Gen-Z girls ditch accessories in favor of cosmetics

Investment bank Piper Jaffray has released the results of its 36th semi-annual “Taking Stock With Teens” study, showing that Gen-Z girls are now spending three times more on beauty than accessories, while streetwear still dominates apparel and footwear.


Tarte and Too Faced were the favorite cosmetics brands among Gen-Z females - Instagram: @tartecosmetics
 
The study, which surveyed 8,600 teenage consumers across 48 US states about their shopping habits and brand preferences, found that female Gen-Zers are increasingly shifting their spending from accessories to cosmetics and self-care products. Indeed, in terms of share in female teenagers’ wallets, accessories have hit an all-time low of under 5%.
 
The report also discovered that, when shopping for color cosmetics, 91% of female teens prefer brick-and-mortar stores, with Sephora topping the charts of favorite beauty retailers at 34% mindshare, followed by Ulta (34%), Walmart (9%) and Target (8%).
 
In terms of cosmetics brands, Tarte (13%) and Too Faced (9%) proved to be the most popular among those surveyed, while Anastasia Beverly Hills (6%) was pushed into fifth place by MAC and Maybelline, which came joint third, both with 7%.
 
As accessories spending declines, Michael Kors was found to be the favorite handbag label, commanding 30% mindshare, while Kate Spade (15%) and Coach (11%) completed the top three.
 
Among apparel brands, Nike still boasts the strongest mindshare at 22%, although this is a slight slip from the 25% it held in Piper Jaffray’s last report. American Eagle holds second place in the rankings with 9%, followed by Adidas (6%), Forever 21 (5%) and PacSun (4%).
 
Nike also topped the footwear brand rankings – and far more convincingly – with 41% mindshare, while Vans secured second place with 19% and Adidas held firm in third with 14%. Converse and Foot Locker rounded out the top five with 5% and 3%, respectively. Interestingly, Vans saw particularly strong progress among girls, and was even the top footwear brand for upper-income females.
 
Vans, along with Adidas, Lululemon and, perhaps surprisingly, Crocs, also saw one of the biggest mindshare gains across all categories since Piper Jaffray’s last report in April of this year. And it’s worth noting just how important brands are to Gen-Z consumers: 45% of those surveyed by the investment bank’s most recent report stated that “brand” is the most important factor that hey take into consideration when making a purchase, up from 33% six years ago.
 
When Piper Jaffray released the results of its last “Taking Stock With Teens” survey in spring, it identified streetwear and 90s nostalgia as key trends and, according to senior research analyst Erinn Murphy, these tendencies have continued into the latter part of the year.
 
“Within fashion, we see a strong brand cycle emerging led by athletic, streetwear and 1990s brands ranging from Vans, Supreme, Tommy Hilfiger and Adidas,” she stated in a release, suggesting that these trends are here to stay for the foreseeable future.             

Piper Jaffray’s 36th “Taking Stock With Teens” study for fall 2018 can be consulted in full on the company’s website.

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