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On London’s Harley Street, a center of excellence in cosmetic surgery, the Zoom Boom keeps rolling. It’s the name of the surge in demand for cosmetic treatments triggered by the fact that we’re all spending so much time on video calls, with our own thoughts watching us. As of 2020, as the pandemic spreads globally, it shows no signs of slowing down.
Many of these treatments are small-scale, minimally invasive procedures often referred to as “adjustments.” A new emphasis on clinical expertise is highly valued by consumers, and in turn, beauty brands are reworking and repositioning products and marketing accordingly.
“Consumer desire for a natural beauty product at any cost is dissipating,” says Ransley Carpio, investor and managing partner at beauty incubator Patina. “There has been a maturation of the push from pure natural to a new emphasis on results and efficacy.”
The worlds of skin care and aesthetic clinics may have been somewhat siloed in the past, but there is a lot of overlap now. Brands are looking to capitalize on the intersection as more beauty customers walk through the doors of clinics and seek advice from credentialed experts, with heightened expectations for what skincare can do for them .
According to the company, income from the clinic of Dr David Jack, a cosmetic doctor, jumped 50% after the end of the first pandemic lockdown in the UK. Its staff maintained a waiting list to respond to new patient requests. “There has been a big rebound in beauty services. People can’t wait to see a professional again,” notes Lauren Leibrandt, head of beauty and wellness investment banking at Baird, lead underwriters in beauty chain European Wax’s billion-dollar IPO. Center in 2021.
The clinic as a workshop
It is a rapidly changing landscape. “The language and perception of professional or medical-grade skincare has been quite stuffy and clinical in the past, but the field is ripe for disruption,” says Dr. Jack of his eponymous skincare line. “On social media, I do a lot of treatment education and how good skincare is the foundational step that should be the start of any kind of aesthetic journey.”
As more and more young consumers visit clinics for treatments, the clinicians they encounter may end up becoming hugely influential salespeople, whether they know it or not. Clinics are responding to demand by strengthening their customer service and emphasizing accessibility. “These establishments are becoming so much less intimidating,” says Katie Thomas, who heads the Kearney Consumer Institute, a consumer insights think tank.