Masculinity is getting a makeover.
- Nearly a quarter of men say they plan to start prioritizing self-care more, with over 40% of Gen Z men claiming they would love to be gifted a spa day.
- The men’s skincare market is outpacing women’s by more than 8% in the UK.
- Today, some of the biggest influencers in beauty are men, boasting millions of followers and selling out of 15,000 lipsticks in 15 minutes.
Bullish on brotox. The shift is only beginning. Men contribute to less than 1% of the $532B global beauty industry market, but they’re caring more and more about their appearance.
“The men’s skincare business is not keeping pace with evolving cultural attitudes regarding gender and beauty,” asserts Brandon Palas, founder of Beau D.
Seeing the opportunity, a new wave of male beauty startups are betting big, taking grooming beyond the DTC razors wave of the mid-2010s:
- Former pro baseball player Alex Rodriguez partnered with Hims & Hers to develop a makeup line for men — he unveiled his first product in May, a “Blur Stick” concealer.
- Pangaea Holdings, parent company of men’s Korean-based skincare brand Lumin, raised $68M in July.
- Men’s personal care brand Hawthorne is expanding from DTC into wholesale, partnering with Nordstrom after completing its $12M Series B.
- In June, cosmetic giant Estée Lauder led a $3M seed funding round for Faculty, a male-oriented nail polish brand.
- Men’s skincare company Disco closed $5M in seed funding this April.
Redefining beauty. Of note, male makeup brands are up against centuries of gender stigma. Helping increase inclusivity, Bulldog Skincare recently partnered with digital beauty tech company Revieve. Explaining the motive behind the move, CEO Sampo Parkkinen noted:
“[For men], the barrier to going into the store and having a discussion and dialogue with that beauty advisor is quite high…[Revieve is] a very easy, low-barrier way to start understanding their skin and what’s impacting it.”
There’s a mental health aspect to it as well. Danny Gray, founder of men’s makeup brand War Paint, opened up the “world’s first men’s makeup store” in London this summer. Gray says he wants to help men normalize “using products and tools to help them feel more confident” and support opening up more about mental health.
Up next, genderless makeup will blur beauty norms even further, with brands like Malin + Goetz, We Are Fluide, and Milk Makeup leading the way. This past week, Pharrell Williams’ genderless skincare line Humanrace launched into bodycare.
Punchline: Beauty routines are starting to become a subset of wellness. Driven by lockdowns, more and more consumers are looking to their skincare routines as a way to nurture well-being — and male makeup brands think that anyone, regardless of gender, should be able to participate.