1 December 2015

Mintel outlines four emerging global beauty trends

Looking ahead to 2025, Mintel Beauty and Personal Care (BPC) has announced four key trends set to impact global beauty markets over the next decade, with implications for both consumers and brands.

In a future where the line between human and technological device blurs, water becomes a protected resource, energy concerns strengthen and natural ingredients take centre stage, beauty brands must innovate to stay relevant, the research consultancy says.

Jane Henderson, Global President of the Beauty and Personal Care Division at Mintel, said: “We are living in exciting times with revolutionary advancements in technology, brand partnerships and product development. However, we think the coming years will bring stark contrasts in personal technology and natural ingredients that will drive beauty innovation over the next decade. Already, beauty manufacturers are working on new generations of beauty products that will satisfy consumers needs for speed and efficacy.”

The line between human and technological device is blurring as smart technology puts consumers in greater control of their individual health and beauty needs. Mintel believes that a bathroom laboratory is closer to existing than consumers might think thanks to ongoing work in augmented and virtual reality, diagnostics, and customised formulations.

The rise in popularity of wearable technology has given consumers unprecedented insight into the inner workings of their own body. Mintel research shows that 18% of Chinese consumers own a wearable device, for example.

Vivienne Rudd, Director of Insight, Beauty and Personal Care at Mintel, said: “As consumers become increasingly familiar with using technology to track their health and well-being, they are looking for beauty brands to offer products and devices that boast similar functionality. New product development in augmented reality is providing the next step in virtual mirrors and real-time visualisation of the effects of beauty products on the skin and hair. What’s more, wearables will increasingly become part of the body, from micro patches that monitor skin condition to ingestibles that send information to connected devices from the stomach, tracking the movement and efficacy of beauty supplements. However, as new technology enables consumers to track the impact of beauty products, brands will be under greater pressure to prove efficacy.”

Water is set to become a precious commodity as consumption outstrips supply. Beauty brands will need to change how they manufacture and formulate products to limit their dependence on water. Where water was once an essential part of some beauty regimes, new environmental formulations require little or no extra water in order to function.

“Our research shows growing consumer interest in alternative water sources that do not place any additional strain on existing resources, and we will see brands scour the earth to find them in order to gain a competitive edge. These products can be positioned as eco-friendly, as well as a source of exclusivity. Brands will not only source water from different oceans, lagoons and glaciers, but they will climb mountains and harvest fogs to gain the purest possible droplets.

"The key to beauty brands’ success lies in younger consumers’ adoption of these innovative measures. They must appeal to their youthful idealism, passion and desire to change the world with products that clearly state how they are addressing the issue of water shortages. There will also be a greater need for brands to help consumers control their water usage, and transparency will be come to the forefront like never before.” Rudd continued.

As energy levels become a key concern for consumers around the world, Mintel forecasts that beauty brands will need to partner with food, drink and leisure brands to create synergistic healthy living product ranges with ingredients and claims that complement one another.

"Energy efficiency claims will also be key in the coming decade as consumers battle against fatigue. Brands must tangibly illustrate how their products can impact consumer energy levels for the better, though work on energy-boosting products is already underway, particularly in skincare and haircare products," Rudd said. "We should expect to see more haircare brands improve the condition and longevity of the hair by stimulating cellular energy. A new generation of colour cosmetics will also emerge, enhancing the energy levels of the skin as well as its outer appearance.”

The saying goes, ‘it’s what’s on the inside that counts’, and there is no better way of knowing the ingredients of a product than preparing it yourself. Beauty products are coming out from the shadows of laboratories and into the spotlight of consumers’ kitchen counters. Attitudinal changes toward natural ingredients have acted as a catalyst in the rise of ‘kitchen beauty’ – products that can be made at the kitchen table, but still reflect the latest beauty styles – and is driven by a desire for consumers to feel in control of their beauty products. “Traditional beauty and personal care remedies are moving into the mainstream as more and more consumers start to ‘cook up’ their own versions. Brands will need to shift their focus to highlight artisanal processes while also making it easier for consumers to make products at home," Rudd said.

"Looking at the decade ahead, we’ll see brands borrow inspiration from the meal kits developed by food companies, propelling the subscription beauty box model to the next level. As well as beauty brands partnering with homewares brands to create kitchen devices and storage products that have beauty brand approval. With the ever growing interest in pursuing more natural lifestyles, consumers will find themselves getting involved in the creation process to ensure their beauty and personal care products are more transparent.”


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