As whitening products continue to gain momentum, product developers are seeking natural whitening ingredients that are multifunctional and not only have clinically-proven results but can reduce the total raw materials in the final formulation, in turn reducing costs.
According to Frost & Sullivan, the global whitening ingredients market earned revenues of $381.0 million in 2014, a figure which is set to grow to $827.9 million in 2021. However, with Western Europe and North America banning hydroquinone and its derivatives, formulators are now seeking natural ingredients that will grow the market further by helping competitive pricing.
Dr. Nandhini Rajagopal, Materials & Food Team Leader, Frost & Sullivan Chemicals, said, “Consumer keenness to have a uniform skin tone is driving cosmetic formulators to develop whitening products for the neckline, arms and feet, in addition to the face. Whether it is used to formulate anti-ageing solutions for the West or create a lighter, blemish-free skin tone in Asian regions, whitening ingredients are increasingly finding the spotlight.”
While China, India, Brazil and the Middle East are helping drive growth in the market thanks to better economic conditions and higher earning potential, consumers in Asia Pacific are finding it hard to choose products due to low awareness on the harmful effects of most synthetic whitening ingredients. However, they are also finding it difficult to justify the price difference between the natural-based ingredients.
Therefore in order to boost the market in this region, competitive pricing in the natural ingredients market has to come into play. And with a lack of regulation prompting competition in the region, whitening ingredient manufacturers will no doubt be forced to consider the natural route in order to enjoy sustained growth.
However, it is said that whitening ingredient manufacturers will have to back up their marketing claims with clinically proved results if they are to capture the attention of cosmetic formulators. R&D therefore is said to be needed for each region globally, focussing on upcoming trends in a bid to meet end-product manufacturers’ demands for new ingredients with cutting-edge properties.
Rajagopal said, “Close strategic partnerships with personal care product manufacturers will help whitening ingredient suppliers stay at the forefront of innovation. Through these partnerships, ingredient suppliers will also get a chance to offer their market knowledge and regulatory advice to customers.”