Ordinary influencers have greater influence as consumers seek functional and personalized products


In this review article by researchers at Dongguk University in South Korea, 43 research articles were analyzed from an online database, covering the years 2019 to 2021, and included studies conducted in Poland, China and South Korea.

The researchers wrote in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, “This study should be used as a marketing benchmark that describes changes in the beauty industry and online shopping behaviors after COVID-19. “

This study was divided into three sections, examining the purchasing habits of beauty products before and after the pandemic, the rise of the wanghong in China which influences purchase rates and the expansion of online services to meet the needs. of consumers.

Wanghong is a newly coined term referring to an internet star popular on social networking sites. Unlike celebrity marketing, consumers recognize these influencers as ordinary people who are not much different from themselves and tend to trust them more.

Functional cosmetics

In the first part of the study, the researchers found differences in past and present purchases of beauty products.

For example, during the pandemic, users showed more interest in skin care and cleansing products such as hand sanitizer, body shower gel, and hair conditioner.

The use of makeup like nail polish, lipstick, eyebrow pencil, and blush has been drastically reduced.

After the pandemic, users would also avoid buying tinted makeup and only buy basic makeup.

Another change was a preference for functional products.

For example, the use of digital screens increased exponentially during the pandemic, which increased people’s exposure to blue light. This exposure can cause oxidative damage to skin cells, and some companies have developed blue light prevention cosmetics to block blue light.

Another popular category was anti-aging products.

Rise of the wanghong

The second part of the study analyzed the increase in the purchase rate due to the rise of the wanghong in China.

From the perspective of cosmetics companies, it is common to choose influencers as ad models rather than celebrities, and influencers directly engage in the sale of the products, which increases sales.The researchers said.

He said that the wanghong market is famous to be worth around 100 billion RMB (US $ 15.5 billion) and has become a new marketing channel.

Some Korean companies that have recently entered China also recognize and use wanghong to market their products.

However, users should note that wanghongs are famous due to their internet presence and are not beauty experts or any industry so their opinions may not be trusted.

Personalized cosmetics

The final part of the study looked at the transition from a contactless society due to COVID-19 to an online experience.

Before the pandemic, consumers mainly bought products by observing, touching and smelling products in physical stores.

Now, they refer to reviews online, listen to the opinions of influencers, and buy products online for delivery to them.

The evolution of online and offline sales is evident. Some retailers who have both online and offline stores have seen their online sales increase to triple digits during the pandemic.

Some companies have started to introduce personalized customer service to meet the various needs of consumers.

These include using augmented reality to analyze the skin and offering personalized cosmetic products.

This reflects the changing roles and functions of the beauty market due to the diversification of the market caused by the foreclosure of cities.The researchers said.

In Korea, some companies even conduct genetic testing directly with consumers to develop products suitable for individuals. DTP genetic testing allows consumers to receive their genetic tests at home and complete the test without visiting medical institutions such as hospitals.

Source: Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology


“Changes in shopping habits in the beauty market due to the post-COVID-19: review of the literature”

Authors: Youngsil Ma, Ki Han Kwon


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