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Experts outline top four personal care packaging trends

By Michelle Yeomans+

21-Jan-2014
Last updated on 21-Jan-2014 at 17:16 GMT

Experts outline top four personal care packaging trends

Market researcher Smithers Pira has compiled four packaging trends it says brands need to know about to stay ahead of the curve as consumers continually change the way they view, interact with and discard their personal care products.

SP analysts say the personal care packaging industry is saturated and is only getting more competitive as the global market is set to be worth $28.2 billion by 2018.

"Whether you're a manufacturer or a product marketer, the importance of standing out from the crowd whilst also reflecting the changing needs of the consumer with your packaging is vital whether its skin care to fragrance and from bath products to oral hygiene," they say.

Thus, they have outlined the below as being key areas for the global packaging industry to take heed of.

1.)    Sustainability

Consumers are becoming increasingly more aware of global environmental issues and are changing their buying habits accordingly. These days, it's 'cool to care', and consumers are actively seeking out semiotic signs on packaging that manufacturers have a green conscience (but are wary of green washing).

Understanding how commitment to sustainability can be communicated in an engaging way on the packaging is key to attracting, relating to, and keeping consumers.

However, herein lies the challenge for a large portion of the personal care market. Luxury products, relying on the perception of exclusivity and prestige for sales, experience a potential disconnect here as brand owners often do not want to associate their high-end goods with recycled materials.

2.)    Convenience

A growing number of consumers balance their personal care routines with increasingly busy lifestyles, meaning that products offering ease of use are most likely to succeed.

As a result, there is a general movement towards PET (polyethylene terephthalate) usage, which allows for product flexibility on-the-go. Manufacturers are also using gravity to ease dispensation, a technique which has been adopted across the board.

Easier to open caps, closure devices, packs which stand up better in the shower, portion control devices and ‘handleability’ are all innovations which are responding to a consumer’s desire for convenience and ease of use. 

 3.)  Male grooming

The growing popularity of male grooming, particularly in emerging markets, is increasing the global demand for male hair care and facial skin care products.

This trend is usually driven not so much by a desire for attractiveness, but by a professional or social situation coupled with a desire to proclaim one’s status or differentiate oneself from the crowd.

The importance of building brand affinity as well as awareness and loyalty feature heavily in the brand owner’s marketing activities as consumers look for the reassurance of established brands for their daily personal care routines.

4.)    Value added products 

As new developments continue to occur in this fast-moving sector, consumers are increasingly expecting added value in the cosmetics they purchase. Packaging companies should meet this expectation through the addition of innovative techniques, such as integrated applicators. 

Across all categories, these dispensing systems have become a key way for brands to differentiate products and offer consumers additional value. Brands are introducing products with dispensing applicator tips that directly apply formulas to the face or other target area, including items such as sponges, brushes and roll-ons.

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