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Pollution Concerns in India not Skin-Deep

December 07, 2019 05:44 AM

Anti-pollution skincare products grew 25-30% this year compared with 8-10% growth in fairness creams

New Delhi:

Pollution protection has toppled fairness as the fastestgrowing category in skincare, riding on consumer fears over hazardous levels of air toxicity in India’s urban markets over the past two years, large firms operating in the space said, citing industry data.

Anti-pollution facewashes, toners and face cleansers from brands such as Pond’s, Amway and Lotus have grown 25-30% this year compared with fairness products, which are growing at 8-10%, albeit on a larger base. The country’s top fairness creams include Fair & Lovely, Lotus Whiteglow, Nivea Natural Fairness and Garnier White Complete.

“Anti-pollution skincare products are now growing three times faster than the fairness range, as consumer demand for solutionbased products is rapidly moving up,” said Nitin Passi, chairman of Lotus Herbals, which sells premium pollution-protection products such as serums. “The category is growing all over the world, especially in geographies where air pollution is very high.”

Almost all the big companies are pushing products that list ingredients to protect the skin rather than just lightening it.

“Our anti-pollution skincare products at both the premium and affordable range are outperforming the other skincare regimes by at least 25%,” said leading direct seller Amway India’s chief executive Anshu Budhraja.

Part of this is the backlash against the entrenched obsession with ‘fair’ skin, experts said.

“Promoting colour of a particular kind isn’t a politically correct thing anymore and companies are increasingly acknowledging that now,” said social commentator and brand consultant Harish Bijoor

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