Pollution, cashless payments and social media set to dominate beauty in 2017


Mintel predicts six key consumer trends impacting beauty

Mintel has predicted key retail trends for 2017. Here's how they will impact the beauty industry.

African growth

Mintel predicts that African will become an increasingly important area of growth. Richard Cope, Senior Trend Consultant at Mintel, said: “A host of factors are raising Africa’s prospects, including its youthfulness, its growing independence and burgeoning middle class.” Products such as black soap and shea butter will become a focus in 2017.

Pollution problems

Airborne pollutants are set to become a focus for consumers. Cope said: ‘Beauty brands are already at the vanguard of the pollution protection industry and we can expect an increase in product claims, as well as more campaigns that show just how bad pollution is for hair and skin.”

Big society

As funding for key cultural projects decreases, consumers are looking to brands to fill the gap. Catherine Cottney, Manager of Trends at Mintel, said that 20% of UK consumers believe that big national brands should play a bigger role in local communities.

However, Cope warned: “Transparency will be key as Mintel finds that 52% of UK consumers say they will only pay more for ethical products if they know where the extra money goes.”

Real time

The digital revolution has fuelled consumer impatience and this is set to continue. Catherine Cottney suggested: “Retailers can introduce happy hours and countdown discounts in response to everything from the weather to political or cultural events to engage consumers through some unscheduled serendipity.”

Cash to go

Payment methods such as contactless cards, smartphones and wearables are about to be embraced in a big way. Cottney predicted: “With the practicalities of paying streamlined, possibilities will be opened up for brands and retailers to focus more on creating a more unique shopping or eating experience for their customers.”

The new social

The popularity of apps such as SnapChat and WhatsApp are going to improve customer service online. “Brands will be able to instantly deal with complaints and queries using these new forms of technology rather than relying on manned social media platforms.”

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However, she also warned that this would raise expectations to new heights, while also offering a chance to forge closer relationships with customers.