Emilia Tognacchini
Emilia researches and writes UK Reports, focusing on Household, BPC and Brands.

2020 has been a challenging year. However, the focus on home hygiene, added to restrictions on movement and social interactions that followed the COVID-19 outbreak have presented household care brands with new opportunities to engage with consumers. As outlined in Mintel 2021 Global Household Care Trends, homecare brands now have the chance to play a far more influential role in consumers’ lives by positioning New Product Development (NPD) as aids to health and mental wellness and championing social change by drawing attention to and acting on inequalities that exist in society.

Homecare as synonym of self-care

The Laundress is a perfect illustration of Mintel 2021 Global Household Care Trend, ‘Safe Home, Serene Home.’ The US company teamed up with wellness brand Aromatherapy Associates to create a range of laundry and household cleaners designed to help consumers approach homecare routines as an extension of self-care. The Laundress x Aromatherapy Associates Collection adds a therapeutic touch to everyday homecare chores and includes four formulas with revealing product names, such as Deep Relax Signature Detergent and Support Breathe Surface Cleaner.

The Laundress x Aromatherapy Associates Collection

Source: The Laundress

2020 saw an increased number of cross-category launches to leverage the new consumer interest in homecare. Wellness and beauty brand The Nue Co launched its first anti-stress home scent specially formulated to help users reset and recenter. The Nue Co Home Functional Fragrance has been developed using data and research from the Brand & Behaviour Laboratory of the University of Geneva, and features a unique packaging graphic that reflects the science-based knowledge behind the functional scent.

 

The Nue Co’s anti-stress home scent

Source: The Nue Co

Packaging to stand out

DedCool, a gender-neutral indie fragrance company, extended its offering to homecare with its new Dedtergent which is available in three different scents: Milk, Taunt and Spring. Produced in L.A. and sourced from plant materials, DedCool Dedtergent taps into Mintel 2030 Global Household Care Trend, ‘Together in Isolation with its 100% biodegradable and environmentally-conscious formula, and its refillable and endlessly recyclable packaging made from aluminium, one of the most bountiful alloys available on the planet.

DedCool’s Dedtergent

Source: DedCool

Procter & Gamble disrupted the household care category with a new line of fabric care and home cleaners specially targeted at younger demographics. Launched in the US and Canada, NBD. stands for ‘No Big Deal’, a popular acronym used on online social platforms and aims to capture a fresh and young approach to homecare chores. The cartoon-inspired design as well as its plant-based formulations and sustainable packaging concept have been developed using feedback from NBD.’s Instagram followers, giving the brand a unique youth-focused profile.

Procter & Gamble’s new home care line NBD.

Source: NBD.

Nature leads innovation in homecare

Concerns around the safety of ingredients used in cleaning products are leading homecare brands to explore alternative nature-inspired solutions. Kurin launched a new range of chemical-free homecare cleaners formulated with nearly 100% water that captures a health approach to homecare firstly described in Mintel 2019 Household Care Trend, ‘Healthy, Happy Home’ and further explored in Mintel 2021 Global Household Care Trend, ‘Safe Home, Serene Home.’ Kurin uses the power of super alkaline ionised water, high alkaline pure water with a pH of around 12-13.1, to provide a green and versatile cleaning formula with sanitising, degreasing and deodorising efficacy comparable to bleach.

Kurin’s range of chemical-free cleansers

Source: Kurin

What to expect in 2021

The success in terms of value sales experienced by household care companies as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak will be hard to replicate. Although the rollout of vaccines has given a glimpse of a return to something like normal life, the restrictions on movement and social interactions that have been put in place in early 2021 will continue to cause significant disruption. Mintel expects that this will keep homecare brands in the spotlight as hygiene-related anxieties linger and people’s lifestyles continue to adhere to the latest regulations.

However, extended periods of cleaning throughout 2020 will raise concerns about the side-effects of traditional cleaning products on health and the environment and will boost demand for eco-conscious and less aggressive alternatives. At the same time, consumer focus on holistic wellness will begin to replace hygiene-centric concerns and will play a pivotal role in strengthening demand for homecare products designed not only to provide cleaning efficacy but also to support consumers’ physical and emotional wellbeing.