Make-up losing shine in Japan but interest in skin, hair and body care products booms amid pandemic

By Guan Yu Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Continued interest in skin, hair and body care products amid pandemic – iStyle survey  ©Getty Images
Continued interest in skin, hair and body care products amid pandemic – iStyle survey ©Getty Images

Related tags Japan Makeup Skin care COVID-19

Demand for skin, hair and body care products continued to increase throughout 2020, but interest in make-up continued to fall, according to Japanese beauty retail company iStyle Inc.

The survey (Questionnaire on beauty and lifestyle) conducted in October 2020, was a follow-up survey to the first conducted in May 2020.

iStyle which owns the beauty retail and information platform @cosme, surveyed 6,563 females between 15 to 69 years old, who were registered as members on @cosme. The May survey involved 10,587 respondents.

Skin care boom

In the survey conducted in May, results showed that there was a rising demand for skin care products, will make-up dipped.

People were no longer meeting up, so they stopped putting make-up. The interest and time devoted to make-up was redirected toward skin care​,” explained @cosme research planner, Saiko Harada.

In the October survey, the trend towards skin care remained, despite people gradually heading outdoors.

Harada explained the prolonged wearing of masks led to people looking for skin care products, particularly those which were soothing and offered anti-inflammation properties.

Harada added: “There was also aninterest in products which prepares skin from the foundation up and make an effective barrier to protect the body from the outside environment​.”

Makeup loses shine

The May survey reported that interest in make-up decreased, which was also reflected in the October results.

Despite the reduced demand for makeup overall, Harada said some products did better in October compared to May. For instance, there was a greater demand for heavier eye make-up and lighter lip make-up.

Since people are wearing masks and covering the mouth area, they are looking for products to bring out the colour around their eyes​.”

Harada said the COVID-19 pandemic had significantly shifted consumer habits for certain products.

For one, they were looking for products such as make-up that will not stick to masks, or make-up that would complement their look when wearing a mask, as well as skin care products that prevents skin damage from prolonged mask wear.

Secondly, people were also beginning to buy beauty products for their own needs.

Instead of putting on makeup to meet up with other people, people are learning to put on makeup for their own enjoyment​.”

In other beauty products such as hair care and body care, about 50% of respondents indicated that their interest had increased compared to before the pandemic. For hair care, Harada said more people shifted to self-care, since they were unable to visit hair salons.

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