From a continental perspective, European countries sold the highest dollar worth of exported beauty and skincare goods during 2019 with shipments valued at $28.4 billion or approaching half (45.6%) of the global total.
In second place were Asian exporters at 39.6% while 12.4% of worldwide beauty cosmetics and skincare product shipments originated from North America. Smaller percentages came from sources located in Oceania (1%) led by Australia and New Zealand, Latin America (0.8%) excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean, and Africa (0.6%).
The 4-digit Harmonized Tariff System code prefix is 3304 for beauty or makeup preparations and preparations for the care of the skin including sunscreen.
Beauty Cosmetics and Skincare Exports by Country
Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of beauty cosmetics and skincare products during 2019.
- France: US$10 billion (16% of total beauty cosmetics and skincare exports)
- Singapore: $6.3 billion (10.1%)
- United States: $6.1 billion (9.8%)
- South Korea: $5.3 billion (8.6%)
- Japan: $4.4 billion (7.1%)
- Germany: $3.8 billion (6.1%)
- Hong Kong: $3.1 billion (5%)
- China: $2.8 billion (4.5%)
- Italy: $2.3 billion (3.7%)
- United Kingdom: $2.3 billion (3.6%)
- Poland: $1.7 billion (2.7%)
- Belgium: $1.4 billion (2.3%)
- Switzerland: $1.4 billion (2.3%)
- Canada: $1.3 billion (2.1%)
- Spain: $1.2 billion (2%)
The listed 15 countries shipped 85.7% of global beauty cosmetics and skincare exports in 2019 by value.
Among the top exporters, the fastest-growing beauty cosmetics and skincare exporters since 2015 were: Japan (up 219.1%), Singapore (up 172.8%), Hong Kong (up 148.3%) and South Korea (up 118.2%).
The countries that posted the smallest increases in their exported beauty cosmetics and skincare sales were the United Kingdom (up 18.4%) and Canada (up 20.4%).
The following countries posted the highest positive net exports for beauty cosmetics and skincare products during 2019. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the surplus between the value of each country’s exported beauty cosmetics and skincare items and its import purchases for those same commodities.
- France: US$8 billion (net export surplus up 43% since 2015)
- South Korea: $4.3 billion (up 185.2%)
- Singapore: $3.1 billion (up 248.4%)
- Japan: $2.9 billion (up 810.1%)
- Germany: $1.2 billion (up 42.7%)
- Italy: $1.1 billion (up 91.4%)
- United States: $987.6 million (up 101.5%)
- Switzerland: $929.3 million (up 222.5%)
- Poland: $775.7 million (up 40.1%)
- Israel: $124.8 million (up 43.2%)
- Colombia: $82.4 million (up 254.4%)
- Netherlands: $69.2 million (reversing a -$160.2 million deficit)
- Senegal: $45.3 million (up 91%)
- Spain: $40.9 million (reversing a -$116.6 million deficit)
- South Africa: $38.9 million (down -47.2%)
Historically a fashion mecca, France had the highest surplus in the international trade of beauty cosmetics and skincare offerings. In turn, this positive cashflow confirms France’s strong competitive advantage for this specific product category.
The following countries posted the highest negative net exports for beauty cosmetics and skincare products during 2019. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the deficit between the value of each country’s import purchases and its exports for these specialized personal care commodities.
- China: -US$10.5 billion (net export deficit up 636.3% since 2015)
- Hong Kong: -$1.9 billion (up 17.8%)
- Russia: -$1 billion (up 42.9%)
- Macao: -$826.9 million (up 123.6%)
- Saudi Arabia: -$671.4 million (up 4.7%)
- United Arab Emirates: -$577.3 million (up 3%)
- Taiwan: -$466.6 million (up 45.9%)
- Vietnam: -$373.8 million (up 856.5%)
- Canada: -$373.5 million (up 36.5%)
- Australia: -$372.5 million (down -12.2%)
- Malaysia: -$330.9 million (up 110.3%)
- Indonesia: -$298.5 million (up 773.3%)
- Mexico: -$287.1 million (up 15.7%)
- Norway: -$257.6 million (down -3.3%)
- Austria: -$241.9 million (up 15%)
Overtaking Hong Kong four years ago in 2015, mainland China incurred the highest deficit in the international trade of beauty cosmetics and skincare products. In turn, this negative cashflow highlights China’s strong competitive disadvantage for this specific product category but also signals opportunities for supplying countries positioned to satisfy the powerful demand among Chinese consumers and businesses.
Beauty Cosmetics and Skincare Product Suppliers
Below are global conglomerates that represent established players engaged in the international trade of beauty cosmetics and skincare offerings. Each conglomerate’s home country is shown within parenthesis.
- Avon Products (United States)
- L’Oreal (France)
- Proctor & Gamble (United States)
- Shiseido (Japan)
- Unilever (United Kingdom)
Top Beauty/Skincare Products Subcategories
Different types of beauty cosmetics and skincare exports are listed in descending order below, starting with the most lucrative subcategory.
- Beauty/makeup preparations and skincare: US$48.4 billion (up 74.3% from 2015)
- Lip makeup including lipstick: $5.2 billion (up 86.2%)
- Eye makeup: $4.8 billion (up 26%)
- Makeup or skincare powders: $2.5 billion (up 35%)
- Manicure or pedicure preparations: $1.3 billion (down -22.1%)
The lipstick-related subcategory grew at the fastest pace during the latest 5-year period via its 86.2% gain. The one declining subcategory is manicure or pedicure preparations with international sales shrinking almost one quarter over the 5-year period.
See also Beauty Cosmetics and Skincare Imports by Country, Perfumes Exporters by Country, Diamond Exports by Country and Wine Exports by Country
Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook Field Listing: Exports – Commodities. Accessed on April 30, 2020
International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on April 30, 2020
Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on April 30, 2020
Wikipedia, Cosmetics. Accessed on April 30, 2020
Wikipedia, Category:Cosmetics companies. Accessed on April 30, 2020