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Prestige Makeup Sales Start to Perk Up

November 23, 2010

Prestige Makeup Sales Start to Perk Up

Prestige Makeup Sales Start to Perk Up

Sales of prestige makeup in U.S. department stores continued on an upward trend as August 2010

There’s something to smile about in the prestige beauty category.
marked the fourth consecutive month of positive dollar and unit sales. Dollar sales increased 2% to $2 billion, year-to-date through August 2010, compared to the same time period in 2009, according to The NPD Group, Inc.

“While 2% may not seem like a huge sales increase, it is noteworthy because this is the first time in two years that the prestige makeup industry is showing a positive trend. We first began to see prestige makeup decline in 2008, before the recession and if you were to look at where the prestige makeup industry was just one year ago, in 2009, you would be seeing a seven percent decline, compared to 2008 figures,” said Karen Grant, vice president and global industry analyst, The NPD Group.“Women continue to tell us that they want to enhance the way they look and to feel more confident and feminine. Experimenting with color is one of the ways they do that without spending a fortune.”

Face and nails were standout segments, outperforming the total makeup category in the first eight months of the year. Face, the largest segment with a 49% dollar share of makeup, grew 3% in dollar volume, versus last year. Concealer (+6%), foundation (+3%), and blush (+2%) helped lead the way for face category growth. The nail segment, the smallest makeup segment, with only one percent dollar share, grew 31% year-to-date (Jan thru Aug.) 2010, compared to the same time last year.

Both the lip and eye segments showed positive growth as well, adding two and one percent, respectively. The sub-segments driving growth in the lip and eye categories were lip color (+8%) and eyeliner (+3%).

“The growth areas in prestige makeup reflect the changing preferences with women. Products that enhance already great skin or provide a natural look are driving sales in face products. Complementing the natural look in face products are the rich color products for lips and nails. For many women, these color categories like lip color are quite new and a place to play, experiment, and indulge without breaking the bank,” concluded Grant.
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At Sustainable Cosmetics Summit, a Call for ‘Positive’ Action
Practical sustainability initiatives for the beauty industry were extensively discussed at the Sustainable Cosmetics Summit, which was held in Paris in mid-October. Organized by Organic Monitor, the three-day summit brought together 180 senior executives from 26 countries.

During the summit, several speakers called for positive action from the beauty industry, including Dr. Michael Braungart—founder of the Cradle-to-Cradle (C2C) design approach—who challenged beauty companies to be more positive rather than try to assuage their guilt.“The discussion should be about having positive impacts, not reducing negative impacts,” he said.

By drawing examples from the beverage industry, Braungart showed how pioneering companies were becoming carbon positive, rather than just carbon neutral. He stated there was a concern that too many beauty companies were considering sustainability because of guilt, rather than a genuine desire to change.

“We should look to instill positive change in the cosmetics industry, and not feel guilty about consumption,” Braungart said.

The need for positive change was also iterated by Jean-Yves Berthon, founder of Greentech. He urged cosmetic companies to develop ethical relationships when sourcing raw materials, and suggested more education and knowledge sharing between companies to support the environment and social communities in developing countries.

Alexis Kryceve, co-founder of Pur Planet, further stressed the importance of ethical sourcing. In his paper on carbon offsetting, Kryceve stated ingredient sourcing has a direct impact on climate change since deforestation is responsible for 20% of carbon emissions that cause global warming. He endorsed fair trade as it encourages farmers to continue agricultural practices, thus mitigating carbon emissions.

Opening session speakers highlighted various sustainability initiatives for cosmetic and ingredient companies. An update of the leading European standards for natural and organic cosmetics was also presented, with Valerie Lemaire from Ecocert introducing the new labeling scheme for the harmonized Cosmos standard. New logos for Cosmos-Organic and Cosmos-Natural are in the pipeline, enabling consumers to clearly identify certified products. In addition, some of the major technical and formulation issues associated with natural and organic cosmetics were also covered.

Amarjit Sahota, founder of Organic Monitor, stressed how marketing had come to the forefront in the increasingly competitive natural cosmetics market.

“The goalposts in the naturals arena are moving, with pioneering companies now focusing on CSR and sustainability,” Sohota said.

