Asia has one of the fastest growing markets for natural and organic cosmetics, with sales revenues projected to exceed USD 1 billion in the coming years. Rising consumer awareness of natural and organic products is fueling product sales across the region.
A new study by Organic Monitor shows the largest market is in China. In spite of many green brands boycotting the Chinese market, it remains the most prominent in Asia. High-end brands are coming into the Chinese market, attracted to the rising purchasing power of its consumers. Japan has the second largest market for natural and organic cosmetics in Asia.
Concept stores are the most important channel for natural and organic cosmetics. Many brands—Western and Asian—are opening stand-alone stores or salons for their brands. The American company Aveda is the front runner, operating concept salons across Asia. A growing number of Asian brands, such as Forest Essentials, are also investing in concept stores to raise visibility and awareness of their product ranges.
Standards are becoming increasingly important, with a growing number of brands taking the certification route. Ecocert standards are the most popular, having the highest adoption rate amongst Asian brands. Many organic food shops are requesting certification to “legitimize” marketing claims of brands.
Organic Monitor finds greenwashing a major challenge for natural and organic brands in the region. Asia is rife with brands making false natural/organic marketing claims, with some placing fake logos and symbols on product packs. As a consequence, there is a high level of consumer confusion about natural and organic cosmetic ingredients. Marketing is another major hurdle, with many brands not effectively communicating their green credentials.
To help overcome these challenges, Organic Monitor will be hosting dedicated workshops on natural and organic cosmetics in Asia later in the year.