In today’s rapidly and constantly evolving beauty biz, it seems that the more things change, the more they stay the same. Or do they? In a retrospective look at beauty trends, behaviors, and influencers from 10 years ago, as well as those informing the industry today, The Benchmarking Company’s landmark 2016 PinkReport: 10-Year Beauty Benchmark—A Consumer Love Affair with All Things Beauty provides brands, retailers, and decision makers a deep-dive examination of the beauty landscape, and how far we’ve come in the past 10 years.
For this special CEW report, we take a close look at the top twelve consumer-identified beauty trends we predict will significantly influence the industry for 2016 and beyond. For even more immediately actionable information on beauty trends and what today’s beauty consumer wants from you, visit our Beauty by the Numbers page or contact us.
Consumer Driven Beauty Trends Set to Guide the Next 10 Years
- Intimate Beauty
- Beauty Devices
- Luxury for All
- Consumer Claims
- Personalized Beauty
- Ingestible Beauty
- Life Proof Beauty
- Farm-to- Face Beauty
- The Rise of Bloggers/Vloggers
- Quick Fixes
- Sunscreen Dominates
- Global Beauty
Trend #1: The Intimate Face of Beauty
By all our calculations, intimate beauty is one of the next big trends to hit the industry. As consumers embrace every kind of safe/natural/organic product for the faces and bodies, they are now ready to bring this level of product sophistication (and safety) to their most intimate body parts. Important developments will include vaginal rejuvenation procedures, insertable pills/tablets to help with feminine hygiene and freshness, organic tampons, and even at-home vaginal facials. Women are used to pampering their hair, skin, and bodies, and all signs indicate they are ready to turn their at10tion to ‘down-there’ beauty.
- Over 50% of women are interested in purchasing organic/natural feminine hygiene products for personal issues, such as dryness or odor, as well as natural/organic tampons, lubricants, and vaginal cleaners or moisturizers.
- The top products they’d like to buy in the future:
- 61% personal trimming devices
- 61% natural/organic products that solve a specific issue, i.e. dryness, odor, or yeast
- 54% intimate beauty products, i.e. vaginal skincare products, cleansers, and fragrance
- 51% organic/natural lubricants
- 49% nutraceutical that enhances or increases sex drive/pleasure
Trend #2: Devices Double Down
While devices are a mainstay for beauty consumers these days, what devices will (and will not) do is ever-evolving, and that is only set to change even more radically over the next 10 years. Tomorrow’s devices will do more than just cleanse or cosmetically treat the skin; they will provide double-duty benefits and usefulness to consumers. Expect to see devices which will tackle multiple areas of concern with the simple switch of the device head, or device apps that will allow consumers to monitor skin health (such as checking for darkening moles or detecting dehydration, for example) at home.
- 91% of women agree that personalized technology that lets consumers monitor their skin health will become more popular in the next decade
- 74% agree that multi-benefit devices will also become as popular.
Trend #3: Living La Vida Luxury
The life of luxury—we all love to dream about it…and when it comes to beauty and personal care products, more and more –consumers expect it. Where luxury beauty used to be the exclusive bastion of hyper-targeted products, such as La Mer, today, the rise of necessary luxuries is gaining steam.
Now, consumers want luxury options for everything. From bug repellent to SPF creams and lotions to toothbrushes to toilet paper to hand sanitizer, luxury is the name of the game every brand (and product) is trying to play, and in many cases, a consumer expectation.
- Top ‘necessary luxury’ products she wants to buy in the next 10 years:
- 50% high end sunscreen
- 44% high end, luxury hand soap (Tom Ford, Prada, etc.)
- 34% luxury lip balm
- 33% luxury bug spray/repellant
Trend #4: Pretty, Personal
Personalized beauty is here, and it’s here to stay. From technology which allows consumers to virtually interact with Sephora’s entire foundation library (Color IQ) to Facebook’s Modiface, which lets users ‘test’ over 9,000 lipsticks using an online interface, getting consumers closer to your brand and products—virtually—is the here and now of beauty, as well as the wave of the future. In a way that no one beauty store can ever replicate (no matter how sophisticated) technology-fueled beauty assistance helps consumers instantly parse through thousands of options, getting her in-front of a beauty marketplace she not have been aware was available to her, or even more importantly, ideal for someone just like her.
- 82% of women believe personalized technology will become more popular in the next 10 years.
- 91% agree that personalized technology will offer the average consumer the ability to monitor their skin health in the next decade
Trend #5: Tell Me More, Tell Me More
With our collective interest in what everyone else is doing, saying, liking, tweeting, and pinning, it’s no wonder that consumer claims are set to remain one of the biggest trends over the next 10 years. Women love consumer claims—they rely on claims to help make purchasing decisions, and they look for them when considering new products and brands to try for the very first time. The appeal of one woman sharing with other women her personal feelings on how a product worked for her is that it helps consumers cut through the clutter of marketing messages facing her in a strategic, real way and get down to the heart of the matter: is this product going to work for someone like me, with my skin concerns? Consumer claims help shrink the distance between a brand and their target audience by immediately connecting similar consumers together, to share collectively in both the problem, and the solution.
- 81% of women believe consumer claims (from women with similar skin concerns/in a similar age group) will become more popular in the next 10 years.
- Conversely, only 10% of consumers believe the Kardashians will be relevant in the next 10 years; they are just considered a present-day fad.
