The cosmetics industry has been accused of using deceptive and misleading marketing to market products.
But researchers say they have found evidence that consumers are buying more masks and using more natural products because of the increasing demand for natural alternatives to chemical-based products.
We are in a world where people are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of using natural ingredients, says Joanne Rothermel, who leads the Natural Ingredients Research Centre at the University of Exeter in the UK.
She is also a co-author of a report published last week by the Cochrane Centre for Health, Safety and Environmental Research (CHSER) that said the cosmetics industry is now the most-affected consumer group in the US.
It says the consumer base of the cosmetics market is expected to grow to £20bn (£12bn) by 2020.
The survey of more than 2,000 consumers, which included responses from more than 600 health professionals, found that the proportion of consumers using natural products had tripled since 2010.
One-third of respondents said they used cosmetics to make themselves look younger or younger-looking, a figure that had remained constant since 2012.
The proportion of people who said they did not use cosmetics to achieve the desired effect of the products had increased to a record high, with 60 per cent of respondents not using natural alternatives.
“There is a growing awareness that natural ingredients are not the only ingredients in products, and that there are other ingredients such as parabens and phthalates in cosmetics,” said Rothermal.
We are really finding that people are starting to feel that they can use natural ingredients for cosmetic purposes, she added.
Most respondents, however, did not say they were more likely to use a natural product because they knew about the potential risks.
While natural alternatives such as beeswax and coconut oil have been around for decades, the cosmetics companies have used them in the past.
More recently, more and more consumers are turning to ingredients such an oil of coconut, a traditional Chinese medicine, to try and improve their appearance.
The survey also found that a significant proportion of respondents were satisfied with their natural cosmetics, but did not have enough money to buy them.
The majority of consumers surveyed said they had no trouble finding a natural cosmetics company.
But the survey also revealed that people were increasingly turning to online retailers such as Amazon, Walmart and Best Buy to purchase cosmetics.
There is still a stigma attached to using natural cosmetics and the products, such as masks, which are often labelled as containing ingredients such a paraben, phthalate and chemical, but consumers say they do not think twice about purchasing them.
Some brands such as Benefit, which launched in 2017, are now being criticised for misleading consumers about their natural ingredients and using them to make their skin look younger and younger.
The study also found people were finding more natural alternatives for cosmetic products, but there was no difference in people’s overall purchases.
Rothermel says it is important to remember that cosmetics have become more affordable as a result of technology and consumer awareness, but she says there is still room for improvement.
Natural ingredients are the new trend, she says.
“We are seeing more natural ingredients being used and the market is growing and changing, so we need to take care of that.”
This is one area that needs to be monitored.
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