Asia and blurring of boundaries trend at in-cosmetics Global 2017

By Imogen Matthews

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Beauty products Cosmetics

Asia and blurring of boundaries trend at in-cosmetics Global 2017
Shifting consumer priorities was the thread running through many of this year’s Marketing Trends presentations at the in-cosmetics Global show in London, reports event consultant Imogen Matthews.

Beauty brands across the globe are responding with innovative interpretations of traditional beauty routines and more sophisticated targeting techniques. One thing’s for sure, global beauty is far from boring and the potential for creativity has never been greater.

Asia sets the pace

Glow is synonymous with beauty across Asia, but each country has its own interpretation: in Korea “chok chok” describes the desired glow obtained after stepping out of the bath or shower, while Chinese women prefer a healthy look obtained from a rosy complexion.

A good number of Asian skincare and make-up launches are positioned to help consumers achieve their desired glow.

According to Jane Jang, global beauty and personal care analyst, Mintel, texture innovations are key, including lightweight, fast-absorbing water essences used as a first skincare step, new transformative oil to foam, powder to serum and powder to water formulations, blending and layering products, and cushion technology that deliver novel textures and formats.

Fei Xu, market intelligence director, Information et Inspiration, highlighted two emerging “glow” categories:

  • Creating definition to the cheekbones has given rise to “apple zone” products which are used to highlight, restore youth and help to define the face into a heart shape.
  • Multi-tasking tone-up creams that are invisible on the skin and deliver skincare and suncare benefits, as well as a base for make-up. Everyone is in on the act from Dior Snow to Laneige -could this be the next BB trend?

Defining beauty is no longer clear-cut

Beauty ideals are constantly changing. So today’s obsession with eradicating the signs of ageing in pursuit of youthful looks will lessen as more women embrace their age (and wrinkles).

Imogen Matthews
Imogen Matthews

Marie Alice Dibon, owner Alice Communications believes, “It’s about defining feminine values beyond pure plastic beauty.” Words such as allure, elegance, charisma and glamour will replace negative anti-ageing terminology.

Gender perception is also shifting making it less relevant for beauty products to be compartmentalized into women’s or men’s categories.

Antoinette van den Berg, trend forecaster & art director, Future-Touch, pointed out that even fashion shows are no longer making a gender differentiation. “It’s about whether she/he is going to use this product,” she argued and foresees a time when consumers are accepted, whatever their age, gender or differences.

A blurring of boundaries is also affecting the natural/organic cosmetics space. According to Jamie Mills, consumer insight analyst, GlobalData, younger consumers are proactive in personal health with food and drink playing a central role in their wellbeing.

According to GlobalData 2016 data, 33% of global consumers are actively buying beauty products containing fresh/raw ingredients. An opportunity exists for cosmetic brands to harness the “clean beauty” trend (#cleaneating is trending with 29.4m followers) by using food ingredients seen to be beneficial to health, including turmeric, kale and green tea.

Future beauty will no longer be about trying to be creative and different, but identifying much more closely with consumers’ changing wants and needs.  

*Imogen Matthews is a beauty industry commentator and report publisher.​ 

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