Consumer attitudes to beautycare products come down to two simple factors: emotions and trust. Emotional responses to how products are presented in this segment have always been important. In a sense, what we are really buying is the opportunity to become a new, different and more appealing person, and every property of the product, particularly its packaging, should reinforce this impression.
Trust, however, is of rising importance. Consumers no longer place faith in the most expensive products based on price or brand standing alone – they are as likely to purchase a private-label (i.e. supermarket-owned) product if it has been recommended in the right channels. And this, of course, means beauty blogs and word-of-mouth buzz rather than the traditional PR avenues.
Products, brands, and communication and distribution channels have all become far more fragmented, whether to accommodate different age groups, genders (male personal care continues to be on the rise), or ethnicities. There is also more multiplicity in terms of brand sizes – the product perceived as “best” in the current beautycare market could be from a boutique independent or, just as easily, from a large multinational. And finally, products themselves are more and more frequently marketed as multi-purpose solutions: colour cosmetic products might also be used both as lipstick and blush.
The movement towards so-called free from products also continues to develop, with more emphasis on the holistic approach seen across many ranges, as well as lines being blurred with, for example, nutrition and pharmaceutical categories in terms of how products are perceived, where they are purchased, and, of course, how they are used.
Tech-oriented beauty products are increasingly popular with consumers, who are adopting devices for home use which may previously have been available only as part of salon treatments. Anything from shaving to hair-care devices may be considered part of this trend – what they share with traditional beautycare products is the need to capture the emotions of consumers with spotlessly attractive packaging.
In terms of how products are consumed, we live in the age of “micromoments”: small daily rituals and gifts to oneself. This is manifested in both the end use of the product – giving yourself a little luxurious space in the midst of a busily scheduled working day, for example – and how it arrives into the consumer’s hands, whether via the retail experience or the “unboxing” of a special package arriving by mail.
Amidst all these developments, it’s easy to overlook the fact that much of the growth in this segment will continue to be focused on the basics as certain markets develop. This will often see the category’s staple products come into increased demand, with the general public becoming acclimatised to products previously considered luxuries.
As these trends shape the markets, Metsä Board’s dedication to providing “Better with less” could hardly be more relevant. Superior quality packaging continues to be of supreme importance, without compromising on sustainability needs and the conservation of energy and natural resources.
Meet us at Luxe Pack Monaco,
the leading global event for creative and innovative packaging,
organised 2-4 October 2017, to experience in person how these beauty
care trends are visible in Metsä Board’s packaging solutions.
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CASE Retro Revival: Totally natural cosmetics packaging