The COVID pandemic negatively affected the cosmetics industry, lowering product sales. However, rapid growth in technology integration is transforming product manufacturing processes, customer interactions, and product marketing in the industry. Customers are also changing their buying behavior, favoring online and mobile services over traditional purchases. In this article, we present an overview of the world’s major trends, ranging from green cosmetics and immersive beauty to artificial intelligence and cosmetics nanotechnology. Read more to explore the top tech-driven trends transforming the cosmetics industry.
Tree Map reveals the Impact of the Top 10 Cosmetics Trends
Based on the Cosmetics Innovation Map, the Tree Map below illustrates the impact of the Top 10 Cosmetics Trends in 2022. Green cosmetics provide sustainable skincare solutions by reducing resource use during production or using non-polluting chemicals. Immersive beauty and personalized care trends improve customer relationships by providing customizable experiences. The anti-aging & rejuvenation trend offers new ways of aging prevention and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Blockchain incentivizes supply chain transparency in the cosmetics industry. Further, 3D printing and AI-based solutions eliminate the risks of overstocking with on-demand production and demand production, respectively.
Top 10 Cosmetics Trends
- Green Cosmetics
- Immersive Beauty
- Personalized Care
- Anti-Aging & Rejuvenation
- Smart Skin Analysis
- Cruelty-free Cosmetics
- Blockchain Beauty
- 3D Printing
- Artificial Intelligence
- Cosmetics Nanotechnology
Global Startup Heat Map covers 2 484 Cosmetics Startups & Scaleups
The Global Startup Heat Map below highlights the global distribution of the 2 484 exemplary startups & scaleups that we analyzed for this research. Created through the StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, the Heat Map reveals that the US and UK see the most startup activity.
Below, you get to meet 20 out of these 2 484 promising startups & scaleups as well as the solutions they develop. These 20 startups are hand-picked based on criteria such as founding year, location, funding raised, and more. Depending on your specific needs, your top picks might look entirely different.
Top 10 Cosmetics Trends for 2022
1. Green Cosmetics
Due to customer concerns, cosmetics companies are more conscious about their production processes. To advance sustainability, startups develop products made from naturally-derived ingredients. This prevents the release of toxic chemicals into the air and water during the manufacturing process. Startups are also using alternative, plant-based packaging solutions and ingredient upcycling to further reduce environmental pollution and greenhouse emissions. Lastly, waterless cosmetic products use fewer resources in production, which makes them more environmentally friendly.
Detoxie produces Anti-Pollution Skincare
Indian startup Detoxie offers anti-stress and anti-pollution skincare that prevents hair and skin ruining. The startup uses matcha with a high content of chlorophyll and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) in cosmetics production. This ingredient protects the skin from sun damage and reduces photo-aging, leading to fewer wrinkles and sunspots. Moreover, the startup’s cosmetics protect the skin from impurities and chemicals in the environment.
DEW MIGHTY develops Sustainable Refillable Skincare
US-based startup DEW MIGHTY produces dermatologist-tested sustainable refillable skincare. Its skincare cosmetics consist of undiluted ingredients that are effective for all skin types. They are packaged in robust containers that are easily refillable. Additionally, the startup’s solution lowers the impact of plastic pollution.
2. Immersive Beauty
The cosmetics industry is adopting immersive technologies such as augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) to provide personalized experiences and increase customer engagement. Using AR, startups launch personalized virtual try-on makeup solutions allowing customers to speed up their buying decisions. Moreover, AR and VR technologies support virtual stores and shopping tours, making it easier to buy products. Additionally, these technologies are transforming the way how brand display their products.
GlamAR develops a Virtual Makeup Try-On Platform
Indian startup GlamAR offers a virtual makeup try-on platform. The platform enables virtual trials of products ranging from lipstick and eyeliner to eyeshadow and blush, configuring shades and color intensity. It allows customers to make faster purchase decisions, thereby increasing engagement. Additionally, the startup is developing a virtual mirror that provides customers with an in-store contactless try-on experience. The startup’s solutions boost marketing and sales for cosmetics brands.
ForYou offers Personalized Skincare Routines
UK-based startup ForYou develops a personal skincare routine app. It uses AR to investigate skin type and wrinkles. It then uses big data & AI to personalize the skincare routine depending on the skin and face type as well as allows tracking progress. This way, it allows consumers to combine facial massage, anti-aging skincare, and lifting exercises for better results. The startup’s solution uses immersive technology to create personalized skincare routines.
3. Personalized Care
To increase customer loyalty, cosmetics startups are developing personalized solutions. They use data science and AI to determine suitable formulas and procedures for each customer. Cosmetic products with modified allergens are specifically designed to address the patient’s underlying concerns. These avoid ingredients that cause sensitivity, reactions, and acne, which prevents allergic reactions. More recently, DNA-based skincare makes beauty products hyper-personalized with products based on a customer’s genetic makeup.
BASE manufactures Personalized Cosmetics
UK-based startup BASE develops personalized cosmetics. It uses natural and science-backed ingredients to create formulas suitable for the customer’s skin type. The startup combines deep machine learning and data analysis to offer bespoke, fragrance-free, sustainable, and vegan personalized skincare products. Moreover, it minimizes ingredient wastage by forecasting inventory needs.
