Mirror, mirror on the wall

Male-groomingThe use of cosmetics and medical cosmetic procedures by men has been widely ignored in dermatological research in the past, but it is finding increasing attention.

As men are changing their habits and increasingly tend to use cosmetic products, they need to be aware of anatomical and physiological differences between male and female skin, environmental stress factors affecting male skin, and about cosmetic practices and the use of products.

Traditionally men’s grooming products were limited to deodorants and shaving products such as gels, foams and razors. Now companies are introducing a widening range of products in categories like hair care and skin care, and there is a particularly strong focus on men’s bath and shower products.

Around the world

The global male grooming products industry is expected to generate more than $33 billion in revenue by 2015, according to research from Global Industry Analysts.

Factors fuelling market growth in this sector include product innovation, an expanding middle-class consumer base and evolving consumer trends that have seen an increasing level of male interest in appearance and grooming. Rising male interest in improving their physical allure is being fuelled in particular by the cult of high-profile male role models, such as celebrity sportsmen and film stars. Growth in the male grooming products market continues to drive expansion in the wider global cosmetics market.

Industry players recognising the trend toward male grooming have thus far concentrated on launching a wide range of personal care products to appeal to various tastes and needs. While male grooming products may have represented a niche market in the past, it has become a mainstream market due to the rising popularity of such products.

Regional market share

The US men’s toiletries industry is led by disposable razors and blades, representing half of the overall market in terms of value, reports research company Canadean.

Aftershaves, colognes and post-shave cosmetics represent the second most lucrative market segment. Changes in gender behaviour are the main driving force behind the US aftershave and cologne market, with men showing enthusiasm for grooming. This constantly expanding consumer base is leading to increased demand, driving market growth. Demand for new and different products may see the market share of existing brands encroached upon by innovative products promising to meet consumer demand.

Disposable razors and blades represent the leading segment in the Indian men’s toiletries market. Canadean estimates disposable razors and blades represent 60% of the overall market in India in terms of value. Aftershave and cologne are the next-largest segment, with pre-shave cosmetics in third place. Post-shave cosmetics lag behind in India, representing only five per cent of the overall male grooming products market. Similarly, private label brands have a weak presence in the Indian market, accounting for only five per cent of India’s men’s toiletries market. Label brands’ weak presence is mainly due to the high degree of fragmentation in India’s retail market, as label brands usually have a strong presence in concentrated retail markets. Factors fuelling growth in the men’s disposable razors and blades market include changing lifestyles and age structures, with a growing younger population and a high degree of urbanisation playing key roles.

Unlike India, China’s disposable razors and blades market shows a high level of private label penetration. According to Canadean, 15 per cent of consumers opt for private label products. Other segments in the men’s toiletries market have a much lower degree of private label penetration. Disposable razors and blades represent the leading market segment in the Chinese male grooming products market, followed by preshave cosmetics. Aftershaves and colognes lag far behind, representing only two per cent of overall market value.

Market outlook

Over the coming years, interest in male grooming will continue to rise as the place of the male celebrity is accorded greater importance. The younger population in particular will drive demand.  Men’s toiletries companies are actively aware of the huge gap between men’s and women’s toiletries, which leaves great potential for manufacturers willing to expand their existing product ranges and add new innovative products with more functionality. This will see market growth driven not only by demand for essential products such as men’s disposable razors and blades, but also for non-essential items like aftershaves and colognes. The decline in demand for non-essential items caused by the volatile economic climate is likely to see strong recovery as consumer confidence picks up along with activity in the wider market.

According to Euromonitor, male-specific body wash, deodorant, hair gel, shaving cream, razors, moisturiser etc., constitute one of those markets that now outpace the overall beauty/grooming retail markets in many countries of the world, despite economic recession. Valued at $19.7 billion worldwide in 2009, male-specific grooming products will mushroom to $28 billion by 2014. And one must not forget that men also use grooming products that are non-male-specific – which raised the total value of male consumption to a colossal $61.3 billion in 2009, with $84.9 billion expected by 2014. From either perspective, more is being spent on men’s grooming, thanks to the ongoing rise of middle-class sectors; the enhanced connectivity of even the poorest corners of the world, via the Internet; marketers’ more sophisticated appeals to men; and the universality of prestige and natural food/HBC channels, across hundreds of international borders. The potential to tap unmined men’s grooming dollars in the United States and Canada, BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and other countries and regions is staggering, Euromonitor reports.


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