What is halal skin care and makeup, and what are the trends?

By Lucy Whitehouse

- Last updated on GMT

What is halal skin care and makeup, and what are the trends?

Related tags Islam

Halal is becoming big business for the beauty industry globally, and particularly in Asia: a central focus for this week’s in-cosmetics Korea event, we take a closer look at the trend.

Ahead of the trade show opening its doors today​, CosmeticsDesign got the exclusive low-down of the major trends up ahead from event speaker, Kunal Mahajan, project manager for Chemicals & Energy at Kline.

Firstly, what makes a product halal?

Halal is an Arabic term in Islamic law used to describe items that are considered acceptable for consumption or use, Mahajan explains.

“Although commonly associated with food and beverages, halal in fact applies to all aspects of life for the practitioners of Islam, including items such as pharmaceuticals, personal care, skincare and hair care products,”​ he says.

“Even materials that come into contact with food, like packaging or machinery, need to adhere to certain rules. Personal care products containing alcohol ingredients, derivatives and ingredients from animals that were slaughtered in a non-halal way, are considered as non-halal products.”

Why is halal suddenly rising to prominence now as a trend in cosmetics? Why hasn't it happened sooner?

Economic and changing consumer lifestyle are two key reasons that have contributed to this change, according to Mahajan.  

As the economies of countries in Asia, which have sizeable Muslim populations, have grown, consumers, especially those who are Muslim, have started demanding higher quality products. Those of the younger Muslim population who are better educated and have more awareness and empowerment have further contributed to the growth of halal cosmetics.

Halal products are also associated with values such as social responsibility, care towards environment, animal welfare and so on. As these values have resonated well with non-Muslim consumers, it has helped the category grow.

“Lastly, increased marketing efforts have helped manufacturers maximise the opportunity from this category,”​ the market expert explains.

Do you have any key predictions for the halal trend in personal care?

Mahajan reckons that globally, halal will pick up in a big way as awareness among consumers grows, and so too do disposable incomes in developing countries. The top growth regions will, not unexpectedly, be the Middle East and Asia, particularly South Asia and Southeast Asia.

Brands looking to tap into the trend will need to be aware of the strict accreditation process that any products claiming to be halal have to meet.

“The entire supply chain including handling, packaging, storage, distribution and labelling, will have to meet the criteria to be branded as Halal cosmetics. Manufacturers will have to look into these aspects, especially as the awareness levels among consumers increase,”​ Mahajan concludes.

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