‘What we’re strong at’: Mistine China banking on eye and complexion make-up to grow colour cosmetics category

By Amanda Lim

- Last updated on GMT

Mistine is aiming to grow its colour cosmetics category in China. [Mistine]
Mistine is aiming to grow its colour cosmetics category in China. [Mistine]

Related tags Thailand China Cosmetics Marketing COVID-19

Thai beauty brand Mistine is aiming to grow its colour cosmetics category in China and has identified eye make-up and complexion products as its biggest opportunities.

Mistine is the flagship cosmetics brand of Thai company BetterWay Co. and is known locally and regionally for its variety of affordable colour cosmetic products.

However, when the brand debut in China in 2016, it focused on its skin care offerings instead. This strategy made Mistine one of the top sunscreen brands in China, especially among the generation Z crowd.

However, the company is now looking at opportunities beyond sunscreen and will be focusing more on colour cosmetics moving forward.

At the moment, sales of colour cosmetics only contribute to around 5% of total sales.

Mistine’s brand and business development director, Jackey Ho, told CosmeticsDesign-Asia​ that while it may be a while before the lip category recovers due to mask-wearing, the eye category has proven to be resilient against China COVID-19 woes.

“For colour cosmetics, we will focus on what we are strong at, such as eyeliner and mascara. We will continue this but of course we will not just produce colours like black, but also dark blue or purple.”

The company is also focusing on complexion products, such as liquid foundations and CC cushions.

Sunny outlook

On the other hand, sunscreen continues to be an important category for the company.

According to Ho, sunscreen sales account for around 70% to 80% of Mistine’s sales in China.

“Today, there are many opportunities in the beauty industry, many trends. Of course, we have to pick the ones that we are competent in and have expertise in. Sunscreen is one of the trends that we work hard on,” ​said Ho.

She elaborated that the demand for sunscreen stems from the shift in consumer usage. While sunscreen used to be thought of as a seasonal summer product or something you need for outdoor activities, now more consumers are seeing sunscreen as an everyday product.

“Nowadays, even if you are not going out, people know you have the chance to face UV or blue light exposure. So, it’s not just for the summer or when you do sports or outdoor activities anymore,” ​said Ho.

Furthermore, consumers are becoming more specific about the type of sunscreens they want to use.

“One of the trends we are seeing is that people are becoming more selective, especially the younger generation. They want a sunscreen that meets specific needs, not one general product meant for all people.”

For instance, consumers are purchasing sunscreens for specific periods, such as the “transitional season”​ between summer and autumn, when the skin may be more sensitive, said Ho. This would lead them to seek out sunscreens that are approved by dermatologists.

Furthermore, there the brand sees a need for different formulations and formats, from lotions to sprays as well as powders.

Testing the waters

In addition to its major markets like China and South East Asia, Mistine is also exploring the idea of expanding into the US.

In recent months, it has made the brand available on Amazon with a limited range to testing the waters.

While the firm does not have any figures to share yet, Ho told us that the growth rates have been positive so far.

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