Teens present burgeoning market in underarm care


Manufacturers of antiperspirant/deodorant should take different approaches when marketing to adults and teens, as they each have different requirements for deodorants, according to market research firm Mintel.

“Antiperspirant/deodorant use a­-
mong teens is at 92%, placing them on par with adults,” stated Amy Ziegler, global personal care analyst at Mintel. “However, teens and adults have different requirements for their deodorants, so it’s important that manufacturers market to each segment appropriately. Marketers should consider distributing samples at teen-oriented clothing stores and using social networking sites to build interest in their brands.”

According to Mintel’s latest report, the antiperspirant/deodorant segment experienced 16% growth between 2006 and 2011, and population growth in the United States will continue to drive this market through 2016 and beyond.

Manufacturers undoubtedly are looking to freshen up the segment by developing products that promise greater protection and enhanced technology. For example, Unilever has launched for 2012 new products under its Dove and Degree brands.

In March, the Dove brand introduc-ed its new Clear Tone antiperspirant/
deodorant, which is positioned as the only deodorant in the United States that is designed to reduce red and dark marks and even skin tone.

The Degree brand has added two new variants for 2012: Degree Women Expert Protection with motionSense in Linen Dry and Degree Women Clinical Protection with motionSense in Cotton Fresh. The motionSense technology is designed to keep women feeling constantly fresh and protected.

For girls, Degree has added the Twilight Kiss fragrance, available in an antiperspirant/deodorant and body mist, and the Just Dance fragrance body mist. The launch of the new fragrances for girls is in line with Mintel’s research findings.

According to Mintel, when it comes to the format of their deodorant, teens significantly favor scented products (93%) more than the 78% scented product usage among adults. Meanwhile, 77% of teens said they like a solid/stick, and 76% prefer clear/invisible deodorants.

Loyalty is not king when it comes to deodorant users, according to the research. Half of Mintel respondents reported experimenting with other brands in the previous 12 months, but fewer than 1-out-of-5 actually switched brands completely. Age is the main driver shaping consumer willingness to experiment. Younger users were significantly more likely to make the switch than their older counterparts, which, according to Mintel, reinforces that the young consumer group should be the core focus for marketers.

Some 40% of women said they pick out or purchase their significant other’s antiperspirant/deodorant versus only 18% of men who do the same for their partners. Therefore, even when marketing products to men, the response of female consumers to packaging, scent and branding should be taken into account.

The “all-natural” and “organic” movement that has hit other industries hasn’t quite made the same impact in the world of underarm care. Mintel’s research confirmed that only 1-out-of-10 people usually use antiperspirant/deodorant with all-natural ingredients, and fewer than 1-out-of-20 buy all-
organic products.

“However, 14% of women and 16% of men report having skin that is easily irritated by antiperspirant/deodorant, which could help drive the all-natural, organic and hypoallergenic formulations in the future,” Ziegler noted.

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