Despite people reigning in their spending this year in response to the pandemic, it hasn’t stopped us splurging on our beauty routines.
While we’ve cut back hugely on cosmetics such as lipsticks and foundations, we spent big on skincare in 2020.
Myer had a whopping 600 per cent rise year-on-year in skincare purchases while online cosmetic store Adore Beauty had sales of items such as face masks skyrocket.
But as shoppers ditched make-up in favour of skin-nourishing products, it didn’t stop them hunting out a hard bargain, landing them at the (virtual) doorstep of The Ordinary, the affordable brand owned by skincare giant Deciem.
According to conversation analysts Exploding Topics, searches for the “dirt cheap” beauty brand were up 1380% in 5 years.
A graph shared by the experts shows a huge surge of that traffic in 2020, as savvy-shoppers looked for “no frills” skincare options in the midst of a pandemic-induced recession.
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Nicola Kilner, CEO and Co-Founder of The Ordinary, said it was “exciting” to be acknowledged as an exploding topic, crediting the brand’s long-running pricing transparency.
“When we launched in 2017 our founder Brandon Truaxe set out to bring integrity and transparency to an industry traditionally plagued with false advertising and overly priced commodity ingredients,” she told news.com.au
“We disrupted the market by doing everything others did not and we definitely did not expect the popularity that followed.”
She also believes the monumental rise in interest online was down to social media platform TikTok, calling it a “huge contributor”.
“The great thing about TikTok and the Gen Z community is their commitment to uncurated content. If it works they tell their audiences honestly and transparently through video,” Nicola said.
“When the results are visual and uncurated, viewers are more likely to align themselves to the product. This spike in social conversation has a knock-on effect for other products in our offering due to their honest formulations, at honest prices.”
TikTok user @kaelynwhitee caused a frenzy for The Ordinary’s AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution, after sharing her incredible results when she used it to treat her acne earlier this year.
Though the product isn’t available in Australia as the TGA class the solution as pharmaceutical-grade meaning it can only be admistered by professionals, it’s an example of the brand’s “explosive growth” in 2020.
Nicola said The Ordinary sells a beauty product globally every second and during April and May, Deciem had the “most success in financials since our inception in 2013”.
“When COVID hit, a lot of people lost their jobs or were on JobKeeper and therefore finances were tighter in some situations then they had been before.
“Audiences looked to us to offer honestly priced products that are effective.”
The cult-brand – which is stocked in Priceline and on Adore Beauty in Australia – has huge success with its acid based products such as the Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution ($14.50). Other glycolic acid based products – a chemical exfoliant that gently dissolves dead skin – can sell for as much as $150 with some leading brands.
On Twitter there are thousands of tweets labelling the brand’s “cheap” products “amazing”.