Wish to stay profitable in the Personal Care industry? Go, sustainable!

June 27, 2023
Cellugy's Newsletter: Leveraging the power of biocellulose

Skincare, fragrance, makeup, and hair care are the primary constituents of the beauty market, according to McKinsey & Company. The beauty market generated close to $430 billion in revenue in 2022. This figure is expected to increase at a projected growth rate of 6% to reach $580 billion by 2027. The European cosmetics and personal care market was valued at 80 billion euros at retail sales prices in 2021. The largest national markets within Europe in this segment are Germany, France, Spain, and Poland. 

Fig1-European Market for cosmetic products1

What are the raw materials required? 

Most products classified as part of the beauty/personal care industry are generally used on one’s skin and hair. With this in mind, certain conditions need to be considered when using and selecting the raw materials: excellent functions matching the usage purpose; safety; excellent oxidation stability; and constant quality, such as a lack of smell.2 

While the specific raw materials required in cosmetic production can vary depending on the product, formulation, and brand, here are three commonly used raw materials in the cosmetics industry:

Water, which is a fundamental raw material and acts as a solvent and a base for many formulations; emollients and oils, which play a crucial role in cosmetic formulations by providing moisturization and hydration to the skin and hair; and surfactants, which are surface-active agents that are essential for cleansing and foaming properties in many cosmetic products.

To give their goods the desired qualities and functionality, the cosmetics and personal care sectors use microparticles of plastic in cosmetics. It is believed that consumers apply 68 to 168 chemicals to their bodies each day, which include billions of microplastic particles. 

Cellugy has decided to investigate how its bio-cellulose-based ingredient, EcoFLEXY, might be used in cosmetics as an alternative to petrochemical-based ingredients. We reduce pollution in the creation of cosmetics while reducing the number of microplastics and toxins in your body by using EcoFLEXY. The salient feature of EcoFLEXY is its manufacturing, which is independent of fuel-derived ingredients. You can read more about the presence of microplastics in cosmetics here.
Microplastics reach humans through cosmetic products

E-commerce disrupting the personal care industry

According to a Mckinsey and Company report, The Beauty Market in 2023: A Special State of Fashion, between 2015 and 2022, e-commerce for cosmetics nearly doubled, reaching a market of over 20% with room to grow. With the industry growing, demand does too, but what does that mean for the environment? 

To meet this increased demand, businesses will need to increase their procurement of raw materials as well as their use of packaging and other logistics across the whole supply chain. With the shift towards more renewable ingredients, the industry is also transitioning to become more environmentally friendly to leave a positive impact. 

The use of renewable materials in the personal care business has resulted in more innovation and formulation breakthroughs. Researchers and product developers are looking at new ways to use renewable materials to make effective and long-lasting personal care products. According to McKinsey, sustainability will be the overarching priority for the majority of consumers in this industry. When they asked customers what aspects of sustainability matter to them the most, the top responses were: the absence of materials that harm the environment, 100% natural formulas, and that production is cruelty-free and does not test on animals in any way.  

Why should businesses take notice of this shift?

As mentioned earlier, the industry is forecast to grow into a multi-billion-dollar industry with millions of customers globally. Any business owner in the beauty industry with such a large customer base must play to the gallery. Cosmetic product users today are well-informed about the darker side of the beauty industry. Beauty consumers are becoming increasingly ingredient-conscious, which has a knock-on effect on trends such as upcycling, says Euromonitor International.

Based on a McKinsey & Company report, the beauty industry in 2023 is headed for disruption by five themes. The report suggests that the influence of the Gen Z generation in demanding sustainable products amounts to a figure representing close to $2 trillion globally for brands, retailers, and investors.  Nearly 50 percent of Gen-Z consumers say they research beauty products extensively before purchasing them. This should coerce even the old-school CEOs, board of directors, and investors to redesign their products to be sustainable. Instead of pouring millions of dollars into advertising how “sustainable” one's product is, Cellugy has invested the team’s collective energy in developing a product that would radically decrease the presence of petroleum-based ingredients in our environment.

Even for established brands in this industry, it is essential that they go green! EcoFLEXY can ensure product integrity as well as add to its sustainability profile. The barriers to entering this market today for new brands have been lowered through the advent of e-commerce. By using a product like EcoFLEXY in their manufacturing process—an ingredient that is biobased and biodegradable—new brands can also gain the engagement and loyalty of their potential customers. Want to find out how Cellugy’s versatile biofabricated cellulose can support your brand? Contact us here 

Works Cited

New Cosmetic Science, edited by Takeo Mitsui, Elsevier Science, 1997. Accessed 14 June 2023.

“The beauty market in 2023: A special State of Fashion report.” McKinsey, 22 May 2023, https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/retail/our-insights/the-beauty-market-in-2023-a-special-state-of-fashion-report#/. Accessed 14 June 2023.

“The Personal Care Association:: Cosmetics Industry.” Cosmetics Europe, https://cosmeticseurope.eu/cosmetics-industry/. Accessed 14 June 2023.

Sahota, Amarjit, editor. Sustainability: How the Cosmetics Industry is Greening Up. Wiley, 2013. Accessed 14 June 2023.