Beauty consumer is changing: Two trends to watch as we approach 2018

The beauty industry is changing—and so is the beauty consumer. That’s according to a recent study by The Benchmarking Company titled “PinkReport: Ten-Year Beauty Benchmark—A Consumer Love Affair with All Things Beauty.” The study dove into how beauty has evolved over the last 10 years, including the rise of social media and the importance of consumer reviews. Considering these forces, there are two beauty trends we think the industry should keep an eye on as we move into 2018.

Stepping away from anti-aging

The days of “anti-aging” products may be numbered—products by that name, at least. Consider that Allure’s editor Michelle Lee has banned the term “anti-aging” from the pages of the magazine. This seemingly semantic difference is a huge step that highlights the beauty consumer’s shifting focus when it comes to products, especially since beauty consumers’ favorite magazine is Allure.

Lee wants companies to start with how they market their products and says she will not promote any products that claim to make women appear younger. Her sentiment seems to be in line with the evolving consumer—the term “anti-aging” is on its way out because people just want good products, not something that makes it seem natural aging is a bad thing. Younger generations are focusing more on smooth, clean looking skin with fewer blemishes, rather than preventing the aging process.

The power of YouTube and social media

Makeup culture is changing, and a lot of this is connected to beauty influencers using YouTube and social media as a platform. Younger generations seem to be more knowledgeable when it comes to beauty and makeup application, all thanks to the proliferation of these online beauty gurus who execute complicated yet flawless looks.

While we don’t see this situation as negative, clients with this knowledge arrive with specific expectations and ideas of what they are looking for—they likely have already seen the process on YouTube. On a positive note, the beauty consumer may be more aware of the different products and procedures available.

With both these trends in mind, spa and salon owners should keep up with the ever-changing beauty consumer to better understand their expectations. This includes really listening to what clients want and what they are expecting from your services. It is vital from both a liability and business perspective for you to avoid negative situations by simply addressing the concerns and complaints as they arise. To keep up in this modern age of social media, influencers and changing cultural norms, you can depend on a time-tested practice: clear communication.

Kathy Lopez, Account Manager for SASSI, the Salon and Spa Specialty Insurance program at Brownyard Group. She can be reached at

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