THERE IS no doubt that it has been a vintage year for the nail care market in Europe. The past
two years in particular have seen
nail care products taking off in a big
way. Gone are the days of the simple
French manicure or the infrequent,
special-occasion-only bright polish.
Instead, there are manicures available of every conceivable variety as well
as nail wraps, gel tips and a plethora of
new nail care products available.
Many big brands are slugging it out
on shelf, by going up against each other
this year in a bid to bring out the most
colors or in order to have manicures of
the most unique textures and finishes
and the number of nail bars and salons
opening has gone up in direct correlation with this trend.
Indeed, many retailers have also incorporated nail bars into their beauty
halls—recognizing that manicures and
pedicures have a much higher turnover
rate than many other beauty treatments
and also represent a more cost-effective treat for a customer who might be
watching her euros.
To prove the point that this year has
been a roaring success, each and every
country in the Big 5 has posted growth
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in value terms indicating in the strongest possible terms that this category is
certainly one to watch.
During the past year, the French nail care
market has posted good gains, with a
10% growth in value terms, according to
SymphonyIRI France. Sales are approaching $100 million in a category made up of
nail varnish, care and base products which,
taken separately, have posted gains of
12%, 2% and 7.5%, respectively. Prestige
market sales have surged 20% to reach
$28 million, according to NPD France.
Taking in other distribution channels,
such as pharmacies, parapharmacies and
specialist stores, the overall nail market is
now worth an estimated $231.4 million,
according to Mintel.
In terms of new product development, the French market stuck to its
homegrown brands when it came to
making the biggest impression, especially when it came to bright and
bold colors. Dior’s (LVMH) Grand Bal
Christmas collection, inspired by the
spirit of grand balls, includes four new
additions to the DiorificVernis collection:
Marilyn, Diva, Diorling and Lady, spanning red, sparkly black, gold and white.
Meanwhile, YSL’s (L’Oréal) Northern
Lights holiday collection includes La
Laque Couture, a topcoat which gives
a high-shine finish and light-reflecting
sparkle to a base color.
Orly’s Naughty or Nice holiday collection is said to be an opulent palette
of decadent hues, from daring reds to
shimmering plums and champagne
golds, plus a sparkling blue tone.
Estée Lauder’s recent addition to its
Pure Color Nail Lacquer line is its Red
Hautes Collection, five shades of red,
spanning day and night time hues and
suitable for subtle accents of color or
A Good Year in Germany
According to SymphonyIRI Germany
it was an even better year for nail care
in Germany with sales of nail polishes
rising 20.2% to exceed $130 million.
Volume sales also grew, but by a more
modest 15.6%, to nearly 43 million
units—although this was still a significant improvement on the previous year.
With all the signs pointed in the the
right direction, local company Artdeco
Cosmetics wasted no time in offering
customers exactly what they seemed to
want in nail color.
Under its Misslyn brand name,
Artdeco rolled out a range of nail polish
strips which are nail polish foil wraps
made of dry nail polish and available
in a wide variety of colors and styles
including tiger print, zebra print and a
variety of floral designs. The brand suggests that the user wear a topcoat on
top of each nail polish foil for extra durability. This launch, and others like it,
directly target the younger consumer
and are geared toward consumers who
want to experiment with new trends
Nails in Fashion
In Italy there was more good news for the
sector as industry trade body Unipro reported that sales within the general hands
and nails category rose 6.2% to exceed
$288.4 million. Within this category, sales
of nail products have grown a healthy
12.2%, and accounted for nearly 50% of
As with many areas of Italian life,
inspiration for new nail products comes
directly from the catwalk.
Fashion brands have always released color collections in hues that
reflect the style and themes of their
clothing, as a clever way to allow
younger consumers to access the brand.
At Dolce & Gabbana, the fashion house