NEWS > 07 May 2024

LONGEVITY: A BRAND-NEW APPROACH TO AGING

“Longevity” is the new keyword of our social evolution: it is a new code which is going to rule fashion, design, beauty, food and many other aspects of our daily life. The attention to aging and to how to face the flowing of time is the direct consequence of global population getting older. How shall we approach to this new paradigm, which new solutions shall we adopt, and how will the need for living longer and better influence our daily life?

The beauty industry is already experimenting this shift towards new codes and values linked to longevity, and the topic was one of the most debated during the latest edition of Cosmoprof Worldwide Bologna, with agencies, experts and media involved in round-tables and panel discussions.

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SETTING A STRATEGIC ROADMAP FOR THE INDUSTRY: COSMOVISION

 Longevity does not exclusively refer to older generations but rather touches all generations, even the youngest ones, as it measures life span and the health and quality of our daily lives. Longevity was the protagonist of the CosmoTalks session CosmoVision 2024-2029 – VITALISM: Living Longer, Living Stronger. The project, and the report curated by the global international trend forecasting authority, BEAUTYSTREAMS, highlighted the most important societal movement predicted to impact the industry in the next five years.

During the live presentation, Michael Nolte, SVP Creative Director of BEAUTYSTREAMS, shined a light on how the longevity market size is predicted to reach an economic value of USD 44,92 billion by the year 2031, growing at a 6,8% CAGR during the forecast period 2024 – 2031. Globally speaking, by 2025, the median age of the world’s population will be 32, but by 2100 it will be 41,9. Such a change is impacting the beauty industry, with the distinct development of new product categories and trends. When we approach skin care and personal care, much attention is paid to dermo-cosmetic products and sexual wellness, but now research has lately been focused on hormonal beauty and age-specific supplements. To embrace our changing demographics, companies in the hair sector are adopting a new approach to grey hair and color and are investing in anti-hair loss and scalp care solutions. For color cosmetics, comfort is the new mantra: light yet covering products, undertone correctors, and make-up with skin care benefits are the new frontier. Packaging will play a new strategic role for aging populations as well: according to BEAUTYSTREAMS, packaging is set to become more inclusive and will cater new solutions to older consumers through graphic color coding, smart dosage dispensers, and easy-to-read typography.

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WHAT ARE SOME OF THE EMERGING LONGEVITY-RELATED VALUES AND TRENDS?

During the official presentation of the report, new longevity-related values and trends emerged. The search for healthy aging is closely related to wellbeing and to a holistic approach to beauty, one that embraces mental health and spirituality. This scenario sets the stage for the growth of neuro-cosmetics and for new beauty standards. Akshay Talati, Vice President Product Development of Goop, underlined that “most products today are created with a  target of people age 20-35, but still very few companies are conceiving products for people of age 40 or 50”. We will have to wait for long before brands start producing products for older people regularly, because getting older is still a taboo. “Gen-X and Baby-Boomers in North America do not feel they are represented by the beauty industry today, although they have the highest power of purchase. In US, Gen X women alone wield a staggering $15 trillion in beauty spending power, while in Canada, Baby Boomers account for 60% of total beauty purchases”, highlighted Otilia Beschea, Director of Innovation of Groupe Marcelle. “Beauty has come along with stereotypes, but one day we will have to embrace intergenerational beauty and change our standards”.

The shift will be influenced by new values coming from different cultures and traditions, too. As of now, trends and products are based on the needs of Caucasian consumers, but regional cultures and local traditions will play a key role in the next future, thanks to the web facilitating global share of new contents, social media interactions, and the increasing impact of migrations. “There is a big difference in the approach towards aging between Westerns countries and Eastern regions. In Europe, the USA and Australia for example the society is youth-oriented, while in Asia and Korea local traditions enhance the role of older people”, said Fabrizia Grimaldi, Entrepreneur, CEO and Founder of Hormoon, a brand which relates skincare to female hormonal fluctuations, from the menstrual cycle to menopause, including pregnancy and breastfeeding.

WATCH THE FULL COSMOTALK VIDEO

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THE AGING-WELL MOVEMENT: A SOCIAL REVOLUTION

As part of the CosmoTalks program of Cosmoprof Worldwide Bologna 2024, the panel discussion The Aging-Well Movement: Innovation for Longevity, curated by the international trend agency Fashion Snoops, revealed how beauty and wellness brands are innovating to support consumers in their health goals and align with the growing “silver generation.”.

In his introduction to the discussion, Simone Marchetti, European Editorial Director of Vanity Fair, who was the moderator of the round-table, highlighted the big revolution led by longevity, making a comparison between the actual situation and what is happening from now on, and which are the new values not only for older generations, but even for young people. From an era regulated by social stereotypes such as looking younger, conforming to pre-established models, and searching for constant hype, starting from now we are entering into a new scenario, where people want to live longer and better, to be included and feel welcome, to be faithful to them-selves, and to care about themselves, about others, and about the planet. Sustainability is shifting towards solidarity, with attention paid not only to the planet, but to other human beings, too.

The market approach has changed dramatically: at first it was the industry who launched products and influenced the market, with a top-down approach. In the latest years social media changed the paradigm, and it was the consumer who drove products’ generation, with a  bottom-up approach. Today these tow models are both old: longevity leads to an open-source approach, and every brand launching a product must think about how consumers can co-operate in the creativity process, doing promotion and sharing suggestions on how to improve it. To summarize, “we have to redesign the map of our lives: longevity asks for new rules and new values”, declared Marchetti.

“When we think about longevity, we usually think about a slow age, but in reality it is a reversing age”, echoed Mallory Huron, Senior Strategist for Beauty & Wellness of Fashion Snoops. “The concept of “being old” is completely reversed, and older people do not want to disappear, but they want to live their true life as long as possible, remaining active and following their passions. Aging is a blessing, as well as a natural status. This mans that the actual communication must be replaced by honest marketing and brand communication. No product is going to cancel the aging process”.

“Beauty is leading to so many opportunities thanks to longevity, because the market is growing, consumers are more wealthy, every country has different approaches and there are lot of empty spaces in R&D and marketing for new brands and proposals; at the same time, consumers are very knowledgeable today, they do research, they look at the ingredients of their products. If a brand is not transparent and authentic, they perceive that”, confirmed Emilie Hood, Senior Research Analyst – Beauty of Euromonitor International.

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EDUCATION: A KEY ELEMENT FOR BRANDS

Another important element for brands is education: “Today the entire culture is focused on making women of mid-life invisible, and topics such as menopause are a taboo. We need a cultural and individual change: it is about learning about female biology, understanding how to live every stage of our life as vitally and happily as possible. Education is the first step”, highlighted Celeste Lee, Co-Founder of Caire Beauty, a new female-focused midlife skincare brand, addressing a long-ignored skincare aging arena - hormone decline and internal aging.

“Today consumers can have research, personal tips and product recommendation at their fingertips, thanks as well to social media, but this can revert to a risk”, stated Laura Kunces, VP Medical Strategy of Thorne HealthTech, a health testing business company. “Brands and scientists need to take the education burden on themselves”.

Raffaele Ruberto, Molecular Biologist, agreed on the importance of educating consumers in the right way, and shared his opinion about how social media trends can be dangerous for skin health. “We need to change the way we treat our skin. Skin is an organ, which needs to be fed-up with good stuff and nourished with healthy products and ingredients. When we start from this assumption, it is simpler to understand what can damage us”.

WATCH THE FULL COSMOTALK VIDEO

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