Mintel Predicts 2010 Global Beauty Trends

"Austerity chic” ruled the beauty industry in 2009, but as this challenging year comes to a close, Mintel Beauty Innovation forecasts the top beauty trends for 2010. Though manufacturer and consumer attitudes were changed by the recession, innovation and resilience have shaped a new landscape for beauty in 2010.

“While 2009 brought its challenges for the industry, beauty brands and suppliers have continued to seek creative new ways to merge science, nature and sustainability for better results and more eco-friendly formulas and packaging," says Nica Lewis, director, Mintel Beauty Innovation. "In 2010, we will see more consolidation in the beauty industry and the evolution of old trends, as well as new ones, as consumer confidence returns.”

Mood Beauty

Make-up has long been associated with making the wearer feel better, but recent product evolution has seen actual ingredients enabling consumers to feel better. In 2010, consumers will be able to enhance their mood through make-up and skin care, going beyond aromatherapy and simple use of scent.

“Mood Beauty” creates a new beauty space, intersecting psychology and wellbeing with beauty products that offer psychological benefits and ingredients that act on people’s neurotransmitters. Expect manufacturers to make use of textures, temperatures or sounds that affect the mood, as well as innovations such as make-up that “switches on and off.” Meanwhile, the idea of beauty sleep will take on new meaning, as cosmetics claiming to induce positive moods or improve sleep quality inject new life into night care products.

Nu Natural

“Nu Natural” is a new vision of natural that is less focused on certification and more focused on results, efficiency and safety. In 2010, beauty products will evolve from today’s trend towards organic ingredients, revisiting attributes such as authenticity, provenance and local production.

Mintel Beauty Innovation expects claims like “free from” and “sustainable” to appear in products that simultaneously contain synthetic actives like peptides, hyaluronic acid, ceramides or collagen. Beauty manufacturers will further explore simple formulas, such as infusions and fluids, but they’ll formulate them with a new generation of phytochemicals, anthocyanins and fermented actives.


Throughout 2009, there was a renewed emphasis on protection—one of the basic functions of skin care, hair care and color cosmetics. Beauty products offered increasingly powerful shields against physiological and man-made factors, in addition to UV rays. In 2010, “Pro-Tech’t” will strengthen this shield. Marketing language is already growing more robust, borrowing from computer technology (e.g. “firewalls”). Packaging, too, will expand beyond traditional glass and plastic to materials like neoprene and concrete. In addition, Mintel Beauty Innovation expects growth in immune-boosting and skin-defending claims, as well as new products that contain ingredients from extreme environments, such as the arctic, alpine envinronment or deserts. Expect more healthcare actives such as rhodiola rosea, griffonia and superoxide dismutase to appear in 2010’s beauty products, forging a stronger link with nutricosmetics.

Turbo Beauty 4G

Developing 2009’s “Turbo Beauty”’ trend, “Turbo Beauty 4G” continues to capitalize on advances in biochemistry for higher-tech beauty products. Expect more quasi-medical results and “mix-it-yourself” solutions—at-home kits and cures that offer alternatives to cosmetic surgery and non-invasive procedures.

In 2010, products will increasingly include medical- or pharmaceutical-grade actives and next-generation nanotechnology. In addition, clinical testing to substantiate claims and results will move from prestige into “masstige” (affordable for general consumers but positioned as luxury).

Following the explosion of social media, Mintel also expects beauty manufacturers to start marketing antiaging products in particular to “digital natives.”

Additional information on these and other Mintel 2010 trend predictions are available by contacting the group or through its Web site.

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