The concept of beauty has always been ever-changing. As society continues to evolve, we have seen many trends come and go.
However, one increasing market demand seems to stay: the need for gender equality in the beauty industry.
There used to be a time when beauty and health care products were so distinct. Pastel-colored hues were designated for women, while intense reds, blacks, and blues were clearly for men.
Now those old marketing norms are starting to fade away as the call for more unisex and gender-neutral products rises.
And this video will give you a glimpse of how the beauty industry has evolved into the way it is now.
New marketing to bend gender stereotypes
The global beauty industry is worth over $500 billion, with a steadily growing 8% year-to-date (as of July 2018) in the men’s grooming market.
Even the American Academy of Dermatology backs up the market statistics by stating that the basics of daily skincare for men and women are the same. These data have led both gender-specific and unisex brands and businesses alike to shift their focus on the gender-inclusive beauty industry.
Gender used to sell. It was one notion that marketing strategies have long seeped into our minds that the sexes were inherently different, so much so that it has created a stigma that men should not use women’s products and vice versa.
With consumers breaking away from past social conditioning, gender-neutral beauty content marketing is one of the most important assets for brands to adapt to this fast-changing time.
Not only does inclusivity matter in image branding, but also the packaging, and overall integrity of its products.
A study from a cosmetic industry statistic in 2017 showed that 92% of consumers claimed to trust a company or cosmetic brand that supports social or environmental issues. These factors are especially important to the younger demographic.
Targeting Gen Z
Nearly 40% of adults aged 18-22 have shown interest in gender-neutral beauty products (such as skincare and cosmetics) according to NPD’s iGen Beauty Consumer report.
This age group falls under Generation Z – or the generation succeeding millennials, born in 1997 or later. They are a diverse and digitally native demographic.
Fearless and idealistic, they stick to brands that resonate with their values. They also exhibit increasing massive spending power ( estimated to be at around $143 billion in the US alone) as they get older.
This 2020, their generation makes up about 40% of all consumers. They also hold influence over their family and their household purchases, which usually go to eating out, electronics, beauty products, and clothing/accessories.
For businesses to thrive, they must be able to speak to this new generation, as they pay particular attention to a brand’s mission, product quality, and service.
This has led beauty brands to hop on the bandwagon of countering stereotypes and adjust their strategies of gender-neutral beauty content marketing to Gen Z.
Gender-neutral and gender-inclusive brands
As progressions are made in the beauty industry, we are no longer confined to a brand’s pre-determined limitations regarding skincare and grooming solutions.
Today, brands can now focus on important matters like skin concerns, social responsibitlities (like using a diverse advertising cast in their marketing), innovative research on product quality such as a DNA-based approach for an individual’s key drivers to aging), and interaction with their customers via multiple media platforms rather than emphasizing stereotypical gender-based marketing.
These are some of the growing best unisex beauty brands and product lines for genderless skincare, hair growth, personal hygiene, and bath products:
Positioning itself as “clinical formulations with integrity,” this brand takes pride in its unisex approach ever since its conception.
The brand features its employees to represent its clientele – “diverse, passionate, in love with skincare and ultimately, just human beings.”
Dedicated in their mission of making nothing less than “awesome, natural skin and body care products,” this brand has decided to go all-in on genderless products.
Their products are sold in eco-friendly packaging featuring blue, green, and white mountain outlines.
American Eagle’s in-house wellness and skincare line, Mood is a collection of hemp-derived CBD wellness products, including everything from face oil and bath bombs to pillow mists.
This non-gendered pampering line was made to “help relax, unwind, and feel your best.”
Committed to making only the finest quality skin, hair, and body care products, the Aesop range is known to utilize simple packaging that appeals to both sexes since its inception in the late ‘80s.
Efficacy and sensory pleasure are the heart and soul behind their brand and formulations.
This brand promises to bring “youth and good” to its consumers with their professional-grade skincare line.
It encompasses diversity and unconventionality and cater to individuality and lifestyle, with particular attention to social justice, community, and the environment.
And here are some innovative, inclusive beauty brands that have effectively removed gender from their branding and have evolved and expanded their content marketing to non-binary beauty:
Owned by superstar Rihanna, this makeup line makes inclusivity its primary focus with its extensive range of cosmetics of universal shades made for all skin types and skin tones “so that people everywhere would be included.” They even feature a makeup tutorial for men.
Founded in 2018, this bold and colorful makeup brand creates vegan, cruelty-free, and paraben-free cosmetics “designed for all skin shades and gender expressions.”
It is also an advocate for queer and gender-expansive identities. The team behind the brand believes that “if makeup is joyful and transformative and fun, nobody should be left out.”
Born and based in NYC, this brand is inspired by its community and culture. Its creators are advocates of self-expression believing that “it’s not just about how you create your look; it’s what you do in it that matters.” Their products are also vegan, cruelty-free, and paraben-free.
Since its relaunch in 2018, the new branding has set the bar for mass market inclusivity. Its new collection is gender-neutral, non-judgemental which is made visible in their imagery.
They had even opted to remove the word “beauty” from their branding which garnered massive attention.
Even this cosmetics giant has launched its gender-neutral makeup back in 2016 and has seen great success.
The first unisex collection, a collaboration made with the Brant brothers, featured a host of neutral eyeshadow shades, lip stain markers, and eyebrow products.
The timely trend and demand for gender-neutral products present the beauty industry with a valuable lesson: that their consumers can no longer be simply boxed in and stereotyped.
Beauty is not a one-way street. It comes in many shapes and forms. We are no longer in the age of having products define us but rather us defining the products we choose to consume.
Is your brand ready to redefine its standards and resonate with your target audience? With our years-long expertise in matters of beauty and wellness content marketing, we can help bring you and your brand up to par with the best gender-inclusive brands in the industry.
How did you like May Thawdar Oo’s blog post “The Future Is “Neutral”: Gender Equality in the Beauty Industry”? Let us know in the comments if you have anything to add, have another content idea for beauty content marketing blog posts, or just want to say “hello.” 🙂