The United States has been a global leader in the production of cosmetics, and this has resulted in the country being the leading exporter of these products. However, after the COVID-19 pandemic hit the industry hard, sales abroad have not yet recovered to their pre-crisis levels. The graph below shows how the export performance of US cosmetics has fared since the crisis. Despite this, the U.S. remains the leading exporting country of these products.
Natural ingredients in cosmetics
There are many reasons to consider importing natural ingredients for cosmetics. One of the best reasons is the growing demand for natural ingredients from consumers. Additionally, natural ingredients in personal care products are becoming more popular, due to the trend toward sustainable raw materials. Listed below are six country markets that are ripe for natural ingredient exports. Listed below are the benefits and advantages of importing natural ingredients for cosmetics from each country.
Organic acids, for example, replace synthetic preservatives. They promote blood circulation and strengthen hair and scalp. These ingredients are also widely used in pharmaceuticals. Food-based cosmetics contain hemisqualane, a natural emulsifier and an alternative to Cyclomethicone, a chemical commonly used in hair and skin care products. Both compounds have numerous beneficial effects, but hemisqualane is a natural substitute for Cyclomethicone.
In addition to using fewer chemicals, natural cosmetics are also less likely to trigger skin irritation and allergies. Furthermore, sustainable products don’t contain artificial colors or synthetic chemicals. Instead, they are based on ingredients from plants and animals that humans have been using for centuries. For example, the French brand La Mer has partnered with a natural cosmetic company called Greentech, which uses Buddleja officials flowers and optimized fermentation of Sphingomonas sp. to obtain the active ingredients it uses.
Entry points for raw materials into the industry
In terms of market size, the Spanish cosmetics market is the fifth largest in Europe and is an attractive export destination for organic and natural ingredients. The Netherlands is also a major market for these ingredients and is an important entry point to the European market. Among the European countries, imports of essential oils and butters increased significantly in the last five years, but the import of palm kernel oil decreased.
The European cosmetics market presents lucrative export opportunities for natural ingredient producers from developing countries. European demand for natural ingredients is highest in hair, skin, and toiletries. Some common natural ingredients include essential oils used as fragrances, vegetable oils with functional properties, and plant-based extracts for active properties. Unilever recently launched its Love, Beauty, and Planet brand in the European market. The company has set up supply chains for many of its essential oils, and sources palmarosa from Uganda.
The global demand for organic and vegan products has been influenced by growing environmental awareness. Environmentally conscious consumers are avoiding the harmful effects of chemical-based cosmetics. Governments around the world have implemented regulations regulating resource use and environmental protection. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 outbreak has disrupted the cosmetics industry and created roadblocks for market players. However, the global market for cosmetics is divided into two distinct segments – prestige products and mass products.
Market share of made-in-France products in 2021
French consumers are increasingly becoming interested in online sales, e-commerce, smartphone use, home delivery services, and more. While foreign products are omnipresent in the stores and distribution channels, French firms have been pursuing eco-friendly products and solutions.
Increasing consumer awareness of environmental and animal welfare issues has spurred the French to choose more eco-friendly, local products. In fact, 79% of consumers said that they would prefer a “more responsible” product of the same price over a product made overseas. Moreover, a third of French consumers purchase second-hand or refurbished products. In addition, made-in-France products are gaining popularity in overseas markets.
New logistical approaches are helping to drive e-commerce growth in France. One such approach is unlimited delivery subscriptions. These subscriptions allow consumers to choose when and where they want their items delivered. Free delivery and returns is a big selling point, but the French are particularly fussy about their convenience, which is why retailers must focus on convenience, speed, and choice. Currently, in-store delivery is the least preferred method.