serum (a high-powered skin retexturizer) and Plush Cream (a featherweight moisturizer for oily skin). These launches were also the direct result of customer input, and they have quickly become two of our most popular products.
In 2022, we have a handful of new products that we are so excited to unveil to you, and we’ll let you know as we get clearer visibility on launch dates. [Hint: one serum that we'll be launching in 2022 is a product that I can't live without now. I've been testing this formula for almost a year, and it has done wonders for my own skin in helping with stubborn pigmentation.]
At Maelove, we're constantly gathering your feedback because it keeps us informed on how we can create the perfect products for you. Have a dream formula you’d love to see become a reality? Please take a moment to fill out the questionnaire here so that we can continue to bring your ideas to life.
A good regimen followed by consistency is the key to great skin
This past year, one of your top requests has been for us to offer more guidance on ingredients, products and routines.
We understand why. With a plethora of skincare products on the market, finding a simple and effective solution can be a daunting task.
We jumped into action, and have curated 4 skincare “kits” that address specific concerns - from aging, to dry and sensitive skin, acne and pigmentation.
These kits provide targeted solutions for those who want a streamlined regimen that doesn’t rely on a dozen different products, or having to chase the next “miracle” ingredient. Since the launch of our 4 main kits, we've received amazing feedback from you that they are indeed simple and effective.
Pick a kit that matches what you're looking for, and with consistent and daily use, you'll be impressed with the improvements.
In closing, we’d just like to thank you again for your continued support. We’re working hard to become a better company every day, and your feedback is one of the most valuable resources we have. If you’ve been happy with your Maelove products, we’d really appreciate it if you would tell a friend.
We’re looking forward to another year of success in 2022, and we wish you and your loved ones a happy and healthy New Year!
-Jackie Kim (CEO) and Team Maelove