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Lower Middle Class Largest Consumer of Cosmetics in Brazil

By: Fernanda Bonifacio
Posted: April 7, 2011, from the April 2011 issue of GCI Magazine.

According to a survey conducted by research firm Data Popular, Brazilians’ spending on beauty products reached R$43.4 billion in 2010. The figures are almost four times higher than the ones recorded in the last survey, conducted in 2002. Participation of the lower middle class (households with annual incomes of between R$11,500–17,000) in the domestic market grew from 26.6% to 45.6% (valued at R$19.8 billion).

In 2010, the upper class and upper middle class spent R$15.9 billion, and the working class and lower class spent R$7.7 billion. While the consumption of the lower middle class has multiplied by eight since 2002, consumption by the wealthier classes multiplied by a factor of three, showing the rise of a new beauty consumer profile.

“The market witnessed a significant change in the past two years, when the lower middle class consolidated its leadership in the consumption of cosmetics”, said Renato Meirelles, managing partner at Data Popular.

The survey also revealed that for every R$100 spent on toiletries and beauty products, approximately R$18.50 is related to hair care and R$17.30 to body care.

Besides the increase in their purchasing power, higher spending by the lower middle class is also due to greater frequency of purchases. Studies by Kantar Worldpanel show that hair masks and treatments have only been added to the lower middle class’ shopping carts a few years ago.