The Holy Month of Ramadan marks an opportune time for brands and companies to take note of the shift in consumer behaviors, lifestyle habits, and overall mindsets, says Mehdi Moutaoukil, L’Oréal Middle East’s chief marketing officer.
Speaking to Khaleej Times, he noted that despite the ever-shifting environment, consumers are still dedicating time to doing what they love in an effort to feel better and more fulfilled. “What has become evident is that beauty and personal care are here to stay regardless of the ever-changing events that come about; the only thing that shifts is the way in which consumers approach their beauty regimens and routines.”
Moving towards the recovery phase of the pandemic, he explained that there has been a noticeable shift in consumer behavior in the UAE and KSA during Ramadan – 46 per cent of residents say that they plan to take part in more celebratory activities, while 56 per cent plan to spend more on personal care, and 42 per cent say that they will spend on luxury.
Research by Red Seer in its ‘Unwrapping Ramadan 2022’ report has also revealed that there was a 36 per cent increase in online purchases, with 49 per cent more spent on luxury, and 41 per cent more spent on personal care within the digital space. It is predicted that the online Ramadan market size in the Mena region will reach $6.2 billion in 2022 - a 39 per cent increase from 2021.
A closer look at the beauty and personal care industry, as highlighted in the Middle East and Africa Beauty and Personal Care Product report, shows significant market potential in the region, with a projected growth of CAGR of 3.1 per cent during the forecast period 2022 - 2027.
“During Ramadan, consumers are still investing time, effort and money in beauty and personal care to varying degrees; whereas in the first half they adopt more minimalistic regimens, the second half is all about shopping and preparing for Eid,” said Moutaoukil. “However, there is a notable shift in the way in which they are going about beauty and how they are approaching facecare, makeup, and hair care. When we look at facecare, concerns of skin dryness come to the fore as consumers are fixated on getting clear skin for Eid.”
Against this backdrop, he pointed to a clear shift in product interest, with a seven per cent month-on-month increase in masks; a two per cent increase in moisturizers; and a three per cent increase in serums. “We also noticed interest in glow and radiance, which was supported by a 26 per cent increase, a stronger focus on diet and a six per cent increase in Do-It-Yourself regimens. A key insight for women during Ramadan is that they tend to wear less makeup and gravitate more towards acquiring a natural look with skin infused makeup and a focus on lip balms, brow makeup, and blush. Eid is a period where consumers start reintroducing bold colors, graphic liners, and glossy eyes and lips.”
When it comes to haircare, hair fall and dryness are amongst the top concerns during Ramadan. In addition to key trends including a strong reliance on masks as well as DIY practices, this also marks the highest season for hair coloration as there is a surge in interest before Eid.
“With the surge in online shopping, we recognise the importance of delivering a seamless user experience for consumers from the comfort of their home. As such, we offer advanced solutions such as Modiface’s ‘Style My Hair Pro’, a 3D real-time hair color try-on service empowered by Artificial Intelligence technology that enables virtual try-on features that produce accurate results in real time,” said Moutaoukil.
He also revealed that L’Oréal has joined forces with Noon this Ramadan season to launch a first-of-its-kind service in the GCC that pairs shopping with livestreaming. This enables consumers to browse and shop simultaneously within the livestream space without leaving the website and application. Consumers can benefit from up to eight live shopping events from mid-Ramadan to Eid on topics such as “Ramadan beauty secrets uncovered” and “Express yourself this Eid”.
“Beauty and personal care remain integral to the daily lives of many consumers in the region and the world,” Moutaoukil said. “Ramadan is an excellent example of a seasonal shift, where consumers find new ways to apply their own beauty regimens in line with their evolving facecare and haircare needs. More than just beauty routines, these daily practices have become synonymous with self-care and self-love, and that is precisely why they are here to stay.”
In line with this, beauty brands need to focus on offering solutions that go beyond the surface and instead respond to consumers' needs for greater fulfilment that can only be achieved through inner happiness and a true sense of comfort, he stressed.
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