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The New Meaning of Beauty

November 17, 2022

New Research from Cassandra Uncovers Gen Z’s Views on the New Meaning of Beauty

Research reveals that 63% of Gen Z believe that their generation is pushing back on outdated beauty standards

NEW YORK, November 17th 2022 – The latest research report, The Fresh Face of Self-Expression, released by Cassandra, Big Village’s insights and strategy group that studies trendsetting young consumers, unveils new findings around Gen Z’s notion of beauty standards and how the beauty industry is evolving. Today’s youth reject a “traditional” concept of beauty to be more inclusive, with 76% of respondents agreeing that society’s beauty standards have evolved to include more races, ethnicities, and genders.

“Just as they have pushed back on ‘tradition’ in so many different ways, Gen Z is also pushing back on conventional ideas of beauty, grooming, and appearance,” said Kathy Sheehan, Senior Vice President, Cassandra. “For today’s younger consumers, beauty is much more fluid and driven by how they want to feel and be perceived, not what others think of them.”

Favoring realness over mimicking runway trends, 62% of Gen Z agree that their beauty routine is primarily about how they want to see themselves. Redefining beauty standards, Gen Z is focused on being authentic and are engaging with beauty content that mentions nonbinary, transgender, and gender fluidity. The report also finds that 77% of nonbinary and trans youth would rather purchase gender-neutral beauty and grooming products. Social media has helped with this culture shift, with the hashtag #GenderFluid garnering 7.3 billion viewers on TikTok, where users produce and share personal stories of self-discovery.

Additional key findings include:

  • 87% of nonbinary and trans youth agree that Gender specific beauty/grooming products are just a way to charge more money for the same products.

  • 57% of Gen Z men consider their beauty and wellness routine to be a part of their mental health practice.

  • 69% of today’s youth agree that the beauty and grooming industry should show greater diversity and inclusion in their advertising.

  • 69% of youth today agree that the beauty and grooming industry needs to make their products in a more sustainable way.

  • 80% of U.S. Trendsetters have bought at least one luxury beauty/grooming product in the last year.

The Fresh Face of Self-Expression report was crafted through a quantitative survey fielded in both the U.S. and UK. Cassandra interviewed a nationally representative sample of 1,020 U.S. youth aged 14 to 34 based on age, gender, ethnicity, and region, and 551 UK youth in the same age range, also nationally representative based on age, gender, and region. Additionally, Cassandra surveyed 500 Trendsetters between the ages of 14 and 34 across the U.S. and UK. For more information, visit https://cassandra.co.

About Cassandra by Big Village

Cassandra is the foremost authority on Millennial, Gen Z, and Gen Alpha research focusing on emerging trends, generational insights, and youth behavior. Cassandra is an insights and cultural strategy group within Big Village, a global advertising, technology, and data company. As the leading experts on young consumers and the cultural forces shaping their lives for nearly 20 years, Cassandra empowers companies to See Tomorrow™. Find out more at https://cassandra.co