‘Age reversal is dead’: How the pandemic redefined anti-ageing for beauty consumers

By Amanda Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

The acceleration of wellness and self-care trends during the COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the eradication of the beauty consumer’s long-held desire to completely erase the signs of ageing. [Getty Images]
The acceleration of wellness and self-care trends during the COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the eradication of the beauty consumer’s long-held desire to completely erase the signs of ageing. [Getty Images]

Related tags: anti-ageing, trends, COVID-19

The acceleration of wellness and self-care trends during the COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the eradication of the beauty consumer’s long-held desire to completely erase the signs of ageing.

While the pro-ageing or well-ageing skin movement has been gaining traction for a while now, the pandemic well and truly accelerated it, said Harini Sivakumar, CEO of India-based brand Earth Rhythm.

“Over the pandemic, there was more emphasis on mental wellness, self-care, and positivity overall. This has translated to body positivity and inclusivity, which I believe has played a huge role in this. With ageing now completely interlinked with these movements, consumers want to have healthy skin and be able to flaunt their real skin.”

Taking cue from this, Sivakumar said the new generation of brands like Earth Rhythm were no longer putting out anti-ageing products.

“Anti-ageing products as a category has seen a huge shift. New age brands like ours would not want to bring in a line of products and call it anti-ageing.”

This is not to say consumers are not looking for products to smoothen fine lines or firm up their skin. However, the results they were expecting to see have become more grounded and realistic.

“It all boils down to the fact that today's women have evolved a great deal over the last two decades. A consumer in her 40s that’s looking to have firmer skin is not looking to transform herself into a 20-year-old again. Age reversing as a concept itself is dead.”

She continued that consumers were now willing to accept that there is no “magic potion”​ to turn back the clock.

“Thanks to all the information that is available, consumers are very clear and very well-informed. They no longer want to see commercials that show creams working instantly to erase wrinkles. In fact, if they see such claims, they will call out the brand for making such claims.”

While anti-ageing has traditionally been an important category in beauty, more brands like Earth Rhythm no longer see it as a priority.

“For us, the mission is to create problem-solving products and we don’t classify ageing as a problem that needs to be solved. We try to encourage consumers to be happy in their own skin, and hence, anti-ageing as a concept doesn't resonate at all.”

However, the brand’s product line-up does include products like peptide serums that deal with signs of ageing such as wrinkles.

“We do have products that target cell renewal to revitalise skin and keep it healthy, but we do not claim to be able to give you wrinkle-free glass skin,” ​said Sivakumar.

She emphasised that it was more than moving away from anti-ageing language.

“It’s about choice. If someone wants a product for their wrinkles it should be their choice and not because society and media are telling you that you are old. It’s taken us a long time to get to this point where the goal should be healthy skin that looks its age and not chasing after time.”

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