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Claims Inspired by Other Segments Propel Hair Care Growth

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According to Mintel’s Global New Product Database, brightening and Illuminating is the fastest growing claim in hair care, with the number of new products carrying this claim globally shooting up from 21% of all global hair care launches in 2010 to 46% in 2014 (through August). In 2014, the top three claims in the global hair care market are: botanical and herbal, with 52% of all hair care products carrying this claim; brightening and illuminating at 46%; and moisturizing and hydrating at 31%.

Speaking at Beyond Beauty 2014 in Paris, Emmanuelle Moeglin, global fragrance and personal care analyst at Mintel, said: “Hair care has become an exciting space. Manufacturers are trying to convince consumers that they should adopt a hair care regimen to match their skin care regimen, and they’re doing this by using a new lexicon, learning from other categories and extending formats into new segments. Claims inspired by skin care and color cosmetics, such as anti-aging and product featuring light-reflecting technology, offer exciting growth opportunities for the hair care market.”

The presented research also highlights key areas of development in the market, including innovations in established trends such as shampoo and conditioner alternatives and hair oils. Indeed as the “no-poo” movement gains force, Mintel’s new research has found that a desire to cut down on hair care routines is a global desire. When asked about attitudes towards washing hair, as many as four in 10 (39%) French hair care product consumers believe that washing hair frequently is too damaging. In the U.S., almost 58% of hair care consumers express an interest in cleansing conditioners, with 20% of these users being really interested in using these products. Furthermore, 23% of German hair care consumers claim they would pay more for products that make their hairstyle last longer, while 16% of Spanish hair care consumers agree they are willing to pay more for hair care products that reduce blow drying time. Overall, 18% hair care products launched globally in 2014 carry a time or speed claim.

Furthermore, with the rising popularity of shampoo alternatives, an increasing number of consumers are favoring dry shampoo, with the UK leading the way in usage across the top five European countries. Today, 13% of Brits use dry shampoo, ahead of France and Germany (7%) and Italy and Spain (5%).

“Dry shampoo is no longer an emerging segment, and is becoming a must-have for mainstream hair care brands," says Moeglin. "Consumers want to cut down their hair washing routine, and as a result, usage is increasing and brands are responding to the demand with more dry shampoo offerings. Today’s products are about more than simply cleaning hair, as the concept crosses into other categories with an increasing number of benefits such as styling extender, volumizing and UV protecting.”

In addition, the use of hair oils, now a must-have in hair treatment, is also growing. In Italy, 34% of consumers use hair oils, up from 28% in 2013. Across Europe, hair oil usage continues to grow—currently standing at 20% in France, 17% in Spain and 16% in Germany. And it is not just argan oil (the oil receiving the lion's share of press) that is proving popular; pracachy, kukui, buruti and macadamia are increasingly seen.

“As shea butter and argan oil become more commoditized, [other] oils will emerge to challenge them; that poses a conundrum for formulators and suppliers," says Moeglin. "Shea butter has multiple skin and hair care benefits, and it might take more than one oil to replace it in the hair care sector. And despite the varying number of oils, argan oil is still growing and the ingredient is not expected to depart the arena anytime soon.”

Looking beyond established trends, the research has found anti-aging hair care has huge scope but is yet to match skin care in this arena. While 27% of facial skin care global launches in 2014 were anti-aging, only 3% of hair care global launches carried this claim, suggesting opportunities for growth in the hair care sector.

When it comes to anti-aging ingredients in hair care, almost half (46%) of UK consumers are interested in using them and an additional 19% would pay more for them. Meanwhile, 26% of French hair care users notice some changes in their hair as they get older, but just 25% of users remain unsure of the benefits of using anti-aging hair care products.

“Anti-aging will increasingly move into hair care, and there is scope for a far higher use of biomimetic ingredients—especially in stimulating hair growth, offering anti-hair loss and volumizing solutions,” suggests Moeglin.

Finally, also taking inspiration from skin care, customization in the hair care market is set to continue to grow in popularity as consumers show strong demand for these products. In France, 29% of women express an interest in buying customized hair treatment products designed for their hair needs.

“New entrants in the hair care sector are responding to a rise in demand in customization by offering customized shampoo, blending bases with concentrated serum and resulting in a made-to-measure hair care products," says Moeglin. "As consumers increasingly look for a personalized products, we expect this trend to expand into mainstream hair care in 2014 and beyond.”

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