There seems to have been a surge in health and wellness entering into the beauty sphere. Businesses traditionally focused on beauty have begun exploring the health and wellness sphere. It’s not uncommon for publications such as Cosmo or Marie Claire to publish articles with a focus on health and wellness. With this emphasis on health, the lines between beauty and health are becoming blurred, but why?
Healthy inside and out
While traditional beauty was focused on the exterior appearance of individuals, there has been a movement in recent years for inside beauty.
Beauty that goes more than just skin deep. Promotion of good mental and gut health are just two areas this can be seen in. There seems to be a desire for not just external beauty, but an emphasis on the beauty that comes from within.
This cultural shift is coupled with an increased understanding between internal health issues and external symptoms. People understand that some external beauty concerns can be caused by internal health issues. Such as dermatitis being caused by an allergy or bloating is caused by food intolerance.
Consumers may not always realise this connection and may approach the beauty industry for a resolution to what they have identified as a problem. The beauty industry has therefore played a role in the education of people that some issues need the assistance of healthcare to be properly resolved.
The beauty industry certainly has a role to play in the healthcare space, with consumers approaching them with what are in many cases, healthcare needs.
Expert engagement and education
To address this need, beauty companies will often consider the content they produce. Company’s such as ‘Now to Love’ (which produce the magazine’s Women’s Day and Good Health) recently produced articles ‘Is it healthier to have low fat or full fat milk in your coffee?’ and ‘This expert says managing your mental health in self-isolation comes down to three strategies’. Likewise, Marie Claire recently published ‘How To Reduce The Appearance Of 'Tech Neck' Wrinkles, According To A Dermatologist’.
These articles all rely on health practitioners advising readers on a healthcare issue. In a sense, this positions these beauty magazines in the position of intermediary and educator on these issues. The reader is getting access to healthcare information, via the beauty industry.
This once again shifts the line between the role of the beauty industry. Consumers are approaching them with concerns, which they are providing a level of information and advice on.
Changing the trust balance
In the past, the beauty industry has been heavily critiqued for promoting methods of obtaining beauty standards that were unhealthy. There seems to be an emphasis from companies on changing how they are perceived.
Emphasis on promoting good health may be a part of this. Having articles that are endorsed by healthcare professionals provides readers with a sense of trust. The endorsement from healthcare providers can influence readers to be more trusting of that publication, and by extension, the beauty products it promotes.
A similar thing can be seen to have occurred with the beauty industry and the emphasis on ‘clean beauty’. Producing beauty products that are ethically and environmentally sustainably produced is the new standard. The beauty industry is making efforts to recover from the criticism they have received in the past and make consumers trust them.
Is this bad? Not necessarily. The beauty industry is engaging with the health sphere in new ways, mostly because of the demand from consumers. There’s an opportunity fora broader education of consumers, with ease of access to information. But that needs to be tempered by healthcare professionals to engage with the beauty industry and provide accurate, helpful information to people.
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