The cosmetics and personal care industries in APAC have witnessed a hive of activity and now “many of the trends in Asia are becoming global trends”, he said.
In a recent report, market research company Mintel revealed that beauty and personal care trends in 2025 will heavily revolve around natural products and sustainability, as well as the use of smart technology and virtual reality.
Individual countries within APAC are also analysing their neighbouring countries’ success through innovative product design and segment concentration to influence and help adapt their own development plans.
We take a look at some of the key trends influencing Ashland and other brands throughout APAC.
Vito Consiglio, Vice President, Personal and Home Care, Ashland, highlights a number of key personal care drivers in the Asia-Pacific market most notably the anti-pollution sectors and the effects of pollution on skin care.
As protection from the elements remains a concern for both experts, product developers and consumers, brands are looking for new ways to appeal to cosmetic, beauty and personal care buyers.
Brands in APAC, are therefore continually looking for innovative ways to protect skin and hair from the deleterious effects of pollution, which is one of the most important drivers of the personal care market throughout the continent.
Pollution is a considerable skin care issue as it can adhere to the skin, potentially causing the particulate matter to penetrate, inducing skin sensitivity and accelerating skin aging. It achieves this through breaking down collagen, discolouring skin and compromising the skin barrier.
Ashland’s Shanghai-based Consumer Science team recently conducted a double-blind clinical study, which revealed that Elixiance biofunctional, which contains polyphenols quercitrin and miquelianin, provide skin protection benefits after 70 days exposure to an urban environment with high air pollution.
In addition, new studies by Ashland demonstrate the detrimental effects that exposure to pollution such as cigarette smoke has on hair including dryness, rough surface texture and loss of lustre.
The company’s hair care R&D team found that its Aquaflex XL-30 polymer, a hair styling polymer, also helps to protect it from pollution by reducing the degradation of proteins, such as tryptophan.
There has also been “a shift in cleansing to oils, [as] natural and sustainable ingredients are becoming more important”, he added.
As the urban living and lifestyle market gains traction, “the effects of digital blue light” through the use of digital devices is an evolving trend.
Ashland has recently launched its Blumilight biofunctional, a sustainable cocoa peptide fraction that focuses on digital blue light to provide customers with pollution protection and help prevent the concept of ‘digital aging’, which is associated with the light-activated receptors expressed in epidermal skin (in vitro).
Consiglio identified the selfie cosmetic market as a significant new market, once again reflecting the impact that changing consumer behaviours is having on the rise of internet retailing and digital marketing.
“Consumer purchasing habits are evolving through social media and e-commerce, [and so] product introductions are faster and brands can reach a wider spectrum of consumers.”
The region is still drawing a considerable amount of influence from Korean trends, Consiglio highlighted, as new textures and extended product regimes continue in popularity.
The company has also been concentrating on the hair care sector and overcoming the damaging effect that colour-treatment processes can have on the hair.
It has recently launched a new patent-pending polymer, ChromoHance 113 polymer, which has multifunctional usability in shampoo and conditioner products. This promotes colour vibrancy and appearance by forming a protective hydrophobic surface on hair.
Part III of this analysis and interview will focus on the necessity of investing in ongoing R&D to develop new products based on both science and nature.