This is an ongoing series that identifies emerging commercial opportunities. We explore nascent and new behaviors that stem from periods of heightened change.

In this edition, we explore how the C19 period is accelerating and shaping beauty trends in China.


40% of women claim they’ll forego beauty salons and look for in- home solutions.

What is it?

Accessible in-home beauty, spa and non- invasive surgery/ treatments made easy.

Market manifestations

Yaman is making costly skin treatment more accessible at home – peeling and EMS treatment sessions are now available and trending.

Alibaba A.I. Lab released a voice- controlled makeup mirror, the Tmall Genie Queen, that features skin- condition assessments and UV- exposure forecasts.

AmorePacific has applied for patents to create a ‘facial massage mask’. A thin plastic case which stimulates the skin upon application allowing women to experience a facial massage similar ones done by beautician in a salon.


  • Invest in higher order beauty devices
  • Partner with famous salons to deliver treatments credibly
  • Work with live streaming ecommerce leaders
  • Develop customized mobile-first advisors


Holistic skin care that mimics health and fitness routines.

What is it?

Incorporating health and gym trends into skin care regimens.

Market manifestations

Across Little Red Book, Oxygen and Weibo health care supplements offering skin care benefits are trending.

Anti-glycemic skin care from Pola and Swisse lowers sugar in blood to prevent acne and offer anti-ageing benefits.

Amore Pacific has trademarked beauty supplements CUBEME in China.

As brands such as Lululemon enter into skin scare, it’s only a matter of time before an activewear skincare brand will be launched in China.


  • Invest in edibles that seamlessly sync with facial skin care
  • Review health, diet, fitness trends and mimic their effects on the body via skin care delivery systems


As skin aggressors multiply, so do desires of products that stabilize and protect skin.

What is it?

An acceleration of a trend that puts skin stability + balance firmly in serum repair as women battle more skin aggressors.

Market manifestations

Brands have been promoting products with stabilizing (维稳), balancing and repairing (修护) functionalities.

Chinese brands Dr.Yu and Winona specialize in calming have seen sales jump by 500% during the lockdown.

La Roche Posay’s gentle medical efficacy has also played out positively on social media as women seek higher order efficacy delivered in a safe manner.


  • New repair trope: calm + stabilize + protect
  • Offer higher order efficacy through gentle, non-sensitizing delivery formats and product sensorials


Simpler, healthier formulations. Moving closer to Korean ingredient minimalism.

What is it?

Looking for better value high tech, high science efficacy.

Market manifestations

Chinese brand HomeFacialPro is gaining attention as a provider of single-solution (acne and pores mitigation) along with high concentrations of lab-made ingredients.

Niche brands such as The Inkey List and Noid are being introduced by beauty influencers.

Biohyalux’s daily-disposal HA concentrate appeals via strong efficacy and safety claims.


  • Offer radical ingredient transparency
  • Streamline formulation
  • Up-weigh and highlight Retinol, Squalene and Hyaluronic Acid
  • Single-solution as shorthand for credibility


Record floods, virus outbreaks, and pollution have spurred conscientious consumption.

What is it?

Environmental protection creeps into brand drivers.

Market manifestations

Although this is the weakest of our 5 trends, the recent pandemic has highlighted the importance of ‘doing good to the earth’.

La Mer’s World Ocean Day activation garnered over 140 million views on Weibo and a quarter of a million discussion threads in China.

Biotherm’s ‘Water Lovers’ along with Guerlain’s World Bee Day to attract attention to the acceleration of bee species extinction.

The opportunity

Begin to invest in formulas and packaging the replenish the earth and/or mitigate harm

If you want to further discuss these beauty trends or the broader Chinese beauty industry in more depth please connect with us.