PODCAST: A global beauty view on COVID-19 – hottest acquisitions, flashy innovations and biggest challenges

By Amanda Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

PODCAST: A global beauty view on COVID-19 – hottest acquisitions, flashy innovations and biggest challenges

Related tags: podcast, COVID-19, financial results, Npd

CosmeticsDesign editors break down the beauty and personal care acquisitions, product innovations and challenges that have arisen under the pressure of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In this exclusive podcast, Kacey Culliney, editor of CosmeticsDesign-Europe; Deanna Utroske, editor of CosmeticsDesign; and Amanda Lim, editor of CosmeticsDesign-Asia, come together again to discuss how the beauty and personal care industry is adapting to the dramatic shifts in beauty.

Despite the difficulties of COVID-19, Culliney believes it has been an “exciting” ​year so far.

“There's been plenty going on in terms of mergers and acquisitions and innovation and new product launches, which has been rather exciting considering what could be arguably defined as a difficult year for industry.”

She highlighted Estée Lauder's plans to increase its investment in Deciem Beauty Group,​ which owns cult skin care beauty brand The Ordinary.

“Deciem has got a lot of products that are very, let's call it's more mass market, but very, very potent, presenting lots of active ingredients, it's going to edge them into a new space. So that will be an interesting one to watch.”

New concerns and new innovations

In terms of product development, the editors noted interesting trends and the emergence of new product categories.

Lim highlighted a group of hybrid products with both make-up and skin care claims​ that are adapting to the new normal.

“A new area which is quite interesting is make-up with skin care benefits – but without the pigments… So, what the product does is smooths out your skin, it gives a glow, but without the pigment and the colours to prevent [your masks from getting stained].”

In a similar vein, Utroske noted how beauty tool and applicators, like make-up brushes, have evolved in light of the pandemic.

“UVé Beauty has a brush collection that features anti-microbial bristles, definitely getting at the concern that we have about touching our faces during the pandemic. I think a lot of the new product development I'm seeing here in the Americas market does have to do with hygiene, you know, touchless, or no touch products,”

While beauty companies are coming out with new innovations to solve new problems that have arisen during the pandemic, we are also seeing exciting new products exploring new realms of beauty, such as the L’Oréal Perso AI-powered personalised device.

“There’s an aspect of [beauty] that needs to be fun and engaging and bring something positive to your life. And I think that a lot of the brands have fallen back on that, given all the hardships experienced by people worldwide last year. How do we inject a little bit of fun and positivity into consumers lives via beauty innovation, beyond just efficacy and ease of use, I think that's quite nice to see,” ​said Culliney.

Big challenges ahead

The podcast goes on to highlight the challenges that the industry will face and have to continue to overcome.

“The biggest challenge that I hear and see right now is still international shipping, just in terms of even having the staff to unload when something gets to the dock… It’s really quite challenging for suppliers and brands right now,” ​said Utroske.

“Before the pandemic, there was obviously the pressure to innovate. But now, that pressure is even more intense, not just the need for speed, the products must be even more fantastical to catch your attention… I think that's very important for brands right now because they not only have to cut through the noise but also that rational part of you that says you don't need make-up products anymore,”​ added Lim.

You can listen to the podcast above or directly via Apple Podcasts.

This podcast was recorded on March 8, 2020.


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