In April, our monthly fresh finds explored the UK’s most-searched beauty products for March 2021, so this month we’re focusing on the base of any good beauty regime – skincare.
In the last 12 months, skincare has enjoyed a surge of interest, with more people than ever engaging with their own skincare routine, researching the latest trends and taking greater interest in the products.
One recurring theme that comes up when searching skincare is the routine you use, with ‘skinfluencers’ stressing that the order in which you use your skincare products makes all the difference.
Here, we explore the emerging trends for serums, which brands come out top for sunscreen and why some of the newest brands within the industry are volumes ahead of more traditional brands in search.
Our search trends have been placed in a typical daytime skincare routine order, starting with: cleansing.
The Most Searched Cleansers in April 2021
Cleansers have become a key product in the daily routine of millions of people, with some even adopting a double-cleanse approach – a trend originally from Korea that’s been championed by dermatologists and skincare gurus everywhere.
The top brands for cleansers in search volume reveals a mix of established brands and relatively new ones. Cerave – a L’Oreal brand developed by dermatologists – comes out top with over 40,000 searches a month. The brand has developed an established reputation within the industry over a short amount of time, leaving the other well-known brands behind.
Whether you’re double-cleansing or not, the language consumers are using matters when it comes to cleansers. The search for ‘face wash’ may feel a little outdated now as more people search for cleansers but the search volumes are still significant.
Face wash vs. cleanser
It’s important for brands to identify what they want their product to be known for when it comes to search volumes, as ‘cleanser’ has much larger volumes compared to the more traditional ‘face wash’ phrase.
So, in keeping with a good routine, the second cleanse step is actually a wash.
The Most Searched Face Washes in April 2021
Once again, Cerave is top spot for ‘face wash’, sharing it with a household name, Simple. Pharmaceutical company Unilever, the brand house for Simple, have a long-established reputation for their range of ‘clean’ face wash products but with the recent increase in popularity from Cerave, they are now sharing a busy market with a younger brand.
Another more established brand, Neutrogena, from house of brands Johnson & Johnson, is still clearly an interest for thousands of consumers despite the level of competition within the industry now, compared to when they first launched as a soap bar in 1930.
The reputation of brands like Simple and Neutrogena are still relevant in consumers minds but the younger brands are starting to dominate the markets – and therefore search landscape.
Comparing the volumes behind cleansers and face wash indicates a change in information and behaviour as consumers are far more exposed to skin professionals referring to ‘cleanser’ than they are terms like face wash, etc.
The next step in a strong skincare routine is the toner.
The Most Searched Toners in April 2021
As a next step, ‘toning’ is a relatively new stage in any good skincare routine, but is often championed by skin professionals as being very important. Once again a newer brand, The Ordinary from DECIEM, pips the more established The Body Shop and Simple to the post.
The Ordinary has quickly gained a reputation within the industry for creating hardworking skincare products that really work, gaining trust from ‘influencers’ within the industry – and in turn, consumers. Its hero products include serums, glycolic acid toners and its AHA solution – all cruelty free, vegan and very affordable.
Both of these factors are important to more educated consumers and the rise in The Ordinary’s popularity could be a real reflection of the brand creating products that directly meet the expectations of modern consumers.
The Most Searched Serums in April 2021
As we’ve mentioned, The Ordinary’s hero products are its serums, which is reflected in the huge search volumes the products have gained. Interestingly, both Estee Lauder and Charlotte Tilbury have recently launched a ‘hero’ serum product which have clearly gained some momentum in the industry.
The Charlotte Tilbury serum is very new but has already gained significant volume. Likewise, Estee Lauder has the same approach, focusing on one serum ‘Advanced Night Repair’ and focusing its marketing efforts to place it everywhere.
The next step, eye cream, isn’t always featured within day routines but has enough search volume that we couldn’t leave it out.
The Most Searched Eye Creams in April 2021
Although eye cream as a product has less search than serums, the volumes for brand Cerave are interesting. Having built a reputation for their cleanser, it’s significant that Cerave also dominates search for eye cream, compared to the more traditional brands such as Clinique and Estee Lauder.
