10–18 year olds spend £709m on toiletries and cosmetics per year

Annual spend on toiletries and cosmetics by UK children aged 10–18 has reached a staggering £709 million, showing what an important demographic they are for the health and beauty sector, according to analyst The Insights People’s Kids Insights Global Health & Beauty Report. 

An interest in vegan health and beauty is one of the key drivers for sales, with the data showing that animal cruelty is one of the leading concerns for kids across all age groups, and not just in the UK, but globally. The report highlighted a shift from the use of chemical-based beauty products towards cruelty-free and plant-based options across categories from make-up to deodorants. 

As beauty and mental health conversations continue to merge – especially the impact social media has on body image and body confidence, it’s no surprise that mental health is one of the biggest concerns for 20% of kids in the UK, the report found. 

Teen girls in the UK who say make-up is their favourite hobby are 49% less likely than average to feel confident “all the time”, and 32% more likely to cite mental health as their top concern. This indicates an opportunity for brands to develop more marketing initiatives to boost the mental health of their young consumers. 

It’s no surprise that influencers play a significant role in in reaching new consumers in this age group, with 8% of girls aged 13–15 having bought cosmetics related to their favourite YouTuber, and 5% in the 16–18 age category, the report found. 

The analyst states that brands and companies in the health and beauty space could benefit from partnerships with influencers on YouTube, but that it’s important for brands to align with the right person to get the right “fit”. 

Dove leads the way as the most popular bath, shower and washing brand among teens globally, while beauty brand The Ordinary Company has made an impression on this UK demographic – not registering as a favourite brand in 2019 but now being used by 6% of this age group.  

“This generation are like no other and are far more financially enabled and empowered from a young age,” said The Insights People chief executive Nick Richardson. 

“When it comes to health and beauty we are seeing some significant developments – from increased awareness of the environment and the importance of a healthy lifestyle, to the increase in peer to peer influence.”

The report surveyed more than 5,000 children every week across five continents and 13 countries – equal to more than 277,000 children a year – to gain an understanding of trends in each area of the world. In this story we have focused on the UK data. 

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