Italy – Cosmetics importers and import trends in 2021

Cosmetics industry

As a large consumer market, home to 60 million people, the country`s cosmetics market has experienced constant significant growth, confirming cosmetics as a routine of Italians` daily lifestyle, while leading to impressive cosmetics imports to satisfy the cosmetics, savvy Italian enthusiasts.

The beauty and personal care market is highly competitive but with lots of opportunities in a variety of segments, among whom body and facial care, hair care, hygiene items, makeup or perfumes are top sales leaders. The most popular brands in the country are not Italian, imported cosmetics having an advantage of variety, price tags, and fresh, trend-following products imported quickly to the market.

Market trends

Essentials & convenience

Financial instability has lead Italian cosmetics buyers towards more affordable and multifunctional, mass-market products. Essential toiletries show more stability, while the premium category is steadily recovering from at-home habits inflicted by Covid 19 repercussions. Bath and shower products, deodorants, shaving items, and skincare solutions for pollution, fatigue, ageing or sun protection among both men and women are grooming necessities of high sales value due to increased hygiene awareness.

More recent generations see makeup as an essential channel of self-expression and turn to colour cosmetics for this reason. In this aspect, colour cosmetics remain a category that continues to benefit from mass-market affordability in 2020, with customer focus on the safer, simpler, natural beauty sector.

Cosmetics exporters should note that sustainability is a buzzword among Italian buyers, who appreciate efforts to reduce waste in every aspect, while busier lifestyles create the need for convenience, with quick and easy to apply formats.

Organics & protection

Already present in the food category, the positive perception of natural & organic cosmetics in recent years has led Italy to be of the largest markets for natural & organic cosmetics in Europe. The engine of this trend is the growing health awareness, followed by rising availability on the market and distribution channels that have highly stimulated the demand and purchasing habits, driving beauty brands to ensure their products meet high ethical standards and consolidate their position in the market.

Strong market potential remains in facial skincare products that contain that deal with ageing prevention, moisturizing creams, cosmeceuticals, firming lotions, slimming treatments, skin impurities, sun protection. Natural, simpler, and safer skincare ingredients, formulas, and products show growing interest now with the current inclination towards long-term skin health.

Moreover, about 400 cosmetics local eco-labels brands are looking for suppliers of natural ingredients like aloe vera, lavender, vitamins, essential oils, and ingredients with aromatherapeutic properties.

Dental prevention

Dental health in Italy benefits from rising consumer awareness about the importance of preventive health and proper care of oral hygiene, including related psychological and physiological aspects. Complex oral care routines and frequent dentist appointments have increased the imports for many oral care supplies, such as dental floss, mouthwashes, tooth whiteners or electric toothbrushes which are the fastest-growing category in retail due to convenience and cleaning efficiency.

Sales dynamism

The shift from offline to online is a significant requirement post-Covid-19, but this trend was already mature before the pandemic, within e-commerce, social media, and live-streaming due to their easiness, better prices, and special offers.

The main cosmetics distribution channel is hypermarkets/supermarkets that cover 44% of sales and satisfy a large audience, followed by perfumery shops and specialty stores, as well as pharmacies and herbalist shops that record strong retail value. Although less active in the past years, drugstores are favoured for their fast response to consumer needs, customer service, reliability, and safety feel, especially for the growing demand for natural cosmetics.

Italian cosmetics consumers are demanding convenience, innovation, and quality at reasonable prices, but also efficiency, multifunctionality, and are keener to buy, with previous exposure with the product or brand.

The beauty market in Italy is highly fragmented due to the presence of numerous local and global players. Producers looking to enter the Italian cosmetics market by searching for cosmetics importers and distributors from Italy can get access to our platform with active cosmetics importers from Italy, by choosing the best packet tailored for their business needs.

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