Germany – Cosmetics importers and import trends in 2022

Cosmetics industry

More than the land of beer, Bratwurst, and lederhosen, Germany is the largest and strongest cosmetics import market in the European Union, at a value of over €11 billion. Home to 83 million multicultural people, Europe`s land of opportunity is the biggest mass consumer society, with the highest purchasing power in Europe, whom despite its production potential, relies on cosmetics imports to satisfy its highly demanding consumers and become market leaders.

Driven by increasing disposable income and beauty consciousness, the prestigious cosmetics market in Germany is expected to grow annually by 4.3% (CAGR 2020-2023).

The German beauty consumer

German buyers are said to be highly demanding, but open-minded to international products. They value clarity and transparency as before purchasing, German customers research the products, their production methods, ingredients, price, origin, given certifications as well as similar products for comparison.

When it comes to the price tag, Germans like to be cautious and invest rather than spend. Premium and certified cosmetics are bought at higher prices, while other items remain price-sensitive for consumers.

Women and youngsters, the main drivers of the German beauty market, appreciate the variety of imported products and prices, preferring smaller brands that value their concerns and are quick to adapt to new trends. In regards to product presentation, conscious consumerism is the trend, with clean, efficient, and eco-friendly, minimalistic packaging as the way to go.

The competition is fierce among local and international brands but buyers are as diverse as the plethora of products available. To impress the German cosmetics consumers, exporters must also show creativity. For this matter, multifunctional goods or products designed as gifts have displayed increased popularity over the past few years.

The organic beauty of sustainability

The beauty industry is today led by conscious consumers and by active responsibility for society and the environment. Everyone involved in the beauty market must be careful of its impact on the world and must be authentic, meaningful, and honest. Companies should show sustainability when dealing with ingredients, production, packaging, marketing, and recycling. Moreover, ethical consumerism is the common standard for German buyers and many brands have improved their performance by attaining certifications to meet demands such as animal cruelty-free or vegan products.

As the top consumer and manufacturer of cosmetics in Europe, Germany is a land of plenty for exporters of natural ingredients and beauty products. As in most Western European countries, Germans focus on greener lifestyles, while physical appearance, and well-being, in general, is rising the demand for healthier, less harmful products. The German import trend for natural and organic cosmetics has been present for decades, making the country the European leader in this category, with a 35% share of Europe`s total.

Urban life necesities

As urban pollution is a current concern for Millennials, especially for the growing female population, the demand and competition in the nourishing, anti-ageing skincare remain high but full of potential, despite the concern of high prices. German consumers make informed choices and buy according to their preferences, quality, functionality, and the type of products that fits each individual. Moreover, Germany is one of the countries that is the most attracted to the idea of pairing skincare products with medical treatments, equipment, and beauty supplements.

Although female buyers show the most knowledge and fondness in this category, men show growing interest in fragrances, especially the intense ones, instead of their usual eau de toilette. Perfume sales have stalled once with the lockdown, but the situation is forecasted to normalize once with the holiday seasons to come and the special offers and discounts.

With a market value of 1.76 billion euros, Germany is also the largest market for baby consumables in Europe. Consumer demand was high for baby wipes for their convenience and multi-purpose feature. Sales in baby and child-specific sun care are high as German parents are aware of the sensitivity of the skin and the sun exposure damage.

Sales value is in 2020 consistently positive in oral hygiene where the market is already mature and steady. Besides the essentials, electric toothbrushes and whiteners are popular in demand. Germany is also a great supporter of dental care partnerships and campaigns for health awareness and product promotion.

The recent Covid pandemic has triggered changes in Germans` buying behaviour and lifestyle in general. The lockdown has awakened the Germans` appetite for DIY, at-home treatments. Besides the indispensable personal haircare products such as shampoo, the sales for colouring products and multifunctional goods have proved significant popularity.

Perks of joining the German cosmetics market

Full potential opportunities are omnipresent as every group of cosmetics is growing faster than the industry average in Germany. Successful German cosmetics importers prefer partners that can implement attractive marketing strategies and supply products that are modern, science-based, and innovative.

In terms of distribution channels for beauty and personal care, Germany favours drug stores that hold about 40% of the market, due to the convenience of their abundance and location while online presence reigns as the channel for communication and promotion of successful businesses. Cosmetic brands are present on multiple channels for their audience because they know Germans like to be informed about new products, analyze peer reviews, and find inspiration online.

To enter the German cosmetics market, exporters must learn its mechanism, research if their products fit the market and establish a clear plan. Traders must learn who to target, create their online presence, ensure the supply of promised volumes, and attend industry events to always be informed about the trends and innovation.

The best ally to enter the German cosmetics market is a reliable local cosmetics importer that can help with the most accurate insight and know-how for success. To quickly find valuable data about reliable German cosmetics importers and distributors, check out our packages and choose which one is best for your business.

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