Cosmetics sitting pretty in consumption growth

Updated: Jun 4, 2024 By ZHENG YIRAN China Daily Print
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With the gradual recovery of the economy, China's cosmetics consumption is expected to maintain growth momentum. With Generation Z becoming an increasingly important driving force, the sector is expected to witness robust growth.

Gen Z refers to those born in the late 1990s or early 2000s. Starting this year, consumers in this demographic have become an increasingly strong driving force for feel-good consumption — buying of goods and services that brings a variety of senses, emotions and pleasure while boosting one's sense of self-worth.

May 20 is seen as one of the Chinese versions of Valentine's Day, as the Chinese pronunciation of "520"resembles that of the phrase for "I love you".

On May 19, cosmetics stores in SKP Beijing, a shopping mall in the capital's Chaoyang district, were bustling. Yang Ziying, a 24-year-old new graduate, was in a perfume store to pick up holiday presents for her and her bestie.

"As Valentine's Day draws close, I would like to take the opportunity to purchase some beauty products as a gift for myself and my best friend. We both lead fast-paced lives every day. In this day of love celebration, I would like to take the opportunity to love myself more, as well as my loved ones," Yang said.

She chose two bottles of perfume as gifts for herself and her friend. For her friend's perfume bottle, she asked the shop assistant to wrap it up in a gift box, and to attach a greeting card. The card reads: "Happy Valentine's Day! Whether you are in a relationship or not, you are always my beloved princess."

According to a study by bjnews.com.cn, during this year's May 20 holiday, among the 3,000 surveyed interviewees, around 40 percent celebrated the special day, which fell on a Monday — a typically busy workday for working folks nationwide.

The survey was conducted among interviewees between the ages of 25 and 45, and over half of them were from first-tier, new first-tier or provincial capital cities.

Specifically, on the special day, they choose to prepare an exclusive gift for their loved ones, and most of them hold that instead of flowery words, a concrete practical gift is more enchanting, said the result.

In addition, for both men and women, perfume ranks among the top three most popular gifts for the love-themed holiday, the investigation showed.

France-based cosmetics giant L'Oreal said that for this year's May 20, in the Chinese market, its brands — including YSL, Prada, Kiehl's, Helena Rubinstein and Biotherm — had launched a series of gift boxes.

"Consumers drop by to buy Valentine's Day special-edition gift boxes containing cleansers, gels and lotions. They also buy classic products, such as anti-wrinkle lotions and hydrating serum," said a shop assistant surnamed Zhang from the Biotherm outlet at shopping mall SKP Beijing.

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