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Hair Care in Western Europe

July 2018

Deceleration of hair care performance stems from a changing consumer mind-set as they are looking to embrace their natural hair, reducing usage of certain hair care products that are associated with heavy use of chemicals. At the same time as consumer hair care choices are largely driven by the expectation to have healthy hair, routines are expanding in some markets to include more targeted solutions with clear benefits around scalp and hair health.

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Turbulent times for hair care

Western Europe, while remaining the third largest hair care region, has experienced decline as consumers in France and the UK, the largest hair care markets, are adopting more natural looks restricting the use of hair care products.

Price wars limit performance

Hair care is highly mass centric, generating 83% of retail value sales. Performance is dampened by fierce price competition and heavy promotions in mass channels such as supermarkets, discounters or drugstores.

Styling and colourants struggle

According to Euromonitor International’s Beauty Survey, in Western Europe consumers prioritise all natural ingredients as the most important green hair care feature in 2017. Styling and colourants, accounting for 36% of hair care sales, are finding themselves under pressure as being those hair care categories least associated with natural ingredients.

Routines are expanding driven by the healthy living megatrend

Consumers in Europe are increasingly prioritising hair health when purchasing hair care products according to Euromonitor International’s Beauty Survey results in 2017. With this in mind, hair care routines are evolving to include multiple steps and more targeted product formats borrowed from skin care as a holistic approach towards beauty is adopted and consumers treat hair as extension of the skin.

Competitive landscape is highly concentrated

Beauty giants such as L’Oréal, Henkel, Procter & Gamble and Unilever dominate the hair care landscape. They benefit from consumer loyalty and are constantly innovating to generate greater interest.


Key findings

Regional Overview

Asia Pacific races ahead, while Western Europe lags behind
Hard times for hair care but further improvements expected
Natural trend is double-edged sword
Turkey underpins growth in Western Europe
Styling and colourants struggle to keep pace
Healthy living megatrend defines development of hair care…
…contributing to routine expansion and premiumisation
Hypermarkets and supermarkets dominate…
…as mass-centric nature of hair care defines distribution landscape

Leading Companies and Brands

Smaller players struggle to compete in a highly concentrated market
L’Oréal leads through innovation…
…sourcing most growth from smaller markets
Reliance on colourants proves to be risky

Forecast Projections

Improving outlook
Varied performance across countries and categories
Population and income are the strongest driving forces
Soft drivers are also of importance

Country Snapshots

Austria: market context
Austria: competitive and retail landscape
Belgium: market context
Belgium: competitive and retail landscape
Denmark: market context
Denmark: competitive and retail landscape
Finland: market context
Finland: competitive and retail landscape
France: market context
France: competitive and retail landscape
Germany: market context
Germany: competitive and retail landscape
Greece: market context
Greece: competitive and retail landscape
Ireland: market context
Ireland: competitive and retail landscape
Italy: market context
Italy: competitive and retail landscape
Netherlands: market context
Netherlands: competitive and retail landscape
Norway: market context
Norway: competitive and retail landscape
Portugal: market context
Portugal: competitive and retail landscape
Spain: market context
Spain: competitive and retail landscape
Sweden: market context
Sweden: competitive and retail landscape
Switzerland: market context
Switzerland: competitive and retail landscape
Turkey: market context
Turkey: competitive and retail landscape
UK: market context
UK: competitive and retail landscape


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