Whilst both Clinique and Estee Lauder both have ‘hero’ eye creams, they’re pipped to the post by the French pharma brand, indicating consumers are looking specifically for ‘dermatologist-led’ products that have a reputation for working.
The next step, moisturising, is arguably one of the busiest product markets as skincare brands release moisturisers as a staple item for everyone.
The Most Searched Moisturisers in April 2021
Established brand Clinique is competing with the newer brand, The Ordinary, despite having a much longer presence within the industry and having their hero product as a moisturiser. This again supports the impact newer brands are having on consumers, featuring their items across social media and gaining a strong following despite being a newer brand.
The Ordinary has a smaller line of moisturisers but, with their appeal to a younger audience with their affordable products, they’ve managed to compete with the likes of Clinique and even Liz Earle – both of which are very established in the market for moisturisers, specifically.
The next step in any good day routine is a fairly new one. With more emphasis from doctors and dermatologists on ‘anti-ageing’ and the huge importance of protecting skin from sun damage, SPF or sunscreen has evolved from an included ingredient in foundation to a focus product in its own right.
The Most Searched SPFs in April 2021
One of the hero products from 2020 was arguably SPF, with interest in anti-ageing and sun protection increasing significantly. SPF used to be an add-on, included in skincare products such as moisturiser and foundations, however more recently, ‘skinfluencers’ like Caroline Hirons have been featuring the importance of sun-care as an independent product used in a daily routine.
French pharma brand La Roche Posay dominates search for specific SPF products, however, the search for variations on SPF such as sun cream, reveals a different landscape. Once again, the language brands choose to use on their products matters as consumers are searching for sunscreen instead of SPF specifically.
Leading us onto…
The Most Searched Sunscreens in April 2021
A variation in terminology has made all the difference in search volumes with more consumers looking for ‘sunscreen’ as a stand-out product instead of ‘SPF’ which was often featured within other products like moisturiser.
French pharma brand La Roche Posay has once again dominated search with its hero SPF range, championed by dermatologists and skin care professionals across social media.
- Informed consumers are changing the industry – People are doing their research when it comes to skincare and they’re looking for dermatologist-led information. People want active skincare and are searching for ingredients or solutions to a skincare problem before they search for brands.
The reputations of younger brands have really come through the industry, with the more traditional brands falling behind in search volumes.
- Terminology matters – Brands need to be aware of language and what their consumers are searching for. Day time searches feature more ‘moisturiser’ queries, whereas night time searches are dominated by the term ‘cream’ as consumers look for a heavier product overnight.
The same is seen for SPF, as more industry professionals use SPF in their product reviews online, compared to the more traditional ‘sunscreen’.
The terminology for face wash vs. cleansers also matters as consumers become more educated about products and their skin routines. ‘Cleanser’ is a widely used term by professionals within the industry and this is then reflected in the search volumes, with a much higher demand for it.
- Likewise, ingredients matter – As more skincare professionals and trusted figures share the ‘lastest’ ingredients to look out for in skincare products. From Vitamin E to retinol and vitamin C, consumers are actively looking for the ingredients before brands when it comes to trying new skincare products.
- Anti-ageing has become the focus – and that’s reflected in both ingredients and hero products like sunscreen becoming so popular. And it doesn’t stop at SPF…
- …Our data also showed that break-through ingredient retinol has gained so much interest over the last 12 months it’s developed a reputation in its own right with huge search volumes behind it. There are 27,100 monthly searches in the UK for ‘retinoid cream’ alone, indicating the huge impact it’s had on the industry over the last 12 months alone.
The anti-ageing ingredient has clearly become an ‘in demand’ ingredient which we will explore in-depth in a new feature.
- While we also wanted to explore search volumes for sheet and face masks, the data for mask-related searches has been skewed as Google prevented any paid bidding for the terms including face masks. We’ll explore this topic later in the year once the data is collected.