The body care category has enjoyed impressive growth in the past year and is showing signs of replicating the success of the facial skin care category.
One of the residual effects of the Covid pandemic and those precarious days of lockdown means that there is now a symbiotic link between body care and wellness that shows no signs of waning.
Applying lotions and potions to the body is no longer considered a mindless chore. Instead, it’s a ritual of self-care that provides a dual function: peace of mind and smoother, happier skin.
Body care searches up by 1,025%
Research by Google Trends and Meta has revealed that there has been a colossal 1,025% increase in searches for body skin care and an impressive 845% surge in overall body care searches since December 2023.
The UK-based beauty retailer Space NK reported a staggering 847% increase in body lotion sales in 2022.
Gen Z consumers are getting in on the body care act. Influencer agency Kyra recently released an annual beauty report which surveyed 1,000 people aged between 18-25 and revealed that 57% of Gen Z consumers have a regular body care routine. Meanwhile, 65% have added another step to their body care routine – citing body lotion, salt scrub and toning mist as the top products needed.
Meanwhile, innovative brands that have made body care a major part of their business, such as Sol de Janeiro, are continuing to see record sales.
We think it’s safe to say that 2024 promises to be an exciting and dynamic time for the body care sector. So, let’s examine some of the trends that are likely to make a splash this year.
Body care trend #1: Increased intersection of body care and wellness
The connectedness between beauty and wellness is a key factor in the surge in interest in body care. This trend will no doubt continue as consumers become more invested in not only what they put on their bodies, but how their chosen beauty products and rituals make them feel mentally, spiritually, and emotionally.
“Body skincare is no longer just about surface-level enhancements; it's a ritual of self-care that nourishes not only the body but the soul”, explained Farida Irani, founder of Subtle Energies, a natural skincare and wellness solutions brand founded on Ayurveda principles.
“Whether it's the allure of decadent body creams, the invigorating power of body oils, or the soothing embrace of body masks, these products represent a holistic approach to beauty that resonates with the modern consumer.”
Body care trend #2: The skinification of body care
This year we predict that the skinification of haircare, which became a huge trend several years ago, will transmute over to the body care sector. Consumers will become increasingly mindful of the ingredients that are present in their body care products. They will also look towards time-honoured ingredients with proven efficacy and ancient wisdom.
Kim van Haaster, founder of Bloomeffects, which is the first skin care brand to harness the power of tulips, has witnessed this growing trend herself, and stated “The concept of skinification, which initially gained traction in treating the scalp and hair with the same level of careful TLC that you give to the skin on your face, has now expanded as consumers look for dedicated products with innovative formulations and advanced ingredients tailored for body care.”
Similarly, we’ll begin to see ingredients that are typically associated with facial skin care like collagen, hyaluronic acid, and retinol integrated into products for the body.
The US-based consumer trends tracker Spate reported 68% year-on-year growth in searches for collagen body lotion. It stated: “Collagen body lotion is just one of the many examples of consumers looking for ingredient-focused body products that will noticeably improve the quality of their skin. Collagen is a peptide that consumers search an average of 191.4K times a month in skincare. Now, we’re starting to see this interest trickle into body care.”
Body care trend #3: More body mists and product layering options
Research conducted by Pinterest suggests that the body care boom has developed due to consumers replicating the spa experience at home. As such, the at-home pampering experience now includes layering body lotion with complementary products such as body oils and body mists.
Body mists are predicted to experience substantial growth due to their affordability, lighter scent profiles and the ability to layer with other products.
There is also a theory that suggests our growing interest in body mists is a by-product of our collective hankering for all things ‘90s nostalgia.
UK-based fragrance manufacturer Carvansons said: “The resurgence of body mists can be attributed to a strong sense of nostalgia in the fragrance and beauty industry in 2023. Brands have revamped the format, which was popular among teenagers in the 1990s and 2000s, by creating more sophisticated and wearable versions."
The company noted how the sales of luxurious fragranced body mists have grown by 185% during the first half of 2023 in the US, according to data from Circana.
Body care trend #4: The elevation of AI beauty
Experts predict that AI will continue to permeate various aspects of how we interact with our beauty routines. Products will become more personalised as apps and our smartphones will function as tools that will keep tabs on the condition of our skin and will therefore make our products more malleable.
Mintel Research Analyst, Georgia Stafford, said that consumers now value their body skin as much as they do their facial skin and are interested in products to help tackle signs of ageing, blemishes, or atopic skin.
"More innovation in these areas will drive spending, as will encourage multi-step routines by offering product recommendations based on quizzes or AI diagnostic technology,” she concluded.