The initial lockdown in the form of a Movement Control Order (MCO) in March had a polarising effect on sales of depilatories during the year, resulting in overall stagnating volume sales across the category. On the one hand, the lockdown forced beauty salons, which were deemed to offer non-essential services to close, forcing consumers who are used to regular personal grooming routines to rely on at-home methods of depilation in the form of women’s razors and blades, and hair removers/bleaches, the only products available in the category in Malaysia at the end of the review period.
Despite lack of growth potential in the earlier part of the year due to the home seclusion trend, an increasing number of brands attempted to add value to depilatories through greater specialisation in the form of pre-shave products including shaving gel for women which concentrates on targeting sensitive skin. Leading depilatories brand Gillette from Procter & Gamble continues to be a pioneer within women’s razors and blades, which had already expanded its product portfolio with a sensitive care range called Gillette Venus Extra Sensitive with Skin Elixir towards the end of the review period.
Depilatories remained a highly consolidated category in Malaysia in 2020, with Reckitt Benckiser dominating hair removers/bleaches with its brand Veet, which continued to gain value share, and Procter & Gamble continuing to dominate women’s razors and blades with its brand Gillette, which is synonymous with this type of product in the country. In addition to retaining its overall leadership of depilatories in 2020 ahead of its closest rival, Procter & Gamble remains highly active in its advertising and promotional efforts to support new launches including its Gillette Venus Sensitive lines such as Gillette Venus Satin Care Sensitive Skin Shave Gel.
With ongoing restrictions in place heading into the forecast period, including the closure of beauty salons which offer depilation services, consumers are likely to continue to rely on at-home alternatives as part of their personal grooming routines, particularly when certain restrictions could possibly be relaxed from May 2021 and consumers start to spend longer periods outside of the home. This is set to drive stronger demand for women’s razors and blades from 2021 onwards with the category outperforming the review period in both volume and value growth terms (at constant 2020 prices).
While less accessible to price-sensitive lower income consumers, the increasing popularity of epilators (not included under the scope of this report) for at-home usage amongst urban more affluent Malaysians, could offer competition to depilatories moving forward. Brands such as Braun Silk-épil 3 Hair Removal Epilator and the IPL Laser Hair Removal appliance which are both offered by online marketplace Lazada, reduce the need for regular depilation; some consumers may perceive these innovative appliances as an investment which will reduce their need to visit a beauty salon for similar services.
While health and beauty specialist retailers and grocery retailers are likely to remain the leading distribution channels for depilatories in Malaysia over the forecast period by offering both accessibility and a wide range of products to most consumers, e-commerce has the potential to further penetrate the category following its performance in 2020. Online sales of depilatories notably improved during the pandemic resulting in greater share gain for the channel, where it not only offered the convenience and perceived safety of home delivery but also the opportunity to find more competitive prices, with popular specialist retailers such as Guardian and Watsons regularly offering attractive discounts and promotions through their e-commerce sites.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Depilatories industry in Malaysia 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 Depilatories research and analysis database.
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