The Index tracks the official fan pages of more than 700 fashion brands, the results of which are updated daily.
The results are divided into platinum, gold, silver and bronze categories, with brands in the platinum category boasting over 100,000 fans.
For March 2010, cosmetics brand MAC had the greatest number of fans (542,613) – more than double that of the second most popular brand, Carol’s Daughter.
Social media can help boost sales
According to Stylophane, the use of Facebook to promote a brand can help influence consumer behaviour and increase purchases both online and offline.
The company also points to the potential of Facebook ads for increasing the number of fans a brand can attract.
If a user joins the fan page as a result of viewing an advert, this action is logged on the advert itself, which means friends of the user can see this action, prompting them to also become a fan of the brand.
Significant for natural and organic brands
The Index showed that cosmetics companies in the natural and organic sector - including Bare Escentuals, Burt’s Bees and Aveda - were amongst the top ten brands in terms of popularity.
According to market researcher Organic Monitor, the potential of social media is of particular significance to natural and organic personal care companies as they sometimes struggle to communicate their brand or product values to consumers.
This channel also represents an opportunity for smaller brands that lack the marketing budget of larger companies, which is also relevant to natural and organic companies as they are often small with strong ethical values.
Internet offers new ways to connect with consumers
According to Stylophane, 62 per cent of Facebook users are between the ages of 18-34, representing an ideal opportunity for brands wishing to target this particular demographic.
However, the social network site is just one of the ways cosmetics companies can use the internet to connect with consumers, with other examples including the use of virtual makeover applications, online beauty tutorials, and iPhone applications.
MAC has seen success with its beauty tutorials on YouTube, and Mary Kay and Estée Lauder have launched virtual makeover applications.
The makeover applications attempt to replicate the in-store experience by allowing consumers to upload a photo of themselves and test products virtually.