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Mixed Fortunes for Sun Care

By: Carrie Lennard, Euromonitor International
Posted: May 4, 2010, from the May 2010 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Beauty companies not traditionally associated with sun care are continuing to enter the category with year-round sun block and antiaging properties. Recent launches such as Aveeno’s Positively Ageless sunblock and Johnson & Johnson’s Minesol sun care range (under the RoC brand) both aim to protect from the aging effects of the sun all year round.

Brands Utilize Skin Cancer Awareness in Marketing

In addition to developing higher factors, many brand owners have aligned their brands with various campaigns to raise awareness of skin cancer. In the U.K., Superdrug continues to lend its support to the Teenage Cancer Trust’s Shunburn campaign, with British popstar Leona Lewis as ambassador. The campaign aims to educate on how to stay safe in the sun. The funding includes a free “Burn Alert” text message system, warning people when sun is forecast. Sunless tanning brands have also jumped on this bandwagon with the “Save Your Skin” campaign, which focuses its message to school children throughout the U.K. toward raising awareness on the dangers of the sun—as well as petitioning the Prime Minister to ban coin-operated sun beds found in unmanned tanning salons, which are believed to be a contributing factor to the rise in skin cancer cases among the young.

L’Oréal’s La Roche Posay brand is also attempting to help raise skin cancer awareness with the launch of its My Skin Check Web site in May 2009. The site helps users evaluate their personal risk of developing skin cancer, instructing how to check your skin as well as offering advice on how to protect skin from the sun.

Self-tan; After-sun Sales Stagnate

Self-tanners and after-sun both remain comparatively niche, accounting for just 8% and 7% respectively of global sun care sales in 2009. Sun protection products are commonly used by many different age groups, while affluent young urban women are the main users of after-sun and self-tanning products. Sales of self-tanners are even on the decline after falling out of fashion in many countries. Despite some strong innovations in mass priced self-tanners—such as Alliance Boots Soltan Once Gradual Face, which contains SPF 25—many women no longer deem self-tan to be an essential purchase, and cut it from their shopping list as the recession hit. According to Euromonitor International statistics, this meant that the segment saw value growth drop by -4% globally from 2008–2009.

Hot Regions Maintain Growth

Most regions saw rather subdued value growth in sun care 2008–2009 compared to the previous year period, with the exception of Latin America (up to 14% 2008–2009 from 12%), the Middle East and Africa (up from 7% to 14%) and Australasia (just over 10%, unchanged from 2007–2008). The hot climates and growing disposable income levels in the former two regions make them perfectly poised to eventually catch up with Western Europe and North America in producing high per capita sun care sales.