Mirror, mirror …..On the wall

Evolving men's cosmetic market
Men cosmetics

Given the gradual increase in the variety of products being offered by cosmetic companies, the improved purchasing power and the fact that men have become increasingly conscious about their looks has stimulated various potential cosmetic companies to introduce new products in this direction.


According to a new research report on 'Indian Cosmetic Sector Analysis (2009-2012)', the Indian cosmetic sector is expected to witness noteworthy growth rate in the near future owing to rising beauty concern of both men and women. When it comes to men cosmetic product market, it is a growing market and the consumers are very responsive.


Male cosmetic product market


Urbanisation has given way to growth of the metro sexual man. Over the years, self consciousness is no more the domain of the women, but men too and the gradual rise of grooming products for men in the market is a clear testimony to this. Sangeeta Kamath, Director, Lush India says, “Traditional sophisticated products that were earlier catered to female vanities are being marketed to men as well. Cosmetic companies are no longer opting to manufacture the stereo typical male grooming product, such as shaving foam, and razors, but are now focused on developing increasingly niche products. Right from the time of its inception, LUSH knew that men would be its potential customers. 40% of LUSH customers in India are men! When LUSH started making fresh (face masks), there were more men customers on the shop floor than female customers trying out the face packs. Such is the reach of the products,” she further adds.


Mohan Goenka, Director, Emami Limited avers, “Fairness creams constitute a huge market with sales worth nearly Rs 2000 crore (Nielsen 2010 figures). Out of this, the men's fairness cream accounts for only 10% and shows the immense possibility of growth.”


New trend?


Skin, whether it is of men or women, should look young and taut. The product need not necessarily be a woman product and everyone should have an equal opportunity to have and feel good skin. However, it is understood that this is not a new trend at all and men have been known to use fairness creams since a long time now.


Undoubtedly, men are becoming more and more aware about skin care and grooming. It’s only lack of availability of exclusive products for men that prompt them to use products meant for women. This also projects the scope of developing more products for men in the years to come. Cavin Kare spokesperson comments, “In fact, 30% of the users of fairness creams that are targeted towards women are actually men.”


Also, an extensive research at Emami implied that more than 30% of the users of fairness creams (all targeted for women at that time) were male. And this is when they thought of coming up with a revolutionary product exclusively for male skin and created a new segment of 'Male Fairness Cream 'in the Indian market. The product was very well accepted and in just five years time it has become a Rs 100-crore brand.


Product categories


The product categories range from a variety of products like fairness creams, deos, hair colorants, shampoos and creams among other things. Shriti Malhotra, General Manager - The Body Shop, India opines, “The men’s category is one of our fastest growing categories as we offer a wide range of grooming products across varied ingredients and formats. Our ranges incorporate expert technology for every man’s skin. Men’s Fragrance and EDT’s are high on demand followed by shaving creams, face wash and face exfoliators. Face lotions with SPF are more in demand as compared to the usual face lotions.”


Although Men skin care is only 4% of the total skin care market but it is growing at a healthy rate of 40% plus. Garnier launched Garnier Men Powerlight in the fairness segment which has managed to become the No. 2 Brand within one year of launch (Value MS – AC Nielsen, All India Urban- Men’s skin care market, May’10).


“At Garnier, it’s our endeavour to provide innovative, relevant, high quality products to our consumers,” says Richa Singh, Marketing Manager, Garnier India.


At LUSH, the most popular product range for men interestingly includes Karma soap, new hair shampoo bar, cosmetic lad multi functional cream, Ambrosia shaving cream and soft cover massage bar (of course, the reason to buy them remains to be varied).


Coming times


With advanced technology and innovative products, the male cosmetics market is bound to change. It is slated to grow and this will not only be restricted to the more popular categories like fairness creams, hair colorants and deos but other facial care, hair care and skin care products as well, and the market is expected to become much larger for men.


“Markets will experience a considerable change and maturity in the coming years with more and more cosmetic brands entering the market and increasing competition in the men’s category which is bound to widen the product ranges and varieties offered to the male customer, thereby leading to a bigger and more mature men’s market,” comments Malhotra.


Goenka concludes, “There is immense potential in this market and the company is particularly happy that it was able to create such a market with great scope. The way the market is growing rapidly on a year on year basis, it depicts a very bright future for the segment.”




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