Small luxuries pay off, and as evidence, prestige beauty is on a roll. In fact, all prestige beauty categories surpassed 2008 pre-recession levels, according to just-released market research from the The NPD Group, Inc. In 2011, total U.S. prestige beauty generated $9.5 billion, an increase of 11% in dollars, compared to $8.6 billion in 2010. In addition, the outstanding dollar results were achieved with all beauty categories surpassing pre-recession levels. Total fragrance earned $2.8 billion, also up 11% over 2010, Total skin care hit $3.1 billion, a gain of 14% over the previous year, and total makeup rang up $3.6 billion, up 9%.
“In the 15 years that NPD has been tracking the prestige beauty industry, we have never seen growth like this—especially across all categories,” said Karen Grant, vice president and senior global industry analyst, The NPD Group—and a member of Beauty Packaging’s Board of Advisors. (For more on Grant’s predictions for 2012, please see www.beautypackaging.com.)
• Prestige fragrances experienced the strongest dollar and unit performance in 15 years, dollars grew +11% and units grew +7 percent.
• Juices (excluding fragrance ancillary or gift set items) grew +14 percent for both women and men, driving overall fragrance performance of +11 percent for women and +12 percent for men.
• Fragrance juices priced at a premium of $100 and above, helped to propel growth for the category with unit gains of +45 percent versus a year ago.
• Fragrance launches were up +21 percent overall, driven by women’s launches, which grew by +33 percent.
• Celebrity brands, specifically women’s, were the winners in 2011 with gains of +57 percent.
• Prestige skincare continued to lead prestige beauty with growth of +14 percent in dollars and +9 percent in units.
• In 2011, all six segments posted dollar and unit gains versus 2010: Face ($ +13%, U +9%), Sets & Kits ($ +27%, U +16%), Body ($ +2%, U +2%), Hair ($ +16%, U +12%), and Sun ($ +11%, U +8%).
• Since 2000, anti-aging facial skincare has grown 16 dollar share points to account for 63 percent of prestige facial skincare or $1.5 billion, a +17 percent increase over 2010.
• Products that have both anti-aging and brightening benefits almost doubled in share in the past four years.
• Premium face products priced at $75 and above experienced a +21 percent dollar increase and a +23 percent gain in units for the year.
• Prestige makeup saw its second year of increases in both dollars (+9%) and units (+6%). It was the first time in 15 years of prestige data reporting, that all makeup segments grew in both dollars and units.
• Eye shadow grew +14 percent, the first increase since 2006, Lip color posted a +13 percent growth and Nail had the largest performance in both dollars (+67%) and units (+88%).
• Eye launches gained seven share points to be the largest launch segment in makeup with 39 percent dollar share.
• Premium price points outpaced overall prestige makeup performance. Premium saw the biggest increases in Face (+14%), Eye (+56%), and Sets (25%).
“What is most intriguing about the acceleration in prestige beauty performance is the degree to which it stands in stark contrast to the overridingly lackluster consumer outlook. Historically, prestige beauty performance followed the trend of consumer sentiments, however, that is not the case today. Though consumer confidence has inched back to the 2008 pre-recession levels, it remains quite shaky and is actually among the lowest levels the nation has experienced in the past 30 years. Yet, prestige beauty thrives. And although prestige beauty growth continues at both ends of the spectrum, it is the high-end, premium price points that experienced the strongest gains,” ended Grant.