According to Euromonitor figures, premium beauty sustained its growth levels in 2012, aided by the strong performance of premium skin care, which outshone all other categories.
And it is in China that growth is particularly strong; which is hardly surprising given that it has been targeted by the big premium players in the rgion: L’Oréal, Estée Lauder and Shiseido.
China is seeing strong growth at present, with premium beauty adding a further $4.5 billion by 2017, resulting in sales of premium cosmetics in Asia Pacific (estimated $6 billion) to exceed any other region.
Euromonitor says that this could benefit the leading premium beauty companies, which all have a foothold in this region.
Being more local, Japan-based Shiseido has perhaps the strongest foothold in Asia-Pacific as the region contributes to the majority of the company’s value. It is able to serve the local needs of the consumer and has benefitted from the skin care market in particular.
Beauty and personal care growth has been mainly driven by premium products that outpaced the mass segment growth, with increasing demand for anti-ageing and skin care products boosting the premium beauty market; and this has attracted some stiff competition for the Japanese cosmetics maker.
Estée Lauder has capitalized on strong prestige beauty market growth in China particularly through airport retail and online channels and has been gradually trying to expand into smaller cities and more airports.
The US-based firm also launched its first China-specific skin care brand, Osiao, targeted at meeting the specific demands of the local consumers.
Drawing on experience
Beauty behemoth L’Oréal has also recently outlined its plans for attracting the next generation of Chinese luxury consumers, with projects such as the launch of the Clarisonic brand at the start of the year and the opening of the new Yves Saint Laurent Beauté boutique last month.
L’Oréal Luxe has been present in the luxury beauty market in China for 20 years since it introduced Lancôme to Chinese consumers. The operation now has 11 brands in available in the country and is the most dynamic of the major luxury cosmetics groups in China with a growth of 1.3 times the market.