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More Than Lipstick

July 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

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What is beauty care? The answer to this question yields significant insight into the hearts and minds of women throughout the United States. How do females define beauty? What are their must-have beauty products? What beauty products or services can they not live without—and which ones do they use to relieve stress? The answers to these questions will provide spa owners and estheticians insight into the wants and needs of today’s clientele. This information should help guide the spa business decisions that are made on a daily basis to continue to be relevant to today’s female clients.

A brave new world

Women’s lives are very different from those of even several decades ago. More and more they have moved out of the home and into the workforce—most are breadwinners. Their evolving roles are nothing short of revolutionary and have changed everything, including the definition and importance of beauty care. This represents an amazing opportunity for all beauty care and beauty service providers. Understanding how women define beauty care and why can lead to an increased understanding of their needs, as well as a greater share of their pocketbook.

Recent research has revealed several interesting themes that revolve around the female consumer’s definition and use of beauty care. Five major findings are explored in this article in order to share consumer insight and implications for beauty marketers. All the statistics in this article have been provided by the March 2006 edition of the Pink Report, a quarterly research account that reveals what consumers of female beauty products want, what they’ll buy and why.

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What Does Beauty Care Mean?

The following chart lists a variety of types of beauty care and the percentage of respondents who identified that particular type as synonymous with beauty care.

Type of beauty care

Skin care 92%

Body care 74%

Hair care 73%

Cosmetics 68%

Nail care 60%

Bath products 56%

Anti-wrinkle/anti-aging 51%

Perfumes 49%

Facial 41%

Body firming/anti-cellulite 29%

Massages 29%

Aromatherapy 25%

Body treatments 22%

Spa visits 22%

Self-tanners 11%

Laser/injectable filler treatments 5%

Cosmetic surgery 4%

Beauty Care Advice Sources

The following chart lists a variety of beauty advice sources and the percentage of respondents who identified a particular source as their preferred provider of beauty advice.

Beauty advice source

Magazines 39%

Friends 17%

Family 10%

In-store sales personnel 10%

Advertising 9%

Other (primarily the Internet) 9%

Packaging instructions 4%

Books 2%

Reasons Women Recommend Beauty Products

The following chart lists a variety of reasons beauty products are recommended and the percentage of respondents who identified with a particular reason.

Reasons Respondents

The product is really good. 65%

The product works like it

claims it does. 53%

I love it and want to share my find

with my friends. 46%

It is reasonably priced. 42%

If it works for me, it will work

for my friend. 32%

It is easy to find and purchase. 28%

The sales service is excellent. 9%

My friend needs it. 9%

Other (primarily do not recommend) 3%

Favorite Stress-reducing Treatments

The following chart lists a variety of treatments and the percentage of respondents who identified that particular service as their favorite stress-reducer.

Beauty service

Hot bath 49%

Massage 21%

Pedicure 9%

Other (hot shower, glass of wine,

long walk, chocolate) 8%

Salon hair blow-dry 4%

Spa body treatment 4%

Manicure 3%

Facial 2%

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