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Transformative haircare and perfume to lead beauty charge in 2021

Gaelle Walker
13 January 2021

Perfume and haircare products with transformative properties look set to top the beauty-shopping agenda at the start of 2021, as stressed-out consumers seek out products which offer comfort and care. 

Recent data from Clearpay’s bi-annual trend report suggests that mask-wearing shoppers are taking a more "dressed up" approach to hair styling, as they continue to cover their faces, with a “huge spike” in sales of haircare products seen during AW20. 

Consumers are also investing more in haircare by incorporating transformative products into their routines, the report, compiled using latest Clearpay sales data, found.

Haircare products with transformative properties topped Clearpay’s list of most shopped haircare products between November and December 2020, with items from the Olaplex brand accounting for the top five spots - led by its No.3 Hair Perfector.

Commenting on the findings, Clearpay retail psychologist Shakaila Forbes-Bell said: “Hair has a transformative and uplifting impact on consumers.

“After a life in lockdown and the closure of salons, where skincare regimes took precedence, consumers are looking at reviving their hair - and are able to spend more time doing their research on products.”

Fragrance also looks set to play a pivotal role in 2021 with shoppers drawn towards sweet smelling and uplifting notes, the report said.

Clearpay’s top search term during the Black Friday sales and Christmas period was ‘perfume’, indicating that shoppers have been using scent as a form of comfort and expression during these tough months, Forbes-Bell added.

Fragrance was also the second-best selling product through Clearpay during the Christmas period, with Paco Rabanne’s sweet scented Lady Million topping Clearpay’s list of most popular fragrances between September and the end of December.

The majority of the most popular selling scents featured sweet notes of vanilla, known for its calming and relaxing properties, as well as citrus fruits, which can boost the body's production of the so called “happy hormone” serotonin.

“Perfume being the most searched beauty term on Clearpay suggests that people have been relying on scents to transport them to happier times,” Forbes-Bell added.

“The power of scents to alter and lift our mood has seen consumers using buy now pay later services like Clearpay to help them invest in high-quality fragrances.

“These fragrances allow consumers to experience the full force of their psychological impact.”

In the UK, the vast majority of Clearpay consumers prefer to shop in the evening around 8pm via their mobile device, with the majority using their debit card to make purchases.

Beauty, fitness and casual fashion topped their list in AW2020, checking out with an average of three items per category.

Globally, beauty has been a fan favourite, with Clearpay consumers checking out at least five beauty items in each transaction, up from three last season, due to the rise in home beauty treatments.

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