The beauty industry has been in flux for the last several years, as consumers’ priorities shift to skincare and a more natural look. Now, with everyone either overworked or in quarantine, you’d think that makeup sales would be falling fast. But people are still buying beauty products.

Some companies like the French cosmetic giants L'Oreal ($EPA:OR) and Sephora ($EPA:MC) are utilizing virtual try-on apps. L'Oreal — the world’s largest cosmetics company, which owns dozens of skincare, perfume, makeup, and hair-care brands — saw first-quarter sales in China increase 6.4% from the same period last year. 

Global sales fell 4.8% over the three months to March, but the company is predicting huge post-quarantine sales and surging business for L'Oreal hair salons in Europe and America. But there’s no shortage of social media engagement.

Since the start of quarantine, more people have been posting about their favorite beauty brands. L'Oreal’s Facebook mentions peaked at 2,130 this month, an increase of over 3,000% from March. Late last month, the company announced its COVID-19 relief and recovery plans, including mask and personal care product donations.

Hair-care and skin-care brands from L'Oreal and Estee Lauder ($EL) have been gaining the most attention on social media. Facebook mentions of Redken, Bumble & Bumble, Aveda, and Origins all spiked in April.

Everyday makeup brands Maybelline and Clinique have slumped since March. Clinique’s Facebook mentions fell 41%, Maybelline’s dropped 142%.

Interestingly, MAC, Too Faced, and Urban Decay — cosmetic brands known for their bold offerings — have experienced rising engagement. Too Faced’s Facebook mentions have increased 72% just this month.

Despite stay-at-home orders, people are still primping before their bed-to-couch commutes— whether you're applying lipstick for a Zoom call, trying out a bold eye for TikTok, or just chilling on the couch in a face mask.

About the Data:

Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales. 

Further Reading: 

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