Maria Coronado, Senior Ingredients Analyst at Euromonitor International, discusses her upcoming presentation ‘New Claims in Skincare: anti-pollution and probiotic ingredients’, which will take place at in-cosmetics Global 2018: Amsterdam.
Why are the anti-pollution and probiotic trends coming to the fore now? What’s bringing them into the spotlight?
These two trends are not completely disconnected, the need for skin protection that goes beyond traditional sunscreens is becoming essential in a world with increasing environmental problems. The negative impact of modern life, the exposure to a growing number of environmental stressors and the rise in allergic reactions to chemicals has put health and wellness at the top of consumer’s priorities, especially young adults who are more environmentally sensitive than past generations. These consumers are seeking for new ways of protecting their skin against these invisible threats and this is where anti-pollution and probiotic ingredients come into play.
In the same way that consumers need and demand pollution protection, they are now starting to understand that microbes play an important role in protecting our body. The industry is making efforts to develop new solutions adapted to the skin microbiome.
Can you give an overview of some of the most exciting new anti-pollution & probiotic consumer behaviours/anti-pollution & probiotic trends?
By the end of 2017 most major cosmetics companies and ingredients manufacturers had already jumped on the anti-pollution bandwagon offering a wide portfolio of solutions that protect against pollutants. In 2018, more adventurous consumers are expected to show an appetite for exciting and experimental products and ingredients with specific health and protection benefits that go beyond the traditional. This marked shift in consumer attitudes is likely to have a positive impact on the market demand for products carrying all type of protection claims. “Mimic or boosting the natural skin protection” or “microbiome friendly” are just a few examples of claims that are starting to appear and co-exist with more specific protection claims such as anti-pollution and blue light protection.
Can you give examples of any exciting brands, ingredients and innovations in the anti-pollution & probiotic spaces at the moment?
While new launches of products with anti-pollution ingredients are expected across more beauty categories, perhaps the most interesting opportunities in the anti-pollution field will rely on cutting-edge technological innovations that enable consumers to fully control at real-time the levels of protection. Another dynamic area under the anti-pollution umbrella is the standardization of clinical trials to assess the effectiveness of the ingredients. Several companies are currently performing research to develop protocols to test anti-pollution efficacy.
In the probiotic arena, it is not a secret that a handful of start-ups, Mother Dirt in the US, Esse Skincare in South Africa and Yun Probiotherapy in Europe, have shaken up the skincare industry by formulating the first beauty products with living bacteria. However, while probiotic-based beauty is an emerging and very promising area, developing products containing these ingredients is costly due to technical challenges in formulation and packaging. This obviously limits the probiotic’s opportunity to the premium market with very niche offering in terms of product proposition and distribution.
Over the last year, the trend has naturally evolved from these first products with living probiotics to less challenging solutions that respect the skin microbiome and even help to boost and strengthen the skin natural defence. Microbiome-derived and microbiome friendly products with natural and milder ingredients are entering the market opening up further opportunities. For instance, Mother Dirt, the company that developed AO Mist, a product containing alive ammonium oxidizing bacteria, is now offering a biome-friendly moisturizer with ingredients that mimic the skin barrier.
Ingredients manufacturers are also engrossing its portfolio with new launches. For instance, CODIF has recently launched Actibiome, a combination of microbiome friendly ingredients that claim to reverses the skin microbiota imbalance.
How are any emerging trends in anti-pollution & probiotic personal care likely to impact on the wider market? (In terms of impact onto other segments, ingredients development, regulation & safety, regional or global focus, or any other relevant factor?)
The protection trend will continue its growth and spread its tentacles even more widely. However, one of the potential risks in the probiotics and anti-pollution markets is the lack of regulation and standardization in terms of packaging claims and terminology. This obviously leaves plenty of room for initiative and freedom but also increases the risk of eventually losing consumer trust.
Who will be the key consumer groups for anti-pollution & probiotic players to target in the next ten years?
Anti-pollution and probiotic ingredients are especially attractive to young urban professionals that are willing to make lifestyle changes to look healthier and younger for longer. These consumers tend to be more educated and critical and thus more open to trying science-based solutions.
Any top tips for anti-pollution & probiotic brands looking to make an impact in the coming period?
Probiotics can be seen as an opportunity to expand the environmental protection trend initiated by anti-pollution and light protection claims or as the brand new natural approach to the traditional anti-ageing. In one way or another, to embrace the enormous opportunities that lie ahead companies need to invest in further studies to fully understand the skin barrier and its impacts on health and ageing to develop more customized solutions. This could be a reality sooner than later if the cost of genetic sequencing falls and the skin microbiome can be fully characterized. The commercialization of affordable technology that allows the identification and motorization of the human skin microbiome will open up new market opportunities for these ingredients in cosmetics. For instance, the use of big data and wearable sensors to monitor and analyse microbial footprint, in the same way that today consumer can do with UV protection, will allow the development of novel solutions to maintain healthy skin.
Maria Coronado, Senior Ingredients Analyst at Euromonitor International will be speaking on ‘‘New Claims in Skincare: anti-pollution and probiotic ingredients’ at the Marketing Trends Theatre on Wednesday, 18th April at 12.15 at in-cosmetics Global in Amsterdam.