The South African beauty industry has become a giant. A giant worth a total of R27.35 billion rand to be more precise. In South Africa alone, this industry grew by 4.6% in the last financial year. When considering the South African economy as a whole grew by only 1.3%, it is abundantly clear that beauty is a lucrative business. The largest categories with in the beauty industry currently is nails, skin care and make up.
Let’s focus on make up, for a start. To beauty professionals making a living from selling make up products and services, it at times seems as if a new competitor is popping up daily. We all want to see the sun shine on everyone, however you are forgiven for thinking: “is there really enough of this sun for us all to actually shine?”. My honest opinion? Yes. The statistics above prove this. But why? Why has an industry traditionally known as a luxury industry boomed so in recent years? It is because women no longer view make up as a want, but as a need. This beautiful industry has made a shift from a luxury to a necessity to many. In addition, traditional gender roles have shifted and make up no longer has a gender or ethnic preference. Never before has the end consumer been so spoilt for choice.
So let’s find focus for a minute. Let us be attentive of what works in this business. First, what make up products specifically are so popular?
- Lipstick- red is the favorite statistically.
- Foundation- voted as the one product making the biggest difference in attractiveness.
- Mascara- according to studies the actual application brush dictates preference above formulations.
Second, if you are a beauty professional operating within the make up industry, my advice to grow your business would be to focus your retail on these 3 products for a start. The masses have spoken, so offer them what they want first. We often bombard consumers with variety. Realistically, a client cannot always afford everything you demonstrate to them. As a result they are left overwhelmed and uncertain of what to purchase first.
Third, educate your client. The trust relationship lies between you and your make up client, not between her and a cosmetic counter in a big retail chain. If you are honest with your client about their actual needs and educate them on how to effectively use their products, then the sale will be yours. However, if you neglect their make up needs, a billboard catch phrase will appeal to them and you will loose that sale.
Lastly, get some local inspiration. Here are 3 phenomenal local women who are changing the industry within South Africa:
- Lynné de Jager (CEO of LJ Cosmetology)
Lynnè is as ambitious as she is beautiful. She has her own line of beautiful mat lipsticks which she now even sells internationally amongst other business ventures. Click on the following link to see what Lynné has been up to: https://www.facebook.com/ljcosmetology/.
- Constance Mapule Bhebhe (Founder of Connie Transform)
This local brand , Connie Transform, creates mat lipsticks in gorgeous shades keeping up with the trends. Visit the Connie Transform Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/connietransform/
- Rabia Ghoor (Founder of Switch Beauty)
This young South African beauty’s brand specializes in skin care and make up products. She also has developed of the most innovative make up tools. You have to check out what they have to offer at https://www.facebook.com/swiitchbeauty/
It is clear that the South African beauty and specifically make up industry is a giant. What are you doing to take advantage of this phenomenal growth?