All dolled up: Thailand’s Cathy Doll sets sight on premiumisation with perfume, make-up

By Amanda Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

Cathy Doll is working towards premiumisation with new offerings in perfume and colour cosmetics. [Cathy Doll]
Cathy Doll is working towards premiumisation with new offerings in perfume and colour cosmetics. [Cathy Doll]

Related tags: make-up, Perfume, Cosmetics, Fragrance, Personal care, Thailand

Thai mass market megabrand Cathy Doll is working towards premiumisation with new offerings in perfume and colour cosmetics.

Cathy Doll is the flagship brand of Thai conglomerate Karmart. It is among the most popular beauty brands in Thailand with a product range spanning make-up, skin care and body care.

Last year, the brand expanded into fragrances, with a range of eau de parfum and scent body lotions.

Karmart regional director of business development, Kat Wei, said the fragrance line was launched with the intention of capturing new consumers.

Speaking to CosmeticsDesign-Asia​ at the inaugural Cosmoprof CBE ASEAN trade show in Bangkok, Thailand, Wei said: “With Cathy Doll, we have always tried to keep the prices competitive. Now after more than 10 years, it’s time to introduce more upscale products to increase our brand equity.”

According to the company, the introduction of the fragrance line has been relatively successful, helping to raise the brand’s visibility and increase its sales volume and profits.

Wei elaborated that the line has faced challenges domestically because of the higher price point. However, it has been doing well for its export markets. Next year, it is set to debut in Malaysia with a popular beauty retail chain.

Cathy Doll is one of Karmart’s 15 beauty and wellness brands with over 1,000 SKUs between them.

As the flagship, it remains the firm’s largest and most successful brand, accounting for around 20% to 30% of total sales.

Since its launch in 2010, Cathy Doll has expanded into various markets overseas. Today, it is available in markets, including China, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines.

Colour-proof future

For the next 12 months, the company will continue to focus on premiumisation – this time for the colour cosmetics category, where it is expecting growth to come from.

While make-up generally saw a decline in the past couple of years because of COVID-19, Karmart saw a huge spike thanks to its dedicated eye make-up brand Browit.

“Browit launched in 2017, starting with just brow products. Precisely because there was a focus on the eyes during COVID, we saw huge growth. For our export market, we saw at least 200% growth,”​ said Wei.

Like many countries in the region, Thailand has abolished mandatory mask rules in both indoor and outdoor settings. However, Wei noted that Thais still continue to wear masks regardless.

At the same time, the need for make-up is not going away. As such, the company has worked on new products such as mask-proof lip tints.

Overall, the firm is seeing growth across all make-up categories, but eye make-up remains the strongest.

“The other make-up categories may be picking up, but it’s not slowing down the growth of eye make-up at all,” ​said Wei.

New marketing avenues

With more emphasis on digital commerce, the firm has been tapping into livestreaming. It has seen excellent results so far, raking in five- to six-digit figures in just one hour.

“We are seeing it take off in Thailand and the Philippines but it’s not in Malaysia or Singapore yet. Still, it is a trending channel we are trying to catch, and we do that by tapping into a lot of our brand ambassadors,” ​said Wei.

In addition to livestreaming, Wei said the firm’s future digital marketing strategy will focus strongly on TikTok.

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