What’s the situation in Turkey’s personal care and cosmetics industry?

After a strong 2016 for Turkey’s personal care and cosmetics market, the sector has continued its upward trend this year.

In 2016, Global Healthcare Technologies estimated the market at $3.1 bn, with imports amounting to $2.48 bn. Although the Turkish economy has struggled recently due to geopolitical issues, the personal care and cosmetics sector has remained buoyant. 

What’s driving the industry?

Changing perceptions towards grooming, a young population, an increase in male and female consumers in working environments leading to rising incomes and urbanisation, and a growing retail sector are all fuelling the personal care industry.

What trends are we seeing in 2017?

The sector is adapting quickly to the digital revolution with influencer marketing proving paramount to success. With product sales relying on consumer experience, 79% of consumers report watching videos on products before purchasing.

Online sales are up for both international and local brands alike: Estée lauder, Clinique, Kiehl’s, Flormar, and Goldenrose have all benefited from e-commerce. Repeat purchases in particular are being made online more frequently and more brands are expected to adopt this lucrative sales channel.

Brands such as Kiko, Urban Decay, Lancôme, and NYX have all opened mono-brand stores in Istanbul and many more are set to follow.

Fast fashion brands such as LC Waikiki, Defacto, and Koton saw the potential in this fast-growing market and have launched their own cosmetics and personal care lines.

A rise in free-from cosmetics is certainly being seen in Turkey and the surrounding MENA region. While the number of vegans in Turkey is low, consumers are becoming more sensitive to animal testing and questioning ingredients in cosmetics following 2015’s partial ban on animal testing and regulation that ensures ingredients are listed in detail in Turkish. This is leading to an emerging popularity of natural, organic, cruelty-free, and vegan cosmetics products.

In early October 2017, the Turkish government announced its intentions to establish a halal accreditation agency. While this primarily concerns the halal meat market, it would also cover cosmetics and would offer accreditation for institutions that grant certificates of halal compliance, further strengthening the certified halal cosmetics sector.

Middle Eastern tourists have become a key demographic for retailers, with a tendency to spend two to three times more than the average Turkish consumer, with some even travelling to Turkey just to shop for personal care products and cosmetics.

What’s next?

Demand has remained strong throughout the country’s financial difficulties and this indicates a potential to grow further still as the economy recovers.

Market research firm Euromonitor expects a healthy compound annual growth rate for the market – around 10% until 2020. With a low average of $35 per capita spend on cosmetics and personal care compared to $159 in Europe, there is strong potential for further growth in the next few years.