Personal care packaging expecting to stagnate in the US as economic uncertainty remains

By Andrew McDougall

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Hair care, United states, Us

Personal care packaging in the US is expected to stagnate for global packager Rexam as key markets start to show a decline and the market in general slows down, provoked by fears of another downturn linger.

According to its Consumer Packaging Report, despite being a mature market accounting for eight per cent of the global market in terms of volume sales, personal care has been stagnating in North America as a general feeling of economic uncertainty remains.

So much so that the biggest category in the US for Rexam, which is bath & shower, is expected to see a decline despite sub categories such as body washes and liquid soaps forecast to record slight growth.

It’s not all doom and gloom

One category expected to perform well is hair care, which is Rexam’s second largest category in North America in terms of volume.

The biggest single market for hair care is the US, with value sales of over $10bn last year, amounting to a 15 percent share of the global hair care market. According to Rexam’s report, Americans are also the biggest consumers of salon hair care, with an annual spend of $2.4bn in 2010.

Facial skin care, along with the eye make-up and deodorant categories are also expected to see growth in North America despite economic fears.

Rexam believes the facial skin care category will remain one of its strongest as women in the US are very loyal to both their skin care regimens and the products they use, such as moisturizers or anti-aging products.

Rexam believes that with the continued aging of the US population, combined with women’s reluctance to trade down on products such as anti-agers, means that it should be a solid future in this category for the UK-based firm.

Time to be flexible

As for types of packaging, flexible packaging is predicted to continue to perform the best, building on the success of being the biggest pack type used in volume terms in the personal care market in 2010.

Flexibles account for nearly half the global packaging total volume, largely thanks to the hair care and bath & shower categories, and is expected to grow six per cent a year reaching 75bn units by 2014.

Rexam expects the majority of this growth to come from the Asia Pacific region with hair colourants and shampoo accounting for 90 per cent of the growth.

A small amount is also expected from Latin America and the Middle East and Africa (MEA), whilst in North America flexibles are expected to decline.

In Europe, Rexam expects the market to remain flat as flexibles in Europe and the US are beginning to lose market share to rigid plastics.

Related topics: All Asia-Pacific, Packaging & Design

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