According to the latest research from Mintel, facial skin care sales are set to reach £1bn (€1.14bn) having seen a healthy growth of 26 per cent in the last five years.
And the report also found that with only two per cent of British women turning to cosmetic surgery, the majority appear to be relying on facial skin care to assist appearance.
Skin care a ‘vital weapon’
“Facial skincare remains a vital weapon in women's appearance improvement and maintenance armoury,” said Michelle Strutton, senior consumer analyst at Mintel.
“Only a very tiny minority of women have had surgical treatments to improve their appearance, which leaves topical treatments, cosmetics and lifestyle adjustments the main tools available to women hoping to look their best from youth through to later life.”
The study found that over six in ten women aged over 65 use products to look better for their age, which Mintel stated underscores the notion that pride in a person’s looks is not only the realm of the young.
Women aged 55-64 (57 per cent) are most likely to use skin care to deal with wrinkles and fine lines, followed by 55 per cent of women aged over 65.
This trend has had a positive impact on the industry, with high growth seen between 2006 and 2010, and furthermore, over the next five years, the market is set to grow a further 31 per cent to reach £1.3bn by 2016.
In terms of product, moisturisers account for 59 per cent of all women’s facial skin care sales. The anti-ageing or anti-wrinkle variety are unsurprisingly the most popular type.
Cleansers are the second biggest sector, with wipes - the country’s most popular cleansing format - generating close to a fifth of all facial skin care sales.
Sales of facial skin care products are divided between Mass products (61 per cent) valued at £584m in 2011 and Prestige products (39 per cent) - valued at £380m - sales of the latter having increased
“While mass-market skincare has the edge on prestige, higher-end products are gaining despite the gloomy economic environment. The entire category may be invigorated even further by the arrival of BB Creams (Blemish Balm Creams) which have enjoyed great success in Asia for several years and are now hitting shelves in the UK,” added Strutton.