Keeping Consumers out of the Red Keeps the Sun Care Industry in the Black

sun care marketThe sun’s rays–usually associated with warmth, vacation, energy, and essential vitamin D–are also our skin’s #1 enemy. For personal skin care manufacturers, they are also a challenge–a compelling invitation to build sustainable business and jointly play an instrumental role in educating consumers about the hazards of overexposing skin to the sun’s rays.

Skin cancer is an ever-growing concern, particularly among the fair-skinned. Aging is the leading skin care condition in the United States, followed by hyperpigmentation. With both of these skin care conditions exacerbated by overexposure to the sun, it is telling that market segments addressing these conditions posted solid gains in 2012, growing by over 4%, according to Kline’s research on the professional skin care market.

Increasing awareness among consumers about the potentially harmful effects of UV rays has helped boost the sun care category’s sales in 2012. Manufacturers’ sales in this category grow 6.5% in 2012 in the United States finds Kline’s Sun Care Products Market in the United States.

Given consumers’ near universal desire for value and products with multiple benefits, sun care marketers are diversifying their product offerings. Recently, a common trend emerging among many up-market sunscreens is to include tint, as exemplified by Anthelios 50 Tinted Mineral Ultra Light Sunscreen Fluid newly introduced by L’Oréal under its La Roche Posay brand, and Eclipse SPF 50+ PerfecTint by Innovative Skin Care.

Due to the volatile nature of product formulations, packaging is of utmost importance to marketers of sun care products. With the evolution of the sun care market, marketers are introducing complex formulations that require innovative packaging solutions including airless packs, foams, sprays, and dispenser tubes. Although spray-on sun care products are popular, there are rising concerns among consumers about the dangers associated with the inhalation of the nano particles released when these products are sprayed. However, companies such as The Honest Company, Aubrey Organics, Babo Botanicals, and California Baby are consequently offering nano particle-free sun care products.

Natural and organic products continue to gather momentum in the sun care products category and although natural ingredients, such as broccoli extracts, totara and manuka tree extracts, jojoba byproducts, cordyceps fungus extracts, and turmeric, have proven themselves as effective ultraviolet filters, there are currently no 100% natural sunscreen formulations in the market.

New U.S. regulations, which came into effect in December 2012, mean that companies can no longer employ terms like “waterproof,” “sweat proof,” “sunblock,” and “all day protection” on product labeling and formulations. Additionally, products must pass UVA and UVB protection tests in to claim “Broad Spectrum” protection. These regulations are likely to lead to changes during the coming years.

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