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Markets Drive Color Cosmetics Growth

By: Oru Mohiuddin, Euromonitor International
Posted: February 27, 2009, from the March 2009 issue of GCI Magazine.
  • “Audacious” makeup looks, and vinyl- and plasticlike finishes, are becoming a major trend.
  • To gain a stronger foothold in emerging, faster-growing markets, marketers must consider and serve specific skin tones—as well as climate and culture.

Color cosmetics will likely grow at a slower rate than the overall cosmetics and toiletries market due, primarily, to saturated Western markets. Alongside limitations in volume growth opportunities due to high levels of maturity, these markets have also come under increased pressure due to the current economic downturn, and Euromonitor International expects many of these markets to see a further slowdown in volume demand.Moving forward, success in the color cosmetics market will be defined by product innovation and geographic expansion.

Innovation Drives Color in Western Markets

Novelty is the buzzword in color cosmetics in Western Europe and North America. Competition and market saturation in these regions are making novel product concepts and designs evermore imperative, and color cosmetics manufacturers and marketers are looking in the most unusual places for inspiration.

Marketers in Western markets are relentlessly engaged in wooing consumers with unusual products, particularly in the eye makeup category, which is projected to achieve the strongest growth in color cosmetics globally. Euromonitor International’s preliminary growth forecasts for eye makeup in the U.S., however, indicate a more moderate compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1.31%, compared to a -0.26% CAGR for overall color cosmetics for the period 2009–2013.

Many of the new product developments have been in the mascara category. Inspired by battery-operated toothbrushes, a number of manufacturers, including L’Oréal and Lancôme, have introduced battery-powered mascaras. These mascaras are designed to give a professional touch to makeup. For example, Estée Lauder’s TurboLash mascara is a battery-operated vibrating mascara said to plump up lashes, while Lancôme’s Oscillation mascara applies the mascara in a zigzag fashion, replicating the finishing touch of a professional makeup artist. In addition, formulas and other packaging choices continue to be refined. L’Oréal, for example, has introduced Extra Volume Collagen Mascara with an enriched hydra collagen formula and a longer brush intricately designed to deposit the right amount of mascara on every lash, resulting in an appearance of more voluminous eyelashes.