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Eye makeup outshines face and lips

BY DSN STAFF

Eye beauty product sales are nothing to blink at. The category experienced a robust 4.6% growth rate for the 52-week period ended Nov.1, 2015, as tracked by IRI across multi-outlets. Total eye sales eclipsed the $2 billion mark — topping both face and lip.

(Click here to view the full Category Review.)

The best news is that the huge jolt was provided by a category almost nonexistent a few years ago — eyebrow makeup. Thanks to introductions of brow kits and other brow tamers, sales soared almost 62% during the 52-week period tracked. Two items in particular set the torrid sales pace, Maybelline’s Eye Studio Brow Drama eyebrow makeup and L’Oréal’s Brow Stylist Sculptor. Also new at Walmart is a Hard Candy brow kit with all the tools for the latest trend in brows. Brows got much needed attention thanks to such influencers as Cara Delevingne, along with a bevy of vloggers with tutorials on how to use kits.

Not too far behind the brow bonanza was an uptick in eyeliners, used in particular to create the emerging cat eye, which is giving smokey eye looks a run for the money. Apparently, the more dramatic the better with brands drawing an upward sales line, including Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama eyeliner and Rimmel Exaggerate eyeliner. Total liner sales rose 4.5%. A nice add-on purchase, sharpeners sales are up 15.4%.

Although mascara retail sales dropped slightly, there were some undeniable hits over the year. Two retailers, one a leading drug chain and the other a top discount store buyer, singled out Maybelline Lash Sensational Full Fan Effect mascara as the top beauty item of 2015. What’s created the fanfare? A special brush that unfolds layer upon layer for a full fan effect. Also extending its sales was L’Oréal’s Voluminous Butterfly Intense with sales fluttering up more than 600%.

If you don’t have them, fake them was the mantra last year with artificial lashes soaring almost 16%. That growth isn’t wasted on Kiss, which just unleashed several new lash items. According to Annette Goldstein, SVP of global marketing at Kiss, the new lashes are the result of research to create the most natural looks possible.

Eye shadow sales are up slightly, just under 2%, as consumers focus on lashes, liners and brows. Eye shadows, however, are the leading force behind kit sales, which Walgreens said sold well for the holidays. One the chain mentioned is the Wet n Wild Beauty University Palette of 130 shades priced at $30.

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In-store support helps mass retailers win back share

BY DSN STAFF

One of the biggest challenges for mass merchants to crack the facial cosmetics code has been selling foundations, blushes and powders to women who can’t sample them in stores. “The right shade is the hardest thing to achieve in face,” said Richelieu Dennis, the co-founder of Sundial Brands, which is poised to break into cosmetics.

(Click here to view the full Category Review.)

Several years ago, drug chains found that the solution was to offer a full refund if women brought back a shade they didn’t like. But the impact of that was softened by the growth of specialty stores with testers and beauty advisers.

Fighting fire with fire, drug store and discount retailers continue to add more service. Walgreens Boots Alliance has more than 26,000 beauty advisers, and the company recently upped the ante in Houston, with a test of Boots Beauty in 13 stores where shoppers can get in-store makeovers and foundation matching from a Boots Beauty Consultant. Target also maintains a beauty concierge program, along with Boots consultants.

CVS continues to add more in-store support, especially to correspond with its addition to the Salma Hayek line with rebooted cosmetics items.

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Selfie surge boosts facial makeup sales

BY DSN STAFF

With the popularity of selfies proliferating, it is no surprise there’s renewed focus on facial makeup. After a few years of dull sales, volume for the 52-week period ended Nov. 1, tracked by IRI across multi-outlets, rose 3.5%.

(Click here to view the full Category Review.)

Notably, there was a shift in the types of facial cosmetics gaining steam. In recent years, bronzers and blush paced sales growth. This year, the quest for camera-ready skin ignited sales of concealers (up 12%) and even foundations (traditionally shunned by younger users). Powders, also “your mother’s products,” expanded by 4%. On the flip side, blush and bronzer sales each declined 3%.

Several concealers stood out from the pack in the past year, including Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser (up 28%), Maybelline Fit Me Concealer (up 65%), CoverGirl Ready Set Gorgeous (up 216%), e.l.f. Studio Concealer (up 38%) and CoverGirl+Olay The Depuffer Concealer.

CoverGirl’s Ready Set Gorgeous franchise also hit the mark in foundations, a category where CoverGirl is traditionally strong, and one where retailers hope new owner Coty can maintain the momentum. The foundation entry achieved sales growth exceeding 175% to almost $20 million. Revlon Colorstay, however, holds the distinction of being the largest seller in foundation, producing sales edging in on $60 million.

The demand for perfection also is an impetus behind dynamic 24% leaps in sales of body accessories, which encompass primers and products to create a glow. The good news is these products are add-on sales and one more item in baskets. Consumer interest in this category helped e.l.f. Cosmetics secure greater distribution. Its body accessory sales soared 138%, according to IRI.

Next up are mass market contour kits to mimic the success in prestige. Entries set to hit the market include options from L’Oreal, Maybelline, Revlon and Wet n Wild. Physicians Formula hit the market running already with its Super BB InstaReady contour trio stick.

Contour kit sales soared at Sephora and Ulta, generating huge demand that buyers expect will translate into the mass market, as well. And, buyers added, there is anticipation in the market for the debut of SheaMoisture beauty products, which should be a huge boost to the foundation category where getting the proper shade is paramount.

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