Beauty trends are constantly evolving and influencing the global beauty industry. In today's technologically connected societies, beauty trends are often shaped by influencers on social media and via videos created and shared on streaming platforms. Asia, popularly known for its beauty-conscious societies, has seen its beauty trends changing, shaped by various factors—most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic.
The pandemic has drawn attention to the concept of self-care. The Asian beauty industry has rapidly adapted itself to meet the demands of consumers who are now actively seeking beauty products that prioritise skin health, hydration and customisations tailored to their skin type.
One of the key beauty trends in the Asian beauty industry is the integration of science and technology into skincare products. This can be seen in the rise of "K-beauty", which refers to the South Korean beauty industry. South Korea is one of the leading export markets in the cosmetics industry, with a beauty and personal care industry valued at US$ 12.1 billion in 2022. Of this, at US$ 7.3 billion, the skincare industry accounted for more than half of the total industry value.
Known for its focus on natural skincare, K-beauty has gained immense popularity in Asia with its formula of prioritising skin health to promote a natural glow. The famous Korean wave, which has swept across the region and beyond, has seen many beauty enthusiasts adopting beauty trends from South Korea. The journey to achieving the natural glow can come in various forms for South Koreans—from skin health consumable vitamins to electronic gadgets, such as the Cellreturn LED Mask, which many Korean stars promote.
Many of the beauty trends emerging from South Korea have quickly caught on across Asia, with companies in countries like China and Singapore importing beauty products for their respective consumer markets. This has undoubtedly helped boost the popularity of South Korean beauty trends in Asia, such as sheet masks, which have become a staple in many Asian beauty routines for women—and men. K-beauty is also popular amongst many due to its affordability compared to many other brands from Europe or the United States.
Another popular beauty trend is using AI and AR technology in the beauty industry. Brands that embrace AI (artificial intelligence) and AR (augmented reality) solutions have seen a boost in sales growth and increased customer engagement. This trend is expected to continue as technology is crucial in enhancing the user experience. Taiwan-based Perfect Corp launched an AI Personality Finder that enables beauty brands to make customised product recommendations based on customers' personality traits.
In Asia, China is leading the way in the beauty trend of implementing AI and AR technology for its hyper-digital consumer market. In 2020, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Perfect Corp and the Chinese app WeChat, launched an AI and AR beauty service that allowed Chinese consumers to enjoy a digital beauty experience from their mobile devices. Beauty brands in Asia are now adopting this technologically advanced innovation to offer consumers ease in virtually trying out beauty products.
The Asian beauty industry is poised to continue its growth and impact on the global market as more beauty trends emerge from the region. With innovations and technologies, businesses and beauty-conscious individuals can explore and discover the latest in products and services from Asia and embrace this dynamic and innovative industry.
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