Western European sales of colour cosmetics, already in decline in recent years, recorded a steep fall in 2020. Coronavirus (COVID-19), and the measures taken to try and control its spread, resulted in much-reduced usage of colour cosmetics products, particularly lip products and facial make-up. Colour cosmetics will see a slow recovery, with sales still some way short of 2019 levels at the end of the forecast period.
After growth slowed considerably in 2017, sales went into decline in 2018, with this continuing in 2019. UK sales were hit by consumers moving away from “heavy” make-up trends and increasing competition from skin care, while German consumers continued to take advantage of the promotions and discounting on offer from retailers and brand owners.
Virtually all markets in the region were in decline in 2020, with most seeing double-digit percentage sales falls. Measures implemented to try and control the spread of COVID-19, including non-essential retail closures and lockdowns, significantly disrupted sales of colour cosmetics. Home seclusion saw consumers relax their make-up routines, while many also saw no need to wear lip products or facial make-up under their masks. Shoppers were also looking to make savings in the uncertain economic environment resulting from the pandemic.
Prior to the arrival of the pandemic in the region, products featuring natural ingredients and/or sensitive/hypoallergenic properties were becoming increasingly popular in many countries – with this trend also expected to be seen in the post-pandemic period. An example of this is the Kiko Green Me line, with ingredients of a natural origin, fully recyclable packaging and sensitive formulas.
Colour cosmetics will only see a slow recovery in Western Europe, with sales continuing to decline in 2021 and only recording relatively modest growth rates thereafter. Consumers will continue to be impacted by the economic consequences of the pandemic, while lockdowns and non-essential retail closures were still in place in early 2021. In addition to continued competition from skin care, consumers will also continue to favour the natural look in terms of make-up.
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