Industry trends: What’s new in the world of beauty?

The only constant in the beauty industry is its rapid pace of change. Businesses and individuals working within the sector know that it evolves continuously to meet the needs of its customers. This year is no exception.

 A range of emerging trends reflect the preferences and values of consumers. In general, there has been a shift towards a more inclusive approach and an emphasis on embracing diverse beauty standards. Additionally, sustainability matters more than ever before. It’s of utmost importance that brands demonstrate eco-friendly practices and products - not just as a tick-box exercise but as an integral way to do business.

Technology is playing a pivotal role in influencing product innovation and changing the way consumers engage with beauty brands. Social media platforms continue to amplify trends, fostering a sense of community and growing reach globally.

Want to find out more? Let’s take a closer look at some of the trends shaping the beauty industry in 2024 and beyond.

1: Creating communities

Building online communities continues to be a key way to support customers because people care about connecting online with like-minded individuals. Brand loyalty still matters, but alongside this consumers are looking for proof that their money is being well spent with evidenced efficacy. Gen Z tends to value high-quality, ethical, and sustainable products. Gen-Alpha consumers may not have significant purchasing power yet, but they will gain a huge amount of influence in the coming years, so it’s worth bearing in mind the next generation of customers too.

2: Sustainability in the spotlight

Sustainable manufacturing needs to be at the forefront of industry priorities. Consumers are not only looking for products that enhance their beauty but that also contribute to a healthier planet. In short, brands need to adopt eco-friendly practices throughout the entire production process. This includes using recyclable and reusable packaging, reducing water and energy consumption, and ethically sourcing ingredients. Here at Hera Beauty, we’re measuring, improving, and auditing our environmental performance through iiE accreditation.

Manufacturers are also exploring innovative ways to minimise waste and promote circular economies. This includes innovating by incorporating reused ingredients or by-products into beauty formulations.

3: Clean and transparent

We know that consumers are becoming more selective about their choice of beauty product ingredients and that they’re prioritising health and well-being. They expect manufacturers to focus on using natural ingredients and providing detailed information about product credentials and ethical sourcing. Alongside this, there is a growing demand for plant-based and natural ingredients - a shift which aligns with the broader on-going desire for cruelty-free and vegan beauty.

4: Prioritising protection

Another factor related to the planet, eco-conscious consumers are becoming more concerned about adopting personal care products with a protective element. Think sophisticated sun protection and formulations that help to shield skin from pollution. For example, the scrutiny around ingredients found in sunscreen is heightening, driving the growth of mineral-based or hybrid SPF options.

5: Focusing on self-care

The relationship between how we look and how we feel is becoming better understood. For beauty products, the link between our mental health and our outer appearance - and how one affects the other - is gaining importance. Consumers are focusing on uplifting self-care, including holistic approaches to well-being for every life stage. When making purchasing decisions, buyers are asking themselves ‘Do I need it?’ and overconsumption is being rejected. Instead, it’s all about investing in high-quality ingredients and products that work.

6: Identity matters

Identity, representation and body positivity are crucial for younger demographics. This trend aligns with the growing demand for personalised preferences and products that cater to individual skin and hair types. Technological advancements and AI are playing a vital role in beauty manufacturing. This includes providing customised products and enabling brands to connect in new, memorable ways.

7: Gender-inclusive beauty

This year we’re also seeing a rejection of traditional gender norms in beauty. The industry is witnessing a surge in gender-inclusive products and marketing strategies. Makeup and skincare are becoming more accessible to everyone, regardless of gender.

8: Signature scent

Did you know that over a quarter of Gen-Z plans to express themselves by discovering a signature scent in 2024? Seeing fragrance as a key factor in shaping their identity, Gen-Z is boosting the popularity of scents such as Cherry and Toffee.

There’s also been a recent focus on scents providing emotional journeys and experiences. Examples from this category include Violet and Bergamot. Fragrances, such as Amber and Sandalwood, can also be seen to provide a feeling of luxury and decadence. Another 2024 trend is for eco-conscious and sustainable fragrances that bring us closer to nature (for example, Nettle and Oakmoss) or perfumes that draw inspiration from fresh oceanic scents (Sea Kelp and Fennel). The final fragrance trend we’re seeing is the emergence of uplifting scents that provide a sense of optimism and energy (eg: Mandarin and Peppercorn).

In summary…

As the industry continues to evolve, brands need to embrace innovation and ethical practices to create beauty products that are not only effective but also environmentally and socially responsible. 

Want to stay ahead of the curve? At Hera Beauty we focus on innovation and new product development to meet the future needs of consumers. Get in touch to see how we can provide advice and support to help your business thrive.