5 Features Consumers Want to See from Cosmetics Packaging
The digital age has changed the cosmetics industry beyond all recognition. Consumers are now far more image-conscious than they once were, and the aesthetic qualities of packaging are often just as important to them as what’s inside. The internet has powered increased personalization and customization too — giving consumers more say in how their cosmetics look and feel.
The exact type and style of packaging proving popular these days tends to differ, depending on where you look. For instance, the trend in the U.S. is for perfect, youthful skin. And in Germany, the pragmatism of simply looking healthy outweighs the need for a Hollywood makeover. While in the UK, cosmetics consumers are more concerned about image and what their peers think — a phenomenon driven by a huge dependency on social media.
Depending on the product inside the packaging and the market is intended for, cosmetics now need to look a certain way if they’re going to appeal to their target demographic group. But they also need to deliver practical benefits that make storage, application and disposal easy. Consumers in the digital age expect a lot from their cosmetics packaging, but here are five of the most prevalent expectations.
1. The Ability to Keep Cosmetic Products Fresh
The demand for natural cosmetics — or at least natural ingredients — is growing. And whether it’s blush or anti-wrinkle cream, all of these products need to be looked after if they’re going to deliver the required benefits. But there has been some confusion and mixed messages in relation to the safe storage of cosmetics over the years. Some people keep their makeup in the fridge, for instance, while others store it in the bathroom. But if a product has an airtight packaging with a solid closure, keeping it fresh shouldn’t be an issue.
The advice from David C. Steinberg of Steinberg & Associates is to always store cosmetics at room temperature. Lipsticks and mascaras are tested at normal temperatures, and the effect of cooling them before warming them up again is not yet known.
2. Packaging That is Eco-Friendly
There is now real value to be gained from delivering cosmetic products to market in eco-friendly packaging. Since the full extent of plastic pollution in the oceans emerged, pressure from both consumers and politicians has reached fever pitch. Manufacturers who switch from plastic bottles, tubes and closures to metal alternatives can earn goodwill in the marketplace — and potentially grow their sales as a result.
The Millennial generation has been crucial to the change of attitudes towards recycling and plastics. Not only do they buy these products, they share and discuss them on social media. And one of the biggest positives discussed is the use of eco-friendly packaging, which can be recycled or reused. In many cases, these environmental qualities are now crucial to the buying process employed by Millennial cosmetics consumers.
3. Visually Appealing for Display
In these days of social media reliance, consumers are far more aware of brand image than they used to be. Apple showed us that the actual product doesn’t need to be the most powerful or practical; what’s often more important is how that product makes us feel. And the same principle applies to the modern cosmetics industry.
It would be reasonable to assume that most moderately priced cosmetics do pretty much the same thing. So when it comes to tempting people to buy their product, brands know how important it is to make packaging visually appealing. Consumers want products that look nice on their nightstand or on their cosmetics shelf — it’s often as important as the efficacy of the product inside the packaging.
4. Easy to Use
The average consumer now expects products to be conveniently packaged and easy to use. Packaging manufacturers have made great strides in product development over recent years, so the average consumer expects their cosmetics to be neatly packaged for convenience and ease of use.
People simply want to pop open the cap, and apply their product — sometimes directly from its container. People are pressed for time more than ever these days, so the last thing they want to be doing while applying makeup is wrestling with a bottle cap. Aluminum tubes have made the dispensing of skincare products easier than ever, which is why they’re so popular right now.
5. Useful Tools
Over the years, cosmetics have evolved in a way that makes their application easier and faster. Brushes were made more compact and flexible, for example. More and more consumers now want to buy a product that includes everything required for the application of cosmetics. People apply these products on the move with increasing frequency, so ergonomic design is crucial.
One such solution involves integrating an applicator into a makeup container. Sponges, foldable brushes, applicator pillows and integrated pumps are just a few of the packaging innovations that have been exciting consumers in recent years.
In the digital age of consumerism, image is everything — and in some cases, it is more important to people than practical issues. Even the most ordinary cosmetic products can be transformed into a premium purchase, as long as the packaging is right.