Can You Sense the Market Shifting? 2022 Predictions for Sensory Attributes in Cleansers

Can You Sense the Market Shifting? 2022 Predictions for Sensory Attributes in Cleansers

You might be asking yourself, “What’s a sensory attribute?” Sensory attributes are the characteristics of a luxury cosmetic product detectable by the five senses, such as appearance, texture, smell, and so on. Put simply, if you can feel it, see it, or smell it, it’s a sensory attribute. 

The team here at Simporter used our White Space AI tool to analyze 34 luxury cleanser sensory attributes to forecast what will be trending in 2022. 

How to Make Sense of the Data

The graphic below breaks down the ten cleanser sensory attributes we believe possess the highest and lowest potential for growth in 2022. Cleanser sensory attribute opportunity scores are determined by looking at both share of voice (a leading indicator of market share) and year-over-year growth rate.

Let’s dive into our 2022 winners and losers list. 

and grease, so products like this should be a big hit in this category.

Consumers will want their skin to feel perfectly hydrated but won’t cross over into greasy territory. It goes without saying — nobody wants to feel greasy — so products that explicitly note they’re Non-Greasy will win with tomorrow’s consumers.  


cleansers - smooth

Now to our first loser on this list. 

2022 won’t be an excellent year for Smooth cleansers, which we’ve predicted will decline 35.55 percent. Smooth refers to both the texture of the cleanser itself and its ability to help rough and bumpy skin feel soft. Even though 2022’s buying power will live in the hands of Gen Z, they won’t be talking about Smooth cleansers and will instead pick up Full Coverage or Non-Greasy products. 


cleansers - gentle

Our AI models predict Gentle cleansers will decline 30.18 percent next year. Gentle sounds approachable and inviting, but it’s a relatively meaningless term since there’s no definition of what “Gentle” actually means. While this Glossier cleanser is an excellent option for consumers with sensitive skin, it doesn’t mean much to the average consumer and won’t drive sales on the label alone. 

Consumers won’t have time or interest in using products with loose claims such as Gentle, so they’ll opt for products boasting more substantial claims next year.


cleansers - calming

Calm is another Sensory Attribute destined to have a bumpy ride in 2022. With a 0.76 percent share of voice, we expect a negative growth rate of 47.83 percent next year. Options like Honest’s Calm On Foaming Cream Cleanser will struggle to gain favor among younger buyers who, again, want more direct and honest claims on their cosmetic products.

Fresh Feeling

cleansers - fresh feeling

While consumers have been getting their #FreshFaceFriday on for years, however, products categorized as Fresh Feeling (0.22 percent share of voice) aren’t going to continue being popular in 2022, with an anticipated negative 81.16 percent growth rate. Consumers fully expect their face to go from being greasy or dirty to Fresh Feeling, so the label on Cleansers like this one from Dior doesn’t add much value to the customer’s decision-making process.


cleansers - cooling

As we head into winter, products labeled as cooling (1.09 percent share of voice) won’t hold as much weight, so we predict this sensory attribute will decline 83.54 percent in the new year. Even as the year goes on and it starts to warm up, products with Cooling properties won’t be as sought after by consumers as those with benefits that directly impact the quality and aesthetic of their skin.


cleansers - creamy

Consumers have loved creamy cleansers like this one from Lancôme because they wash and moisturize the skin, but that won’t be enough to stand in the way of its predicted 96.04 percent negative growth rate. While this sensory attribute holds a decent 2.60 percent share of voice, it can easily feel thick, and consumers will favor products labeled as Full-Coverage or Non-Greasy. 


cleansers - foaming

Foaming cleansers have been a consumer favorite for years and hold a 4.63 percent share of voice. This duly named sensory attribute does exactly as it sounds — it creates a foamy lather that’s great for removing layers of oil, sunscreen, makeup, and anything else you might’ve put on your skin. While they’re more fun than liquid cleansers, they tend to dry the skin out even with added moisturizing ingredients. 

We predicted consumers will be talking about intensive moisture products in our recent blog, so it makes sense that Foaming cleansers hold a negative 65.83 percent growth potential for 2022. 


cleansers - fragrance-free

After pulling back on scented products during the pandemic, consumers are ready to reintroduce natural fragrances into their daily routines. As we highlighted in our article on trending fragrances, natural and lightly scented products will be on the rise in 2022, so don’t be surprised to see cleansers labeled as Fragrance-Free decline over 97 percent in the new year. 

While few people want to turn heads with overpowering fragrances, consumers want to use products that smell like something. Including lighter, more natural scents within your cleanser line is sure to help any luxury cosmetics brand get ahead next year. 

Need a deeper data dive?

For more insights on luxury cosmetics trends, check out our recent webinar here. If you’re ready to see Simporter AI in action and learn what it can do for you, request a demo on our website.

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