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The Ascent of Healthy Aging

By: Carrie Lennard
Posted: October 27, 2010, from the November 2010 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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Even in the notoriously frugal German market, anti-aging products showed the strongest growth in 2009, with the category growing by more than 7% in value terms. As in the United States, Germany’s population is an aging one, and the consumer group for anti-aging products is growing on a daily basis. Although anti-aging products historically were used only by consumers over the age of 50, they are now being purchased by consumers, both women and men, in their 30s and even younger.

A rise in private label anti-aging

Globally, private label’s share in skin care has remained low—during the 2004–2009 period, its share in global skin care remained below 3%. In Western Europe, however, private label anti-aging products have had much more success, doubling their share from 3% in 2004 to 6% in 2009.

This growth has been driven primarily by some notable, high-profile successes for individual private label anti-aging products from mass retailers, such as Alliance Boots in the United Kingdom. Its private label anti-aging product, Protect and Perfect, has proved successful as a result of being scientifically proven in independent tests to reduce the appearance of wrinkles now also being sold in continental Europe, and retails at prices that rival masstige skin care brands. The discount chain, Aldi, has a private label anti-aging range called Lacura, which has also outperformed branded anti-aging products in similar tests.

These launches have helped improve the public’s perception of private label anti-aging offerings and provide a lesson for skin care players in other regions—that subjecting even a few products in their brand range to these kinds of trials could bring similar rewards, and raise the consumer perception of their entire product range.

Looking East

Pale skin is considered beautiful in Asian markets. Given this cultural ideal, there has always been strong demand for skin lighteners. In addition, the need to remain young-looking in a competitive job market means that key, up-and-coming skin-lightening ingredients in Asia are now pervasive in anti-aging products and are helping to drive global sales. The key difference is that, thanks to rising disposable incomes in these emerging countries, consumers have more money than ever to spend on them.