Charlotte Libby
Charlotte is a Global Colour Cosmetics and Fragrance Analyst. Her expertise lie in consumer behaviour, trends and product innovation.

The importance of skincare claims in colour cosmetics is now emerging in the nail segment. With the nail treatment category holding the interest of consumers, brands are now bringing new innovations to this sector and replicating claims and formats seen in facial skincare.

Consumers today want to care for and treat their skin, not simply disguise imperfections. Over a third of make-up wearers in China prefer investing in facial skincare products than colour cosmetics, while in the UK, consumers now more likely to be influenced by product claims when buying nail polish than other colour cosmetics.

Nail brands are therefore exploring new treatment concepts: for instance, overnight nail products, reminiscent of night creams, were launched by Nails Inc in 2016 with the Overnight Detox Mask, and Sally Hansen recommends overnight use with the Moisture Rehab product.

Gastronomia trend can bring new textures

Almost one third of US nail colour users are concerned about chemicals, leading to brands innovating with diet inspired ingredients. Ingredients such as kale, turmeric, carrots, milk and almonds are thought to be beneficial for skin and nail health and offer new opportunities for nail brands. Looking to the future, there are opportunities for nail polish brands to further promote their superfood ingredients by texture matching, or creating DIY products for users to mix at home. Additionally, with the Pantone Colour of the Year 2017 being Greenery, brands can explore green vegetable polishes to match this shade.

Hot on the heels of this trend, in November 2016 French DIY cosmetics company Aroma-Zone announced the launch of vegetable pigments for use in nail polish. While the Violetta Allegro Pepper Nail Polish, introduced in 2016, offers a pepper texture effect.

Expanding nail protection

As explored in Mintel’s 2017 Beauty Trend Damsels in De-Stress, beauty consumers are becoming increasingly concerned over the negative effects of environmental stressors on their appearance. Protecting claims such as anti-pollution and UV protection are expected to increase in 2017. In 2016, Nails Inc has already released a range of nail polishes formulated with charcoal to protect nails against pollutants.

Anti-ageing nail is an untapped area

Further innovation is needed in colour cosmetics to match the demand from older women. As the population of mature countries across the world ages, nail brands can do more to target senior consumers. However, anti-ageing is not the only way to position products for an older age group: make-up that offers adapted claims and a range of shades that appeals to seniors and includes them in a younger-oriented category is the way forward. Moreover, as nails become brittle with age, there are opportunities in hydrating, strengthening and smoothing products, designed specifically for older consumers.

Removal can be improved

Nail polish removal can be harsh on nails and cuticles, therefore innovation to increase nail care benefits of removal can appeal to nail polish users, and encourage more frequent application.

Treat Collection Gentle Nail Polish Remover is a gentle soy-based formula made with pure argan oil, and enriched with vitamins, while Kester Black have launched a vegan water-based remover. Nail polish removers can also look to emerging skincare trends such as double cleansing, transformative textures and oil encapsulation to create products which appeal more to consumers.
Gentle nail polish removerpolish remover

Charlotte joined Mintel in 2013 as a UK Beauty Analyst and now focuses on the Global Colour Cosmetics and Fragrance markets. Prior to joining Mintel, Charlotte worked at a Beauty PR agency before moving to publisher Bauer Media to work on their women’s magazine portfolio. Charlotte is experienced in analysing consumer behaviours and identifying trends, and has a BA (Hons) in Public Relations & Communications.