Due to factors such as stress, bad lifestyle habits, sun exposure and pollution, sensitive skin is rapidly becoming a major concern for consumers in Asia.
Its symptoms include redness, itching and tightness or the skin but can also lead to premature ageing.
“Sensitive skin is the rise of an old issue. In 2017, 48% of women perceive their skin as sensitive and they look for gentle, safe products,” said Marty Lumain, APAC beauty care marketing manager, Seppic.
Fortunately, the quest to soothe sensitive skin is an age-old issue, she said.
“From ancient times, soothing the skin from sensitivity has been a real concern. According to Ayurveda traditions, they used ingredient like aloe vera or cica to make balms to soothe and heal wounds.”
The speciality ingredient company has identified the Ayurveda-inspired ingredient as the ‘new hero for sensitive skin’.
“Since 2016, we have seen more and more product launches with cica. It’s first a soothing cream dedicated to sensitive skin. It can relieve irritated skin, strengthen skin barrier and moisturise the skin,” said Lumain.
She pointed out that cica ticked many of the boxes in terms of overarching megatrends such as the focus on natural ingredients and wellness.
One way the wellness trend has manifested in beauty is through derma beauty, Lumain explained.
“More consumers are aware of sensitive skin and we’re seeing the market for derma beauty growing.”
Probably one of the most well-known cica products is Cicaplast Baume B5, by derma beauty brand La Roche Posay.
As a known cure for sensitive skin, cica can fulfil both the natural and effective aspects that consumers are now looking for.
“There’s a growing need for transparency, more minimalist formulas with simple, natural ingredients,” said Lumain.
Aside from strengthening and protecting distressed skin, products with cica also fight the wrinkles associated with mature skin.
Lumain highlighted L'Oreal Paris Revitalift anti-ageing range which now includes cica as an ingredient to resists visible signs of ageing.
New formats needed
While cica is not a new phenomenon, Lumain stressed that consumers wanted to see new product formats that cater to modern-day beauty needs.
“[Consumers] seek out new product experiences stimulated by innovative textures and formats,” she said.
K-beauty brand Dr. Jart+ has done just that with its popular Cicapair range, which includes a cica serum, gel, mist, sheet mask and ‘ampoule mask’.
According to Seppic, popular product formats today include cloud-like and yoghurt textures.
“What we see in the market right now is cloud-like, cushiony, airy marshmallow textures and also yoghurt textures which we have prototypes of,” said Lumain.
She added that mists and stick formats were also becoming more popular because of ease of application and portability.
“For fluid formats, spray and mists are becoming more popular as serums, essences and body lotion. Stick formats are not messy and easy to use when you travel or when you’re at the gym. Such nomadic formats are very popular tight now because more consumers are more engaged in physical actives as well as travelling.”