UK prestige beauty driven by strength in urban centres says NPD
The market for the sale of prestige beauty in the UK rose 4% to £2.55bn last year, according to a new report from The NPD Group, with the most impressive growth coming from key cities including Liverpool (15%), London (9%) and Birmingham (8%).
The rise in Liverpool is particularly interesting. The city is known for its addiction to strong make-up looks looks with the still-going-strong drawn-on brow look being popularly known as the ‘Scouse Brow’.
NPD said the city represents just 3% of the total prestige beauty market in the UK, but last year total sales of make-up there increased by 30% and women’s skincare by 6%.
June Jensen, Director, NPD UK Beauty said: “It’s a small sector of the market [but] the data demonstrates that women in the city have embraced prestige beauty and are upgrading their beauty regime with more premium make-up and skincare products.”
London, which represents 18% of the total market for prestige beauty in the UK reported an increase of 9%. In 2016 total sales of make-up there increased by 17% and women’s skincare by 6%. Birmingham, although being a bigger city that Liverpool represents a smaller 2% of the prestige beauty market and grew by 8%. In 2016 total sales there of make-up increased by 20% and women’s skincare by 8%.
Given the tough economic times, it’s unsurprising that the well-known ‘lipstick effect’ (whereby consumers get their luxury fix from cheaper products such as beauty rather than fashion) kicked-in. And this, too, was noticeable regionally. Sales of prestige lip products in 2016 rose an impressive 50% in Liverpool, 46% in London, 21% in Birmingham, 13% in Leeds, 11% in Belfast and 11% in Cardiff year-on-year.
But while prestige fragrance overall grew only 1% in 2016, again, key cities drove the growth. The market reached a value of £2.539bn with women’s scent growth of 7.5% in London and men’s fragrance growth of 12% in Liverpool. Growth in colognes rose most in Glasgow (21%), while Belfast saw a 72% surge in men’s Eau de perfume and 16% for men’s cologne.
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