The men’s grooming category has shown steady growth since 2020 and is expected to continue growing through 2026. As men returned to the workplace and resumed social activities following the pandemic, they re-established their grooming routines, driving sales across several categories, including shave and fragrance. Berlin Packaging tracks consumer insights, product trends, and packaging innovation throughout the year to understand what is happening in the market so we can best help our customers succeed. Here are some of the key trends influencing men’s grooming in 2023.
Today’s consumers — especially younger generations — are more inclusive of gender nonconformity and reject traditional gender stereotypes. The founders of Fieldtrip, a new personal care brand targeting Gen Z consumers, conducted a survey showing that two-thirds of men ages 16–24 are interested in genderless beauty products. As people seek to express their individuality and define themselves outside of the bounds of gender, gender-neutral brands will become increasingly popular. While many of these brands are currently found in the premium or luxury market, gender neutrality is a movement that is gaining traction in the mass segment.
Several companies are launching product lines and marketing campaigns aimed at breaking down barriers and moving into traditionally female-dominated categories like nail polish and skincare. Brand design plays an essential role in conveying gender neutrality. The Ordinary and Kiehl’s use brand design that appeals to both women and men with simple typography and minimal use of color. Avoiding stereotypical “masculine” colors, imagery, and language can communicate that a brand is designed for everyone.
70% of Americans say that supporting brands that promote diversity is important to them.
Over the last several years, a large part of the conversation in personal care has surrounded societal issues such as mental health and body image, resulting in brands emphasizing the idea of “self-care” through their products. While this has primarily been a focus in women’s beauty care, it is becoming a bigger part of the discussion in men’s grooming due to the growing social awareness of mental health and well-being among men.
Beard care, for example, is now being positioned as a rewarding hobby or a spiritual pursuit allowing men to get in touch with themselves. Packaging that creates an enjoyable user experience can help enhance these self-care rituals. This includes premium custom design, luxurious materials, unique dispensing, multi-sensory elements, and more.
65% of consumers say “being healthy” means mental well-being.
There is a newfound focus on individuality and self-expression, and consumers increasingly want personalized products, services, and experiences targeted to their individual attributes, interests, and goals. Personalized beauty has grown rapidly, with a range of customized options that incorporate unique products and experiences, including mix-and-match products, bespoke formulations, skin/hair care analysis, and virtual reality try-ons.
There has also been a rise in direct-to-consumer subscription kits that allow consumers to select personalized options or have products curated for them based on their preferences. The desire for individuality is not new but has become more attainable through technological innovations and digital engagement. Customizable labels, smart packaging, and interactive design can create unique personalized consumer experiences that drive brand loyalty.
More than half of global consumers say they want products and services uniquely tailored to them.
Consumers want to support brands that align with their values and expect businesses to be socially and environmentally responsible. Men’s grooming companies have sought to include social purpose in their products in a way that speaks directly to the issues facing men. Pacific Shaving launched a line of colored shaving creams, with each product supporting a specific concern like mental health awareness, prostate cancer research, and suicide prevention. Harry’s donates 1% of their proceeds to support men’s mental health.
Beyond supporting social causes, demonstrating a commitment to inclusivity and accessibility is becoming increasingly meaningful. Accessible and inclusive design is gaining traction as companies focus on addressing the needs of all consumers. And environmental responsibility continues to be a priority for consumers, including sustainable packaging solutions that are recyclable, refillable, and made with eco-friendly materials like post-consumer recycled, ocean-bound, and bio-based plastics.
61% of global consumers say they are more loyal to brands that support social/human rights matters.
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The brands mentioned in this report are trademarks of their respective owners. Inclusion of these brands in this report is not meant to imply an association with or endorsement from the respective trademark owners.