Why Mother’s Day Could Be Particularly Big For Beauty This Year
On Sunday, Beryl Solomon doesn’t simply want a card or cute drawing to mark Mother’s Day.
“Hey, partner or kids, if you are online, make some of that online time about me. I don’t want a big gift, but I want you to make the effort of purchasing something,” says the mom of 5-year-old and 7-year-old boys. “As moms, we are the primary caretaker, and we especially are during this time. Maybe more than ever we expect a little something for Mother’s Day and aren’t willing to let it go with the obligatory card because we feel we’re working our asses off.”
Solomon is working her ass off running CBD e-tailer Poplar as well as her home, and her Mother Day’s desires as she juggles it all are translating into what she’s selling to her customers. Poplar is spotlighting four sets for the occasion priced from $50 to $145 to cater to a range of budgets and recipients. They’re not only for spouses to give to their wives or children to give to their moms, but for moms to give to their mom friends or themselves to ease the strain of being cooped up with small monsters. The approach is paying off.
“We are up double digits, which, in this time period, wasn’t expected,” says Solomon. “I think that’s because moms are buying for themselves. They’re saying OK, ‘I haven’t gotten my manicure or pedicure, so I can spend $75 on a tincture, and I hope it makes me feel better.’”
Mother’s Day, the classic contrived Hallmark holiday, is much less Hallmark-y this year. The creator of Mother’s Day, activist Anna Jarvis, who decried its commercialization, might be inspired by what’s happening. There’s genuine meaning behind gift-giving as family and friends of mothers—and mothers themselves—turn to gifts to honor mothers for their gallant pandemic domestic labor and provide a bit of a break. Many gift givers will be sending gifts to mothers they aren’t able to be with in person, imbuing them with unparalleled emotional gravity.
“We expect a little something for Mother’s Day and aren’t willing to let it go with the obligatory card because we feel we’re working our asses off.”
The heightened importance of Mother’s Day is apparent in consumer data. In a survey of 8,294 adults in the United States, the National Retail Federation discovered 80% of respondents are planning to participate, and they’re shelling out an average of $205 on Mother’s Day gifts, $8 above last year’s spending. Consumers under the age of 25 years old are boosting their Mother’s Day outlay by almost $40. NRF explains they’re “looking for new, creative ways to show mom they care. That includes things like treating mom to a ‘spa day at home’ with her favorite nail polish.”
“It’s going to be bigger this year than it ever has been from a commercial perspective and a cultural perspective. People are really focused on family,” says Natalie Mackey, CEO of Glow Concept, owner of cosmetics brand Winky Lux, which has seen online sales lift 20% heading into the holiday. In a typical year, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day sales have been roughly equivalent for Winky Lux. This year, Mackey predicts Mother’s Day sales will surpass Valentine’s Day sales. At makeup brand True + Luscious, Mother’s Day sales have jumped 200% from last year. CEO Mehir Sethi says, “People are looking to connect through gifts more than ever.”
In the recent past, beauty products haven’t been particularly prominent for Mother’s Day gifting. Rather than fragrance, a traditional Mother’s Day standard, consumers largely opted for outings, electronics, jewelry and flowers. However, this year, spending on outings is unsurprisingly down. According to NRF’s survey, 55% of consumers planned to take moms on outings for Mother’s Day last year. This year, the figure dipped to 46%. Beauty products could gain the dollars shifting away from outings. Fragrances, though, impacted by stores closures are unlikely to pick up steam. Rather, skincare, bath and body care, and nail merchandise have increasingly been moving into Mother’s Day gift givers’ online shopping carts.
Color Camp launched At-Home Super Gels two weeks ago and, in its first week of availability, it generated sales akin to the amount Color Camp generates in a week of operations at one of its two locations. The nail salon concept has assembled a $99 Mother’s Day bundle, too. Since March 13, body care brand Esker’s sales have risen 300%. The brand offers sets with a body oil, body wash and dry brush that, at $98, are $23 cheaper than if customers buy the products individually. Founder Shannon Davenport notes women have been gifting the sets to their female besties for Mother’s Day. Esker has also just introduced a Soothing Belly Oil and Uplifting Belly Oil aimed at pregnant women. Nearly 38 weeks pregnant with her second child, Davenport believes moms-to-be are receiving special Mother’s Day attention this year.
“It’s going to be bigger this year than it ever has been from a commercial perspective and a cultural perspective.”
“People have been checking in on me and thinking of me more now than the first time around when I was just living life,” she says. “If you do have a pregnant woman in your life, it’s a really good chance to send them some extra love and support because it’s stressful, bizarre and not ideal.”
Brands are changing up marketing, messaging and charitable initiatives to suit the significance of the moment. Winky Lux is personalizing Mother’s Day by sharing conversations between its employees and their mothers about beauty products on its digital platforms. Deodorant brand Kinkō and skincare brand Ranavat are enabling customers to customize notes that come with gifts of their products. Intimate wellness company Rosebud Woman is donating a portion of sales from purchases made on its website through Mother’s Day to One Heart Worldwide’s efforts to help pregnant women and newborns in low-resource environments.
Rachel Daugherty, founder of CBD skincare brand Fine Healing Goods, points out women entrepreneurs have banded together to drive business. She mentioned her brand has been in six Mother’s Day gift guides. For example, Mother Nutrient, a women’s ingestible brand started by nutrition consultant Mirelle Leguia, put together a gift guide featuring Fine Healing Goods. Haircare brand Allyoos is taking part in a Mother’s Day giveaway with seven emerging brands helmed by women, including Glowe and Kate McLeod. Daugherty says, “Women-owned brands are really shouting out for each other.”
This year, most women aren’t letting Mother’s Day pass by without notice, whether it’s to back women-led companies or make sure they maintain their mental and physical health as the pandemic rages on. Solomon says, “The last people we look out for is ourselves, but we know that, in 2020, if we don’t care for ourselves, we aren’t going to be there for our kids or partners.”
- Americans are spending more this year on Mother’s Day gifts. In a survey of 8,294 adults in the United States, the National Retail Federation discovered respondents are shelling out an average of $205 on Mother’s Day gifts, $8 above last year’s spending.
- Mother’s Day gifting this year is particularly meaningful because many people can't visit their mothers in person. In addition, mothers are being celebrated at a time in which they’re carrying a heavy burden of domestic labor with children home from school.
- In recent years, outings such as brunches have become common Mother’s Day gifts. With spending on outings decreasing this year, beauty products have the ability to pick up Mother’s Day dollars. Also, because moms aren’t getting to their nail, haircare and facial appointments, spouses and children may be interested in sending them products to try to replicate beauty services at home. Nail product kits have been particularly popular.
- Fragrance, a beauty industry Mother's Day staple, isn't the focus this year. With stores closed, fragrance buying has been depressed.
- Beauty brands are seeing online sales spike during the Mother’s Day shopping period. For example, clean color cosmetics brand True + Luscious’s sales are up 200% from last year. Since March 13, body care brand Esker’s sales have risen 300%.
- Mother’s Day marketing has shifted to be relevant to the moment. Brand founders and employees are letting customers in on what their moms are like. Women-led brands are also teaming up to support each other’s businesses with giveaways and gift guide features.
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