Is the beauty industry better set up to withstand the cost-of-living crisis than other sectors? According to one report from Metapak, it is – with more UK adults planning to spend normally on this category in 2023 than any other.

That said, it is still as competitive and challenging as ever, meaning distinct and creative new tactics are always welcome. Look no further than the fact that, according to eMarketer,

Shoppers are opting for premium products. “Premiumization” was a key factor behind the     £119.3 million ($140.3 million) growth in cosmetics sales last year, according to The Grocer’s top       products survey.

While at the same time, we are told that offers are equally driving sales. According to the Office for National Statistics, discounting on the high street drove 9.6% year-on-year unit sales growth for cosmetics and toiletries in January 2023[1].

Nano Insights on Beauty

In another sign of the durability of the sector, Nano’s own data suggests demand for beauty products has grown by 20% year on year, comparing Q1 2023 to 2022.

For beauty brands that want to ensure they capitalise, we have a range of advice and tips – all based on insights gathered from the Nano platform:

  1. Build brand awareness amongst people researching brands alongside retailers

Overall, demand for brands alongside retailers is largest among Boots, which accounts for 61% of total impression opportunity, with No.7 accounting for 36% of total impressions within that category.

Nano is able to target specific brand intent, down to specific products, as well as specific topics – and introduced most recently, include a demographic element to targeting, via its Intent Personas product.

Action: Brands and agencies might consider intercepting consumers who are actively researching close competitors, with creative that highlights the latest brand USPs and products.

  1. Get Ahead of Seasonal Effects

Nano insights suggest that demand for skincare peaks a month ahead of perfumes before Christmas.

Both skincare and perfumes follow a similar trend over the year, peaking in November/December, with demand for skincare at around four times the volume of that of perfumes.

Action: Buyers could build brand awareness among those actively researching for skincare and perfumes ahead of the seasonal demand spike with bespoke creative linked to the user’s intent.

  1. Ethical Beauty & Seasonality

Meanwhile, our intent data also shows that ethical beauty products peak twice a year, first at Christmas and second in Spring.

Overall demand for ethical beauty products has remained stable over the past three years, suggesting that this is now an established category – and arguably one brands need to focus even more upon.

Action: Advice for brands and agencies here would be to flex campaign budgets to capitalise on seasonal demand for ethical beauty products, with creative tailored for each season.


  1. Demographic Targeting without Personal Data

Looking at a particular demographic focus for beauty brands, our insights showed that Dove, L’Oreal and Nivea seemed to have more or less general appeal.

Gen Z & Millennials favoured brands such as, Maybelline, The Body Shop and MAC. While Baby Boomers and Gen X favour brands such as Olay, Clinique, Max Factor.

Demographic targeting is facing challenges in the face of cookie deprecation – and there are those who also challenge its validity, especially where assumptions are made around audiences.

With Intent Personas, Nano offers demographic targeting without using cookies, IDs, profiling or personal data. It promises greater accuracy than cookie-led targeting, cross-checked against actual consumers.

Intent Personas offers accurate audience segments delivered via machine learning and verified by always up-to-date panel data. These are robust, trustworthy personas ready for targeting without the guesswork and stereotypes of the past, combining billions of data signals with verification from ‘real world’ consumer panel data.


1 Stats via eMarketer’s UK Beauty 2023 report.

[1] Stats via eMarketer’s UK Beauty 2023 report.