Trend #6: Inside Job: The Rise of Ingestible Beauty
From supplements to beauty elixirs to gummies to dusts to candies to teas, brands have been pioneering ever more inventive eatables and drinkables to help improve the health and appearance of the skin, the hair and nails, as well as the eyes; joints; and even genitals! And every day, it’s becoming easier than ever for consumers to eat and drink their way to an improved sense of vitality and health. Expect to see growth in segments that mingle serious skincare benefits with an ingestible format, such as a sunscreen pill, or a supplement which will help fade dark spots, and these are just the tip of the iceberg. Ingestible beauty that streamlines her beauty regimen, helps her feel healthy, and delivers noticeable improvements will garner legions of interested consumers.
- 78% state that they would be interest in taking a nutraceutical product or “beauty pill” that was targeted to her specific beauty concern, i.e. sagging skin, acne, dark circles, or lackluster skin.
Trend #7: Life-Proof Performance
Women today lead very busy lives, and they don’t just want beauty products which can keep the pace, they require it. That’s why we see life-proof beauty as one of the next big trends to emerge (and be perfected) over the coming decade. From goof-proof, sweat-proof makeup that can go straight from a Zumba workout to a lunch meeting to skincare which delivers benefits for days (and not just hours), products that help women streamline their routines is a must for the pell-mell pace we all live anymore, and consumers are eager for this category to grow: two-thirds of women believe life-proof makeup will become more popular over the next 10 years.
- 87% of women believe that makeup which improves skin health will become more relevant in the next 10 years.
Trend #8: Farm-to-Face Focus
From out of the garden of natural and organic comes farm-to-face—the evolution of all things good for us and our skin. Only these days, it’s no longer enough for a brand to say they are ‘natural’—they have to be able to back up their assertions and prove it. Savvy on ingredients, today’s consumer is looking for components that are hyper-local and— they want all the glorious 411 details on your products: what’s the chain of custody from harvest to formulation to production to sale? And because consumers are so dialed into ingredients, they know if a brand is saying their products are natural (but they aren’t), and they are not shy about raising a social fuss to get you—the brand—to change your ways. A continued focus on ingredient safety, and locally sustainable ways to deliver the best results, is clearly a movement for the next decade.
- Over 80% of women believe that botanical ingredients from the garden (coconut oil, coffee, etc.) will become more popular in the next 10 years.
Trend #9: #DigitalDivas
Fueled by the advent of millennials entering the workforce and bringing with them their abiding love for all things social, digital beauty is already a huge trend, and one this set to become even more impactful. Already a massive factor in how beauty consumers learn about and find new products and brands, the digital realm is becoming even more impactful as women turn to the words, advice, and reviews of other women before they make a purchase. From changing how (and how long) brand talk to consumers (because yeah, our at10tion spans are dwindling) to informing how your new products launch to how we even apply and use our products, the #digitaldiva is a powerful force in beauty, and she is setting the stage for everything moving forward.
- 76% of consumers believe the influence of social media on cosmetics’ advertising will increase over the next 10 years.
Trend #10: Queueing Up for a Quick Fix
Quick fixes have always been a favorite with beauty buyers, and the next evolution of this staple is here. Products that offer multi-duty use and deliver multiple benefits, such as mascara that also creates a ‘tightline’ eyeliner application, eye shadow primer that delivers anti-aging eye benefits like a traditional eye cream, or the ChinUp Mask, an instant ‘face lift’ that shrinks the appearance of a double chin in just 30 minutes—are hot. Similarly, age-specific kits for both makeup and skincare are on the upswing. Unlike 10 or even 15 years ago, when a brand might have two or three moisturizers in their assortment, today—the choice can be overwhelming to even the most savvy consumer. Age-specific kits are helping women to zero in on the products, ingredients and benefits most targeted to their skin’s needs based upon their age, and it’s a trend women are embracing.
- 74% of women believe age specific kits will become more popular over the next 10 years.
Trend #11: The Mighty, Mighty Sunscreen
Sun care is not a new trend, but it is an enduring one—and, one that deserves to stay at the forefront of consumer awareness and excitement. Today, sun care options include SPF skincare, makeup, styling sprays, nail polishes, and even clothing. There are even growing advancements in oral SPF protection such as pills and supplements. Because of the urgent need to protect skin from harmful UV rays, both brands and consumers alike have got10 even savvier about the kinds of claims SPF products make, and the kind of protection these products actually provide, and both must be top-notch because she won’t accept anything less.
- 62% of women agree they would be interested in using a sunscreen pill or supplement, providing it was proven safe and effective by the FDA.
Trend #12: Globe Shopper: Culturally Diverse Beauty Takes Flight
The growth and development of multi-cultural beauty brands and products is one of the most exciting trends we’ve seen. From region-specific ingredients to products designed specifically to meet the needs of a certain group or— a particular region of the world—this trend is filling a gap that has long been empty. Spanning everything from sheet masks to cushion compacts to snail wrinkle creams to jelly flower lipsticks, globe hopping beauty products are redefining what beauty means to not only consumers, but the industry itself, and in the process, helping women of all tones, types, and nationalities feel part of the beauty conversation.
- 86% of women agree that products which leverage secrets from other cultures, i.e. Asian blue lotus; medicinal herbs from the Amazon or India, will deliver superior benefits over traditional beauty products.
- Over the next 10 years, 93% of women expect mainstream brands to offer more multi-cultural beauty solutions such as products for ethnic hair, foundation in darker shakes or skincare products designed to work for specific ethnicities.
Report Design and Methodology
The Benchmarking Company’s (TBC) 2016 PinkReport: 10 Year Beauty Benchmark: A Consumer Love Affair with All Things Beauty, provides a detailed look at the US female beauty consumer. This report details ex10sive quantitative primary research designed to uncover the aspects of this consumer’s interaction with beauty, as well as what is, and is not, driving her interest in your brand or store. For the section of this report focusing exclusively on trends, we asked thousands of US women to take part in the online survey. Data for this study was collected from May – June 2016, with over 3,400 female US beauty consumers.