Beauty goes green


Formerly the realm of the initiated, natural cosmetology is now everywhere, including in supermarkets. This fundamental trend is encouraging manufacturers to widen their ranges with new ingredients and increasingly technical products.

The natural cosmetology market was considered a temporary phenomenon for a long time. Today it is flourishing to the point of becoming a fundamental trend. A recent survey by Deloitte revealed that this sector represents € 350 M, with annual growth of around 25% since 2005. The organic sector is in good health. Traditional cosmetics are struggling to keep up with annual growth at just 4%. What are the reasons for this success? The manufacturing processes, which are more environmentally-friendly. Organic or natural cosmetics that are fragrance-free, colorant-free and perservative-free appeal to consumers, who are increasingly careful about the quality of products and who are acting more responsibly when it comes to making purchases.

Relaxed organic products

But who ar these addicts of naturalness? Mainly women, who want to look after their health and their beauty (organic cosmetics for men represent just 5% of the market). For these Greenistas, natural cosmetology reflects collective awareness of the environment, the climate, protection of the animal kingdom, fairtrade, etc. The result is that these new green followers have made the market develop at great speed.

Alongside the historical brands, such as Dr Hauschka or Weleda, sold in specialised stores, we are now seeing more “relaxed” organic ranges available in supermarkets. From face care to make-up (So’Bio étic), including bodycare products (Ushuaïa Bio), supermarket shelves are filling up with organic choices! Even private labels have adopted green cosmetics, such as Carrefour’s full Agir Bio range (in 2008) and Leader Price Bio. 

A new label in sight

More than hype, naturalness seems to be an ingredient for success today. It has to be said that organic cosmetics have managed to get rid of their “rustic” image and are now proposing formulations for the entire family, including babies: wash gels, cleansing lotions, sun cream, organic wipes, etc. Mums applaud these natural products, which respect the fragile skin of babies (Auchan Baby Bio wash gel). Although organic cosmetics essentially draw on the natural aspect, it also has the “innovation” card up its sleeve, with increasingly “surprising” active ingredients.  Who would have imagined snail slaver “made in Charente” (Helixir) or saffron flower petal from Provence (Kesari)? And now these natural claims can be certified. The new Cosmebio Nat label certifies products which contain at least 95% natural ingredients. This should reassure consumers, for whom these plant references can sometimes be confusing. In any case, one thing is sure: green is the colour of the future!

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