Guest Blog - Jeanne Naylor
Posted on August 13 2018
The growing grooming culture & the modern man
The shift in male shaving and grooming habits over the past decade has not gone unnoticed and the numbers are certainly showing us that men like to look after their beards. Sales of facial hair care products have increased by 226% In 3 years and so far this year, men in the UK have spent almost £5 million on beard care products (maybe something to do with Prince Harry’s recent beard situation at his wedding to Meghan Markel?!). We’d like to think so.
But what are the wider reasons for this shift in men’s grooming habits, the change in the type of products they are choosing and the increase in sales of premium beardcare items? So glad you asked…
Stereotypically assumed to have a ‘slap dash’ approach to their looks in the past, men today, (millennials in particular) are being influenced by the celebrities leading the grooming revolution, most notably Ryan Reynolds, David Gandy and one of the pioneers of the contemporary groomed look, David Beckham.
In 2018, celebrity news has never been easier to consume, with articles appearing on social media and fact that these articles are tailored to users’ past searches – getting these famous faces in front of the user (or shopper) has never been easier for the media and ecommerce retailers. As a result, the largest demographic using social media (millennials) are taking inspiration for their appearance from there, causing an increase in the products that give this particular look. Moreover the ‘seismic cultural shifts we’re seeing in modern masculinity are changing the notion of what it means to be a man’ as explained by Unilever’s Matthew McCarthy. These cultural shifts are characterised by the following….
The evolution from the lumbersexual look of early 2000 to the more primed appearance of today has been a gradual one and can it could be argued that there are wider causes that extend outside of the beauty industry at play. The now ‘stripped back’ nature of huge brands like Apple, Mastercard and McDonalds, are sure to have had an impact; in recent years these brands are among many who have opted to scrap their previously complex logos and replace them with clean lines and airy designs. Why should this change not make its way into the beauty industry too?
It’s not just men driving the change, with women now contributing to the industry too, opting to purchase premium products as gifts for birthdays and at Christmas.
The beard has become the modern man’s accessory and a way to stand out from the crowd. Finally having the option of premium tailored products for each person’s unique grooming needs is a huge driver – something that did not used to be an option for men.