Model backstage, hair detailPrabal Gurung show, Backstage, Fall Winter 2018, New York Fashion Week, USA - 11 Feb 2018

While hair remains the smallest category in the prestige beauty market, it is the fastest-growing followed by skin and fragrance, as makeup sales continue to decline, according to the latest figures from The NPD Group.

In the U.S., for the second quarter of 2019, hair grew 21 percent to $217 million. Makeup sales were down 4 percent to $1.79 billion. Skin care was up 7 percent to $1.4 billion, and fragrance was up 2 percent to $8.34 million.

The hair category’s exponential growth was attributed to specialized treatments and color products, both up double digits, as consumers continue to embrace care products for hair and scalp health, rather than spend on styling aids. Bond-builders and leave-in-treatments were another big area of growth, up 41 percent year-over-year.

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Makeup, the prestige market’s largest category, was another story. The category, which has been in decline, continued to struggle in the second quarter. NPD attributed the category’s challenges to shifting consumer preferences toward a natural look. Categories that lend to a no-makeup makeup look, such as tinted moisturizer and lip gloss, showed “positive performance,” while concealer and eyebrow makeup remained steady. Primers, up 78 percent, and setting sprays, up 6 percent, are growth-drivers in the category, as well as false eyelashes, up 18 percent.

Skin care continues to experience strong growth, though one area NPD noted is “showing signs of maturity” is masks, which may face waning consumer interest due to brands increasingly infusing core products with more advanced and active technologies. Targeted treatments are skin-care’s fastest growing segment, with growth in brighteners, acne treatments and exfoliators.

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In fragrance, stronger concentrations are driving performance, including eau de parfums, up 8 percent, and perfumes, up 31 percent. Men’s parfum concentrations are another growth-driving category. Interest in artisanal continues to increase, up 12 percent, and designer fragrances were slow-growing, up 2 percent.

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