Nürnberg, 10 September 2020
– Within the five biggest European prestige beauty markets, Germany shows the best recovery in year-to-date value sales through the end of June 2020, with value sales down 21 per cent compared to the first half of 2019. Among the two other markets reaching approximately 3 billion euros in the prestige beauty industry, the UK was down 37 per cent, and France was down 30 per cent, according to global information company The NPD Group, Inc.

In April, when the majority of brick-and-mortar stores were still closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, prestige beauty retail sales had declined more than 60 per cent compared to April 2019. In May, when brick-and-mortar retailers began reopening, sales started to improve and continued to do so through June with a decline of only 11 per cent.

Skincare recorded the fastest recovery within the three main categories in prestige beauty, declining 17 per cent year to date through June. During the first half of the year, the importance of skincare products grew, boosting its category weight from 25 percent in February to 29 per cent in May 2020. After haircare, the skincare category showed the strongest e-commerce performance, with almost 30 per cent of sales generated online in the first half of 2020.

Fragrances showed accelerated recovery in May, thanks to promotional focus during Mother’s Day and Father’s Day campaigns. Looking at the year-to-date through June results, fragrances is the second best-performing category in the market with value sales down only 20 per cent. The category maintains its value weight within the prestige beauty market at 47 per cent in the first half of 2020. Higher concentrated juices, such as eau de parfum and parfum continue to gain relevancy within the category.

In contrast, the makeup category saw a slower recovery, declining 29 per cent compared to last year. The lips segment was heavily impacted, most likely as a result of to the obligatory mask-wearing policy, as well as the limited number of social events. The eye segment was less impacted, supported by the good sales performance of mascara at and eye brow products.

“Even if we observe that it gradually returns to the level before the brick-and-mortar closures, the recovery phase shows that e-commerce still remains at higher levels compared to pre-COVID-19 levels,” said Samantha Grand, Director of Beauty Prestige Germany at The NPD Group. “The importance of an omnichannel approach to connect both the online and offline channels becomes even more evident with the recent impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The fourth quarter will be even more critical than in previous years for the prestige beauty market.”


*Source: The NPD Group / Germany Prestige Beauty Total
Market, January-June 2020