Contact lenses suffered steep double-digit retail volume and value declines during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Sales suffered from disruption to the supply chain during the crisis as factories in the Asia Pacific region were amongst the first to be affected by the pandemic, closing early in the year, while supply was also impacted by restrictions on the operations of retailers as all non-essential businesses and establishments were forced to close, with only supermarkets and markets permitted to remain open for grocery purchases.
Both daily disposable lenses (DD) and frequent replacement lenses (FRP) are set to achieve strong retail value growth in 2021 after their steep declines during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Frequent replacement lenses (FRP) require less frequent replacement than daily disposable lenses and many consumers therefore regard the format as offering better value for money, given their increasing concerns around the economic impact of the measures to contain the COVID-19 virus.
Despite being forced to close for long periods during the COVID-19 pandemic, optical shops remained by far the most popular outlets to purchase contact lenses in 2020. Although the channel lost some share during the pandemic as a minority of customers switched to e-commerce for their supplies, optical shops is set to regain much of its lost share in 2021 as these outlets reopen.
The expected bounce back in sales of contact lenses in 2021 is likely to strengthen in 2022, followed by lower, if accelerating retail volume growth over the remainder of the forecast period. Although the macroeconomic environment is set to be extremely challenging in the aftermath of the pandemic, the essential status of contact lenses provides a strong base for development.
While optical shops will continue to dominate distribution of contact lenses and solutions, online activity is set to play a growing role, in terms of both distribution and marketing, during the forecast period. Social media is already a key tool for both manufacturers and retailers looking to attract younger consumers.
The general rise in consumer health consciousness is boosting awareness of the impact of modern lifestyles on eye health, including the effect of extended exposure to screens through work, education and leisure. Despite the challenging economic environment resulting from measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, this awareness is generating favourable conditions for the development of more sophisticated products offering targeted eye health benefits within contact lenses and solutions.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Contact Lenses industry in Philippines with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Contact Lenses research and analysis database.
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