Mintel reveals China beauty trends for 2023 at Cosme Week Tokyo

January 12, 2023

Mintel, the world’s leading market intelligence agency, recently attended Cosme Week 2023 where Ruyi Xu, SVP of Insights, APAC at Mintel , was invited to discuss Mintel’s latest research and insights  on China’s beauty market. The day-one session explored opportunities for brands in the skincare market, including recommendations for brands looking to grow their business within China’s clean beauty space.

Picture: Mintel at Cosme Tokyo

COSME [OSAKA][TOKYO] is Japan’s largest B-to-B cosmetics show. Tokyo was the first event of the 2023 season, which brought together cosmetics and toiletries companies, brands and manufacturers from all around the world, including many newcomers to the Japanese market.

Picture: Ruyi Presented

“Mintel’s high-quality consumer data, in-depth market analysis, unparaleled beauty industry expertise and commitment to helping brands understand what consumers want and why, puts us at the center of our clients growth strategies,” said Ruyi. “Today, I shared some of our insights and recommendations on the development of China’s beauty industry, but given how nuanced the market is and how quickly consumer behavior is changing, there’s so much more for brands to learn about C Beauty and to apply to their specific business needs.”

In her presentation, Ruyi shared case studies on China Beauty trends and summarized key opportunities, including:

The New Guochao

Nowadays, Chinese consumers acknowledge the progress made by local brands in terms of efficacy, texture and ingredients. Mintel data shows that nearly half (49%) of Chinese consumers prefer domestic function-driven facial skincare brands. In fact, with more exploration of local ingredients and cultural components, as well as increasing investment in research and development, local brands have the ability to compete with multinationals as the new era of Guochao goes beyond design and packaging.

The Pursuit of Healthy Skin

Mintel data reveals that 42% of Chinese female consumers perceive their skin as ‘unhealthy’. Meanwhile, 34% of Chinese female consumers say they  have sensitive skin, and 48% of sensitive skincare product users consider ‘repairing the skin corneum’ to be the most important claim for sensitive skincare products. Looking ahead, skin barrier repair will be a key focus area with opportunities to develop new angles, such as stratum corneum care. Another area of opportunity is extending the pursuit of healthy skin to more subcategories, such as the scalp and color cosmetics.

The Rise of Local Clean Beauty

Although not standardized in China, clean beauty concepts are quickly expanding as consumers seek safety and grow more informed and concerned about sustainability. Currently, local clean beauty brands are incorporating Chinese-specific needs and resources into brand concepts and product designs to appeal to Chinese consumers and stand out. Free-from and ethical claims are the most important aspects of clean cosmetic products and the two claim groups have represented a growing trend in key categories.

*Guochao: meaning ‘national trend,’ refers to the fact that young Chinese consumers are increasingly interested in the integration of traditional Chinese culture and style with domestic brands and products.

Media interviews with Ruyi Xu, SVP of Insights, APAC, are available on request from the Mintel Press Office.

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