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Older consumers hold the key to future growth in beauty

SpecialChem / Imogen Matthews – Jun 2, 2006

The over 50s are a much ignored and misrepresented market within the cosmetics and toiletries industry. When launching a new product, most companies prefer to target the more sexy, dynamic youth market, as this is where they believe more money is to be made. However, writing off the over 50s as too old could be seriously damaging to a brand's business. Older consumers are increasing in numbers and many are keen to spend out on beauty products that make them look younger, or simply good for their age. Far from giving up on their appearance, this is the generation that were part of the Swinging Sixties, when fashion designer Mary Quant launched her daring cosmetics range which included "make-up to make love in". Their taste in make-up may have toned down somewhat since then, but they are as likely to use cosmetics as any woman half their age. In the UK, there are some 20 million consumers aged over 50 and 12.7 million of these are over 60, according to a research study conducted by charity Age Concern in association with Yours magazine. As time goes on, this older age group will grow in numbers and importance, providing a massive targeting opportunity for beauty brands.

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