World market of cosmetics and toiletries: main trends of international trade

World market of cosmetics and toiletries: main trends of international trade

Related tags Personal care International trade Cosmetics

In this guest article, Tatiana Gladenkova, a PhD research student at the Moscow State University, presents the findings of her research into the shifting nature of trade in the global cosmetics industry.

Beauty and personal care is one of the most important branches of the world chemical industry, distinguished by its scale (in fine chemistry follows pharmacy by its output), its high rate of development, and its strong, science-based innovation.

The specifics of the industry include the creation of consumer products, meeting human daily needs, high transportability, and active involvement in international trade.

Currently in the beauty and personal care industry, an intensive process of globalization and a resulting profound change in structural and territorial aspects is taking place.

The beauty and personal care markets of the Asia-Pacific region, particularly South-Eastern and Southern Asia, are distinguished by high rates of economic development, and are becoming more and more significant.

In 2015, approximately 35% of world beauty and personal care goods were consumed by these regions (compared with 20% in 2000). Much higher rates of demand on the products of this industry are also observed in the region of Middle East. Overall, the share taken by developing countries of the global market is constantly increasing.

As such, it seems to be urgent to analyze the changes in the geography of the international beauty and personal care trade – in particular, the export trade – in order to predict general prospects of the development of the industry.

For this purpose, we have analyzed the changes of the international trade of the countries, the major exporters of beauty and personal care goods in 1990-2015.

From our results, we drew the following conclusions:

The traditional European beauty and personal care suppliers, such as France, the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and etc., experienced a relative decrease of European product market on the background of increase of the role of remote markets, including countries of Eastern, South-Eastern and Southern Asia, and the Middle East.

The main reason for this process has been the rapid rate of growth of demand for beauty and personal care products in Asian countries, in contrast to the relatively slow one in Europe.

The opposite tendency characterizes the process that is taking place in major industry exporter countries outside of Europe, such as Asia (China, Japan, South Korea, India), North America (USA) and Latin America (Brazil, Mexico, Argentina).

It is the increase of the role of the internal regional product markets against the background of a relative decrease in the role of remote markets. Besides the factor of unequal rates of the demand rise in different regions, the distance factor can still play the important role in the distribution of trade streams.

The practical significance of this research involves the possibility of using obtained results for the development of business plans for world beauty and personal care industry, its branches and manufactures, and policy in the sphere of international trade.

The conclusions dealing with the beauty and personal care industry perspectives can become the foundation for working out the models of the development of production and distribution by multinational beauty and personal care companies.

Gladenkova’s rcomplete research is titled 'International beauty and personal care trade: the main trends in its geography of the end of XX – beginning of XXI century’. It is currently under peer review, to be edited in the journal ‘Vestnik of Moscow State University’.

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