It can be challenging for manufacturers to engage consumers and achieve standout appeal, especially in an industry as emotive as personal care. In "Innovation Trends in Personal Care: Uncovering Future Opportunities," a recently released report from Datamonitor, more than half (55%) of global consumers claimed they would rather stick with a health and beauty brand that they know works for them than try a new one, heightening the need for personal care manufacturers to understand consumers needs, wants and preferences for personal care products and innovate accordingly.
One of Datamonitor’s key findings underscored the how crucial it is for personal care brands to be aware of the implications of consumers’ anti-aging, personalization, ethical, convenience, “at-home” and sensory needs for new product development.
Tom Vierhile, Datamonitor’s director of innovation insights, pointed to passages in the report that signified a number of drivers have converged to compel the growth of the natural personal care market. Among them was the finding that the personal care market is outpacing overall industry growth. “Although the natural personal care industry was not completely resistant to the recession, persistent demand among global consumers for more natural and less harmful products has ensured a rapid recovery,” the researchers stated. “Indeed, Datamonitor’s 2010 Consumer Survey shows that 52% of global consumers believe natural ingredients to be better for them, which is helping to fuel demand for natural personal care products.”
What’s more, Datamonitor said the growing trend for natural and organic personal care is being further driven by what Organic Monitor described as “the trickle-down effect,” which is the idea that consumer demand for organic and natural foods has spilled over into their beauty and personal care product choices. Just as greater attention has been paid to the kinds of foods ingested into the body, the level of attention paid to the type of products applied to the body has also increased.
Datamonitor identified the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China) as having the most rapid growth rates for natural personal care products. “The Brazilian market for natural personal care products, for instance, has shown a 20% CAGR since 2005, making it one of the fastest growing markets in the world (source: Kline & Company),” the report stated. “Asia, the largest market for natural personal care in the world, is also expected to display double-digit growth and a CAGR of close to 14% through to 2015.
“The high demand for natural personal care products in Brazil and Asia is being spurred by the widespread cultural acceptance of herbal products and natural remedies, which have for a long time been used for medicinal and therapeutic purposes in these regions. Even Russia, which was hit hard by the economic recession, is displaying slow and steady growth in its naturals market, as Russian consumers embrace a more ‘natural’ lifestyle.”
A small but steady sub-segment in personal care is the existence of do-it-yourself beauty kits that have been driven by the broader availability of high quality raw materials. Examples included under this DIY banner were Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, a company that encourages consumers to create their own make-up by packaging a mixing medium together with “pure” pigments; Herbarle’s PhytoEmulsion System facial treatments that include mix-in antioxidants and anti-aging ingredients; and DIY Cosmetics, a company that encourages consumers to have fun making their own personal care products by providing consumers with everything from the natural and raw ingredients to the packaging.
Datamonitor found consumers to be “assertively” in search of “greener” personal care products, thanks to a continued focus on environmental issues. While 37% of consumers said they actively try to buy personal care products with natural or organic ingredients “all” or “most of the time,” 79% of consumers polled believed environmental protection to be “important” or “very important,” with 63% of consumers considering ethical/environmental issues to be important purchasing attributes.