Ethnic beauty care to take a multicultural approach

NEW YORK —Despite the tough economic times, the ethnic health and beauty care industry has experienced steady growth as the lines blur between ethnic-specific and general market products, according to market research publisher Packaged Facts.

Retail sales of ethnic-specific health and beauty care products increased to $3 billion during the 2005-2009 period, according to Packaged Facts, a division of MarketResearch.com. While some marketers are intimately acquainted with the more specific aspects of the ethnic health and beauty care market—which is mainly comprised of hair care, makeup and skin care products for African-Americans and Hispanics—other marketers have decided to compete on a larger scale and reach beyond any one ethnic demographic niche.

Packaged Facts asserted that there now is less advantage for ethnic health and beauty care markets—particularly for smaller and mid-size players—to restrict themselves to niche positioning, and more advantage in the multicultural approach. “In 2010, there is a strong trend to position beauty products multiculturally—that is, not only to the three principal minorities consisting of Hispanics, African-Americans and Asians, but also to Arabs, Native Americans, South Asians and others,” stated Don Montuori, publisher of Packaged Facts. “A strength of using the term ‘multicultural’ is that products carrying the label can be marketed to everybody, including Caucasians.”

Packaged Facts noted that the ability to market multicultural products to Caucasians, in addition to consumers of other ethnic backgrounds, is important to marketers based in the United States who increasingly seek international involvements. The term “ethnic” does not have the same meaning in most other parts of the world, where billions of people have skin tones that befit the use of ethnic products popular in America, and where whites are the minority.

Even in the United States, the term is expected to become antiquated in the coming decades as the ethnic nation expands to become the majority sometime around 2042, Packaged Facts stated.

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