APAC beauty industry reviews inclusivity and focuses on social issues as market set to reach US$94.4bn by 2024, says GlobalData

The Asia-Pacific (APAC) beauty industry is reviewing its inclusivity and focusing on social issues in response to changing consumer attitudes influenced by recent social movements such as the Black Lives Matter (BLM), according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Asia-Pacific was the largest and fastest growing beauty market in 2019, dominated by skincare segment that is projected to reach US$94.4bn by 2024 from US$72.8bn in 2019, at a CAGR of 5.5%, while the facial care market is set to reach US$86bn by 2024 from US$66.3bn in 2019, at a CAGR of 5.3%. This implies that the huge demand for facial care products in APAC is apparent and brands would be eager to gain a competitive edge. However, brands will have to ensure that their products and marketing campaigns represent inclusivity, be it in terms of gender, age, and color, acting as the key towards smashing stereotypes.

Shagun Sachdeva, Consumer Insights Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Major social movements in the recent times have undoubtedly laid the groundwork for long-term change in the beauty industry by pushing consumers towards values-based consumption. With more emphasis on the need to build diverse and inclusive landscapes, beauty brands are undertaking commendable efforts to retool their portfolios and make amendments in their marketing campaigns.”

We can expect the skin-lightening products sector, which is often associated with non-inclusive messaging, to decline significantly in the coming time. Leading brands such as Johnson & Johnson discontinued fairness and skin lightening creams, while others such as Unilever and L’Oreal removing words such as ‘white’, ‘fair’ and ‘light’ from skin-evening products. Such bold and quick response from the big beauty brands will trigger a domino effect in other brands too.

Sachdeva adds: “Brands have started to realise that one-size-fits-all approach in beauty fails to truly resonate with consumers. Along with brands’ efforts in terms of inclusive advertising campaigns and more diverse shade ranges, customization will be one key differentiator for them to being truly inclusive. Opportunity clearly lies for brands not only in terms of creating inclusive beauty offerings, but also to justify more premium price points.”

In APAC, beauty brands might face challenges in certain country markets to run diverse beauty campaigns due to deeply ingrained beauty standards. Therefore, localized approach can work in favour of brands.

Sachdeva concludes: “While it is difficult to anticipate the long term influence social movements will have on the APAC beauty industry, inclusive beauty concept is certainly here to stay, be it in form of inclusive formulations, marketing campaigns, or even technology-enhanced customizable options.”

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