Cosmetics industry, as with all other industries in this world, is here to make money. Now that we got that over with, let's take a look at it from a lover's point of view.
Cosmetics industry is without doubt one of the most successful industries in the world. It constantly has a new flow of clients amidst its ever expanding client base with a life span of 60 years minimum, almost as long as each of us lives! For those who are serious about their skincare, teenagers from the age of 12 (or perhaps even earlier these days!) are told to use some form of skincare or beauty products. Be it as simple as a face soap or as complicated as the eye shadows. Creams, powders, lipsticks, nail polish... well, which lady hasn't had her love affairs with these?
I began early with a mom who's very conscious of a good skincare. I am also blessed with a good skin to begin with (unlike some of my sisters who have had their shares of problem skins to the extent they have to go see dermatologists and apply special creams). Still, from the age of 12, I was already "educated" to take care of my skin. The skin is as important as a smile, if not even more so. A flawless skin is an asset, I was told by my aunts. And you do have to follow the regime sets out by the beauticians. So, followed I did and I've not regretted since.
Now, the simple truth about our skins, especially when it comes to the face, is that all skin ages. The earlier you start taking care of it the better. You do not start to avert aging by the time you reach 30, 40 or 50. You begin young! Also, the food one eats, the fruits & vegetables one consumes, the amount of sleep and the degree of stress in one life's all accounted for the condition of your skin. We are merely touching the tip of the iceberg here, just the basic. Your face and your skin. This alone is a big segment of a mega power industry. It generates billions of revenues each year and women and men from all over the world pay a certain "tax" on this.
The beauty of this industry and since it's a beauty industry, lies in beauty. It is fascinating to see the types of products and varieties of each products this industry can come up with. It's not only innovative, it is interesting (for me). While Travels sell adventures & experiences, Cosmetics sell hopes and the idea of beauty. Since Cleopatra days, women have applied cosmetics. So, it's not only a very old industry, it's an ever changing industry. That's why it's fascinating. It has its own history, it's own culture and its own life! This is getting philosophical and I could go on and on but that's not my intention for this review.
As early as I had been initiated about beauty and its regime, I almost began my career path in this industry as well. I took a Beautician course right after graduation as an inroad into this industry while I was searching for jobs. It's a 3 month course and I was taught to do facials, manicures, etc, etc... I then took an external exam (conducted by Cidesco of Switzerland) and after passing the exam, got a Marketing Executive job with Clarins. Now you know why I'm so familiar with this brand (& others, I spent a great deal of time going to numerous departmental stores & check out cosmetic counters every day while I was at that job! ;-)) I worked for less than half a year but eventually left it when I found out how hard it is for a newcomer to represent a brand. That was my initial plan, that is. No, not interested in setting up salons. I wanted to be the agent of a brand. Anyhow, that's all history now. What I did find out in the few months I worked in that company was that the cost of cosmetics is super low. It only accounts for 10% or even less of the retail price. If you have read my review till now, here's the big industry secret! 1/3 is usually consignment portion (ie payable to the retail store for their presence in the 1st floor of the store; yes, ever wonder why that's the department you often enter the store with? It's because it's the most profitable and with the high traffic of goods, you get the drift...), another 1/3 is advertising, marketing & distribution cost and the last 1/3 is the company's share of the product. Hence, when you pay for $100 for a cream, that cream normally costs less than $10 to manufacture!
Anyhow, I'm still a fan of these cosmetics and skin care products. To me, the design component dominates. I love the shape of a bottle, the color of a powder and the smell of a cream. It's very important although most people don't make conscious choice. For example, you like some products possibly due to the texture or smell of the products, but you told yourself, it's some plant extracts that's good or even vital for a good skincare. I did that many times. So, it is fascinating from a psychological perspective of what motivates us to spend and after spending, be happy with our choices! I think the cosmetics industry as a whole master this well. You can't deny this when you think about the amount of money travelers spend each day at the Duty Free Shop!
Now, we might think this industry is saturated. Perhaps. I don't think so though. I notice the amount of men's fragrance that have popped up in recent years. Less new ladies fragrances are marketed and invented while plenty of new ones for men. In addition, other products like colored lenses (contacts, that is), health supplements and products like Fancl are selling like hot cakes! I can't wait to see what they will come up with in the next few decades. It'll definitely be exciting times!
Cosmetics are substances used to enhance the appearance or odor of the human body. Cosmetics include skin-care creams, lotions,powders, perfumes, lipsticks, fingernail and toe nail polish, eye and facial makeup, permanent waves, colored contact lenses, hair colors, [hair sprays] and gels, deodorants, baby products, bath oils, bubble baths, bath salts, butters and many other types of products. Their use is widespread, especially among women in Western countries. A subset of cosmetics is called "make-up," which refers primarily to colored products intended to alter the user’s appearance. Many manufacturers distinguish between decorative cosmetics and care cosmetics.
The manufacture of cosmetics is currently dominated by a small number of multinational corporations that originated in the early 20th century, but the distribution and sale of cosmetics is spread among a wide range of different businesses. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which regulates cosmetics in the United States defines cosmetics as: "intended to be applied to the human body for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance without affecting the body's structure or functions." This broad definition includes, as well, any material intended for use as a component of a cosmetic product. The FDA ...