• Consumer Research
  • Understanding Consumers

The Current State of Beauty Products Shopping

Team InMobi
3 min read
Posted on March 31, 2022

With COVID-19 cases dwindling in the U.S. and with more consumers venturing out, are Americans buying beauty products once again? That’s what we wanted to find out. 

In February and March 2022, we polled hundreds of consumers across the U.S. using InMobi Pulse, InMobi’s mobile market research solution. As part of this research, we looked into how Americans are thinking about and shopping for beauty products. 

Here’s what we uncovered: 

Key Findings: 

  • 46% of American women had purchased beauty supplies in the past 60 days. 
  • 65% of those who had made a home goods purchase in the past 60 days also bought beauty products recently. 
  • 51% of those who had made an apparel purchase in the past 60 days also bought beauty products recently. 
  • 77% of beauty shoppers buy in person. 

Are Americans Buying Beauty Products? 

Overall, only around a third of adults in the U.S. said they had purchased beauty products in the past 60 days. The percentage is higher for women than men (46% versus 21%), but that still indicates that fewer than half of all women are making beauty product purchases of late. 

Older Americans and wealthier people are the ones most likely to be buying beauty supplies. Barely over one in four adults between 18 and 24 years old said they have bought these kinds of products recently, the percentage jumps to 39% for those between 45 and 54 years old.  

Further, 38% of those making more than $75,000 a year said they had made a beauty product purchase recently, as compared to 32% for those making less than that amount. 

The group most likely to be buying beauty products? It’s those that said they had bought home goods and apparel recently. Overall, 51% of those surveyed who had made an apparel purchase in the past 60 days also bought beauty products, while 65% of home goods purchasers have bought beauty products lately. 

Understanding Beauty Product Purchase Behavior 

Among those making beauty product purchases recently, where do they turn to buy? More often than not, these purchases are happening in person. 

Among everyone who said they had bought beauty supplies in the past 60 days, 77% of them said they made the purchase in person. And for those between 18 and 24 years old, that number jumps to 81%. 

That being said, a lot of purchases are happening via digital channels. Overall, 36% of this cohort said they went online to buy. Among beauty shoppers between 25 and 34 years old, 43% shop online while 32% use a store’s mobile app. 

Key Takeaways For Beauty Brands 

For those selling beauty supplies to post-pandemic shoppers, how can they use this data to more effectively reach and engage their best customers? Here are our recommendations: 

  • Be hyperfocused on audiences: As our data indicates, the vast majority of Americans are not making beauty purchases. Instead of wasting media budget on a “spray and pray” campaign, beauty brands are much better not only targeting women but specifically targeting more affluent women who are also actively buying home goods. 
  • Provide a holistic buying journey: While the bulk of shoppers are unsurprisingly heading into stores, a significant cohort are also utilizing digital channels. Ignore these online shoppers at your own peril! Beauty brands are best served when they provide customers with a variety of choices that suit their various needs. 
  • Reach consumers where they are: Even though customers may not always shop via apps, mobile is still a great tool for product discovery. In 2022, eMarketer predicts that Americans will spend more time with mobile than with any other single media source. Considering that adults in the U.S. devote so much of their day to their mobile screens, it makes sense to target and message to mobile-first audiences. 

Interested in learning more about what it takes to reach and engage your best audiences through their favorite screen? Reach out to the mobile experts at InMobi to learn more and to launch always-on campaigns that yield real results. 

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