Why International Brands are Preferred over Homegrown Brands for Skincare Needs in India
Why International Brands are Preferred over Homegrown Brands for Skincare Needs in India

Over the past few years, international brands have become significant contributors to the Indian market. Owing to a ‘globalized lifestyle’, the inclination of Indian consumers towards international brands has become pertinent. The Indian cosmetics and skincare market is flooded with international brands and despite higher price points has managed to lure high-income consumers. 

There are a number of factors that have led to the drastic transformation in consumer behavior and lifestyle transformation:
-    Growing aspirations
-    Growth in purchasing power and per capita income
-    Social media influence
-    Lucrative ad and marketing strategies

However, with the Government’s probe to opt for Indian brands and support the ‘vocal for local’ mission, a number of homebred brands have emerged and proved to be tough competition to international brands. A number of brands have comprehended that the right way to sell their products and ensure that it reaches its end consumer, ‘being informative’ is the key. 

For instance, India is the birthplace of Ayurveda, a practice that has been in existence since 5000 BC. It is also a country where opening the kitchen cabinet to look for a quick fix to any skin or hair problem is a common practice. These rich traditions have given rise to many homegrown natural cosmetic brands. 

Bridging the Gap

Beauty has been a very important part of the lives of Indian women for centuries now, but beauty in India is changing. A fair complexion is no longer an obsession but a glowing, protected, and healthy skin is. Today the consumers are opting for more results-driven solutions and products. 

While Ayurvedic beauty brands have been local skincare frontrunners for decades, clinical skincare is on the rise. Modern millennials want to be informed and they want formulas that are safe and effective and show rapid and visible results. The percentage of consumers that care about what they put on their face has increased drastically. Consumers are constantly reading reviews on social media and e-commerce platforms to understand brands better. 

The pandemic has been a significant contributor to the rise in demand for skincare in India. Consumers want to maintain a routine, practice self-care, and also appreciate having more time to experiment with formulas. The pandemic has given ample time to consumers to dedicate to their skincare routines and research solutions that can effectively solve their concerns.

There is a steady shift from preferring foreign products to appreciating and giving Indian brands a chance. Local brands are making efforts to educate consumers about the ingredients, benefits, new vision, and change outlook for effective results. Brands are opting for formulas that are deep-rooted and cultural, which is clean and non-toxic as well. Indian brands are listening and communicating with their consumers, to understand their needs and preferences of ingredients and concern areas. 

For years we have noticed marked differences in the overall offering of homegrown brands in comparison to global ones. There was almost a clear stamp among homegrown brands terming them as ‘local’. In the last decade we have seen a palpable scale up on the overall package offered by the homegrowns, be it the quality of offering or class of packaging or advertising and even the use of brand ambassadors, homegrowns have not left too much reason for the global brands to be chosen over them.

The Rise in Demand of ‘Swadesi’ Products

-    A significant segment of this demand is for products that suit Indian skin types and hair - a need that largely remained unfulfilled by international brands, providing the perfect opportunity for local companies

-    A growing movement away from chemical to natural - and, by association, safer - ingredients have seen these companies tap into the country’s centuries-old repertoire of Ayurvedic and other organic remedies for their formulations

-    Customized local products are pocket-friendly, compared to the international brands

Indian beauty brands continue to harness the power of natural blends and organic ingredients, to create products that look good, and, more importantly, feel great. Not only can they rival their foreign counterparts on quality and beauty benefits, but they’re also much more affordable, accessible, and, at the end of the day, beneficial for our economy.

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