Beauty Broadcast Video Series

Tiny but mighty: Can strength in innovation enable Singapore’s beauty sector to rival Asian giants?

By Amanda Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Singapore, SEA

Singapore’s thriving cosmetics industry has been hailed as ‘one to watch’ with several domestic brands finding success in international markets thanks to groundbreaking research and extensive product innovation.

When you think about beauty in Asia, chances your mind would spring to the heavyweights like Japan and South Korea, or the emerging giants of China and India.

But in the background, Singapore’s beauty industry has quietly been advancing with local champions like Skin Inc and Allies of Skin finding renown in the international market.

These successes could be just the beginning, as Singapore’s beauty industry has a very strong research and development scene with well-funded institutions including Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and the Skin Research Institute of Singapore (SRIS).

“What’s great about Singapore is that we have the SRIS, the universities, we also have support from the polytechnics. All these players are very, very important because they give you innovation. If you want new innovations, Singapore is the right place,”​ said Tan Ming Jie, vice president of the Singapore Society of Cosmetic Scientists.

He highlighted local brands such as Vesiderm and Heure Beauty, which have benefitted from the support of the various Singaporean institutes to ensure they are at the forefront of cosmetic innovation.

In fact, Tan foresees that this high level of innovation could become the signature of the Singaporean beauty industry.

To hear more about the potential Tan sees for Singapore’s beauty industry, check out our video above.

Building a community

On April 8, the SCSS launched the first of its SingBeauty webinar series.

“We wanted to spread the awareness of local brands because a lot of people don’t realise there’s been a lot more activity going on behind the scenes during the COVID-19 pandemic, many more brands coming out, a lot of exciting things from them. It was very important for us to feature them,” ​said Tan.

While still in the early days, the SCSS hopes this event will gain traction and eventually become an in-person event.

“With all businesses, it’s about the connections. We are thinking about holding a physical networking event can be the bridge between B2B.”

Tan emphasised the need to strengthen the beauty community not just between brands, but retailers, distributors, academia and all other relevant parties.

“We are small but I’m happy knowing one thing – that we are growing. Singapore is getting stronger and stronger. That’s why we need this ecosystem, that’s how Japan and Korea started as well.

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