The success of influencers, a growing interest in sustainability, and more demand for transparency are some of the trends affecting the global color cosmetics market.
2/3 of young U.K. women want info on eco-friendly beauty products
Global sales of color cosmetics are expected to reach $48.3 billion in 2018, up 6% from $45.5 billion in 2017, according to new research from Mintel. The firm forecasts the top five color cosmetics markets in 2018 to be:
- U.S. (US$ 12.1 bn)
- Japan (US$ 6.4 bn)
- China (US$ 5.1 bn)
- U.K. (US$ 2.7 bn)
- South Korea (US$ 2.2 bn)
Influencers becoming more influential
At the 28th edition of in-cosmetics Global, an exhibition for personal care ingredients that kicked off on April 17 in Amsterdam, Mintel’s global color cosmetics analyst Charlotte Libby presented the very latest trends in color cosmetics. She identifies the hottest macro-trends in the category: social media, sustainability, transparency, and hybridization.
34% of Brazilian Millennials want to support social causes with their purchases
When speaking on social media, Libby points to the growing success of influencers. These include 41% of Chinese color cosmetics users are influenced by celebrity beauty bloggers and vloggers to buy products.
Other research from Mintel shows 66% of women in the U.K. aged 16-24 say it’s easy to learn new beauty techniques from the Internet and 31% of German make-up users aged 16-24 wear make-up to feel trendy.
“The success of influencers has shown that people buy the personality, and not simply the products,” Libby says. “It has become more important for brands to have a personality, to showcase their founders, and tell their story to be relatable for consumers. Social media gives brands a way to give customers behind-the-scenes access to their culture.”
As fashions change, new ‘selfie-friendly’ zones of the face are receiving more attention, Libby says.
“Eye make-up is moving away from the lids, with the brow bone and inner eye corners growing in popularity as focus points for bright and bold colors.,” she adds. “Meanwhile, the YouTube-born ‘boy beat’ complexion trend is catching on, encouraging make-up users to switch to sheer bases and embrace so-called flaws such as freckles, pigmentation or dark circles.”
Focus on sustainability
Sustainability is having an impact too. Mintel research shows 66% of U.K. female beauty buyers aged 16-24 want retailers to give them more information about which beauty products are environmentally friendly and 24% of Italian women have bought natural and organic make-up in the past year.
67% of Chinese women want to minimize make-up steps
The beauty industry’s shift towards natural and organic products will have a unique impact on color cosmetics, leading to increased attention on product origin and quality of ingredients. Brands will be expected to demonstrate their ethical policies and consideration of resources and alternatives. For instance, many glitters found in color cosmetics contain non-biodegradable microplastics. As consumer awareness around the negatives of microplastics grows, glitter in make-up will be subject to more scrutiny, Libby says.
“Consumers are drawn to brands that act responsibly,” Libby says. “Attempting to reduce the carbon footprint by tackling waste is an area in which color cosmetics brands can innovate.”
Alternative materials like bamboo, coconut husk and rice bran have been a growing trend in packaging. As well as appealing to consumers looking for environmentally-friendly products, they have the added benefit of standing out on the shelves where plastic and glass is the norm, she adds.
Millennials seek transparency
Consumers also want transparency. This is especially true of Millennials. According to Mintel, research shows 34% of Brazilian Millennials aged 19-35 say they prefer to buy from brands that support social causes and 39% of U.S. women aged 18-34 think brands that support charities are trying to make themselves look better.
Multipurpose female beauty products interest 41% of U.S. buyers
“As global politics becomes more divisive, consumers want to be sure the companies and brands they buy from align with their personal views,” Libby says. “As a result, an increasing number of brands are making their political views known and embarking on more action-led initiatives, such as charitable donations. This trend is expected to become more prevalent in 2018. Rather than just offering products, brands need to offer a way to support the world.”
While younger audiences are most likely to seek out brands that align with their beliefs and values, they can also be the most cynical, fearing charitable brands are disingenuous. Consumers need confirmation that this is a genuine positioning. Hence, a strategy involving charitable donations needs to be long term and treated appropriately, becoming part of the core business of the company, she says.
Make-up meets skincare
What else do consumers want? Mintel sees a growing demand for hybridization. Backing this up, stats from the firm include 67% of Chinese women want to minimize make-up steps and 41% of U.S. female beauty buyers would be interested in multi-purpose beauty products. Another 41% of French women think that the environment (eg pollution, cold weather) affects the appearance of the skin.
As consumer demand for make-up with skincare benefits increases, there is more opportunity for brands to develop hybridization between categories. As part of growing concerns around pollution, face make-up can act as another layer of protection. Hence, it is important that color cosmetics incorporate skincare benefits such as hydration and UV protection, Libby says.
“Probiotics also have a chance to grow; a prominent trend in skincare, connecting good bacteria to healthy skin, they are increasingly being used in color cosmetics too,” she says.