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UAE lifestyle: Beauty with a conscience

Khaleej Times logo Khaleej Times 1 day ago Purva Grover
UAE lifestyle: Beauty with a conscience © Provided by Khaleej Times UAE lifestyle: Beauty with a conscience

You and I, both, have apparently not only increasingly become concerned about our natural skin, but the planet too. And let's admit it, both can all do with some deep breathing, right? To start with, does your skin need to breathe? Yes! We are essentially speaking of using products that don't clog the pores, cleansing sensibly, and cutting down the make-up. Less is more and healthy skin begins with minimal skincare. The good news is that not only are we now adapting to simpler cleaning routines, but also bending heavily towards organic, natural products; experts and brands point out.

"We should keep in mind that skin health is important, and we should care for it like any other body organ. As people are becoming more educated about skincare, they know what works and doesn't work. It's about skincare priorities," shares Sonal Sachdev, director of strategic planning at Leader Healthcare Group. So how do you start looking after your skin? Foremost pay heed to words of wisdom by Sarah Gardner, head of beauty, Lifestyle, i.e. it is important to remember that one size does not fit all. Choose products according to your skin type. She adds that if skincare is new to you then a three-step process is recommended in the morning and evening: cleanse your face, use an antioxidants serum, and finally a moisturiser with SPF protection.

Indeed, the trend now is about keeping it basic, opting for simpler skincare routines, for we may have realised that healthy glowing skin can be achieved without spending a lot of time and money on wasteful products. We're knowledge-savvy and clearly vocal about our demands from the skincare industry. Nisha Ganapathy, group product manager, DermoViva, Dabur International, points out how consumers are more aware and actively seeking information from various sources. "They read up on the ingredients, search online for toxicity, effects, benefits and their impact on the environment."

Interestingly, Abhish Chandhok, general manager marketing, The Himalaya Drug Company, points out how even search engine data reveals that searches for combinations like 'natural ingredients for skincare', 'DIY skincare', and 'stay at home beauty regime' has gone up substantially. "The pandemic shook up everything that was considered essential. It was a break for people to let their skin breathe. Limiting beauty routines to only a handful of skincare products and letting the skin breathe to flaunt natural beauty, is a trend that the world is catching on; with even celebrities endorsing simpler beauty regimes and social media accelerating its reach. More consumers from not just the UAE but globally are taking up simplicity. Layers of foundation is gone and consumers are opting for beauty care products that enhance the natural glow."

So, can we safely conclude that the Middle East beauty-conscious are also green champions? Manju Choudhary, managing director, Radiant Splendorous Mothers (RSM) International and distributor for Mamaearth, MEA region, speaks of market trends, "In the Middle East, the beauty consumers are more aware of the need to use natural cosmetics and maintain a healthier skin care regimen. We see this growing preference to a more health-conscious mindset among consumers, especially after Covid-19." Here's to being woke to the skin and planet then.


• Cleanse your face. Your cleanser should ideally incorporate a balance of bio-nutrients and antioxidants.

• Invest in a good moisturiser, one with healing antioxidants with vitamin B5, hyaluronic acid.

• Protect early skin aging with a good SPF, which is important in our part of the region.

• Lastly, don't forget to take care of your hair.

Tips courtesy Sonal Sachdev, director of strategic planning at Leader Healthcare Group

"Statistics reveal that at least 54% of the female millennial population in the Middle East has embraced a cleaner and basic approach towards beauty needs. Not just clean cosmetics and skincare products, but consumers are inclined towards using fresh ingredients from their kitchen in DIY skincare hacks. It only suggests that the consumers are consciously demanding products that do good to the skin whilst taking care of the planet."

Nisha Ganapathy, group product manager, DermoViva, Dabur International

"In the UAE, many are getting interested in sustainable and ethical practices. In the Middle East and Africa, organic cosmetics are becoming a popular choice among users, with the market estimated to reach USD 5 billion in value by 2022. UAE is one of the key markets of these products where consumers are discerning the importance of using organic and ethically sourced cosmetics."

Manju Choudhary, managing director, Radiant Splendorous Mothers (RSM) International and distributor for Mamaearth, MEA region

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