Diagonal Reports' Global Salon Panel (1998) interviewed experts representing 57 million salon visits in 12 countries. This survey reviewed haircare trends, evaluated demand for services and products, and assessed company and brand performance. Our research identified a consumer segment with important growth potential - ageing baby-boomers.

Demand from ageing baby-boomers is growing the haircare market. These consumers are frequent users of the most expensive service and products, (eg, colouring, styling and perming). Further, older consumers - conscious that the prolonged use of products could damage or prematurely age hair - are the most intensive users of a wide range of treatments (eg, products to deal with thinning hair, hair loss, dryness and to prevent damage). Indeed, in France it is mainly women over 40 who buy expensive products in salons.

Globally, ageing baby boomers are a large and diverse consumer group. They include "stay-at-home moms", and working and retired people. In Germany and Italy older women are the main consumer segment with sufficient time to visit salons.

Greying baby-boomers (women and men) drive the double-digit growth for salon colouring services. Unlike younger, fashion colourers older people must colour regularly to cover grey.

Workplace pressures are an increasingly important motivation for colouring. The desire to look more youthful is particularly strong among middle-class, metropolitan professionals who are concerned about "looking old" in image conscious workplaces. This concerns becomes acute, even for men, whenever there is major job insecurity.

Product improvements can grow the market. Globally greying baby-boomers want longer-lasting colourants which would deal more effectively with grey and white hair. This is particularly important for Asian consumers. There is also demand for natural colours (eg, brown, blonde and red) Older consumers respond better to less aggressive advertising.

Vol. 2.No. 5. MCMXCIX Copyright 1998 Diagonal Reports Ltd.