Although the conscious consumer is a relatively new phenomenon, it’s a powerful one. These new ethical, health-conscious consumers look beyond the label: they want to know everything about where the raw materials came from, the product’s composition, the manufacturing process, right through to the company’s corporate responsibility projects. This is especially the case as concerns about sustainability and the environment grow; customers want to feel that the choices they make play a part in protecting the planet.
This attitude has made the consumer more empowered than ever before. Now, reputation is everything, as it could drastically affect where consumers choose to invest their hard-earned money. There’s no doubt that the conscious consumer is here to stay – and what’s more, they’re extremely influential. Looking at the medium and long term, this purchasing behavior is set to become more prevalent, particularly in the health and beauty industry.
Ethics, sustainability, and cosmetics
Ethics and sustainability have always played an important role when it comes to consumer behavior and the beauty industry. For example, animal welfare is lately of particular concern and this is set to extend. From food to beauty and fashion through to pet products, consumers are increasingly making decisions based on animal welfare issues. Furthermore, consumers are tending towards vegan and vegetarian diets. This tendency is also bleeding out into other consumer choices, where shoppers are actively seeking plant-based products.
For instance, in a survey across 11 nations conducted by Ingredion Inc., 60% of respondents want to see more “kitchen-like” ingredients in cosmetics, such as plant-based oils, flours, starches, or proteins. It’s statistics like this that Provital keeps at the forefront of their approach when developing products. Provital aims to meet the needs of the health-conscious consumer by using clean, ethically-sourced and recognizable ingredients that consumers feel they can trust.
Industry growth and health-conscious consumers
The growing popularity of the natural beauty segment is supported by statistical research. Moreover, according to a recent report compiled by the Soil Association, this growth can be largely put down to conscious consumerism and attitudes towards well-being. Consumers look for products that are sourced sustainably and organically, due to the tacit link between ecological practices, organic produce, and health. According to a survey by AlixPartners, 72% of 4,500 respondents in China, the UK, Germany, France, and the USA said that it was important to buy products that were healthy or clean.
Moreover, this growth isn’t insubstantial. As indicated in the study, the organic beauty market in the UK alone has grown by 14% since last year, marking its 8th consecutive year of growth. In other regions this growth is even more pronounced; in Middle Eastern markets, a report by TechSci Research suggested the industry will continue to grow by 12-15% annually until 2023. As such, the numbers don’t lie – the influence of the conscious consumer shouldn’t be underestimated by the beauty industry.
Ethical is going mainstream
Health-conscious and ethically-minded consumerism are going mainstream. This desire for greater transparency and corporate responsibility is forcing the beauty industry to reconsider its approach. Instead of cost-cutting or fast-tracking, companies should aim to differentiate themselves by demonstrating their commitment to ethical practices. By showing a savvier consumer that their ingredients are clean and cruelty-free, cosmetics companies can remain relevant in an increasingly consumer-driven market.