Bargain reports and analytics

Brits’ cosmetics preferences

PicodiJune 29, 2020

The first mentions of make-up date back to ancient Egypt. Even then, people used the prototype of eyeliner, and both men and women wore make-up. Since that time, cosmetics and the perception of make-up itself have diametrically changed. Nowadays, trends come and go every season, and the preferences of British women are constantly evolving.

How much money do British people spend on cosmetics yearly? Which factors determine the purchase of cosmetics? How do men and women feel about eco cosmetics? And how do we compare to other countries? analysis team answered these and other questions related to the cosmetics market.

Beauty has its price

What are the reasons for picking particular cosmetics?

British women’s’ toiletry bags are quite spacious — on average, they contain as many as 24 beauty products. It is no wonder that a typical British woman spends around £400 in a year on cosmetics. On the other hand, among these 24 cosmetics, only 11 are in regular use. It could be explained by the fact that 38 per cent of the surveyed women buy cosmetics when they are discounted, in reserve. 35 per cent buy cosmetics when they run out and 27 per cent whenever they feel like it.

How do British women choose their cosmetics? Most of the surveyed women (74 per cent) chose price as a major factor determining the purchase. Brand of the cosmetic is crucial for 56 per cent of the surveyed respondents, and 34 per cent chose ingredients. Less important are influencers’ recommendations and specialists’ tips (both 23 per cent) or friends’ opinions (16 per cent).

Considering the fact that most of the respondents consider price as the most important consideration, it is not surprising that only 28 per cent of women prefer premium cosmetics, more expensive than the regular ones. 41 per cent allow themselves to buy such cosmetics occasionally, and 21 per cent don’t buy them at all. Price is also the decisive factor for choosing between regular and eco cosmetics, which became quite popular in recent years. The majority of the surveyed women (67 per cent) declared that they pick green cosmetics only when the price is reasonable. 21 per cent always buy eco cosmetics, and 12 per cent don’t have any interest in the ecological aspect of beauty products.

Mirror, mirror on the wall…

The favourite cosmetics of British women

For many women, make-up is an integral part of the morning routine. However, one-fifth of the surveyed British women do not wear make-up at all. Among those who do, less than one-third wears it daily. 58 per cent does make-up sometimes, and 15 per cent does it only for special occasions.

How much time do British women usually spend in front of the mirror? Among the women aged 18 to 50, 48 per cent spend 5 to 15 minutes on make-up, and one-fifth less than 5 minutes. One-third of surveyed British women take much more time doing make-up — as much as half an hour.

An average women’s make-up bag contains many products, including some of the same kind. Statistically, British women own 6 lipsticks, 3 lip liners, 3 blushes, 3 mascaras, 5 eyeshadows, and 5 fingernail polishes.

Through the looking glass

How much money women around the world spend on cosmetics?

In the United Kingdom, the most popular beauty products are lipstick, foundation, mascara, eyebrow pencil, and eyeliner, and women spend around €448 a year on cosmetics. How about our neighbours?

The Irish spend less than Brits — €393. Their favourite cosmetics, besides foundation, concealer and mascara, are powder and concealer.

Surprisingly, German women spend much less, around €164 a year. With €351 spent on cosmetics each year, women in the United States are ahead, but still behind the British.

Men vs cosmetics

Do British men buy cosmetics by themselves?

How do men feel about cosmetics? First of all, they spend much less money on cosmetics than women — £230 a year, which is close to just half of the average woman’s beauty budget. They also own fewer beauty products (11 pieces), although they only 7 use regularly. What is interesting, only 63 per cent of the surveyed men buy cosmetics by themselves — the remaining 37 per cent admits that it is mom or partner who buys cosmetics for them.

As opposed to British women, men usually buy cosmetics when they run out (59 per cent). 27 per cent buy cosmetics when they are discounted, and 14 per cent when they feel like buying. Same as women, the main factor determining the choice for men is the price — 63 per cent. Still, the brand is also important (54 per cent), as well as their own preferences (27 per cent).

British men are also less likely to buy premium cosmetics — 36 per cent claim that they never buy them and 35 per cent do only occasionally. When it comes to eco cosmetics, half of the surveyed men declared that they do not care about their ecological aspect. One-third buy such cosmetics when the price is reasonable, and 17 per cent prefer eco products no matter what.

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This report was based on survey results conducted among 9300 people in 44 countries in June 2020.

Public Use

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