2021: A Year in Review

2021 was a lurching, stammering year that began in hope, flirted with whiplash, and ended by just narrowly missing another global lockdown. But still, resilience was everywhere.

The world emerging from the worst of the pandemic had a renewed focus for solace and purpose. People invested heavily in multi-benefit wellness products, and we continue to see inclusivity evolve and expand beyond demographic traits. New and smaller brands continue to disrupt and chip away at the “goliaths” of the CPG Industry, while beauty addresses climate change and screen pollution.

New wave of Inclusion

New brand disruption is on the rise

Looking for the ‘Silver Bullet’

Adapting to a changing climate in Beauty

New brand disruption is not slowing down

Consumers are looking beyond big national brands to meet their Health & beauty needs. Small brands grew 2x vs top manufacturers in 2020

Small competitors are gaining market share at the expense of larger national brands that have long maintained dominant positions in several key Health & Beauty sectors. A new generation of buyers is driving the growth of challenger brands, who are more open to new ideas in general and are more inclined to believe that small brands do a better job of meeting their needs.

In MULO, new brands continue to be a major growth driver within a category, and the number of new brands that are being launched every year is not slowing down.

Total MULO, Avg $ per Brand vs # of New Companies

Nearly two thirds of shoppers say they find out about new brands and products to try while browsing in the store

While there has been a consistent and steady stream of new brands being launched across Brick & mortar retailers, Amazon, Direct to Consumer or other .com options are where most new brands will launch.

Launching a new brand online as the first point of entry into the market not only helps to mitigate some of the risk, but also offers a wider reach and larger footprint to help brands share their brand story and educate consumers, which are the first steps to building a consumer base.

“ Over 20% of any given HBC category on Amazon are from brands that are exclusively sold online.”

Compared to 2019, new brands launched within these categories have seen the highest increase in sales:

Purchase Drivers

What motivates consumers to purchase a new brand?


Photo Credit: Kohls Kreatives

Drivers for purchasing new brands are not anything new, and price/sale continues to be the top driver. It is important to highlight that two out of the five motivators are online focused, where consumers are spending most of their time researching reviews.

Don’t lose the power of agility

New brands that are winning are nimble, able to find an unmet need and have a clear consumer target they are marketing towards.

  • 2021: A Year in Review - The world emerging from the worst of the pandemic had a renewed focus for solace and purpose. People invested heavily in multi-benefit wellness…

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  • Consumers are increasingly looking to get more benefits out of their health & beauty products, creating an opportunity for brands to differentiate from competition

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  • Climate change-affected weather, temperature fluctuations and ‘Digital ageing’ are continuing to inspire new brand and product launches within the Beauty category

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