India Embracing the Revolution In Men’s Grooming – Entrepreneur

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According to a report published by Allied Market research, in 2022 the global male grooming market is worth $166 billion. The market for men’s grooming and personal care products is expanding globally. In the past, shaving and fragrances marked the extent of the masculine grooming regimen. Today, men have a lot of options to choose from, be it beard, skin, body or hair care.


Increasingly, men are investing in themselves to look good, and the stigma that was associated with male grooming and beautification is a thing of the past. This coupled with the Internet and social media has led to the launch of men’s grooming D2C brands all over the world, including India. The men’s grooming brands are now feeling the tailwinds that the women’s colour cosmetics brands experienced. In India market size for men’s grooming is pegged at anywhere between INR 12,000 crore to INR 30,000 crore (Euromonitor).

The male grooming industry is booming in India

To begin with, the men’s grooming industry has always been under-indexed compared to the women’s range. The men’s market is roughly around 10 per cent of the women’s market so there is a huge headroom to grow.

Prior to the entry of new-age grooming brands, what was being offered to men was very basic. Men had changed but the products being offered to them had not. Mushrooming of gyms and salons all over the country all point to the fact that men want to improve the way they look. Social media and selfie culture may have been a catalyst too in forcing men to use face wash and de-tan creams.

Trends are not just restricted to big metros, small Indian towns are leading the grooming growth story. D2C brands through their website are selling in towns and cities across the length and breadth of the country. The traditional distribution strength of FMCG giants is no longer an entry barrier as the new-age brands are side-stepping the entire chain and reaching directly to the end user.

Having said that, even offline trade with the emergence of strong regional modern trade has been a boon for new-age brands. Today, multiple store outlets pan India is providing a seamless supply chain and product access to customers. The customer knowledge obtained by selling on their website is helping brands reach out to neighbourhood kirana (grocery) stores with specific offerings. The omnichannel push and better visibility have also helped in expanding the market for men’s grooming products.

Categories such as deodorants and de-tan creams have seen explosive growth already, and now we are seeing similar trends in other categories too.

Men’s grooming brands are bringing a change in their ecosystem

Men tend to spend more time outside, their skin texture is different than women, and they have problems like male pattern baldness. They also tend to spend less effort on grooming themselves.

Mens’ grooming brands have been addressing all these issues and creating products specifically for typical problems that men face. Brands are investing in building robust research and development (R&D) capabilities. There are specialized labs to create products that have gone on to become category builders. Products such as hair growth vitalizer or a face wash with bigger scrub particles for faster exfoliation.

Men’s grooming industry is likely to compete with the women’s beauty and skincare industry in the near future

As the markets become mature, use of unisex products will decline. Men will start using more products that specifically are made for them.

The use of products with harmful chemicals such as SLES or parabens will continue to decline. The use of eco-friendly packaging and zero-waste products will become the norm.

The path to growth and sustainability

The forward-looking approach is that customers are evolving and continue to explore and express themselves. Brands need to keep up and keep innovating. Another challenge is of connecting with customers on an organic and personal level; the opportunity is in expanding beyond established routines and leveraging a stronger connect through the right marketing.

Brands to succeed need to have an omnichannel strategy, presence across marketplace, websites, and mobile applications are mandatory. Quick Delivery to customers, seamless returns, and quick customer grievance redressal are the main differentiators in the online space.

In the offline presence in general trade, MT and regional MT will be critical for long-term growth. Brands need to build in-house capabilities when it comes to tech, R&D, sales and distribution.

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