Andrew Dixon of Burt’s Bees explained the sustainability ethos of his company, including a “Dumpster Dive” day in which employees get involved in waste management. Whole Foods Market shared its experiences in selecting and marketing natural cosmetics.

Sustainable packaging was the focus of the last session of the conference, and key speakers explored the gamut of solutions available to beauty companies. Summit participants also learned that cosmetic companies mainly focus on recycling and ecodesign to lower their packaging footprint, whereas the take-up rate of bioplastics remains low. Case studies were given of companies with novel approaches to sustainable packaging.

In addition to the main conference, 80 delegates attended two interactive workshops that zeroed in on two key aspects of sustainability in the beauty industry: green formulations and packaging.

The next edition of the Sustainable Cosmetic Summit will be held in New York, May 12-14, 2010.
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Mintel Predicts CPG Trends for 2011
From a natural market “shakedown” to “new retro,” Mintel, Chicago, has issued 12 predictions for CPG trends set to make an impact in 2011. Here are a few of them.

Redefining Natural: Get ready for a “natural shakedown,” according to Mintel. While all types of natural claims have grown in importance in all regions and across all product categories, the term “natural” is still ill-defined. Terms that are vague or not well understood will come under fire and we are due to see an intervention of regulatory bodies. Also, expect to see a new focus on accentuating the positives of what is in a product, rather than emphasizing what is not in it.

Professionalization of the Amateur: Mainstream brands are getting into a more serious “professional” arena, by bringing into the home what used to require a specialist service—a trend that arguably has its origins in personal care markets, with “salon-style” hair treatments for home use. It will continue to expand to include household (“professional strength” cleaning products) and food (chef-endorsed, restaurant-style meals).

Sustainability stays focused on the Basics: Sustainability is not slipping down the priority list, but instead of seeing new developments, expect to see a continuation of what we have seen—with a few twists, said Mintel. There will be a greater focus on reduced packaging that promotes environmental responsibility in combination with uniqueness—think boxless cereal bars or cereals without the inner bag. Also, expect water usage to become a hot issue in 2011.

Blurring Categories: How much more innovation can you get out of a category? Manufacturers’ response to consumer needs is the driver to developing hybrid products. Consumers don’t necessarily view products as being in one category or another, rather they look for solutions that meet their needs, and that may be something that straddles multiple categories, according to Mintel. Beyond hybrid forms, we also see a blurring of how consumers use products, such as personal care and home care products that do more than one thing.

Will reviving old campaigns be a hot sales tool in 2011?

New Retro: Over the last year, there have been more big brands revitalizing old products and old ad campaigns, tapping into the escalating trend of nostalgia—and there’s more to come in 2011. This will be fleshed out with brands using old formulations, old package designs, and re-runs of advertising campaigns or new ads with a retro feel—such as the Unilever tie in with “Mad Men” using key products like Dove and Vaseline.

“These annual predictions represent continuations of current big-picture trends, rather than major changes in the marketplace and what companies are doing,” said Lynn Dornblaser, director of innovation and insight at Mintel. “Understanding the major trend areas and how they change from year to year is essential for companies to be successful when developing and launching new products.”
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Brand Loyalty Leaders Make Connections, Study Says
Cosmetic and moisturizer brands—including Mary Kay, Estée Lauder and Clinique—accounted for a third of the 10th annual Top 50 Brand Keys Loyalty Leaders in the annual survey by Brand Keys, a New York-based brand, customer loyalty and engagement consultancy.

“Brand loyalty is absolutely driven by emotion,” said Robert Passikoff, Brand Keys founder and president. “And the rankings on this year’s list make it clear that consumers are looking to emotionally connect with brands more than ever before.”

This year’s Brand Keys Loyalty Leaders List includes 501 brands in 71 categories. Apple iPhone, Samsung cellphones, Walmart, Grey Goose vodka, Apple Computers, Hyundai, Amazon, J. Crew, Blackberry and Avis were the top 10 overall.

The 2010 Top 50 Brand Keys Loyalty Leaders list is comprised of eight general categories, and according to Brand Keys, cosmetics and moisturizers (both mass and luxury brands) accounted for 30% of the leading brands, based on data culled by the company.

“The‘emotional engagement’ that women share with their favorite beauty brands is very powerful,” said Passikoff.

Avon (+53) made the biggest leap in brand loyalty, according to Brand Keys.
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