At first blush, the beauty industry could be thought to cater only to the glamourous, or perhaps the vain, or maybe just those in the spotlight. And it does - along with everyone else! The industry is built on the product and services that help us look our best - whatever that best may be.
It’s more diverse than you think and it’s certainly not just the makeup, hair color and perfume - it’s also the deodorant, toothpaste and even the ear hair clippers. It’s not just the salons - it’s the barber shops, tanning beds, massage franchises and a whole lot more.
It is every product and service dedicated to helping us look - and smell - the way we want, or the way we believe we should for professional reasons. And our definition of beauty is malleable and ever changing - providing never ending opportunities for the industry to innovate.
Historically trends were driven by celebrity tastemakers through their personal choices or professional endorsements. Think of Jackie Kennedy’s salmon suits, or more recently the “Rachel” - a hairstyle phenomenon based on my Friend and yours.
Those days are gone, or nearly so. 82% of women now believe that social media drives these trends. It’s a constant flow of information and opinion from not just trendsetters or celebrities, but from friends and friends of friends and an entire universe of strangers.
But however they are set, there is a large industry ready, willing and able to cater to them. It is resistant to economic downturns and poised for even more growth. For the entrepreneur there are plentiful representative sales opportunities within companies like Avon or Arbonne and many more traditional franchising opportunities providing a slew of services.
As it turns out, it takes a lot of effort to keep us looking and smelling our best - an absolute army of products and services, in fact. Cosmetics, skin care, hair styling, hair coloring, hair removal, nail salons, tanning salons, massage parlours and luxury spas, shower and shaving product, perfumes, colognes...and a whole lot more.
And that’s where it starts to get interesting - within each of these segments are products for every different skin tone or texture, allergy, age, hair type or color, sex - even the time of day! It is a level of diversity and nuance that may go unnoticed to the casual observer. Some of us, in fact, are overwhelmed by all those rows of shaving cream.
But increasingly we are the minority - most consumers care, are discerning, and will try a number of different products before finding something that works. Once they find it, however, brand loyalty - whether for a shampoo or a particular salon - is extremely strong.
Producers differentiate themselves through their target demographic markets, price point and with different manufacturing processes. Products that promise no animal testing or that are all natural, for example, have loyal, niche markets and can often charge a premium.
Service providers compete primarily through price, location as well as their target demographic markets. Types of service and the related products that are offered are vital to profitability. Hair salons and barber shops, for example, rely on 5-15% of their revenue from hair care product sales.
The beauty industry is known to be resistant to economic downturns - even faring well during the Great Recession of 2008. Though consumers tend to be more price conscious during those times, they do not stop spending. So in today’s environment of rising per capita incomes the beauty business is booming.
Contact Person: Ms. Dan
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