The beauty and cosmetics industry is booming in the UK. Although the value slightly decreased in 2019, it stands at around £10 billion pounds. The amount that customers spend on cosmetics and personal care products is increasing year-on-year and we spend on average £35 per week (per person) on these items as well as a time investment of around 20 minutes a day. This includes skincare, haircare, toiletries and fragrances amongst other things. This makes the UK one of the top three largest cosmetics markets in Western Europe, following Germany and France.
Wearing a cake of makeup isn’t something I really noticed that was particularly different from living abroad to here in the UK. With the cosmetics and makeup industry being worth hundreds of billions of pounds worldwide, I think no matter where you come from, you’ll find that cosmetics play a huge part in the fashion and lifestyle of people. After all, the spend on these products is higher in other countries than the UK.
So why exactly do we spend so much on makeup?
Perhaps it’s the social media influencers promoting cosmetics and makeup brands or the big hitting fashion and lifestyle magazines, such as Yours, Vogue and Cosmopolitan; Brits have put so much pressure on looking young and “beautiful” and feel this necessity to use the “perfect” brand of makeup.
But studies indicate that one of the biggest influencers of all is reality TV show Keeping Up With The Kardashians, which promotes the “perfect” image of young girls. Other reality TV shows, such as Love Island, have also come under fire in the UK for trying to push this “perfect body – perfect face” image onto teens.
So, it’s established that we’re surrounded by an influencing environment, what about the inner feelings?
The majority of women in the UK choose to wear makeup to cover up acne, blotchy skin or blemishes. Around 50% wear makeup to avoid looking “tired” in the face and around 40% wear makeup to avoid looking pale.
Research suggests that just over 40% of British women feel self-conscious about their looks when they’re not wearing makeup and 23% feeling anxious and upset if others find them without makeup on.