PerfumeTech develops Smart Perfumes
Slovenian startup PerfumeTech makes smart perfume bottles that allow customers to apply perfume with a touch trigger. Controlled via a mobile app, the perfume bottles allow the customers to adjust the aroma or the mist level. In addition, this enables brands to track usage and offer new bottles when the previous ones run out.
4. Anti-Aging & Rejuvenation
Aging causes skin problems such as collagen degradation and higher venerability to skin infections. There is an increasing demand for anti-aging cosmetics to slow down the visual signs of aging. Anti-stress skincare is a major cosmetic trend that prevents skin aging caused by daily stress. Startups are developing cosmetic products that reduce stress-induced inflammation of the skin. Stem cells or microbiome-based skin rejuvenation solutions are at the forefront of advances in the skincare industry.
GENTLE & ROSE manufactures Anti-Aging Cosmetics
Bulgarian startup GENTLE & ROSE produces anti-aging cosmetics. The startup combines natural plant extracts and bioengineering to create its range of cosmetics. These cosmetics tackle the impact of various factors like lack of hydration, pollution, toxins, UV exposure, and collagen breakdown. Thes cosmetics reduce wrinkles depth and skin roughness and increase moisture and natural skin glow.
Nuebiome produces Microbiome Skincare
Jamaican startup Nuebiome manufactures microbiome skincare cosmetics. Its cosmetics contain nutrient-rich bioferments that blend prebiotics, probiotics, and postbiotics to help hydrate and restore supple skin. The startup creates these with potent plant extracts formulated in an optimal pH environment. This sustainable solution supports the skin’s microbiome and increases hydration while maintaining the enzymes, vitamins, and nutrients that maintain the skin’s barrier function.
5. Smart Skin Analysis
Smart skin analysis solutions determine if a person has an uneven skin tone, acne, or other skin issues. For this, startups use AI, cross-polarized UV lighting, and 3D technologies to perform these analyses. Devices such as skin analyzers or smart mirrors perform humidity and moisture checks, skin condition management, as well as detect signs of aging. Supporting these devices are skincare apps that provide the customer with information about the condition of the skin through the built-in camera on mobile phones.
CatchMD develops a Skin Diagnostic Device
US-based startup CatchMD offers an AI-based skin diagnostic device. The startup’s device The portable machine shows more than 10 readings with different light filters, highlighting pores and wrinkles, among other skin features. The solution provides real-time data, thereby facilitating customer engagement, and identifies major lesions and skin conditions that patients cannot see with the naked eye. The startup’s solution finds application inn medical spas, plastic surgery, and dermatology.
SQIN offers Skin Health Monitoring
German startup SQIN develops an AI-based skin health monitoring app that helps to tackle dermatologic issues. After an in-app skin analysis by a professional dermatologist, it provides personalized skincare recommendations and allows for further monitoring. Moreover, after the prescription from a doctor, necessary products are sent to the customer for skin treatment. Additionally, the app includes skincare tips and trackers, such as a water tracker for skin hydration, daily to-do’s for healthier skin, and recommendations on the right nutrition for the skin.
6. Cruelty-free Cosmetics
Cruelty-free cosmetics are a major consumer-driven trend in the industry. This is why startups are advancing technologies to develop cosmetic products without animal testing. Cosmetics brands use vegan cosmetic formulations to create clean cosmetics that are better for the skin and reduce the risk of allergies and inflammation. This way, consumers get cruelty-free cosmetics that are also better for them.
Halal Beauty offers Halal Cosmetics
US-based startup Halal Beauty produces cosmetics that consist of ingredients that are natural, cruelty-free, and halal-certified. This means that the brand’s cosmetics don’t contain ingredients derived from blood, pigs, human body parts, predatory animals, reptiles, insects, and alcohol. The startup’s solutions offer a healthier, less toxic, and sustainable alternative to traditional cosmetics.
SQIN ZERO creates Vegan Cosmetic Formulations
Swiss startup SQIN ZERO produces sustainable, vegan cosmetic formulations. Based on the skinimalism concept, the startup uses as few ingredients as possible. This allows active ingredients in the products to take full advantage of the absorption powers of the skin. To further increase sustainability, the startup uses recyclable and reusable products and plants a tree for each order.
7. Blockchain Beauty
When it comes to cosmetics, it is crucial to know what they consist of. Blockchain technology offers cosmetic brands a cryptographically secure way to record everything from product information to purchasing behavior. Supply chain traceability allows companies to maintain product authenticity. Increasingly, cosmetics companies are offering cryptocosmetics, digital reproductions of their most popular products based on non-fungible tokens (NFTs). This way, blockchain technology brings transparency to the cosmetics industry and opens innovative avenues for customer interactions.
