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Introduction to beauty industry

What is the beauty industry?
© Adam Smith Center, Singapore

From an ancient Roman anti-wrinkle cream recipe to today’s multi-product makeup kits, the beauty industry has been around for centuries. The beauty industry encompasses cosmetics, perfume, skincare and haircare products.

According to Statista, the global cosmetic industry generated a revenue of US$80.74 billion in 2021. It is projected to earn revenue of around US$131 billion by 2026. The exponential growth in the industry, however, has also skyrocketed its plastic use, exacerbating environmental woes.

Given the industry’s negative environmental impact, an eco-awakening has gripped the beauty industry. Today, small firms and global giants are making the leap towards sustainable development and resource efficiency.

The rise of environmental considerations has led to the creation of green products. Green or environmentally-friendly products are broadly defined as products that will not pollute the earth or deplete natural resources and can be recycled or conserved. Correspondingly, Nielsen’s consumer insights reflect the unwavering demand and growth for sustainable Consumer Packaged Goods (CPGs), which include beauty products.

Already, one in seven people in the UK have changed to more sustainable beauty products from the months of April to July 2020. Research by Futerra found that 88% of American and British consumers want brands to do more to make a difference. Over 70% of respondents would consider paying a premium of 35% for sustainable and environmentally-friendly brands.

© Adam Smith Center, Singapore
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