Mens skincare goes glocal

A previous blog referred to the potential in male skincare with the increasing attention to personal appearance. European demand is fuelled by a consumer desire to maintain a youthful appearance. Consequently, Western Europe has seen a focus on anti-fatigue/ stress or anti-aging effects.

Experts suggest that the traditional categories (shaving products & razors) in Europe’s 5 largest markets have been largely stagnant with the dynamism coming from skincare and Germany along with Spain registering the fastest growth over the past 5 years.

Given the lower purchase penetration of skincare, the prospects for growth look good – in the US, 9 out of 10 men over 18 use a grooming product but only 1 in 4 use facial skincare.

However, it is the Asian male skincare market which exhibits truly extraordinary growth potential. Market sizes are expected to double in India, Indonesia and China in the medium term.

As a result, Western brands are now responding to this potential with a more localised approach of tailoring specific products to respond to regional differences.  This reflects a more developed view of skincare among Asian men,  where looking good is synonymous with higher social standing.

This local approach has manifest itself in a number of ways such as focused, narrower ranges  to reflect the fragmented retail trade and smaller stores size. Smaller product sizes or sachets are being used to generate new consumer trial in rural areas. Men in selected Asian markets such as South Korea have established and sophisticated skincare regimes so brands are compelled to reflect consumer interest in fairness, oil control and cleansing benefits.

Successful exploitation of this localisation and adaption is illustrated by Men’s skincare brand Lab Series where 54% of total business is now from Asia.

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