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2017 Beauty Outlook, Part 1: Makeup Trumps All!

Dec 21, 2016
Karen Grant, Senior Vice President, Global Industry Analyst ;
Beauty

Blowing away the competition and upending our world as we once knew it. If you ever doubted the power of the internet, social media, and the appeal of the personality, now you know. This force is real and turning everything we know, or thought we knew, on its head. Politics? Think again…

Makeup, the winner in 2016, stands to trump all again in 2017.

For years, makeup has been watched and followed – remember the famous ‘lipstick index?’ – as an economic market indicator of where women invest during tough or uncertain times. Now, makeup has moved so very far beyond that; it defines the selfie-obsessed, image-driven, influencer-made culture of our time. Yes, makeup is still followed and watched, but now it is by most every woman looking to learn, find a new option for self-expression, for the quick-fix to look instantly younger, or to achieve that perfected ‘natural’ appearance.

Growing at a pace unseen in all NPD U.S. prestige beauty tracking history, makeup is also enjoying this momentum in virtually all countries tracked by NPD. But what about the “no makeup” trend, you may ask? As has often been stated, looking as though you wear no makeup takes a whole lot of makeup. Today, not only is there an increase in the number of women wearing makeup compared to when the ‘no makeup’ trend emerged in 2014, but of the women wearing makeup, two out of every five women aged 18-54 are wearing at least five or more makeup products on a typical day! 

And, it doesn’t stop there. Even during the holidays—the perennial fragrance season—makeup now rules. Surpassing fragrance sales in the fourth quarter, U.S. prestige makeup sales look to generate over a quarter of a billion dollars more in revenue than fragrance during the holiday season. Yes – makeup is now not only the category of choice every day, but also for the holiday season. Do we live in a world where, for an increasing number, it’s all about me?!

Yes. Today, in this age of appearance driven e-reality, makeup trumps all.

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