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Published
Mar 22, 2018
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UK beauty gets vegan boost - NPD

Published
Mar 22, 2018

More consumer awareness, bigger availability of products and a widespread move towards healthier lifestyles are taking the niche vegan beauty segment into the mainstream, according to new research.


Photo: Charlotte Tilbury


Indeed, the sale of vegan prestige beauty products in the UK increased by 38% in the 12 months to end of January 2018, has found the NPD Group, a global information company.

The rise is underpinned by an increase in the number of vegan brands in the prestige beauty market, as well as social media campaigns like Veganuary, and the popularity of a vegan lifestyle.

Consumers are now taking a more conscientious approach when purchasing products, looking closely at the philosophies of the brands, says Helen Duxbury, senior account manager at NDP UK Beauty.

“They not only investigate ingredients and efficacy, they want to know about traceability, and how animal friendly they are. Vegan and cruelty-free are two of the big issues for customers in 2018, but still remains a niche segment of the skincare market.”

While demand for vegan products is growing fast (up 38%), distribution remains limited, with vegan beauty brands accounting for just 1% of women’s face skincare.


Photo: Elemis


Vegan beauty is part of the wider natural beauty market, which was valued at £124 million in 2017. Natural brands (including organic, naturally-derived and vegan) grew by 16% between February 2017 and January 2018, and outstripped the rest of the beauty market (up 7%).

Natural anti-ageing products, cleansers, moisturisers, eye treatment and masks are driving the growth, with cleansers performing particularly well and now accounting for 18 of sales, said NDP Group.

Cruelty-free certification is also becoming more important for consumers, as more people become aware of the beauty industry’s impact. Beauty brands with cruelty-free certification grew by 18% in 2017 and now account for 20% of the women’s face skincare market. Charlotte Tilbury, Decleor, Elemis, La Prairie and Liz Earle are leading the way, according to the report.

“The popularity of vegan is undeniable and brands are now capitalising on the movement,” Duxbury continues. “In the past year we have seen solid growth and a stream of new launches in this sector. Whilst most of these are in limited distribution, we are also seeing an increase in mainstream brands offering a vegan range or who are fully vegan, such as the launch of Super Food Skincare by Elemis, which is not only vegan, it meets consumer demand for super food ingredients. We believe the trend for beauty products that not only help consumers look good but feel good about their purchase too is set to grow in 2018.”

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