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Euromonitor International Report: A Shift in Focus

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

As of the print date of the March 2010 issue, 2009 numbers were not available. That data is now available through Euromonitor International.

The credit crunch has not proved to be overly kind to sales of color cosmetics. Despite some still proclaiming the positive effects of the lipstick factor, the negative growth of most of the major beauty companies proves that the lipstick theory fell rather flat during the global recession this time around. Global growth in the segment slowed from 6% in 2007 to 4% in 2008* as consumers cut back on buying new products. To counteract consumer cuts in spending in the category, discounting, especially among mass brands, became rife in mature markets such as the U.S. and the U.K. This led to reductions in value sales.

Eye Color; Makeup Fairing Best

Eye color cosmetics and makeup (foundations and powders) both performed comparatively well, with eye products only dipping slightly in terms of growth to 6% in 2008 from 7% the previous year, according to Euromonitor International. The trend for bright, striking colors worn on the eyes has meant that consumers remained more open to experimenting with different eye products. Strong innovations in mascara also found no shortage of consumers willing to try these products out in the hope of achieving longer-looking lashes. Innovative products such as Lancôme’s Oscillation vibrating mascara and Givenchy’s Phenomen’Eyes mascara, complete with ball-shaped wand, have helped to maintain consumer interest in the segment.

Facial makeup managed to register 5% value growth in 2008 in Western Europe, one of the most mature and recession-hit regions. This success is largely linked to the concept of facial color cosmetics being an extension of skin care in the minds of many female consumers. With many foundations now promising sun protection and antiaging benefits, the line between skin care and color cosmetics is becoming increasingly blurred.

Furthermore, due to the fear of buying a foundation that does not match skin tone, many consumers refused to trade down to less expensive products and continued to opt for premium or masstige-priced products, many of which now automatically match skin tone.

Mature Markets See Rise in Private Label Sales