“Suncare brands need to defend their turf"
Less and less Indian consumers are using or planning to use suncare products, according to recent research.
The research comes from London-based market research company Mintel.
According to Mintel’s research, 39% of Indian consumers said they are not using suncare products because they stay indoors most of the time.
Also, 33% said that when they do go outside, they are not in the sun long enough to need suncare products.
As well as this, 24% of Indian consumers do not use or intend to use suncare in the future.
This is because they believe applying a suncare product an unnecessary step in their skincare routine.
Tanya Rajani, India Beauty and Personal Care Analyst at Mintel, says that a lack of consumer knowledge also contributes to the low usage of skincare products.
“Lack of consumer knowledge surrounding skincare and the misconception that if they are not exposed to the sun they don’t need to use suncare or skin protection products is the top reason why we see low usage in this category.
“With consumers staying indoors as a result of Covid-19, but spending more time online, suncare brands have the opportunity to take the role of an educator to broaden the communication on skin protection.
“Brands can amplify education around the daily need for suncare and skin protection even when staying indoors due to wider environmental aggressors.
“Brands can add lifestyle relevance with skin protection claims against indoor pollution, indoor lights, and blue lights from electronic devices to cater to stay-home lifestyles.”
However, suncare brands are also being threatened by the SPF claims made by various facial skin care products and cosmetics.
According to Mintel’s research, a third (34%) of consumers said that makeup products with SPF give them enough sun protection.
Speaking of this, Rajani continued:
“With a significant percentage of beauty and personal care categories, such as facial skincare, including UV protection in their product claims, this is eating into the consumer need for suncare products.”
Tanya Rajani also spoke of the need for suncare brands to diversify themselves in the consumer market.
She also said that they need to think of innovative ways to stand out against skincare products and cosmetics with SPF claims.
“Suncare brands need to defend their turf through further innovation in claims, textures and formats to increase their importance in the eyes of Indian consumers.
“Sunscreen innovations that expand beyond UV protection and include skincare claims like moisturising and whitening or brightening can help make suncare more vital to one’s skincare regime.
“Brands can also look at developing hybrid concepts that merge suncare and makeup to help protect the suncare category from face colour cosmetics brands carrying SPF claims.”
According to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), the suncare contribution to UV protection claims under skincare dropped from 42% to 25% in India in 2020.
However, facial skincare with such claims became more prominent, rising from 26% to 35% in 2020.
Tanya Rajani believes that multi-functional suncare products increase both their value and their appeal to consumers.
“Multi-functional suncare presents gaps to incorporate various skincare claims such as anti-ageing and brightening, making products more appealing to multi-functional buyers.
“Offering multi-functional is also a way to enhance the value of products, making consumers feel they are getting a better return for their investment.
“Moreover, brands can amp up communication around indoor pollution or dust protection, which are equally prevalent in homes, and build the need to protect against unconventional aggressors such as blue light.”
According to Mintel’s research, 31% of Indian consumers said they are willing to pay more for suncare products with skincare benefits.
This percentage increases to 41% among women aged 25-34.
Additionally, 44% of consumers have used a face cream with anti-pollution benefits, and 39% have used a face cream with blue light defence.
These consumers have also said that they intend to use these products in the future.