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30 Jan

Prestige Beauty Grew 15 Percent in 2022 – WWD


Economic uncertainties are not any match for prestige beauty, latest data shows.

In keeping with a year-end report from the NPD Group, every category in prestige beauty posted double-digit gains, with makeup, skincare, fragrance and hair growing 18 percent, 12 percent, 11 percent and 22 percent, respectively. The industry overall grew 15 percent.

That ballooning of sales shows no signs of abatement, in accordance with Larissa Jensen, vice chairman of beauty at the NPD Group. “It’s still up double digits year-to-date to date,” she said. “That swell is continuous in 2023, which is what we anticipated.”

Across the consumable sectors NPD tracks, prestige beauty was the just one to achieve double-digit sales in units. “It goes back to the lipstick index and the ‘treat’ mindset,” Jensen said. “Consumer confidence went down and sales went up. But even when consumer confidence crept back up, we still got good sales.”

Jensen attributed that to the prestige beauty shopper’s median income, with roughly half of shoppers earning greater than $100,000 annually. “That consumer is less more likely to be impacted by the things which might be happening around us when it comes to inflationary prices,” she said, adding that beauty prices in prestige are relatively flat, even in an inflationary environment.

Makeup unit sales are past pre-pandemic volumes, though dollar sales are barely short. Jensen attributed the phenomenon to product mix — lip was the fastest growing segment and has lower median prices than complexion — and smaller price increases. Lip gloss also outranked lipsticks, but lip sales overall passed pre-pandemic levels in each dollar and unit sales.

In fragrance, higher concentrations and luxury artisanal juices drove the expansion.

Shoppers also appear to be trading up in hair, still among the many market’s fastest-growing segments attributable to mask and treatment sales, though it declined within the mass market.

In skincare, body products shot up at triple the speed of facial skincare. “That consumer discovered body products within the pandemic, but this behavior really stuck,” she said.

Body care is the exception, not the rule. Brick-and-mortar sales are still capturing market share from e-commerce. “Body care is considered one of the few [behaviors] that’s stuck around. What’s happened more is a shift back to pre-pandemic behaviors,” Jensen said.

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