Top trend of 2018: Hair is your crowning glory!

Top trend of 2018: Hair is your crowning glory!

The haircare, styling and colourants market has experienced steady growth over recent years, and its set to catapult in 2018 and beyond! One of the reasons hair products are poised to grow so strongly, specifically in the LATAM market, is because of the varying hair types of the LATAM population. This means Brands can vary dramatically in their offerings, be specific to any one consumer market, and still have plenty of sales opportunities. It also means significant opportunities for niche brands to grow with specialised and unique product offerings.

Sub-categories from within the hair sector ‘to watch’ include:

  • Styling actives that provide heat protection as well – this category has grown dramatically in 2017 and will continue to grow throughout 2018. If your brand is about hair care and you don’t have a heat protecting styling solution, you’ll get left behind!
  • Hair repair actives from natural sources – particularly those with an Amazon or exotic story to tell.
  • Products that protect the hair from pollution and UV damage
  • Products that REVERSE the appearance of grey hair and nourish hair growth – there will be launches this year with incredible clinical efficacy to address ageing hair concerns – it’s the next big anti-ageing growth area.
  • Hair colouring products that include protection and repair actives – we’re seeing exciting launches in this sector with new actives that are able to tolerate the extreme pH requirements of colourant products
  • Hair colouring products that are effective at acidic and neutral pH ranges – this means less damage to the hair, less potential irritancy during the colouring process and greater choice of active material inclusions
  • Hair relaxant products with protective actives – this is a rapidly evolving and growing product space, look for new and exciting launches to address these formulation needs this year!
  • Hair oils that aren’t oily – oily serum formulations is a sector that will see new innovations and solutions both in product forms and performance in 2018. Expect more than just frizz control and silicone based

Trend 2: Body beautiful

The next big trend for LATAM products will be based around body care, particularly skin smoothing and hydration. One of the beautiful things about Latin American women is their curves, and it’s something the cosmetics industry will embrace this year as products and material launches will provide:

  • Natural extracts and oils aimed at moisturising and toning the skin – especially where they resonate with Amazon sources
  • Products designed to smooth skin irregularities and cellulite
  • Hydrating lotions with advanced efficacy – make sure your 2018 developments include hydrating actives with clinical results over an 8 to 24 hour period, and use this in your marketing; consumers will be given increasing choice in this sector so don’t miss out!
  • Products with instant visual appeal – whether it be ‘spot’ treatments with instant blurring or firming effects or subtle shimmer to enhance a healthy glow, body products will need to be more than just ‘lotions’ this year to gain market traction.

Men aren’t forgotten either! Body care products for men will also grow this year, in particular:

  • tanning products for men are a growing trend – but they’re less likely to go for spray tans than women, instead opting for more subtle self-tanning or tan-enhancing products instead. They may be looking for a bronzed bod, but they want to achieve it discreetly – so cover tanning agent smells and market your products well. Ensure fast but subtle results from products that can be used regularly rather than every day for best market traction. Achieve these objectives and you’ll be on-trend!
  • Body wash products that provide (or at least don’t strip) moisture – men want ‘on the go’ products that combine functionality, and they’ll be looking for this in their cleansers in 2018.

Trend 3: Include natural materials

If you didn’t pick it up in the first 2 trends, then let me make it clear here: your products need to have a natural extract or oil; think Amazon or exotic sources, with a nutrient-rich profile and marketing story to tell. Consumers are always attracted to the appeal of natural ingredients, and materials from your region resonate particularly well with the LATAM consumer.

Trend 4: Male grooming will grow

Male skin and hair care, including shaving products, has gained significant market share around the globe in recent years – Brasilian men will catch on more than ever in 2018. In particular, make sure you have products that suit the following skin care needs:

  • Body care – refer to trend 2!
  • Facial care – men don’t want multiple products, so keep them simple yet effective. For example, think cleansing and exfoliation in one. After shave and moisturising in one. Actives that energise and revitalise. Make sure they have the right sensory too – make it cooling/soothing and hydrating yet non-greasy, that’s what they really want!
  • Hair care – styling aids will take centre stage this year as they’re easiest to attract the male market with on-trend styling advice.

Trend 5: Encapsulates are captivating!

There’s nothing like seeing is believing to really captivate your target market. Speak with suppliers of encapsulates – whether they contain actives or oils, in bead or other form, adding a visual material to your product will help your product stand out in 2018. You may even include florets or plant roots that match your marketing story for extra visual appeal. Consider also encapsulates that ARE the product – large beads that are actually complete emulsions, including actives, indiscreet portion sized quantities that break and spread easily when applied to the skin and rubbed in. Ensure your product has added visual appeal to turn heads in 2018 and lead the pack.

Diversity is key

The diversity of the LATAM market is one of its strengths, so use it in 2018!
Look for material launches that help you achieve innovative product forms with visual impact and strong marketing stories – both emotionally appealing and clinically proven. Play to the strengths of the market and its growth sectors and get set for an exciting year ahead.



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Belinda is the Director of Institute of Personal Care Science, leaders in on-line Internationally Recognised Training for Cosmetic Formulation and Regulatory Affairs. She holds a Bachelor of Natural Therapies, Diploma of Cosmetic Science and Certificate in Training and Assessment. She has written 5 books on Cosmetic Formulation from Beginners through to Advanced levels as well as Organic and Colour Cosmetic Formulations and Brand Management. Belinda provides training to all levels of industry, from Beginners through to Advanced Diplomas both on-site and via distance. She has also developed thousands of personal care formulations and document dossiers over the years. She specialises in training on innovative and compliant product developments.

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