A quarter of Gen Z consumers feel left out by beauty adverts

Whilst the beauty industry has made strides towards becoming more inclusive, a quarter of US Gen Z consumers said that they still felt left out of beauty advertisements according to new research by Mintel.

Although 49% of consumers said that they wanted to see different types of beauty represented in the industry and that beauty advertisements should make people feel good about themselves, nearly a third (30%) of consumers said that beauty adverts should be aspirational.

In a similar survey, ‘The Age of Beauty’ project found 65% of older generations feel they also aren’t represented accurately by the industry.

However, the research also found that consumer buying trends have changed, with people moving on from traditional cookie cutter beauty standards as nearly half (47%) of beauty product users say that they shop from brands with diversity or inclusivity.  This shows consumers changing demands as they seek out more inclusive and attainable portrayals of beauty.

Gen Z consumers are also more likely to shop at beauty brands that have promoted diversity in the past year (38%), compared to any other age group (23%).

When it comes to defining the term "diversity" and what makes a diverse brand, 45% of the consumers said, “a brand that creates products for people with different skin tones/ hair types”.

38% said a diverse brand is “a brand that creates universal products that everyone can use”, and 30% said they are brands “that offers customisable products that can be tailored to every individual’s unique need”.

This comes after 74% of dark-skinned consumers struggle to find beauty products for their skin type.

When asked what they look for in advertising, 86% of beauty product consumers said that they look for realistic signs of aging, with 82% saying that they look for racial diversity and 79% of those survey look for people of all gender and identities.

Clare Hennigan, the senior beauty analyst at Mintel, said, "While the beauty industry has made strides in recent years to be more inclusive, there is still work to be done. Consumers continue to feel that there are unrealistic standards of beauty, and some groups feel entirely ignored by brands. As a result, consumers are increasingly expecting brands to change the narrative and destigmatise 'flaws.'

“While adjusting communication strategies to bring forth feelings of empowerment is essential, consumers want to see brands reflect these changes in product development as well. Looking ahead, expect an even stronger focus on accessible packaging design to both expand target consumer groups and keep up with the needs of an aging population."

Do you feel your age group is accurately represented by the beauty industry? Let us know in the comments…