The world of beauty will never be the same.  On the heels of a global pandemic and social uprising, everything from what consumers buy to what we expect from our brands has been altered. Remarkable behavioral changes have been seen all across the board as a result of this global health crisis, and beauty is no exception.  In addition, this crisis has been having an impact on how consumers think about shopping after the pandemic eases up and the economies reopen.

 As confinement is being rolled back across the globe, women’s appearance remains important. Between a global pandemic and a looming recession, it seems that consumer spending has shifted priorities, opting for more skin care and self-care. Skincare started to grow to the point where it captures almost half the volume of the beauty industry. This is unprecedented.  

Generation Z

Makeup sales declined in the U.S. during the pandemic, since younger people are wearing less of it. In addition, many are missing some of their big life events - such as their 18th or 21st birthday, graduations, and weddings - due to lockdowns. In other words, why get dressed up when there’s nowhere to go? This is a generation that’s somewhat in the doldrums during these uncertain times. 

Millennials

While the US was in lockdown, about 15% of Millennials tried a new beauty product, which was split between cleansers and facial care. They were three times more likely to have tried a new product than Generation X or Baby Boomers. A holistic approach to life will probably resonate a lot among Millennials and Gen X. This includes choosing everything that’s healthier, cleaner, or has an approach from inside out. With the Millennial mindset skewing towards wellness, brands may focus more on self-care products. 

Generation X

During the pandemic Gen Xers turned to their trusted brands. This group is less focused on buying online and would rather personally experience a beauty product. They are focused on products with greater benefits in sync with positive aging and skin renewal. 

Baby Boomers 

During the pandemic, Baby Boomers in the U.S. went from buying about 14% to approximately 44% of high-end beauty, and continue to want pampering. They seek formulations that are going to be tailored to their skin, which changes the way they look and how they›re feeling. 

As the U.S. retail market is beginning to reopen and beauty sales are beginning to pick up, consumers are seeking products based on safety, efficacy, and looking good within the confines of a face mask. These trends are expected to accelerate as the U.S continues to reopen despite the absence of a vaccine. Wellness promoting products will be in higher demand as consumers exit quarantine. 

The demand for hand sanitizer and antibacterial products, which promise maximum efficacy, will not waver either. Sanitation will be a top priority for consumers who may have previously prioritized natural ingredients. It seems like there’s been a swing back to normcore chemicals and science-based products. However, consumers still want ingredients that are first and foremost nontoxic, because they consider clean equivalent to safety. 

When it comes to wellness, the product affordability factor will be paramount, especially in a slumping economy with record unemployment levels.  Consumers want to know if products perform and are functional before buying. Although life goes on, the beauty industry, as well as every other business, has shifted and changed gears as a result of this global health crisis. 


Risselle Naimark is a Professional Freelance Makeup Artist and Skincare Consultant. She carries an extensive line of personalized skincare, cosmetics, and anti-aging products. Risselle is also available for weddings, Bar Mitzvahs, makeup lessons, and all of your beauty needs. She can be reached at 718 263-5517.

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