Cosmetics products are some of the most popular gifts for Christmas, and the sale of cosmetics is expected to increase in Finland compared to last Christmas.
“For example, the Christmas party season and the increased time spent at workplaces and restaurants are stimulating the demand for cosmetics. We are also expecting cosmetics to be given as gifts more often than last year,” says Jaana Kurjenoja, Chief Economist of the Finnish Commerce Federation, describing the forecast for the rest of the year.
“Cosmetics gifts are not similarly tied to the latest game console or phone model as electronics, so availability and production problems affect them in a different way,” Kurjenoja continues.
Consumption of cosmetics to grow rapidly next year
Overall, the demand for various cosmetics in Finland is expected to recover by a couple of per cent this year. Statista estimates that demand for these products decreased by nearly 5 per cent last year. Demand for makeup and fragrances took the biggest hit during the pandemic.
In Finland, the pandemic did not significantly reduce the sale of personal hygiene products, i.e., products related to washing your skin and hair, brushing your teeth and taking care of your beard. Therefore, there was no correction movement in their demand this year. Instead, the change took place in the purchasing channels for these products, as purchases made in grocery shops, supermarkets and online stores increased.
Even though demand for various cosmetics has increased from last year, actual demand growth is expected for next year. All in all, the sale of cosmetics is expected to grow by approximately 6 per cent in 2022, and makeup by as much as 15 per cent. Consumption of skincare products is also expected to grow faster than average.
“The demand for skincare products in Finland is influenced by the same trends as elsewhere in the world: the popularity of anti-aging products, skincare routines that consumers started during the pandemic, skincare pressures caused by Teams and Zoom meetings, the demand for natural cosmetics and the popularity of K- and J-Beauty*,” Kurjenoja explains, while listing current trends.
South Korea and Japan are the two leading countries in skincare and beauty trends at the moment.
Finnish people invest in dental care
According to Statista’s consumer survey, the most important criteria for Finnish consumers when choosing cosmetics are a cheap price and the product’s suitability for one’s own skin type, while Germans, Russians and Swedes choose products primarily on the basis of quality. Of course, quality also has a strong impact on Finns’ purchasing decisions, but less so than with their neighbours.
Finns’ cosmetics purchases are also strongly influenced by old habits, whereas Germans, Russians and Swedes place less significance on tradition. The smell of the product is not at all as important for Finns as it is for Russians and Germans.
“There seem to exist significant national differences in cosmetics purchases, which are worth acknowledging when selling products on the international markets,” Kurjenoja says.
Finns are frequent users of dental care and personal hygiene products and use them more often than, for example, Swedes. Perhaps that is why Finns use far less fragrances than Germans, Russians or Swedes — or maybe it is just a cultural difference.
The pandemic boosted digital cosmetics sales permanently
Even internationally, the digital sales of cosmetics has mostly not been as popular as, for example, fashion or electronics. The same applies in Finland. However, the pandemic also boosted the digital buying of cosmetics and, in Sweden and Norway, already 40 per cent of cosmetics are purchased digitally.
In Finland, the digital buying of cosmetics is less frequent than in the other Nordic countries or the EU average; approximately 22 per cent of all cosmetics purchases. However, its share is growing rapidly. In 2025, it is estimated to be almost at the level of the other EU countries, at around 36 per cent — yet still well below the Nordic average.
Technology is changing the market
Technology will keep developing the consumer markets for cosmetics in the future. Skin and hair care products have already been combined with smart speakers and phones, among other things. For example, there are experiments on how the consumer can get AI-assisted personalised guidance in their daily skincare routines, while a smart brush can guide and advise on hair care.
The use of augmented reality in the cosmetics market is also under development, and some interesting experiments have already been carried out. For example, a smart mirror can be used to analyse and monitor the condition of your skin or to test different make-up products. If the service provider enables the mirror to be connected to social media platforms, this can also speed up social commerce.
“Social commerce is a fast-growing form of digital commerce, in which various shopping applications are connected to social media platform interfaces. From the consumer’s point of view, the entire path to purchase, from the stimulus to paying, can take place on a social media platform,” Kurjenoja explains.
*K(orean)-beauty and J(apanese)-beauty
The main sources in the cosmetics consumer market report are Statista’s Consumer Market Outlook and the Global Consumer Survey, in which the sample concerning Finland is more than 12,000 adults aged 18–64 living in Finland.
For further information, please contact: Jaana Kurjenoja, Chief Economist, Finnish Commerce Federation, tel. +358 (0)40 820 5378, firstname.lastname@example.org