Why Are Health and Beauty Sales Increasing So Much as of Late?
We can all recognize just how much every area of life has changed in the past two years, but we may be less aware of how much health and beauty product sales have increased at a rapid rate lately, largely due to those changes in our world.
When you consider this fact, you probably realize that your own purchasing of health and/or beauty products has expanded as well, and if this is the case, you are certainly not the only one! All around the world, health and beauty products have been flying off the shelves–in many cases figuratively, since many of these sales took place solely online through e-commerce stores. But chances are you have also visited a physical store in the past few months and found that the shelves carrying health or beauty items were rather bare.
Why does a certain industry suddenly experience a rapid uptick in sales? The reasons can vary widely and sometimes all circle around the same larger picture cause, which is why we’ve brought this question before experts in the beauty and health industries. These authorities in their fields have experienced the rise in sales more sharply than anyone else, so they have a deep understanding of what exactly is going on behind the scenes. Let’s find out what factors are causing health and beauty products to be in such high demand.
Customer Needs Have Shifted, Contributing to the Economic Impact
“The $500 billion health and beauty industry has shifted and adapted with changing consumer needs and demands throughout the ongoing pandemic.
“Although 2021 witnessed a sharp decline in beauty sales related to color cosmetics (makeup), skincare products have become a major trend as more people focus on their health and wellness at home instead of attending social engagements.
“The economic impact of the current crisis is expected to continue to hit the beauty industry hard, but it is do-it-yourself and self-care health and beauty products, such as AI-enabled skincare, that are influencing current sales growth,” says Rachel Roff, Founder and CEO of Urban Skin Rx
Skin Care is the Priority
“The beauty industry has had to adapt to the differing priorities their customers feel during a global pandemic. For two years now we have been in the middle of the storm, but for most of us 2020 felt the most challenging and confusing as we learned to adapt to being in lockdown for months on end. Our social lives became vastly different and therefore so did the way we cared about beauty trends, because we weren’t going out anymore. Instead we were spending a lot of time looking at ourselves on screens or in the mirror, and became acquainted with our bare skin again. Most of us barely touched makeup and instead began to realize our need for good skin care, so much so that the skincare industry grew by 13%, while the makeup industry by only 1%. With the wearing of masks also came cases of maskne, often in people who hadn’t broken out regularly in years. So skincare became pretty much the only beauty trend we cared about. This mentality of taking care of our skin rather than just covering it up has lasted into 2021, and will stretch into 2022 at just as strong of a pace, I believe,” says Maegan Griffin, Founder, CEO, and Nurse Practitioner of Skin Pharm.
People Are Having Fun With Beauty Looks Now That They Have Places to Go
“The health and beauty industries are experiencing increased sales right now because people feel a renewed zest regarding their appearances again. After spending so much time inside and without social lives of any kind (for many people, not even being able to go into their workplace), I think consumers are eager to enjoy playing around with makeup and hair care again. We are tentatively interacting in the world again and people just ask themselves, why not go all out to go to the store? Why not have fun with my appearance for that event coming up?” says Ann McFerran, CEO of Glamnetic.
Consumers Are Eager to Shop for All Areas of Beauty Products Again
“If you think about everything, from body wash to deodorant, to a fragrance you might want for a special date night to everything in between, we have an opportunity to engage with so many guests because of the relevance and breadth of a category like beauty. For years, we’ve been noticing our guests’ interest level in products free from certain chemicals has been growing and that came to life primarily in our curation of natural beauty, but the evolution continues and they also want to see even more. But they also want clarity around helping them find those offerings on Target.com and in our stores,” says Christina Hennington, Chief Growth Officer of Target.
Our Love of Beauty Products Has Returned
“Now that we are cautiously going out more into social situations, we once again are interested in beauty products that aid in our confidence and are fun to experiment with. Sales of cosmetic products were at a low during the height of the covid pandemic because no one was interacting in person with others, but that doesn’t mean many of us do not still have a love of playing around with our appearances and participating in beauty trends. Sales of cosmetics are lifting once more, and may even come to be in higher demand than before. For example, nail polish sales declined but then rose in numbers in 2020 when people were giving themselves at-home manicures. The same is proving true in the beauty industry that sales are increasing at greater levels now that life is more social again,” says Sumeer Kaur, CEO of Lashkaraa.
