Nowadays, consumers are becoming more aware of ingredients in cosmetics and their effect on the skin. Incidences of animal cruelty during testing, combined with the adverse environmental consequences are emerging as some of the major issues with conventional cosmetic products. Millennials are publicly boycotting companies who perform cosmetic testing on animals, including mice, rabbits, and rats to check the efficacy of cosmetic chemicals.

In response, numerous firms are already abandoning these procedures and moving towards natural cosmetics and skincare products. Banning of animal experimentation and growing pressure from animal rights activists towards the use of dangerous chemicals on animals has led companies to adopt vegan cosmetics.

According to Future Market Insights report on Vegan Cosmetics Market, the vegan cosmetics market will exceed US $20 Bn by 2025. As Veganism movement gains momentum in 2022, established firms will look to enter the vegan cosmetic market. In this blog, we will discuss the market potential of vegan cosmetics, key opportunities to look out for and which companies are taking the vegan cosmetics market by storm in 2022.

Vegan Cosmetics are leaving a Mark across the Beauty and Skincare Domain

Vegan cosmetics have gained worldwide popularity in recent years. Several brands and celebrities are developing animal cruelty free, vegan cosmetic products to appeal to a wider environment conscious audience. These new brands are challenging some established names in the cosmetic industry.

For instance, singer Harry Styles launched his gender-inclusive vegan beauty brand “Pleasing” in 2021. Currently, the company specializes in vegan nail polishes along with a number of skincare products.

Similarly, American-popstar Halsey launched her intergalactic beauty brand “About Face” in 2021.  The company makes premium vegan eye, lip, and face makeup and the products are gluten, parabens, and synthetic fragrances free.

To stay relevant in this evolving market, manufacturers are changing production lines, as consumers become aware of the presence of toxic chemicals in regular cosmetics. Moreover, consistent celebrity endorsement has rendered vegan cosmetics increasingly mainstream, dislodging it from its earlier niche stance.

What are the major Driving Forces behind the Vegan Cosmetics Market growth?

Unlike its conventional competitors, the vegan cosmetics sector is benefiting from a greater willingness among consumers to accept natural and plant-based alternatives. The industry has also benefited from the support of well-known worldwide organizations, such as the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). PETA frequently publishes a list of top vegan beauty brands and being on PETA’s list is a huge advantage.

Cosmetic companies are also focusing on obtaining vegan certification. People tend to buy from companies who make and market PETA certified vegan products. Thus, in a highly competitive beauty sector, products with vegan certified trademarks and certificates will have a distinct edge. Consumers are gravitating toward items labeled as natural and safe, citing safety concerns.

While purchasing a product, modern customers have become more conscious of the raw materials used and their linked source origin. Consumers prefer ecologically responsible items over reckless purchasing. These purchasing preferences have led to widespread acceptance of vegan beauty products.

An increasing number of beauty bloggers and social media outlets pushing vegan makeup techniques is in turn accelerating vegan cosmetics market growth.

In the future, the vegan cosmetics sector will benefit from increased sales through online channels. The e-commerce market, despite being fiercely competitive provides companies with a single platform to promote their products. This will benefit product sales in upcoming years.

Consumers willing to Pay Premium Prices for Vegan Beauty Products

Consumers want pure ingredients in their cosmetic products without compromising on their effectiveness. They seek clean label products and are willing to spend extra dollars for high-quality vegan skin care products for their day-to-day skin needs.

Brand owners are introducing new vegan cosmetic items that are as effective and attractive as synthetic cosmetics at premium pricing to gain competitive advantage.

To cope with changing customer demand, more and more brands are launching 100% vegan and cruelty-free cosmetics. For instance, CoverGirl, a leading manufacturer of beauty products recently launched a novel vegan cosmetics product line made from aloe extract and milk.

The word “vegan” naturally draws attention and modern day consumers believe excellent cosmetics complement a healthy planet. Consumers are demanding brand owners to integrate veganism in their product line and use ethical strategies and are willing to pay additional amount for premium products.

 Veganism is set to become mainstream in the cosmetics industry in the near future.

Consumers have shown inclination towards purchasing premium sustainable beauty products and are willing to spend extra money on products that reflect their personal ideals.

We can expect that consumers will continue to scrutinize the ethicality of the beauty products they frequently use. Change in purchasing preferences of consumers and the intersection of beauty and veganism will likely benefit the vegan cosmetics market. Vegan cosmetic companies will look to introduce unique products and rely on “free-from” claims and clean label packaging, in order to make their products stand out in the market.

Health and environment conscious clients want paraben-free and gluten-free personal care products and are looking to make more sustainable choices. In response to that, companies will be providing vegan cosmetics that have “paraben-free” and “gluten-free” labels.

Because of easy access to information and increased internet use, today’s consumers are more informed than ever before. Internet and e-commerce has made vegan cosmetics accessible. In upcoming years, online retail will become a “one-stop-shop-platform” for purchasing vegan beauty products.

What are some Critical Success Factors for Prominent Vegan Cosmetic Players?

Given the ever widening scope of the vegan cosmetic industry, attributed to the presence of a large number of companies and products, entrepreneurs are scrambling to measure whether or not they will be successful in accomplishing business objectives. One major factor determining success of vegan cosmetics is how much weighting manufacturers attach to consumer preferences.

Incorporating quality ingredients ensures integrity of the vegan cosmetic brand. Contemporary buyers seek out products which are durable. Furthermore, they crave products which are not only cruelty free, but also safeguard the skin. If either of these aspects is lacking, they would not hesitate to substitute the brand for something else. Hence, manufacturers are constantly looking for maintaining their product quality, while ensuring that consumer sentiments are catered to.

For instance, Daughter Earth, a prominent Indian vegan cosmetics manufacturer, has taken the regional cosmetic industry by storm. Based on traditional Ayurvedic principles, the brand emerged as one of the most authentic organic skin care provider, offering products after thorough peer-reviewed research and perusal of scientific publications. This is not just about the ingredients in the product, but also about newer ways of formulation. In 2020, the company launched a new line of Probiotic Eye Serum, which uses a micro-emulsion earlier only deployed by pharma drug delivery systems.

The second most critical factor is to what extent manufacturers are able to capitalize on the target groups. While a player may be willing to offer a broad spectrum of product lines at reasonable prices, if the business is unable to invest in identifying the core consumer groups, its expansion prospects become significantly limited. Hence, they must take into account target strategies and tactics to penetrate the market deeper, maintain their positions and attract higher revenue shares.

For instance, cosmetics giant E.l.f introduced a new line of vegan skincare products. All their products are naturally sourced, including their brushes. However, most makeup brushes are generally manufactured from mink fur. Taking cognizance of the recent coronavirus outbreak in mink fur farms across Europe and America, also the move towards veganism, has prompted consumers to switch over to more plant based alternatives. Realizing this trend, the company is diversifying its product portfolio to more non-animal based and is expected to gain an impressive share in the Global market in the years to come.

About the Author: Sneha Varghese, Senior Research Consultant at Future Market Insights

Sneha is an experienced Research professional and Senior Research Consultant at ESOMAR-certified market research and consulting firm Future Market Insights (FMI). FMI is headquartered in Dubai, with offices in the US, UK, and India. MarketNgage is the Market Research Subscription Platform from FMI that assists stakeholders in obtaining in-depth research across industries, markets and niche segments. You can connect with Sneha on LinkedIn.