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Masculine Dynamism—Men’s Care Growing Fast

By: Carrie Lennard, Euromonitor International
Posted: December 6, 2010, from the December 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Along with razors and blades, deodorants comprise the overwhelming majority of sales globally—the three product types combined accounted for a 39% value share of total men’s grooming in 2009. Other categories in men’s care are still in their infancy in many regions, but are seeing dynamic growth rates. Facing weak growth opportunities in razors and blades in some of the more mature markets, brand owners are expected to continue their push to develop male-specific product categories—leveraging the fact that male consumer’s mindset about beauty has shifted and the well-groomed male is likely to remain.

Strong Growth in Skin Care, But From a Small Base

Men’s skin care was the star category in 2009, with growth of 7%, and is beginning to emulate the trends in female skin care—with many products now featuring antiaging, SPF and self-tanning properties. There is much room for further growth in the category. While recognizing the importance of a skin care regimen, many men do not feel comfortable about buying a female or unisex version of such an overtly feminine product, and this is set to keep male skin care sales strong. Skin care will continue to outperform other men’s grooming categories through 2014. Men’s skin care is the most dynamic category in most regions, mimicking the product types seen in women’s skin care.

Men’s antiagers is a particular area of male skin care that is showing very strong potential for the future. Signs of aging are a growing concern for men, especially those in youth-obsessed industries such as advertising. While older men, the key target audience for antiagers, are still reluctant to enter male beauty aisles, they are an attractive potential market.

Hair Care Value Growth Lags Behind Skin Care

Despite strong growth rates seen in most other categories of men’s grooming, men’s hair care is developing at a slower pace, growing by just 4% in value terms in 2009—a weaker performance than the 5% registered by men’s grooming as a whole. Men’s hair care still accounts for a bigger chunk of sales than skin care, at $2.9 billion in 2009 compared to skin care’s $1.8 billion. However, skin care is set to outpace hair care before long. Male skin care is set to add $950 million to its value size by 2014 compared to just over $580 million for men’s hair care, meaning that men’s skin care is undoubtedly the star performer in men’s grooming.

One of the key reasons behind this is the perception by many men that it is acceptable to simply use unisex shampoo, or their existing shower gel. Furthermore, hair care as a whole was also one of the categories to suffer most during the global economic downturn, and trends in men’s grooming frequently mimic trends in the beauty market as a whole.