2016: The cosmetics industry's year in review

By Rachel Lawler 20-Dec-2016

Cosmetics Business takes a look back at the biggest news that broke over the past 12 months


President Barack Obama signed into US law the Microbead-Free Waters Act. The act prohibits the manufacture and introduction to market of rinse-off cosmetics containing plastic microbeads. The intention is to phase out the manufacture of such products by 1 July 2017 with sales stopped by 1 July 2018.

Obama signs Microbead-free Waters Act


After the success of its Kylie Lip Kits, Kylie Jenner’s business expanded into other products, rebranding as Kylie Cosmetics. Jenner has since gone on to open her first bricks-and-mortar store with a pop-up in LA opening in December.

Kylie Jenner creates beauty empire


The industry reacted with shock after a Danish study discovered that liposomes do not penetrate the skin’s surface or carry active agents across its barrier as previously thought.

Study confirms that liposomes do not penetrate the skin’s surface


Sk-II’s online clip about sheng nu, or leftover women, went viral on YouTube and Weibo. The video told a touching story about Chinese women and shared the message: “Don’t let pressure dictate your future”.

Sk-II skin care advert goes viral


Givenchy partnered with DS Automobiles to create a limited edition model of car – DS3 Givenchy Le MakeUp. 1,400 cars were created with Givenchy cosmetics stored in the arm rest and sun visor mirrors.

Givenchy teams up with DS Automobiles on MakeUp car


The global cosmetics industry reacted with shock after the UK voted to leave the EU in a close 48% to 52% referendum. Several industry names, including Lush Cosmetics, expressed dismay and concern at the results.

UK votes Leave in EU referendum


Leaving, Midtown Manhattan after almost 60 years, L’Oréal opened the doors to its new official headquarters in Manhattan’s West Side. Home to 1,000 employees, the office covers ten floors and offers an onsite coffee bar, salon and company store.

L’Oréal opens new headquarters in New York


Shiseido cut its profit forecast for 2016 following declining sales and a strengthened Yen. The news came shortly after the company purchased Dolce & Gabbana’s fragrance range from P&G after Coty’s bid to take over the license failed.

Shiseido slashes profit forecasts


Revlon announced that it had agreed to buy all of the outstanding shares of Elizabeth Arden for $870m, expanding its portfolio to include a premium and spa brand.

Revlon acquires Elizabeth Arden for $870m


Coty closed its acquisition of 41 beauty and personal care brands from P&G, in one of the decade’s biggest deals. The deal made Coty the world’s third largest beauty company and took its total revenue up to $9bn.

Coty closes historic acquisition of 41 P&G beauty brands


In its biggest ever acquisition, Estée Lauder purchased Too Faced Cosmetics – one of the fastest growing cosmetics brands. The deal was said to be worth around $1.4bn and adds another prestige brand, and crucially one popular with millennials, to the Estée Lauder portfolio.

Estée Lauder acquires Too Faced Cosmetics


Lush Cosmetics campaigned against government-ordered internet shutdowns, which it said are a way of silencing individual groups and a breach of digital rights. The company launched a limited edition bath bomb, called Error 404, to raise awareness and support action group Access Now.

Lush fights against government internet shutdowns