False lashes are flying off the shelves.
According to data from Nielsen, false lashes are experiencing dramatic growth in the mass market. Sales of false eyelashes were up 21 percent in dollars, and 10 percent in units for the week ended Sept. 28. In the past year, sales of false lashes have jumped to nearly $270 million, up 31 percent in dollars and 15 percent in unit volume.
In mass, lashes are a bright spot in an otherwise bleak market. The rest of the Nielsen-tracked health and beauty market grew 2 percent in dollars and 0.2 percent in units for the week ended Sept. 28.
False lashes have become a normal part of beauty routines on Instagram, featured frequently as a finishing touch in elaborate makeup tutorials. They were popularized by influencers like Huda Kattan, who started her Huda Beauty line with false lashes, and have become more broadly available as brands like Kiss bring updated lash technology into the mass market.
According to Brit McCorquodale, senior vice president of revenue at Tribe Dynamics, influencers have played a key role in making false lashes “more accessible to consumers over time.” Influencers “proved” the potential of the categories for bigger brands that have historically offered, but not necessarily focused on, these products, she noted.
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At Kiss Products Inc., which sells several lines of false lashes in stores like Walgreens and Ulta Beauty, sales growth is being driven in part by Instagram trends, according to Annette DeVita-Goldstein, senior vice president of global marketing. The company’s products start around $2.99, and go up to about $9.99 for one pair of lashes. Year-over-year sales are up more than 26 percent for Kiss lashes, according to IRI.
Growth in the segment can be credited to the “growing photo-selfie-Instagram phenomenon,” DeVita-Goldstein said.
Kiss has launched two new lines this year. One, called Lash Couture Triple Push Up Collection, integrates three lash designs into one strip, aiming to deliver lift and high impact. The second line, called Blowout Lash, pulls ideas from salon hair teasing into false lashes, aiming to provide volume and curl.
Even outside of mass, false lash sales are picking up. According to The NPD Group, false lash sales in the U.S. prestige segment were up 51 percent for the 12 months ended in August, to $57.9 million.
In the U.S. market, lash extension services — which are far pricier than false lashes — have also been expanding.
Amazing Lash Studio, which was recently acquired by WellBiz Brands, has built up a stable of more than 200 lash extension franchises in the U.S.
In late September, after the deal, the business established a separate unit intended to purchase, operate and build more corporate Amazing Lash Studios. As part of that plan, Amazing bought seven Phoenix area studios.
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