Brand story: The recent APAC developments from the biggest names in beauty

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Most-read stories on the activities of the big-name beauty brands in the region. [HUL / Love Beauty and Planet]
Most-read stories on the activities of the big-name beauty brands in the region. [HUL / Love Beauty and Planet]

Related tags Brands Estée lauder LG Household & Healthcare Hindustan unilever kao corp

We round up our most-read stories on the activities of the big-name beauty brands in the region, featuring news updates from Estée Lauder, LG Household & Health Care, Hindustan Unilever and more.

1 – Vegan boost: LG H&H’s first vegan make-up brand completes line-up with seven new product launches

LG Household & Health Care’s has completed the product line-up of its first-ever vegan make-up​ brand, Belif x VDL, with the addition of seven more products to the existing line-up.

LG Household & Health Care (LG H&H) is a South Korean personal care conglomerate that owns a host of international beauty brands including History of Whoo, The Face Shop and Su:m37.

Belif x VDL is the company’s first vegan make-up brand that made its debut in August this year.

The brand was billed as a special collaboration between the firm’s skin care brand Belif, and make-up brand VDL that focuses on sustainable beauty with ‘clean’ ingredients.

2 – ‘Substantial shrinkage’: Kao reports skin care sales dip as hand hygiene demand falls

Japanese firm Kao Corporation has recorded a sales decline in skin care in the third quarter as the demand for hand soaps and sanitisers tumbled​.

The firm’s health and beauty division saw sales decrease 4.8% on a like-for-like basis to JPY261.2bn (U$2,29bn) in the third quarter of its financial year while operating profit dropped JPY6.1bn (U$53.6m) to JPY41.3bn (U$490m) in the nine months ending September 30.

It attributed the slump to the falling demand for hygiene-related products.

Sales of hygiene products grew tremendously last year due to the heightened awareness of hygiene triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

3 – Hindustan Unilever ramping up ‘innovation intensity’ with premium brands Simple, Love Beauty and Planet

Hindustan Unilever has teased an “aggressive plan” with more new innovations in from its premium beauty portfolio​, which consist of brands such as Simple, Love Beauty and Planet and Baby Dove.

The Premium Beauty Business Unit is an incubator set up within the HUL ecosystem.

“The Premium Beauty Business Unit is not just about building brands, but this is also about incubating capabilities. Some of these are having an agile innovation model to pick up trends on the fly, launch the product in minimal time, scaling it up as it succeeds, building a supply chain for small like nano-factory setups and flexible supply chain to provide agility,”​ said Sanjiv Mehta, chairman and managing director, Hindustan Unilever (HUL)

This unit has launched products such as booster serums under Simple and a sulphate-free hair care range with onion and apple cider vinegar under Love Beauty and Planet.

4 – Reinforcing recovery: Kosé outlines plans to maintain Tarte sales recovery from COVID-19 pandemic

Japanese cosmetics firm Kosé Corp is expecting the performance of Tarte Cosmetics to be “better than expected”​ this year and has plotted strategies to maintain the brand’s post-pandemic recovery​.

Sale of Tarte Cosmetics improved by 6.8% to JPY15.6bn (U$136.5m) in the first half of the firm’s 2021 fiscal year as consumer spending in North America and Europe recovered with the end of pandemic restrictions.

This stabilised the prestige make-up market and Tarte observed strong repeated sales rates for concealers like its Shape Tape Contour Concealer.

In 2014, Kosé acquired a 93.5% stake in Tarte Cosmetics for a reported U$135m to gain a foothold in the US market.

5 – Estée Lauder Q1: APAC sales grow 10% despite impact of COVID-19 resurgence

The Estée Lauder Companies recorded organic net sales growth of 10% in Asia Pacific despite the wave of COVID-triggered lockdowns​ that hit the region, driven by the strong performance of China and South Korea.

The region overall experienced higher levels of lockdowns in this quarter due to the rise of the Delta variant.

In China, sales growth was also curtailed in China in July and August due to COVID-19 restrictions.  Additionally, online sales growth slowed following the 6.18 shopping festival and in anticipation of 11.11.

During this time, Hainan traffic was also impacted, hitting the travel retail sector. However, once restrictions were lifted, sales picked up “almost immediately,”​ said Tracey Travis, executive VP and CFO.

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