Skinfo ensures Ingredient Transparency
Sweden startup Skinfo creates ingredient transparency widgets. The startup explains ingredients in cosmetic and skincare products with scientific facts to enable customers to choose, avoid or discover products based on their ingredients. This improves ingredient transparency about their functions, skin effects, concerns, vitamin highlights, botanical names, and origin information. This, in turn, enhances customer trust in cosmetic brands.
AFTS develops Cosmetics Tracking Platform
German startup AFTS develops a blockchain-based cosmetics tracking platform. It measures sustainability along the supply chain, allowing companies to understand the impact of the ingredients they use. It also ensures ethical sources and sustainable supplier practices. The solution brings transparency and traceability to the cosmetics supply chain and, in turn, increases trust among customers.
8. 3D Printing
The cosmetic industry utilizes 3D printing for solutions ranging from designing to packaging products. It is also leading to greater personalization, providing customers with better options. Some startups also create solutions that allow customers to directly print cosmetics onto surfaces. For brands, this means that they can sell the exact amounts required by the customers, minimizing waste. In cosmetics packaging, the technology enables new creative and custom solutions.
OPTE advances Precision Skincare
US-based startup OPTE creates a makeup-skincare printer. It scans the skin for discoloration, dark spots, age spots, and sun spots by capturing and analyzing skin images. It then prints a skin-enhancing coating with a formulation of pure ingredients that instantly correct the appearance of spots and prevent the appearance of new ones. The startup’s solution advances precision skincare by offering highly personal intervention with a more balanced skin barrier with less irritation.
AIM Colours produces Smart Nail Polish
Canadian startup AIM Colours develops a customizable smart nail polish technology. It produces press-on nails made of ultra-thin, low-power screens visible under direct sunlight without a battery. The startup’s mobile app allows customers to customize the color or nail art. This reduces time, waste, and exposure to solvents as well as prevents microplastic waste.
9. Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing the cosmetics industry in multiple ways. It improves beauty product manufacturing processes, speeds up customer analysis and communication, and enables virtual product testing. Cosmetics brands are using natural language processing (NLP) to create intelligent digital assistants for better customer engagement. Predictive analytics provides demand forecasts and supports new product development by analyzing a combination of factors such as weather or seasonality. Moreover, AI-based solutions accelerate the discovery of novel cosmetic ingredients.
MISTRIX offers Virtual Makeup Shopping
Israeli startup MISTRIX develops a mobile app for virtual makeup shopping. After uploading the makeup look pictures, its AI-based algorithm allows a customer to wear the makeup digitally. Using AR technology, it visualizes the looks on the customer’s face. It then recommends to customers a set of products for purchase. The virtual makeup experience takes the hassle out of the shopping and provides customers with the exact looks they want.
Wewell provides Cosmetics Quality Analysis
Czech startup Wewell provides a mobile app that performs quality analysis on cosmetics and self-care products. After scanning or searching for a product, the app provides an unbiased risk score. The product rating score is based on the evaluation of the ingredients with detailed information. Additionally, it identifies and excludes risky ingredients from the searches, and provides alternatives for poorly rated products. The solution provides users with a better understanding of the risk and health impact of cosmetics.
10. Cosmetics Nanotechnology
Startups are utilizing nanotechnology to increase the effectiveness of cosmetic products. Nanoparticles carry cosmetic ingredients, enabling better absorption into the skin for damage repair. For instance, startups use micellar nanoparticle technology to produce more effective cleansers. Various types of other nanomaterials, such as nanosomes, liposomes, fullerenes, and solid lipid nanoparticles, also find use in cosmetics manufacture. These provide a long-lasting effect, improved color, and finish quality to cosmetics.
Redox Biotechnology develops Nanobubble Calcium Mineral Cosmetics
South Korean startup Redox Biotechnology creates nanobubble calcium mineral cosmetics. Nanobubbles include functional components of air bubbles that provide easy access to functional organs. The startup creates cosmetics for middle-aged individuals. Its products hydrate the skin, remove bacteria, improve toxin removal, and enhance skin metabolism and healing.
Planta Scientific offers Nano-cannabinoid Ingredients
US-based startup Planta Scientific creates nano-cannabinoid ingredients with high bioavailability for the cosmetic industry. The startup’s nanomolecules are small enough to reach receptors at the cellular level, making it more active and bioavailable than regular cannabidiol (CBD). The solution enables brands to create CBD-infused cosmetic and personal care products.
Discover all Cosmetics Trends, Technologies & Startups
After the integration of new technologies, the cosmetics industry is accelerating its development. The industry continues to adapt to the needs of consumers and is focusing on meeting the growing demand for inclusivity and personalization through the use of advanced technologies. The consumer is still interested in digital assets, so technology will evolve in this direction to meet demand. In addition, cosmetics are moving beyond traditional products, making personalization and sustainability important trends.
The Cosmetics Trends & Startups outlined in this report only scratch the surface of trends that we identified during our data-driven innovation and startup scouting process. Among others, microbiomics, AI-enabled ingredient discovery, and controlled delivery will transform the sector as we know it today. Identifying new opportunities and emerging technologies to implement into your business goes a long way in gaining a competitive advantage. Get in touch to easily and exhaustively scout startups, technologies & trends that matter to you!