Skin sensors are routinely used in the cosmetics industry, playing essential roles in studies of safety and efficacy. However, despite the importance of and public focus on skin health and appearance, skin sensor technologies have rarely spilled over into wider use by the public. For example, though consumers moisturize their skin, and some even use anti-wrinkle cream, few people utilize moisture sensors to measure their skin hydration, nor do they measure changes in their wrinkles. With the shrinking of electronics and the advancement of smartphones and smartphone cameras, the availability of skin sensors is now spreading.
Digital disruption has reached the cosmetics industry, and companies are seeking ways to augment or even replace their retail counters with digital solutions. This process has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has already forced the closure of retailers, spas, etc. for several months. While online sales can bridge some of the gap, there is still a long way to go - traditionally, less than 10% of sales in the cosmetic industry come from online. To drive online sales, software services such as virtual try-on and skin analysis have been developed to provide similar education and product recommendation services of a brick and mortar store. Such technologies have been demonstrated to increase conversion rates and basket sizes.
Skin sensors for analysis of moisture, wrinkles, sebum, color, etc. can take many different forms such as cameras, probes, smart mirrors, films, facial imaging booths, smart phone accessories, and more.
In tandem with digitization comes the demand for personalization. Consumers are increasingly dissatisfied with existing skin analysis solutions and look to electronics, gadgets, and even genetic tests to provide quantifiable results using scientific measurements. Furthermore, an emerging trend is hyper-personalized skin care, which can range between bespoke bottles formulated for a specific person, daily customized skin care based on current skin condition and local weather, to 3D face masks that address specific problem areas on the face. Such products invariably rely on skin sensors to measure parameters such as skin moisture, wrinkles, sebum, elasticity, redness, dark spots, and more to provide the necessary data for personalization.
To stay ahead of the curve in the highly competitive cosmetics market, information and insights are required. Results gathered during clinical trials are difficult to replicate in the real world, and often lead to disappointed customers. Skin sensors play a crucial role here - both in helping the consumer quantify changes that are imperceptible to the naked eye, but also with the possibility of sending valuable data back into research and development for the next generation of products.
Technologies covered in this report
This report focuses on the skin parameters typically measured for the cosmetics industry and assesses the range of skin sensor technologies used to analyse them. Techniques range from gold standard techniques used in the laboratory to modifications used by companies to bring the technology to the consumer, to future skin sensors. IDTechEx has analyzed the technologies sued by over 36 players in the skin sensor market, focusing on the following parameters:
- Skin hydration/moisture
- Wrinkles, fine lines, pores
- Sebum, including acne
- Color, including dark spots, redness and overall skin tone
- Skin elasticity/firmness
Technologies profiled in the report include:
- 3D photography
- UV light
- Multispectral imaging
- Genetic testing
While the report does not focus on medical applications, it does include a chapter on the emerging field of AI in skin cancer diagnosis.
Players, markets, and forecasts in this report
The report provides an overview of players in the skin sensors market and breaks down into target segments:
- Research & development
- Marketing in retail settings
- Marketing in the consumer home
IDTechEx conducted primary research and profiled 16 companies developing skin sensors across the 3 applications. While R&D players stay comfortable in their niche with capability to deliver in retail settings, companies focusing on retail and consumer home settings are diversifying and creating innovative new technologies and business models.
With the changing landscape around the world, the market for skin sensors for the cosmetics industry is set to experience rapid growth in the next few years. This report presents a 10-year market forecast from 2020 to 2030 of the skin sensors in cosmetics market, with breakdown into R&D, marketing, and consumer applications.