Global Licensing Trends in Beauty and Personal Care

June 2016

Licensing is becoming an important factor across many categories. While fashion houses’ sales in the industry continue to grow, character franchises are driving licensing in baby/child-specific products and children’s oral care. As many celebrity properties struggle in fragrances globally, there could be further opportunities in emerging markets. Untapped categories, such as bath & shower, hair care and men’s grooming could potentially present good prospects for the licensing industry to expand.

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Key categories

Baby and child-specific products, fragrances, colour cosmetics and oral care are the most important beauty and personal care categories in terms of licensing.

Opportunities beyond established categories

Relatively untapped categories by licensing, including bath and shower, hair care and men’s grooming, could potentially present good opportunities to expand.

Baby and child-specific products: Licensing is driven by character properties targeting children

Asia Pacific is home to more than half of the world’s 0-14 year-olds, while lower birth rates and postponing motherhood bring both challenges and opportunities globally. As brands with natural/organic credentials gain popularity, there could be further prospects for increased collaborations between licensors and niche players. In total category spend per child*, Portugal, the UK, Switzerland and South Korea are the top markets.

Fragrances: Fashion and celebrity are the most predominant licensing types

Fashion licensing permits access to luxury within fragrances. Developing markets, offer better prospects for celebrity fragrances. They possess larger youth populations, and consumers have a stronger power distance, meaning that they are more likely to view celebrities in high regard.

Colour cosmetics: Fashion licensing increasing penetration

The category remains a far less explored option, with only a handful of fashion brands in the top 20 global colour cosmetics rankings. Foundation, lipstick and nail polish are the top three most receptive categories to licensing, according to Euromonitor International’s Beauty Survey 2015.

Oral care: Character licensing targets children’s products

In the Middle East and Africa, 0-14 years population is projected to increase by almost 148 million over 2015-2030, the fastest growth globally. Children’s oral care is a segment that the licensing industry could benefit from, if more players actively pay greater attention to it. Licensees and licensors could utilise the category to be an educator and a catalyst for dental health improvement among children in nascent markets.

Note: *Total category sales -represents overall sales of both licensed and non-licensed products.


Key findings


Size of the prize
Major licensing types
Domestic versus international character-based licences
Domestic versus international character-based licences (cont.)
More mass fashion houses enter beauty and personal care
Opportunities beyond established categories for licensing
David Beckham to become Biotherm’s brand ambassador
David Beckham to become Biotherm’s brand ambassador (cont.)

Baby and Child-Specific Products

Baby and child-specific products : Size of the prize
Baby and child-specific products: Top brands
Johnson & Johnson revamps baby care range
Natural/organic products on the rise: Opportunities for licensing
Lower birth rates/late motherhood bring challenges and opportunities
Asia Pacific is home to more than half of the world’s 0-14 year-olds
Where do 0-14 year-olds live?
China’s removal of its one-child policy should boost industry
World’s biggest per child spenders
Baby and child-specific products: Key demand factors for the future


Fragrances: Size of the prize
Perfumery is a luxury for all
Fashion licensing permits access to luxury with fragrances
Top global celebrity perfumes
Celebrity licensing a better fit in emerging markets
Desire for status symbols stronger in emerging markets
Role models : Consumers look closer to home
Opportunity for licensing: Stand out from the crowd
Case study: Coty Inc (1)
Case study: Coty Inc (2)
Case study: Elizabeth Arden
Elizabeth Arden: Overhauling eponymous brand
Fashion licences’ reign is challenged where local companies prevail
Major fashion licensing properties in fragrances

Colour Cosmetics

Colour cosmetics: Size of the prize
Colour cosmetics: Top brands
Fashion licensing increase penetration in colour cosmetics
Mac and Max Factor get on board with Star Trek and Star Wars
Sephora targets youngsters with Minnie Mouse
Warner Bros. partners with the US retailer Walgreens
Foundation: Most influenced by celebrity/advertising/licensing
Lip products: Lipstick – India is most receptive to licensing
Nail products: Nail polish – Chanel is a trend setter
Eye make-up: Thailand is most receptive to licensing

Oral Care

Oral care: Size of the prize
Oral care: Top brands
Middle East and Africa to record fastest growth in child population
High birth rate not always drives growth in children’s toothpaste
Children’s characters could boost good dental health
Oral-B: Leads in combining licensing, technology and dental health
Case study: Oral-B


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