Beauty Inclusivity meets the Forgotten Customer

Beauty Inclusivity meets the Forgotten Customer

Beauty Inclusivity meets the Forgotten Customer 900 400 Chute Gerdeman

“By promoting and fostering more inclusive strategies, beauty is becoming the poster industry for doing good.”


The beauty market is no longer convoluted by endorsements of negative statements to shame and perpetuate insecurity; instead, it has become a pillar in promoting what kind of beauty can exude when differences are embraced. It’s easy to lose sight of the today’s shoppers while transforming a business model to attract the ones of tomorrow, but in order to parallel touts of inclusivity, the need of every demographic must be addressed.

“Male make-up counters could become a reality in five years.”

Vismay Sharma | UK Managing Director, L’Oréal

The male grooming industry has been a predominate focus for brands since the influencer industry–via social media and YouTub­e–started to gain popularity. Platforms like these finally gave this market a voice and showcased a need for products not just pertaining to trimming beards and eradicating acne. Men of all ages and orientations utilize products for purposes ranging from conceal to “full beat,” normalizing a culture built on expression and differentiation.

In a study done by Future Thinking, 4,300 British men were asked questions to help formalize an otherwise overlooked and uncategorized hub of consumers. It was noted that “27% would buy cosmetics if they were branded as gender neutral,” (Stylus, 2018) rather than male-specific. “19% of the participants use make-up as part of their regular routine,” emphasizing a growing culture of normality in regard to products more often advertised to the opposite gender. Throwing away statements of masculinity–and the stigmas behind it–will better establish some semblance of balance, seizing new opportunities within the market as a whole.

As an industry predicted to be “worth more than $60bn by 2020,” (Euromonitor, 2017) it’s imperative that men’s beauty pivot its strategy to what’s important to the masses. Wellness and eco-friendly product and packaging should be adjusted, but in a way that won’t intimidate the target. This type of approach coincides with a transparency of ingredients to help educate the consumer and promote the naturalization of brands as a whole.

“With the beauty industry focused primarily on youth, many Gen Xers feel disregarded.”


As a group with one of the largest spending powers in the nation, Gen Xers are known for being the most overlooked generation of our time. With lots to spend and little to be engaged by, this untapped market is forced to go past what beauty brands are telling them is wrong and find products that appropriately addresses their concerns.

In a world where shouts of age defamation lead to anti-ageing products we see in stores ranging from drug to department, this core group of avid researchers are forced to discover products that “simultaneously tackle issues such as blemishes, dark spots, and texture.” (Stylus, 2018)

Because of research stating the daily use of tech and social media by Gen-Z and Millennials, many brands seem to think they are the only group following and scrolling through advertisements and updates. Gen X is surprisingly a research-based generation, “thoroughly reaserch[ing] before shopping” says beauty brand Cult Beauty.

The need to research and connect to brands before a purchase is made defines what makes this demographic unique. “More than half of American Gen Xers are frustrated by brands that treat them as an afterthought.” (Futures Company, 2017) Statements like these continue to illuminate a higher need for brands addressing current, relevant needs and advertising them in a way that still feels cohesive.

It’s time to promote the needs of every consumer in the beauty market; providing spaces and experiences that adhere to every age, every gender, and every concern is the only way to keep up with today’s shopper. Designing flexible areas for packaging that broaches the concern of every shopper is imperative. Do you believe your brand is doing what it takes to speak and sell appropriately? CHECK OUT how other brands are partnering in new, innovative ways to do just that.


A collection of insights research and observations across retail, restaurant, c-store and grocery. Helping brands provide a better experience for their customers. Enjoy.

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