Beauty in Transition

The beauty market is transitioning as women fall out of love with the cosmetic beauty model.

Tomorrow's beauty market will rest on three pillars wellness, technological and cosmetic beauty.

Scientific skincare now displacing traditional beauty products.

Wellness and technological beauty are guaranteed to be the next big skincare trends. The beauty market which, until recently, was almost exclusively cosmetic, will rest on the three pillars of wellness, technological and cosmetic beauty for the foreseeable future. Although both new beauty pillars have originated from outside 'the cosmetic box', they have been the growth drivers of the skincare market.

Women worldwide are falling out of love with, and moving away from, the cosmetic beauty model. They are willing to experiment with alternatives which, they believe, can deliver dramatic improvements to their skin condition and appearance. This change happened under the radar as both wellness and technological beauty were popularized by spas tapping into a rich seam of consumer demand and market opportunities.

Wellness has been competing for beauty spending for many years. It was early 2000 when we first noted that salon professionals (in the US, Europe and China) were providing wellness or 'beauty from within' services. Beauty spas were the platform which rolled out innovative treatments based on reducing stress or increasing energy to deliver a younger looking skin. Since then we have been documenting how changes in buyer behaviour created a sector worth billions.

More recently, and at the other end of the spectrum, it is beauty technology which is transforming the inherited (cosmetic) beauty culture. Here, devices and tools (e.g., cleansing brush, IPL, laser) are being incorporated into daily skincare regimes because they deliver effective and efficient results. The era of the superfacial has arrived. But as long ago as 2006, we identified that devices were being added to spa treatment protocols because of dissatisfaction with traditional products. Demand for new solutions was so widespread that we called it the "Botox Effect".

Changes in spending will transform companies' fortunes because skincare can account for up to 50% of all beauty product sales in some key markets. Wellness and technological beauty are already impacting on what many people want from their products, making even the most conservative of cosmetic beauty buyers more open than ever to new skincare technologies and formulations. Our research shows that consumers in mature markets are adopting new products while their counterparts in developing markets are taking their own traditions with them.

Scientific skincare has been both the engine and beneficiary of this market change. It is displacing cosmetic products traditionally used for facial care (especially cleansing and moisturising). Scientific skincare developed under the radar and so remains somewhat misunderstood by the industry. For starters this is really an umbrella category which melds cosmetic, medical and also natural skincare. In consequence, the value of scientific skincare sales has been seriously underestimated because so many small players account for, in aggregate, a significant market share.

Contact us for fuller information on our end of year Compilation of Skincare Trends Report which includes 1) Scientific Skincare, 2) Wellness / Beauty from Within and 3) Technological Beauty.