Skin Care Remains Popular but Cosmetics and Fragrances Have Made a Comeback
“In 2018, our e-commerce as a percent of our net sales was 2% and at the end of last year it was 20%, which is an incredible acceleration of our capability as well as from a business standpoint, our results. I’ve also made a commitment within the company on diversity and inclusion and sustainability. During the pandemic, we were very focused on skin care as well as hair color. Whereas today we’re focused on color cosmetics and skin care fragrances, which have had an incredible comeback in the market,” says Debra Perelman, CEO of Revlon.
Consumers Want Targeted Advice
“Companies with virtual advisers or smart AI technology that allows consumers to receive personalized skincare products and routines are experiencing additional success. Now that this structure is popular, people are starting to ask why they would shop around for generic beauty products when they could receive customized items that will target their most important concerns.
“Healthcare brands that are doing the same are also on the right track. We are seeing more and more businesses with a very targeted specialty, such as gut health, hormonal health, fertility advising, or in Allara’s case, polycystic ovarian syndrome expertise. Because people are able to find experts on their particular concern, they see less reason to give their business to a more generic health and wellness platform,” says Rachel Blank, Founder and CEO of Allara.
Healthy Habits Established During Lockdown Continue
“During the pandemic, many people got really invested into health and wellness during all that free time they experienced. This is actually a positive side of a time when pain and fear was going on in the world, because it took peoples’ minds off of their situation and onto something they could control. Lots of us realized just how challenging it is to stick to a workout routine that can only be completed inside our houses, so now that we are able to return to fitness centers and parks again, lots of the population is excited to stick with the healthy habits and routines they established in harder times,” says Patrick Samy, CEO of Span Health.
Men’s Skincare is Having a Major Moment
“Men’s skincare is ever growing in popularity. It hit high records in 2021 with a nearly 30% increase in sales. I personally am so pleased to see how the conversation is switching to actual skin health rather than just covering it up with makeup, or ignoring it in mens’ cases. Stress impacts skin, and we’ve all seen the personal effects of that these last two years. And now it has become almost like a therapeutic practice for guys and their girlfriends to participate in self care together, such as by both staying in with face masks for a relaxing evening. I risk sounding vain, but I genuinely believe we at MadeMan have reinvented men’s skincare. We have taken a component of personal care that many men fear is effeminate, and not only eviscerate such concerns, but make it totally approachable and easy,” says Jeremy Gardner, CEO of MadeMan Inc.
A Healthy Lifestyle is a Key Factor for Mental Health
“Lockdown was a trying time for a statistically large number of people. In fact, four in ten adults in the United States struggle with their mental health and those numbers increased during lockdown. A lot of people did not know where to turn to deal with the added anxiety and depression they experienced. As a method of working on their mental health during lockdown, many found relief from regular exercise, even just a daily walk in the fresh air, and realized that treating their bodies well could make a big difference. While lockdowns are not currently in place any more, the pandemic still continues on and so does uncertainty and anxiety. Therefore, a healthy lifestyle including the use of health products is still highly in demand, leading to increased sales,” says Jake Langley, CEO of Luma Nutrition.
People Want to Take Care of Themselves to Stave off Sickness
“Many consumers of the health industry became interested in health and wellness last year because they either got sick or they witnessed loved ones get sick from the virus. We have had a collective firsthand experience of the fragility of life these last two years. Following our recent experiences, many people feel a renewed desire to take excellent care of their bodies during this life. This is part of the reason why health product sales have increased in the last few years,” says Joel Jackson, Founder of Lifeforce.
Consumers Want a Routine They Can Stick With
“The consumers who are really driving sales in the health and beauty industries are the people who deeply care about establishing a ritual for continual health. They don’t want to be constantly experimenting with products, but rather desire to find a skincare line that suits their needs and stick with it. And without them ever having a reason to change their routine, they have the likelihood of becoming long term customers. With this in mind, skincare companies should realize what their customers are looking for and what they like about the company’s products, and then continue creating additional items that complement their skincare line, rather than make big adjustments to their well-loved goods. It is also important for brands to keep an eye on the trends and provide their own version of the most popular types of products, whether it be eye creams, face masks, or sunscreen, etc.,” says Dino Ha, CEO of Kaja Beauty.
It is clear to see just how drastically the demands for various beauty products have shifted recently, with skincare at a much greater increase in sales than before the pandemic (and not slowing down any time soon), cosmetics and fragrances returning to the sales scene now that life continues to return to a more normal state, and sustainable natural beauty taking the lead. Sales of health and wellness products continue to remain popular too, as the world feels an unending desire to take good care of their bodies during a time of so much sickness around them. The sales have increased because attitudes have shifted, so we look forward to seeing what the next moves for the health and beauty industry are in 2022.