Cosmetics Business reveals 5 key trends shaping the rise of beauty activism


Beauty has become a playground for activism. It may not always be a safe space for brands to play in, but those who get it right have much to gain

Market overview: At a glance

What's in this report?


Top 5 trends:

1. Charitable campaigns

2. Reclaiming regulation

3. Anti-conformist beauty

4. Call-out culture

5. Political activism

Country highlights


Percentage of consumers who choose, switch to or boycott a brand on its societal issues

Source: 2018 Edelman Earned Brand Study: Brands Take A Stand

Source: 2018 Edelman Earned Brand Study: Brands Take A Stand

Key market challenges addressed

At a time when trust in government and media is at an all-time low, and environmental concern has reached an all time high, consumers are turning to brands to take a firm stand. And while brand activism isn’t new in the beauty industry, what has dramatically changed is how many more brands are speaking out and standing up for what they believe in.

“In beauty, brands have become much more transparent about what they stand for, from their sourcing and supply chain principles to their views about gender, authenticity, diversity and inclusivity,” says Janet Milner-Walker, founder and Director of beauty brand consultancy Bespoke Advantage.

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Consumers want brands to declare their views on the issues that matter: globally, 64% will make a purchasing decision based on a brand’s social or political position, says Edelman’s 2018 Earned Brand study.


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