Cosmetics company

Revlon

(REV) - Get Report

posted a narrower-than-expected first quarter loss Wednesday, beating Wall Street's estimates by a penny.

The news helped to strengthen the company's sagging shares in morning trading. Revlon rose 1/2, or 7%, to 8 3/16.

Revlon said it lost $24.6 million, or 48 cents per diluted share, vs. $26 million, or 51 cents per share, a year ago. Analysts surveyed by

First Call/Thomson Financial

had projected a loss of 48 cents per share.

"Although our results for the first quarter show we're off to a good start, we still have some distance to go before we are satisfied with our performance," said Jeffrey M. Nugent, president and chief executive, in a statement.

The company said it intends to grow business through new product launches beginning in the third quarter.

New York-based Revlon, the No. 2 U.S. cosmetics manufacturer behind

L'Oreal

, also said it intends to "create a more exciting environment at the point of sale" and improve marketing.

Overall, net sales rose 6.1% to $468 million from $441.1 million a year ago.