18 inspire • #30  www.iggesund.com such products have mostly been used as “basic” male grooming supplies. According to Alexandra Richmond, senior beauty analyst at market researcher Mintel, the specific product lines that have accounted for most of the current growth weren’t previously associated with men. “[Sales of] face creams and lotions as well as hair conditioners have risen since 2005,” she says. “This rise has come about because men see it as more acceptable to use traditionally feminine toiletries, like skincare or hair styling agents such as gel and conditioner.” Everyone, seemingly, wants to sell such products these days. Not only are young companies like Mënaji and KenMen thriving, their traditional female-slanting rivals are also making good money by concentrating on the male segment. Germany’s Beiersdorf, for example, has benefited from the strong performance of its “Nivea For Men” brand, currently one of the most popular male skincare lines on the market. Nivea has poured much of its recent marketing efforts into the line, which features a full assortment of products from body wash to shave gel to eye cream. These offerings are available for a range of skin types. Similarly, Lancôme – one of the classic French cosmetic houses – has leveraged its popular brand name with a line for the male of the species. Lancôme’s men’s skincare covers a similar range of goods as its German rival, and is boosted by an emphasis on high-profile marketing. In 2007, the firm hired suave British actor Clive Owen to be the face of its men’s skincare products, as well as its “Hypnose Homme” cologne. Industry watchers expect the future to be bright for men’s cosmetics, both in terms of overall acceptance and raw sales. Many key markets in the world remain under-developed despite the increasing popularity of male offerings. Figures from Mintel reveal that sales of cosmetics to men in Britain, for example, amounted to 57 million British pounds (USD 114 million) in 2007. This figure was dwarfed by the GBP 602 million sold to their female counterparts. “The key here is that men are clearly creatures of habit and they hold onto their skincare regime,” says Mintel’s Richmond. There is, then, significant room for growth. According to Michele Probst of Mënaji, future increases will result from the increasing sophistication of the customer base, as well as demand for more specialized goods such as mascara and supplies for manicures and pedicures. ...men see it as more acceptable to use traditionally feminine toiletries, like skincare or hair styling agents such as gel...” ‘‘ The key trick to packaging men’s cosmetics is to avoid certain nomenclature. The dreaded “m-word” (makeup) is studiously avoided. Men, after all, are generally new to the world of cosmetics and can be sensitive to the fact that they’re buying products still heavily associated with women. “It’s all in the verbiage for men,” says Mënaji’s Michele Probst. “All of our names are very militant.” Are they ever – the company’s skincare assortment is the Facial Survival Kit, for example, while its eye makeup is the 911 Eye Concealer, named after the United State’s emergency phone number. In contrast to the stereotype of the fussy “metrosexual,” (or “ubersexual” or “menaissance man” which are synonyms for the same idea) industry experts say male cosmetics shoppers are more traditional and less effete than their purchasing habits may indicate. And manufacturers are well aware of this. “The men’s toiletries industry is trying to distance itself from these stereotypes which are often limiting and very one-dimensional,” says Mintel’s Alexandra Richmond. This is most clearly reflected in the design approach to men’s products. In contrast to women’s goods, packaging for male offerings tends to be simpler, darker and more severe. L’Oreal’s Men’s Expert skin care line, for instance, features gray packaging with only a few stripes of colour; its typography is clear and unambiguous, and entirely devoid of flowery marketing language. More starkly, the foundation colour in the packaging for its Vive Pro hair care range is a solid, deep black, again with only occasional stripes of colour. This difference in approach to products in the two gender categories is also reflected in container design. Women’s perfumes and toiletries, for example, often come in arty, sculptured vessels, all the better to indicate the uniqueness and quality of the product. Men are more utilitarian, and the shape of containers aimed at their demographic reflects this; most often boxy and cylindrical with clean, straight lines, they project a sober and reliable functionality. Simple, dark and severe Marketing to men calls for a certain kind of minimalism.