8 Cosmetic eCommerce Trends You Can’t Ignore in 2021

With less than two months into 2021, top cosmetic eCommerce trends are already emerging for the new year. The global beauty industry is now worth over $530 billion and still growing.

That’s a huge number, but getting a fair share out of that number would require you to be on top of your game. To get ahead, you need to be in tune with the latest technologies along with consumer demands.

Here are 8 cosmetic eCommerce trends you shouldn’t ignore in 2021.

1. Inclusivity

There’s no selfsame approach when it comes to makeup and skincare needs. Inclusive beauty means that no one is excluded. It also means that there’s something unique available for everyone. We are different in terms of our skin colours, skin tone, age, and even skin conditions, and beauty brands are now stepping up to the challenge to serve everyone’s unique needs.

Brands like Too Faced prides itself on innovative makeup products, with an array of cosmetic lines that saw a massive annual turnover of $350m in 2019. Also, Illamasqua, a beauty brand whose motto is “Express your individuality” saw their biggest ever profit at $50m. 

2. VR, AR, and Tech partnerships

Perfect Corp, the world’s most prominent AR company, partnered with Jack Ma’s Alibaba Group and integrated its YouCam Makeup AR virtual technology into Taobao and Tmall Alibaba online shopping experiences. The integration provided new virtual try-outs to the consumers in China.

Alibaba reported that their conversion rate was increased 4x in just six months of using Perfect Corp’s AR technology. Since then, new techs in the cosmetic industry are growing, immersing AI, AR, and VR into popular brands like MAC, NARS, and L’Oreal.

3. Beauty subscription services

Several reports have predicted the value of the subscription box market to grow by up to 72% by 2022. In the cosmetic eCommerce industry, subscription boxes such as Birchbox and Glossybox have revealed how successful the subscription box business model can be.

In a study conducted by McKinsey, it was discovered that curation services — subscriptions that aim to seek and surprise by offering new items or provide highly personalized experience received up to 55% of total subscriptions, which suggests the desired for personalized services. The beauty subscription box services are designed to cater to the unique needs of the subscribers and also provide the excitement of getting to try out new products. 

4. Natural, clean, and transparent beauty

Beauty product consumers are now choosing brands that are transparent in their list of ingredients. A study by Nielsen revealed that the beauty industry consumers are now choosing more natural and objectively simpler products.

And instead of just receiving the brand’s definition of ‘natural,’ the consumers are now defining what’s natural and not. Over the past few years, the sales of cosmetics that are paraben-free have increased by 2.3%. In addition, products that claim to be paraben-free and made with natural ingredients have grown by up to 12%.

5. Big data for new product development

Brands are now incorporating their customers, followers, fans into their business to help them build the brand, develop new products, and even market the products using big data. Big data in the beauty industry are collected via questionnaires, search terms data, and spending habits.

For instance, the popular cosmetic brand, Olay, discovered that a large percentage of consumers desired skincare products that are fragrance-free through big data. Armed with this knowledge, the brand launched scent-free versions of the Olay Whip facial moisturizers, which have also become popular as the original.

6. Influencers

In recent years, influencers have become a vital part of the beauty eCommerce industry. With the rise of influencers and micro-influencers (influencers with a fan base of 100,000 for less), the beauty industry and its advertising outlets enjoy a significant investment return in renewable resources.

Authenticity is vital when it comes to influencer marketing. Influencers and beauty brands that show authenticity in their products and marketing will stand out and quickly get to the consumers’ hearts.

7. Brand partnerships 

Market analysis by AdNews showed partnerships in any industry were 30 times cheaper than digital advertising as a result of the ability to tap into an already existing customer base. This is especially true in the beauty industry. When a unique cosmetic collaboration is released, tons of social media posts and reviews convert all that excitement to product sales.

For instance, when interests such as a favourite snack or TV show are combined with cosmetic and beauty, joining the existing customer base of both brands together in a marketing move, more customers can be obtained with a potential reach—and may be appealing to people who ordinarily wouldn’t be interested in beauty products.

Brands like Cheetos and Hershey have used the brand partnership model.

8. Hyper-personalized skincare

A survey by Epsilon for consumers between the ages of 18-64 revealed that the demand for personalization is high, with 80 per cent of the respondents saying that they’d instead give their business to a brand that offers a personalized experience and 90 per cent of the respondents indicated that they find personalization appealing. 

The desire for personalization and connection with brands has brought a new form of hyper-personalization, courtesy of AI technology, and a twoway data-driven conversation between the brand and consumer. In a highly competitive beauty eCommerce market, hyper-personalization is a trend that ensures that a brand can stand out among the crowd by enabling the consumer to make informed choices instead of offering them endless choices. Using the hyper-personalization strategy encourages brand loyalty and repeat buyers.


These eight cosmetic eCommerce trends provide eCommerce cosmetic businesses with ideas about where the industry is headed as we approach 2021.

Capitalizing on the right eCommerce trend can take your business to a new height. If you plan to start a new eCommerce cosmetic business or intend to have your own cosmetic brand, get in touch with Ori Bionature, an established cosmetic manufacturer and contract manufacturer.

With years of experience, we can leverage these trends and help you produce cosmetic OEM products or private label cosmetics with your own brand and give your eCommerce cosmetic business a headstart in the brand new year. 

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