Global survey reveals different attitudes towards beauty

Women in the UK largely define beauty as confidence and contentment, and feel they do not need products in order to be beautiful. On the whole, they do not see beauty or being beautiful as the most important part of life.

These findings come from new research by online beauty retailer feelunique.com, which collated beauty information from different online sources.

Its Global Beauty infographic looks at how women in different countries view and use beauty differently, and how the market reflects these attitudes and cultures.

The attitude of UK women towards beauty presents a stark contrast to that of Chinese women, for whom beauty is largely a reflection of success and vice versa. In Mexico the industry has evolved to be deeply integrated with social media, so a large number of Mexican women said that they love being social with beauty and swapping tips and content with friends.

For UK women, inner qualities such as happiness, confidence, humour and wisdom far outweigh the importance of physical attributes such as facial appearance, youthfulness and body shape, though these are still contributing factors for 49% of women asked.

Make-up was classed as a “style” factor, and style was viewed as important by 46% of UK women. Physical attributes were most important to Brazilian women, with 77% saying these contributed to their idea of beauty. 66% also said that style was an important factor, making Brazil the country most concerned with aesthetic over inner qualities.

Surprisingly, Latin American only accounts for 12.5% of the global cosmetic market, while Western Europe contributed 21.8%, second only to Asia Pacific at 34.7%. The UK was among the top five importers of beauty products in the world in 2014, having imported 10 million kilograms of eye make-up, 11 million kg of lip make-up and 15 million kg of skincare, the highest amount in the world.

L’Oréal, which owns pro brands Skinceuticals, Essie and Decléor, is the leading global brand, valued at US$12.5 billion (£8.1 billion), while Estée Lauder, with salon brands Darphin, Aveda and Glamglow, came in at $4.7bn (roughly £3 billion) and is headquartered in New York City.

The full info graphic can be accessed here.