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Values are Top of Mind for Beauty Consumers, According to FIT Master’s Students

As consumers emerge from the coronavirus pandemic, they are expected to weigh values even more heavily when beauty shopping.

The beauty consumer is going through a big shift, according to FIT master’s students in Cosmetics and Fragrance Marketing and Management, who presented their capstone projects on June 23. 

Students identified consumers as “chameleons” — noting that after surveying 68 consumers across age groups, speaking to industry professionals and doing secondary research, their findings showed that consumers are constantly weighing different values to make purchasing decisions. Post-COVID-19, customers will be looking for long-term gratification, the group said. To make decisions, they will weigh different values, including fluidity, experience, customization, community, wellness, sustainability, simplicity, price and convenience.

While consumer values may be shifting, a second group of the FIT master’s candidates suggested that values around sustainability, social ethics and experience — such as AI availability — are non-negotiable. 

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The group pitched a digital management tool called the Personal Impact Index that would allow consumers to scan a product and see how it aligns with their values. They suggested brands could use that data to better serve customers. 

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Dr. Joyce F. Brown, FIT president, noted the cohort’s research will be presented at the Cosmoprof North America trade show in Vegas this August. 

The FIT Capstone presentation concluded with an awards ceremony recognizing students, faculty and alumni. The recipients were: Scholarship Recognition: Ryan Larson, Chanel and Annalee Rice, Giorgio Armani Beauty; Outstanding Scholar: Alecceandra Meier, IT Cosmetics and Allyson Trayah, Redken; Coty Award for Professional Excellence: Mark Polson, Polson & Associates/FIT; Estée Lauder Companies Faculty Leadership Award: Dr. Brooke Carlson, FIT School of Graduate Studies; L’Oréal Student Leadership Award: Allyson Trayah, Redken and Ryan Larson, Chanel; Department Medal: Allyson Trayah, Redken. 

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