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What is the future of the online beauty industry post-pandemic?

Last updated :
March 10, 2024

minutes read

Gazing into the Mirror: The Future of the Online Beauty Industry Post-Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a moment of reckoning for many industries, but none more so than the beauty industry. As masks covered smiles and stay-at-home orders closed beauty parlours, the industry was forced to reinvent itself online. But as the world prepares to shed its lockdown skin, one question remains - what is the future of the online beauty industry post-pandemic?

A Makeover in Progress

The beauty industry is one of the few sectors that has shown resilience during the pandemic. However, the shift from physical stores to digital platforms was not without its challenges. Most consumers were accustomed to the sensory experience of trying out beauty products in stores. Transitioning this to an online experience required innovation and a fundamental shift in approach.

Brands started focusing on enhancing their online presence, offering virtual try-ons, personalized product recommendations, and increased interactivity through social media. Online beauty platforms like Nykaa and Purplle saw a surge in user engagement during the lockdown, with consumers flocking to these platforms for their beauty needs.

One key trend was the rise of the conscious consumer. A global survey by Accenture revealed that 60% of consumers have become more aware of their environmental impact during the pandemic, leading to increased demand for sustainable and cruelty-free beauty products. Brands have responded by offering a wider range of such products and using eco-friendly packaging.

The Virtual Beauty Parlor

The pandemic has also given rise to a new trend - online beauty consultations. With salons closed consumers turned to virtual consultations, where experts offered advice on skin care routines, product usage, and more. This trend is likely to continue, offering consumers the convenience of expert advice from the comfort of their homes.

Furthermore, there has been a rise in beauty tech startups, like MyGlamm, that are using AI and AR technologies to enhance the online beauty experience. These technologies enable virtual try-ons, skin analysis, and personalized product recommendations, making online shopping more interactive and personalized.

The Beauty of the Future

So, what is the future of the online beauty industry post-pandemic? The pandemic has accelerated the digitization of the beauty industry, and there is no going back. The move towards sustainable beauty products, online consultations, and personalized experiences is here to stay.

However, the role of physical stores will also evolve. Instead of being merely sales points, they will become experiential centres where consumers can try out new products and technologies. Brick-and-mortar stores will coexist with online platforms, each complementing the other.

Moreover, the future of the online beauty industry will be driven by technology. As AI and AR technologies evolve, they will offer more immersive and personalized experiences, from virtual makeovers to personalized skincare routines.

The Digital Boom: An Unprecedented Surge

While overall global beauty revenues are expected to fall by 20-30%, the online segment remains in the top 5 most purchased categories during the pandemic, with online revenues increasing by 20-30% compared to pre-pandemic levels. This shift to online shopping is expected to become a legacy move, with the online market for beauty and personal care remaining at a higher value than pre-pandemic levels.

In China, online revenues for beauty-industry players rose by 20 to 30 percent during the outbreak, a trend reflected worldwide. This surge in digital sales is compelling beauty brands to rethink the consumer experience online. For instance, L’Oréal reported a 62% growth in digital sales in 2020, with 29% of its sales taking place online in the first three quarters of 2021.

Navigating the Digital Landscape: The New Consumer Behavior

The pandemic has caused a seismic shift in consumer behaviour. The use of smartphones for online shopping has more than doubled since 2018, and this shift to digital channels is expected to persist post-pandemic. Furthermore, customer loyalty has taken a hit during the pandemic, with buyers switching brands at unprecedented rates. This volatile landscape presents both challenges and opportunities for the online beauty industry.

Brands will need to work harder to retain customers, focusing on offering exceptional online experiences, personalized services, and engaging content. They will need to leverage data analytics to understand customer preferences and shopping habits and use this information to tailor their offerings and marketing strategies. Simultaneously, the high rate of brand switching also presents an opportunity for brands to attract new customers. Brands that can effectively communicate their unique selling propositions, whether it's sustainability, ingredient quality, or innovative technology, stand to gain in this dynamic marketplace.

The Post-Pandemic Beauty Landscape: Unmasking the Opportunities

As we move into the post-pandemic world, we can expect the beauty industry to continue to be shaped by the trends and transformations instigated by the pandemic. The online beauty industry will continue to grow, propelled by technological innovations, changing consumer behaviour, and the lasting impacts of the pandemic.

The future of the online beauty industry will not just be about selling beauty products online. It will be about offering holistic beauty experiences that are personalized, sustainable, and driven by technology. Brands that can adapt to these trends and meet the evolving needs and wants of consumers will shine in the post-pandemic beauty landscape.

As we look into the mirror of the future, we see an online beauty industry that is more resilient, innovative, and dynamic than ever before. A beauty industry that is ready to take on the challenges and opportunities of the post-pandemic world.

A New Dawn

The pandemic has been a challenging time for the beauty industry, but it has also been a time of opportunity. It has accelerated the shift towards a more digital, sustainable, and personalized beauty industry.

As we move into the post-pandemic world, the beauty industry will continue to evolve and adapt, driven by technology and changing consumer preferences. Whether it's virtual consultations, personalized recommendations, or sustainable beauty products, the future looks bright for the online beauty industry.

So, what do you think about the future of the online beauty industry? Do you see yourself embracing the virtual beauty parlour? We'd love to hear your thoughts. Feel free to share this article with your friends and spark a conversation!

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