Sunny outlook: Growth of sun care market driven by opportunities for innovation

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Growth of sun care market driven by opportunities for innovation

Related tags Sun protection trends

The sun care market in Asia Pacific is set to grow at a CAGR of 7% from 2019 to 2021 with India, Indonesia and China leading the market growth.

Experts say product innovation, coupled with expanding the scope of sun care from skin care to body care, will drive this growth.

Suddhanya Gisbert, Insight Analyst, Thailand at Mintel said: “This will drive the growth of the sun care market in Asia as well as other subcategories where sun protection has the potential to play out.”

Consumers are also looking for sun care products that can prevent concerns such as pigmentation and protect against other factors such as pollution or blue light.

“It’s important to note that it’s not just skin damage from the sun that Asian consumers are concerned about; pollution is also at the forefront. This highlights the opportunity for companies and brands to develop products that protect and nourish skin that has been exposed to both the sun and pollution,”​ said Gisbert.

Gisbert also highlighted that she saw opportunities in the beauty supplement space.

“Beauty supplements continue to gain traction in the region and with this, we are seeing an uptake with oral sun care. Companies who have not tapped into the oral suncare space should look into this area and think of how they can introduce oral supplements that offer skincare benefits on top of sun protection.”

Moving forward, Gisbert believes the clean beauty movement will shape the future of sun care. 

“Consumers’ increasing attention to safety will drive the sun care category to innovate with more natural and clean products, as well as push companies to develop formulations that are safe for people and the environment,”​ she said.

Consumers look to ratings

Gisbert highlighted Bioré UV Athlizm range of sun care products as a recent innovation in the sun care market.

The products claim to use a unique technology to produce a light outer film that helps the formula to adhere to the skin even under very humid conditions.

“With this, the range has great potential to appeal to consumers living South East Asian countries with tropical climates and who are on the lookout for effective sun protection products​,” said Gisbert.

The Athlizm range provides a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 50+ with a Pa++++ rating. Such high protection ratings becoming more common in the Asian market.

According to Mintel’s Global New Product Database, the share of all sun care-related launches in APAC with SPF levels of over 40 has increased from 66% to 74% from 2014-15 and 2018-19.

This is driven by the consumer’s reliance on these ratings to choose sunscreens. For instance, almost two-thirds of female sunscreen users in China agree that indicators of sun protection are most important when buying sunscreen.

However, even though ratings are a huge factor when consumers make their purchase decision, there is still a lack of education and understanding among Asian consumers when it comes to sun care.

“Consumers are still not fully clear about the level of SPF to use and aren’t exactly familiar with terms like UVA/UVB and PA+++, in turn impacting the efficacy of using sun care products. In fact, the level of understanding is varied across markets in Asia.”

According to Mintel’s research, the majority of consumers in China see sunscreen a part of preventing ageing and skin diseases. However, as many as two in five rarely reapply sun protection throughout the day when they are outdoors.

This opens up opportunities for new textures and formats of sun protection, which will hopefully educate consumers on the benefits of reapplication.

She elaborated: “Companies and brands can also diversify on textures and formats to meet the different needs and preferences of Asian consumers, increasing usage frequency as well as encouraging reapplication.”Suddhanya Gisbert, Insight Analyst, Thailand, Mintel, will lead a session at in-cosmetic Asia on ‘Spotlight on Suncare’ on Tuesday 5 November at 14:00 in theMarketing Trends Theatre. For more information on the in-cosmetics Asia 2019 education programme, visit:

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