5 Trends Spotted At The South China Beauty Expo 2020
August 2020 – This year, Meiyume joined the South China Beauty Expo (SCBE) that took place in Shenzhen. Featuring a total exhibition area of 22,500 square meters and more than 800 leading companies and brands, this year’s three-day expo brought together local and global exhibitors across the beauty industry to showcase new product and retail solutions, concepts, and technological developments.
While our booth was abuzz with customers looking to find transformative, end-to-end product and retail solutions, we were also able to get our team members on-the-ground to scout out some of the top current trends in the Chinese beauty industry.
1. Integration of Online and Offline Retail Channels
Undoubtedly, more consumers are moving online and consumption channels are evolving globally.
China has taken it to a whole other level, where emerging social commerce has opened up a new form of retail. With the fast-growing new group of Gen Z consumers who are adept at using technology and more comfortable obtaining brand information online, social commerce (e.g. WeChat Mini Programs and Xiaohongshu) and live streaming have become the top driving factors for sales in recent years.
Brands are adapting to this trend as many Chinese beauty brands are combining offline and online channels to expand their customer base. In leveraging social commerce platforms and using various forms of content marketing, brands build a fan following that can ultimately be converted into customers and brand advocates.
In line with this trend, SCBE 2020 conducted a live streaming of the whole event for the first time as a way to enhance brand visibility through both online and offline channels.
Noticeably, there were many e-commerce exhibitors this year. Some held workshops to demonstrate the use of mini app streaming. Others used various forms of content marketing to better communicate and connect with customers, including a gamification of their booth to attract the audience, and the use of Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) to sell products through live streaming.
Gamification & Live Streams at SCBE 2020
2. New Decorative Technology
This year we saw a lot of innovation especially in decorative technology. Many exhibitors showcased new techniques, designs, and material usage in beauty packaging decoration methods. Some examples included holographic coating, 3D leather effect printing, sparkle and water effect spraying, marble effect bi-injection, and integrating the use of 3D printing, labelling and hot stamping onto a single product.
Meiyume also showcased some of our in-house capabilities in this area. As multi-material experts, we are able to create unique packaging through a mix of metal, plastic and soft material. Our technical capabilities also span from complex pad printing and digital printing to various types of heat transfers. Customers were especially interested in our Decoration Process Platform, where we work with brands to create differentiated packaging – such as creating packaging decoration through the use of heat transfer and vacuum heat transfer technology – to help elevate the product within.
An array of products at SCBE showcasing new decorative technology
Another hot topic this year was sustainability.
Many customers are looking at ways to help their brands go green. Eco-friendly options include refillable bottles, jars, and compacts, as well as replaceable caps and other interchangeable components that will allow for waste reduction.
Amongst the various options for recyclable material, PP, PLA, and PMMA were top choices. This has been a growing space for beauty brands globally and is one to watch for China.
Meiyume’s molded pulp material
Bamboo and natural materials
“Single material” or “Mono-material” sustainable packaging at SCBE
Many refillable containers were also on display
4. Skincare Growth & Advocacy for “Beauty and Health”
Already the largest beauty category in China, skincare has gained even more traction in the wake of a growing stay-at-home DIY facial care trend as a result of Covid-19. At SCBE 2020, we see that more local players have joined top traditional multinational companies in investing in their own R&D and manufacturing capabilities in this area.
Chinese consumers, especially Millennials and Gen Z are digital savvy and information rich. They are looking for better performing, more effective and easy-to-apply products. Now, with health and safety top of mind, consumers are also increasingly interested in better understanding the ingredients and efficacy of the products they use, with 45% of consumers planning to use more natural and herbal-based skincare products.
Skin analysis technology on display at SCBE
Wide array of skin care products covering formulation and new application methods
5. Post Covid-19 Consumer Retail
In the wake of the global pandemic, brands and retailers are looking to implement safety measures to maintain the health and wellbeing of their people and customers.
With “touch-and-try” a core part of the beauty retail experience, brands are now looking at ways to allow consumers to continue getting the full sensorial experience but in a safe and hygienic way. At SCBE this year, we are seeing many disruptive innovations that will help brands adapt.
Most recently, Meiyume rolled out touchless sampling testers, a motion-activated dispenser that can distribute any kind of fragrance or liquid skincare product. To further create a safe retail experience as people are returning to stores that are re-opening, we have also developed in-store displays equipped with an automated density guide to help maintain social distancing guidelines, as well as customer tracking dashboards to help brands better understand consumer shopping behavior.
For those staying at home, we have also launched a range of touchless packaging and applicators for hygienic beauty regimens at home. One of the highlights of this range is the Gemstone Facial wand, made with a premium soft touch silicone spatula for skincare application and a ball tip that can be customized with gemstone or anti-microbial coated steel. The wand allows consumers to apply their skincare without having to dip their fingers in the product and contaminate the rest of the formulation.
With evolving retail environment and consumer behavior top of mind, we are continuing to innovate on product and retail solutions to provide safer experiences for brands and their customers.