As more than two-thirds of the country face stay-at-home orders, many consumers are partaking in different forms of self-care, typically involving beauty products.
Beauty sales began to drop as a result of temporary store closings, declining by 58% in the week ending March 28, 2020, year-over-year. However products like body oils, home scents, nail care and hair color saw sales growth, with some in the double-digits.
Additionally, it's no surprise that staying home has also led to a rise in online sales. In terms of dollar share, online typically accounts for around 20% of total prestige beauty industry sales; however, in the latest week, online sales grew by 47% and captured close to 90% of total industry spend.
With physical stores closed, online represents nearly all of the industry volume today. Staying home also provides a unique opportunity to experiment with different beauty products with minimal risk; if it doesn’t yield favorable results or your skin has a reaction, no one has to see it.
Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, the best performing beauty products online included lash growth serums, boosters and essences.
The short- and long-term implications of this pandemic on the beauty industry are significant. In the short-term, sales will be hit hard, but looking further ahead the growth opportunities are strong. Clean beauty, which is already an important trend to watch, will be amplified as consumers re-interpret what safety means to them.
Similarly, when emotions run high, opportunities abound in categories that are intrinsically linked to emotion.
Beauty provides confidence, hope, a temporary escape, and—contrary to today’s more formal definition—beauty is essential. Think about this: what is the first thing most people will do when they emerge from quarantine? It is likely that hair salons, nail salons, and barbershops will be overrun.