Beauty Perspectives
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Natural Sunscreens Experience Surging Sales

<p>SPINS research shows more consumers are making the switch to sun protection products containing natural ingredients, such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.</p>

Natural face wash, natural moisturizer, natural shampoo, natural makeup—the list of all-natural hair and skin care products desired by consumers keeps growing longer. And now, SPINS research shows more consumers are making the switch to sun protection products containing natural ingredients, such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.

Sales of natural sunscreen alternatives grew almost 24 percent across the natural, specialty gourmet and conventional multi-outlet channels, according to SPINS data collected from June 2014 to June 2015. In fact, 99 percent of sun protection and tanning lotions sold by natural retailers over the past year were categorized as natural, followed by 29 percent of sunscreens sold by specialty gourmet retailers. Only about 1 percent of sun protection products sold in the conventional multi-outlet channel were natural; however, dollar growth of these products was up 40 percent in mainstream outlets.

Sun protection brands have also recently made moves to gain B Corp certifications, which show the products meet certain sustainability standards. Products in this sector with B Corp certifications experienced 55-percent sales increases since last year. In addition, more than 40 percent of natural sun products are now labeled fragrance free, and these fragrance-free products experienced 21 percent sales growth over the 2014 to 2015 time period. Gluten-free product sales in the sector also rose 16 percent, while natural sun protection products with organic content experienced sales increases of 15 percent. SPINS also reported almost half of all natural sun protection products contain at least some organic content.

Other data from SPINS indicates natural sunscreens with SPF 30 or higher sold by natural retailers make up almost 90 percent of sunscreen dollar sales. Sunscreens making “coral reef safe" claims, meaning the products contain no chemicals that could harm coral reefs, also grew 46 percent since last year.

Many sunscreen companies have already taken note of these new trends in consumer demand, and they have formulated products accordingly. For example, Elemental Herbs, the maker of All Good organic skin care and healing products, will debut two new organic sun protection formulas in early August. The sunscreen butter and lip balm products are both chemical-free, coral reef-safe and environmentally friendly. Companies who follow suit and take the minimalist approach to sunscreen formulation can help meet this growing demand and keep their products aligned with current trends.

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