Halal cosmetics products are becoming more popular ranging from colour cosmetics, facial care, bath and shower and hair care, while specific nail polish and fragrance solutions have been developed to deal with traditional challenges.
The increase in demand, according to Oru Mohiuddin, beauty and personal care senior analyst at Euromonitor, is that the purchasing power of the Muslim consumer has risen, and younger Muslim women demonstrate a greater interest in fashion, looking for ways to combine it with their religious practices with fashion in compliance with Islamic rituals.
Mohiuddin says that this means there are also good opportunities in this market segment as it is still not a very crowded space.
"There is no longer an issue of opportunity for some multinationals" - Oru Mohiuddin
“While local players are tapping into the segment in their respective markets, there are scopes in the western countries with a large Muslim population,” she tells CosmeticsDesign-Europe.com.
“In addition, in South East Asia where the segment is being tapped into there are opportunities to extend to a wider range of categories. There are strong prospects in categories such as oral care free of pig fat.”
At present the halal cosmetics segment is relatively free of the multinational players, which may be down to local players having a better understanding of the religion; however Mohiuddin says Unilever is considering it, and that there is good scope for Colgate and P&G too.
“This segment is mostly populated by local players. Some well-known ones are Wardah in Indonesia, IBA in India, Layla Mandi in North America,” she continues.
It is because of Wardah and IBA, which are denting the Anglo-Dutch giant’s share in their respective markets, that Unilever will be taking a serious look at halal cosmetics.
“This means there is no longer an issue of opportunity for some multinationals,” says Mohiuddin. “Companies such as Unilever are left with not much option other than to enter the segment given their shares are potentially threatened in markets where they have a strong presence.”
If they were to make the move, what impact, if any, would it have?
“This is unclear,” answers Mohiuddin. “There are a few factors – would consumers trust a multinational with Islamic products over a local player who is likely to have a better understanding of the religion.”
“Also for the larger players would it make sense for them to target this segment in terms of scale and do they really have the understanding of the consumer base.”
Another factor is that it is not just the formulation that is important, but also the marketing message.
“Wardah has launched a range for Hajj/Umrah and this shows the company’s in depth understanding of the segment to have the insight to launch product ranges for the said rituals,” adds Oru. “In this aspect, local players may have an edge over multinationals.”