Mintel’s research shows that nearly three-quarters of US respondents (74%) agree that affordable makeup can work just as well as premium products, a trend that is underscored by the growing number of social media posts highlighting how less expensive makeup brands can do just as good a job as some top of the range brands.

Backing this up, the research also shows that around one third of consumers in the 18 to 34 age group say they have purchased a ‘dupe’ because of favorable content supporting less expensive brands on social media.

Dupe culture driven by lower spending power

Persistently low consumer confidence continues to drive cost-conscious shopping behaviors, including the popularity of dupes, with social media playing a big role. This is especially true among younger consumer groups, which are more likely to be influenced by and take inspiration from social media,” said Joan Li, Senior Beauty & Personal Care Analyst at Mintel.

“While the ‘lipstick effect’- in which color cosmetics are viewed as an affordable luxury during times of financial uncertainty – protected the category from high inflation’s threat to discretionary spending, looking ahead, the color cosmetics market is expected to level off. Our research forecasts that growth will slow due to headwinds from continued trade-down behaviors, the mainstay of work-from-home and hybrid lifestyles, and competing growth in beauty-adjacent categories like ingestibles and skincare.”

This is also underlined by Mintel data that points to less makeup use, with the survey results showing 35% say they are using less makeup compared to a year ago, while only 25% say they are using more makeup.

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