Consumers in China driving demand for clean and eco-friendly beauty

Kaycee Enerva

Kaycee Enerva

La Bouche Rouge

China is currently leading the market in demand for clean and eco-friendly beauty and personal care products, with 90 per cent of Chinese consumers preferring to buy these goods.

Clean and eco-friendly beauty products are designed to satisfy consumers’ needs to find products void of “harmful” ingredients such as parabens, sulphates, and artificial colours or fragrances. At the same time, they are made with renewable, sustainable, and/or recyclable materials.

Skincare and makeup products usually reach customers packaged in single-use plastic – creating more than 120 billion units of waste packaging globally each year, with most ending up in oceans or landfills. 

According to a study by investment bank Goldman Sachs, the country’s cosmetics market, already the largest worldwide, will reach a US$145 billion valuation by 2025.

Furthermore, 80 per cent of shoppers in China are willing to pay for sustainable packaging compared with 68 per cent in the US and 65 per cent in the UK, according to a report from McKinsey consulting.

Because of this, many established beauty brands are beginning to delve into green manufacturing products to meet the increasing demand. 

For example, luxury brands such as Dior and Hermes recently introduced refillable lipsticks into their collections. In contrast, indie brand Hourglass Cosmetics already launched its refillable version in 2017.

Paris-based La Bouche Rouge is one of the many clean beauty brands that will enter the Chinese market this year through the e-commerce platform Tmall Global. 

The French beauty brand’s lipstick is formulated without plastic and encased in refillable metal tubes wrapped in upcycled or vegan leather.

In addition, the lipstick’s formulation is free from microplastics and uses a hand-harvested French seaweed as its main ingredient, making the end product “clean enough to eat”.

“As sustainability becomes an established requirement for shoppers, China is witnessing a rapid increase in demand for products that conform to global green standards,” said Tmall’s Tony Shan.

Kaycee Enerva

Kaycee Enerva

A digital content manager based in the Philippines, Kaycee Enerva has written for multiple publications over several years. A graduate of Computer Science, she exchanged a career in IT to pursue her passion for writing. She's slowly practicing sustainability through period cups, and eating more plant-based food.