New personal care routines emerge among APAC consumers during COVID-19 quarantine, says GlobalData

COVID-19 established new routines and preferences in the beauty and grooming landscape. Consumers across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region continue to look for ways to maintain their normal lifestyles while confining themselves at home. Wellness, becoming a priority, has resulted in new form of at-home experimentation and self-expression such as new haircuts and DIY beauty products. With self-care and stress relief being key behavioral influences, brands can take this opportunity to experiment with their offerings and marketing tools, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

According to GlobalData Coronavirus (COVID-19) survey, Week 8 (12-17 May), about 45% Australians, 67% Chinese and 57% Indians are spending time on social media, while 26% Australians, 45% Chinese and 41% Indians are actively posting on social media. This implies that the ‘instagrammability’ of a product or experience is paramount, more than ever, as consumers connect through social media as their inability to express themselves outside has been replaced by online expression.

Shagun Sachdeva, Consumer insights analyst at GlobalData, highlights the beauty trends that are going to shape up in APAC.

Normal with a twist

Keeping the same ritual but with a twist is one such trend where for many consumers quarantined at home, looking their best can be a way to perform their work duties and feel better about them. At-home tutorials, over-the-top Friday looks on social media, or following beauty routines are keeping the consumers engaged and give them a sense of improved wellbeing in anxious times.

For beauty and grooming brands, it is important to understand how they can integrate their brands in this new lifestyle, while also communicating with consumers how to create a sense of normalcy at home using their products.

Embracing fresh and clean

Being indoors means consumers who might have previously been nervous about going makeup-free or leaving their hair natural, now have the opportunity to give their beauty regime a break. With limited access to some of their favorite products that might have harsh chemicals, consumers with extra time can make their own using fresh ingredients already in their kitchens.

For beauty brands, this doesn’t mean consumers will stop buying their products. Instead, brands can communicate that their offerings have simple ingredients and can be incorporated into their more simplified beauty routines.

Experimentation and uniqueness

According to GlobalData COVID-19 Week 8 (May 12-17) Consumer survey, more than 80% of Australians, Chinese and Indian consumers are always/often/sometimes influenced by how unique a product is.Thanks to social media, the quarantine can be a performativity experience with people sharing haircut videos, makeup experiments, cooking and artistic endeavors. As consumers spend time trying out new trends, this is an opportunity for brands to test out new ideas and gauge consumers’ response. Brands need to illustrate how their products can be fun, and facilitate experimentation as a way to create an at-home adventure.

Gender-neutral grooming needs

Men look at home-solutions for their grooming needs as appearance is equally important for men as it is for women and is this no less true during periods of uncertainty. The lockdown has fueled this desire even further particularly with zoom meetings and house party calls becoming increasingly popular and the ‘new norm’ as a way of keeping connected with colleagues, friends and family. This will continue to stimulate an increase in demand for at-home styling products and hair coloring kits that can offer a salon quality finish for consumers looking for professional results in the comfort and safety of their homes. Manufacturers capitalize on this by targeting a male demographic searching for products that offer a salon-finish look at home.

What’s next?

While most consumers behave in certain ways for multitude reasons, brands must show an understanding and empathy for consumers in order to meaningfully engage with their consumers during the pandemic and move forward.

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