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Report: HBC Spending by Ethnic Consumers Hits $1.5 Million

New York - General, rather than ethnic-specific, product appeal is the key to growth in the ethnic cosmetics and beauty care market, according to a new report from market research publisher Packaged Facts, "The U.S. Market for Ethnic Cosmetics, Hair Care, and Beauty Products."

Marketing efforts such as celebrity endorsements of general HBC products aimed at ethnic audiences is becoming more frequent in hopes of tapping the $1.9 trillion spending power of U.S. Asians, African-Americans, and Hispanics.

Rethinking the way health and beauty products are marketed comes after research indicates that general-use products, like Unilever's Suave shampoo, are top choices among ethnic consumers, rather than ethnic-specific brands.

Currently the market for ethnic-specific health and beauty products is stagnant and valued at $1.5 billion, a 1.3 percent decrease over 2002 sales. Purchases of general-use health and beauty products by ethnic consumers are valued at $6 billion, posting a slight rise of 1.1 percent over 2002.

"Growth in the ethnic HBC market will have to come through nontraditional ways," said Don Montuori, acquisitions editor for Packaged Facts. "Companies will need to extend mainstream product lines to attract ethnic consumers.
But they shouldn't abandon niche positioning, such as launching products for Hispanic-Americans or developing more natural product lines for African-Americans that are not reliant on harsh chemicals."
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