Latest Beauty Trends as Face Masks Becomes a Norm

4 Min Read |

The beauty market is likely to see a rise in colour cosmetics such as mascara, eye shadow, eye liners and concealers throughout the COVID-19 crisis as consumers are adopting the habit of wearing masks and applying this as part of their daily routine and outfit choices.

Consumers in Asia were some of the first to wear face masks – even pre COVID-19 where they were used for hygiene and allergy purposes. Brands and consumers in the West are are on familiar ground but this is an area in the industry which has yet to reach its full potential.

Masks in Asia

Wearing a mask for Asians is already a very normal and everyday affair where it’s used to fend off pollution, pollen or germs and protect from sneezes and coughs – especially in the North.

In Japan masks are worn for health reasons and to keep the face warm during colder seasons. Disposable medical masks were being marketed to consumers with allergic reactions from 2003 and featured unwoven material claiming to effectively block out pollen and other allergy triggers.

Colour Cosmetics

According to Mintel GNPD, eye makeup, lip and cheek products have gone from strength-to-strength in Asia over the years and represent half of the colour cosmetic launches in Asia over the last three years.

Close to one third of the total global colour cosmetic launches can be attributed to lip colour – the most active sub-category.  It is likely that the mask makeup trend will continue long after the COVID-19 pandemic.  As more and more consumers will fall into the habit of wearing a mask, the beauty industry can expect colour cosmetics such as eyeshadow, eyeline, mascara and concealer to gradually rise.

Changes In Consumer Habits

This latest trend provides an opportunity for beauty brands but they must look beyond the sole purpose of the mask –  to protect and cover. Recognizing the changes in consumer habits and their lifestyle will bring with it a wealth of possibilities for brands. There is a real potential for eye colour makeup to grow as consumers look to emphasise their makeup routine and include it as part of their overall look with the masks.

Foundations & Base Makeup Challenge

Foundation and base makeup have a different challenge ahead and will be evaluated on its ability to withstand sweat and stay on under the mask. Something brands should now be seriously considering as part of their advertising campaigns to remain relevant in the ‘new normal’.

The Relationship Between Fashion & Beauty & Masks

Masks have opened a new realm of creative branding opportunities for fashion, we’ve already seen a number of designers jumping on board and launching face masks – many doing so for charity. Fashion and beauty have always had a close relationship, influencing each other on style and colour and we can expect this trend to continue as masks now become a key facial differentiator for many. 

Beauty Tutorials & Manufacturers

Another opportunity is for retailers and mall owners to provide tutorials for mask makeup. Hong Kong’s premier shopping destination – Habour City, has worked with seven global brands whereby its tenants including Tom Ford Beauty and Shu Uemura to create looks that integrate masks into the overall personal care routine.

Manufacturers have been quick to respond and are already filling the supply chain with more long-lasting formulations. Kolmar Korea released sunscreen, cushion foundation, lipstick and powder that can withstand sweat and wear from masks.

Makeup During A Crisis

The beauty industry has always advocated wellbeing in its marketing and there’s no reason why this message should stop. Brands can still encourage its consumers to look and, most importantly, feel their best even, if they are staying at home more or out wearing a mask.

Connecting with consumers can be amplified by focusing on creating makeup looks which can be followed, such as eye makeup with a mask, video conference look or stay-at home look.

Makeup Trends Emerging From Asia

Asia has the potential to be the leader of the mask makeup trend, with its history in face masks and with more and more consumers all over the world now wearing a mask on a daily basis. Mask makeup is likely to continue growing post the pandemic. Asian brands can take a hold of this fundamental change in consumers routines and lead the way.

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