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Published
Mar 31, 2020
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Covid-19 drives prestige hand soap sales higher in UK

Published
Mar 31, 2020

Prestige Hand Soap sales have risen in the UK during the Covid-19 Outbreak, NPD Group said this week. Consumers have been buying hygiene products in large numbers and when they can't get them cheaply, many have clearly been turning to upmarket brands and products instead. Sales have been rising “significantly” both in stores and online. 


Advice to wash hands frequently is boosting the premium sector as well as the mass-market



And it’s been going on for much of the year. NPD said sales of prestige hand soaps have been rising year-on-year since January 26 and as each week goes by, turnover increases. Since February 23, the week of the public health announcement from Prime Minister Boris Johnson telling people to regularly wash their hands, sales of luxury and prestige hand soaps have seen double-digit growth.

The market researcher added that the week beginning March 8, when concerns around the coronavirus really hit panic levels, sales rose 102% year-on-year. Then, as stores closed and people were asked to stay at home, consumers moved online where sales increased by 199% on the year.

It will be interesting to see how sales hold up once the crisis is over. It could be that we’re now seeing a longer-term change in consumer habits as more of us retain our awareness of the need for good hygiene, especially during cold and flu season.

“As the UK public follow government guidelines on hand-washing, we have seen the sales of prestige and luxury hand soaps grow dramatically, week-on-week. The beauty industry is responding to the situation in many ways. L’Occitane has donated 10,000 hand creams to the NHS and multinational luxury brands such as  LVMH, Clarins, L’Oréal and Coty are switching production to products such as hand sanitiser,” said Emma Fishwick, account manager, NPD UK Beauty.

Perhaps these companies might find a permanent market for such hand sanitising products.

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