Port Washington, N.Y., February 28, 2022 – The fragrance category was the star of the U.S. prestige beauty industry in 2021. Revenue growth outperformed all other beauty categories and, for the first time, fragrance sales reached parity with skincare. The average retail price for fragrances rose by 15% in 2021, versus 2020, after averaging a 5% increase during the two years prior, according to U.S. retail sales data from The NPD Group. Both men’s and women’s fragrances added nearly $10 more per product, on average, in 2021.
Higher fragrance prices are mainly due to a shift toward the purchase of eau de parfums (EDPs) and parfums, which have a higher percentage of fragrance oils and last longer once applied. This was at the expense of cologne, eau de toilette (EDT), and other products with lower concentrations of fragrance oils.
Premium luxury brands and private designer collections also command higher price-points and experienced market share gains in 2021. Fragrance juices priced over $175 more than doubled in unit sales for the year.
“By purchasing fragrances, consumers can find a pocket of luxury that brings them joy and is a welcome addition to their wellness rituals,” said Larissa Jensen, beauty industry advisor at NPD. “Given their willingness to trade up to more premium fragrances, consumers are exhibiting the high value they place on this olfactive category.”