Beauty insights fromYouGov SixthSense

Imogen Matthews


Written by Imogen Matthews. Find out more about Imogen




A new report from YouGov (better known as political pollsters) reveals some fascinating facts about UK women’s attitudes and purchasing of beauty products.

Who uses fake tan?

The beauty pages and blogs are full of the latest in fake tanning products, but who actually uses them?  YouGov reports that only a tiny 4% of women use fake tan regularly throughout the year. Even fewer, 3%, go to a professional salon for a spray tan.

The reason? I’m sure it’s because many women are put off by the unpleasant after smell (caused by the chemical DHA that gives skin a ‘tan’) and unpredictable results.

But it’s not all bad news for fake tan brands. According to YouGov SixthSense, women under 24 use them before a holiday or in early summer (as a kickstart to getting a tan). They also use fake tan throughout the year, reflecting the fact that young women like to go bare-legged when dressing up for a night out.

Mascara is the handbag essential
Times might be tough, but most women interviewed for the report regard make-up as an affordable beauty essential.
The handbag must-have is mascara, worn by 1 in 2 women every day.

Foundation is up there too
Almost as many women wear foundation as mascara, particularly the under 40s. So how come most foundation brands target older skins?

Younger women are sophisticated in their choice of foundation, looking for specific textures and effects. They also want long-lasting formulations as well as skincare benefits.

Natural formulations

YouGov reveals that almost 1 in 4 women look for natural ingredients in make-up. I can only think of a few mineral make-up brands that tick that box (eg Bare Escentuals). Isn’t it time more make-up brands started to manufacture natural formulations and give women what they really want?

The Beauty Market Report is the first in a series of new online reports launched by YouGov SixthSense that claim to deliver ten times the amount of insight of traditional research reports.