According to Syntun, the Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) of this year's Double Eleven Shopping Festival totalled 1.14 trillion yuan, a modest year-on-year (YoY) growth of only 2.08%.1 Among them, live-streaming e-commerce platforms continued their high growth, although the growth rate slowed significantly compared to 2022. Meanwhile, the GMV of comprehensive e-commerce platforms experienced negative growth. This article provides an overview of the beauty brand landscape on both comprehensive e-commerce platforms, represented by Tmall and JD.com, and live-streaming e-commerce platforms, with a focus on Douyin.
The overall GMV of beauty products on comprehensive e-commerce platforms (including Taobao Live), amounted to 78.6 billion yuan, reflecting a 4.38% decline compared to the previous year. Looking at specific categories, skincare products achieved a GMV of 58.2 billion yuan, down 4.0% YoY, and makeup products decreased by 28.2% YoY to 15.5 billion yuan.
Based on Syntun data, international brands L'Oréal, Estée Lauder, and Lancôme saw declines of 14.7%, 24.4%, and 16.9%, respectively. Japanese brands SK-II and Shiseido dropped out of the top ten rankings this year. Since 2016, these two Japanese brands frequently appeared in Tmall's Double Eleven top ten beauty brands list. This shift may be attributed to negative consumer sentiments toward Japanese brands following the Fukushima nuclear-contaminated water discharge. Starting from July this year, China’s cosmetic imports from Japan saw a significant decline, down over 30% YoY, 16% YoY, and 25% YoY in July, August, and September, respectively.
In contrast, Chinese domestic beauty brands performed exceptionally well during this year's Double Eleven Shopping Festival, challenging the longstanding international dominance. Proya claimed the top spot, marking the first time in six years that a Chinese beauty brand secured the top position. In addition, the top five also included the Winona which marked the brand's seventh consecutive year in the top 10 and a remarkable debut in the top five. Furthermore, in the top 20 skincare list, we can also see the presence of several Chinese brands including Chando, Confime, and Quadha
In the makeup category, Yves Saint Laurent claimed the top position. In the second place, Timage under Proya Group surpassed international counterparts to secure the position with an impressive growth of 98%. This marked Timage 's debut in such a high-ranking position. It's noteworthy that the impact of the Austin Li livestreaming incident affected Florasis' ranking, but the brand demonstrated resilience by maintaining a position within the top nine.
In the perfume category, international perfume brands dominated the top 20, with only one Chinese brand, Boitown, at the 19th position. Notably, niche perfumes showcased significant competitive advantages, with brands like Maison Margiela, Byredo, Diptyque, Penhaligon's, L'Artisan Parfumeur, Creed securing leading positions.
Unlike the landscape on Tmall, the dynamic on JD.com revealed a continued dominance of international brands. The top three positions were occupied by L'Oréal, Lancôme, and Estée Lauder. Proya stood as the only Chinese brand in this ranking, claiming the fourth position.
Douyin ranked the first among the live-streaming e-commerce platforms. Data shows that the total GMV of beauty products on Douyin reached 21.52 billion yuan, with a YoY growth of 38.87%. Last year, the threshold for brands entering the top 20 list was set at 50 million yuan, while this year, the threshold increased to 100 million yuan, with top four brands achieved GMV exceeding 500 million yuan.
Proya maintained its dominance in the top 20 skincare brand list, achieving a remarkable growth rate of over 300%. Following closely, Kans secured the second spot with an impressive growth of over 700%. The exceptional performance of these two brands can be attributed to their strategic presence on the Douyin platform. Proya strategically utilized account matrix for brand’s self-hosted live-streaming, through which they targeted consumers more precisely. Kans’ growth was driven by short video campaigns in collaboration with influencers. Actually, Kans has been employing this strategic approach this year, which has enabled this brand to frequently clinch the top position in Douyin's beauty sector. According to the financial report of Kans’ parent company, the Douyin channel played a pivotal role in propelling Kans' sales, registering a remarkable surge of 70.3% in the first half of 2023.
It is noteworthy that international brands are increasingly emphasizing the Douyin channel. Brands such as L'Oréal, Estée Lauder, and La Mer maintained a relatively stable presence on the list, while Lancôme and HR saw a significant rise in their rankings. However, South Korean beauty brands experienced a decline. Whoo and Sulwhasoo reported negative growth, with Whoo dropping from first to eighth place and Sulwhasoo falling beyond the top 50 rankings.
In the makeup category, Chinese domestic brands secured seven out of the top 10 positions. Among them, emerging brands including Timage and FunnyElves demonstrated robust momentum. Of particular notice is top one brand VC, a white-label brand on Douyin. Like many other Douyin white-label brands, VC has gained huge exposure on the platform in a short period through celebrity endorsements and continuous live-streaming across multiple accounts. While white-label brands experience rapid growth and capture huge attention, they face apparent challenges such as exaggerated marketing, heavy reliance on a single live-streaming channel, and inadequate after-sales service. It remains to be seen whether these brands can adapt and evolve in the long run.
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