Asia’s aging population continues to grow at an unprecedented rate, and the beauty industry has taken notice of this shift in demographics. New research from global market intelligence agency Mintel reveals that, in 2016, 37% of global beauty and personal-care (BPC) launches with anti-aging claims were launched in Asia Pacific (APAC), up from 28% in 2014. This makes APAC the second most active region for anti-aging BPC innovation after Europe (40%), according to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD).
In APAC, South Korea and Japan are leading the charge in anti-aging BPC launches, each country accounting for 23% of APAC anti-aging BPC launches between 2014 and 2016, according to Mintel GNPD. Following closely on their heels is China at 22%, while Thailand at 7% and India at 6% round out the top five Asian markets for anti-aging BPC innovation.
- In 2016, 37% of the world’s beauty and personal-care launches with anti-aging claims were launched in Asia Pacific.
- Two in five urban Chinese female consumers aged 20-24 use anti-aging skincare products.
- Anti-aging facial skincare launches with an anti-pollution claim saw a 15% rise in Asia Pacific from 2015 to 2016.
U.K. still accounts for largest global market share
Globally, the U.K. takes up the largest share of the pie, accounting for 16% of the world’s BPC innovation with anti-aging claims between 2014 and 2016. Comparatively, in the same time period, South Korea and Japan each account for 8% of all global anti-aging BPC launches respectively, and China at 7%. While the U.K. leads globally, Mintel GNPD reveals that anti-aging BPC innovation in the country has seen a year-on-year dip: 19% in 2014; 17% in 2015; and 12% in 2016.
South Korea, Japan. and China each have a rapidly graying population, notes Sharon Kwek, senior beauty and personal care innovation and insights analyst at Mintel. “It makes sense that these North Asian markets are at the forefront of anti-aging beauty within Asia Pacific. The region’s growing silver generation is opening up opportunities for beauty and personal-care brands looking to capitalize on the ‘gray wave.’ In Japan, beauty and personal brands are designing age-specific skincare products targeted toward the mature consumer, for instance.”
Meanwhile, younger consumers are starting to use anti-aging products as a preventive measure against early signs of aging. Intel research shows 30% of urban Chinese consumers aged 20-49 describe their current skin condition as showing early signs of wrinkles or lines, while 39% of Chinese females aged 20-24 report using anti-aging skincare products. In Thailand, 45% and 48% of metro male consumers aged 18 and over are concerned about the appearance of wrinkles and age spots respectively.
Idealism, environmental concerns drive purchases
“An even skin tone that’s free from age spots and wrinkles has long been considered the ideal among many in Asia. This quest for the ideal is encouraging younger Asians to use skincare products to delay and combat early signs of aging. Younger consumers are increasing their use of anti-aging products. Brands can successfully appeal to this target market by offering anti-aging solutions that address the lifestyle and environmental stressors to which they are commonly exposed,” Sharon says.
Over half (55%) of urban females in Thailand think the environment—including pollution—influences the appearance of skin, according to Mintel. Environmental concerns have led to the addition of new protection claims within the anti-aging BPC space, particularly against pollution. According to Mintel GNPD, launches of anti-aging facial skincare products with an anti-pollution claim increased from 20% in 2015 to 35% in 2016 in APAC.
“Anti-pollution has been a hot topic of late and the possible effects of pollution on the skin’s health, such as the acceleration of aging, are recognized by many across the world. The time is ripe for beauty and personal-care brands to align with this by innovating and launching anti-aging beauty and personal care products with protection claims,” Sharon says.