The beauty industry encompasses sales of cosmetics, perfume, and products for skin and hair care. Beauty salons and spas are considered the service sector of the beauty industry. In addition, some economists include health clubs and cosmetic surgery in their definition of the market.
Worldwide sales of beauty-related products and services are estimated to be in excess of $159 billion US dollars (USD) each year. Most research shows that sales to women account for a huge majority of the sum.
According to business analysts, the best-selling beauty products are products that clean and beautify hair. Hair care is estimated to bring in nearly $40 billion USD each year. Other leading products of the beauty industry are related to skin care and cosmetics. Skin care is estimated to generate sales of about $23 billion USD yearly, which includes purchases of moisturizers and anti-aging ointments. Cosmetics are estimated to bring in about $18 billion USD each year.
Cosmetic surgery was once considered rare, because the procedures were so expensive and very few consumers could afford them. In addition, in the early days of plastic surgery, there was a bit of social stigma attached to those who went under the knife, and many people who had procedures were very secretive about it. Cosmetic surgery is now fairly common and is a huge part of the beauty industry, with walk-in clinics available for a wide variety of procedures.
The beauty industry has very deep roots in history. Some of the earliest records of man include some type of body adornment. Throughout history, people have sought ways to make themselves more noticeable and more beautiful. The main thing that seems to constantly change is how different cultures define human beauty. The beauty industry has been a natural outgrowth of the human need to improve their looks, based on modern perceptions of beauty.
Achieving beauty is not just about vanity. Studies show that the more attractive a person is, the more likely he or she is to be successful. Good looks give people a head start in most areas of life, including business and relationships. Good-looking people usually have an easier time finding a job, and in many cases, beauty can play a role in earning potential. In most cultures, women are expected to be attractive, while men are often forgiven their looks, and this may be why women account for the huge majority of sales within the beauty industry.