Did you know that 85% of American women put at least 16 products on their face18 before they walk out the door in the morning? From facial cleanser and toner to eyeshadow and blush, applying beauty and cosmetic products is second nature for some people going about their morning routine.

The investment in skincare routines, beauty tutorials and funky new hair colors all help make the global beauty and cosmetic industry worth $380 billion. Interest in these products is vast and growing at a steady rate, as more innovative and creative ways to care for and beautify your face and body hit the mainstream (eco-friendly skincare is hot right now, with a focus on keeping your skin and the environment clean).

Even outside of the home, people flock to beauty salons for services from facials to eyebrow waxing and hair cutting. With interest in beauty services growing — haircuts, nail services and hair coloring remain the top drivers of the industry — employment of people to perform these services is expected to grow alongside it.

Below, we’ll break down some eye-opening statistics about the beauty industry, including what to watch out for if you’re looking to break into it as a self-employed esthetician, salon employee or other beauty career.

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Cosmetics and beauty industry market size

  • North America accounts for 24% of the worldwide cosmetics market.1
  • The global cosmetics market was valued at $380.2 billion in 2019.8
  • There are 3,738 beauty and cosmetics product manufacturing businesses in the United States in 2021.12
  • 54,490 people are employed in the beauty and cosmetics industry in the United States as of 2021.12
  • Hair salons are expected to generate $39 billion in revenue in 2021.20
  • Beauty salons including hair, skin and nail salons generated $57 billion in 2020.21

Beauty professional demographics

  • Most business insurance policies for beauticians, nail artists and hair stylists are purchased in California.14
  • There were 722,600 people employed as hairstylists, beauticians and barbers in the United States in 2019.15
  • 91% of hairdressers, hairstylists and cosmetologists are female.16
  • The median age of a hairdresser, hairstylist or cosmetologist is 40.16
  • Most hair stylists are white (64.1%), followed by Hispanic or Latino (14.0%) and Black or African American (12.2%).19
  • 25% of hair stylists earned a license as their highest level of education or training; 14% earned a high school diploma.19
  • 30% of hair stylists stay in their jobs for one to two years.19

COVID-19 and the beauty industry

  • In-store shopping accounted for 85 percent of beauty purchases prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.7
  • Prestige brands reported a 55 and 75 percent drop in fragrance and cosmetics sales, respectively, during the pandemic.7
  • Beauty industry revenue is expected to return to pre-COVID levels in Q1 2022.7
  • Sales of hair dye and hair clippers rose 23 and 166 percent, respectively, in April 2020, compared to April 2019.7
  • Nearly 50% of women spent less money on makeup in Q2 of 2020, citing COVID-19 as a deterrent for this spending.17

The skincare and makeup industry

  • Skincare accounts for roughly 39% of the global cosmetics market.1
  • Makeup accounts for roughly 19% of the global cosmetics market.1
  • The estimated market value of the worldwide skincare industry is $145 billion.1
  • 25% of beauty spending in the United States is spent on facial products.6
  • The market for natural and organic skincare products is expected to grow at a 10.9% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) and reach $9.4 billion by 2027.13
  • Of languages other than English, 58% of U.S. makeup artists speak Spanish, 8% speak French and 4% speak German.23
  • The most common level of education for a makeup artist was a bachelor’s degree (27%), followed by an associate’s degree (14%) and then a high school diploma (13%).23
  • 30% of makeup artists stay in their jobs for one to two years.23

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Hair care industry facts and figures

  • Hair care accounts for roughly 21% of the global cosmetics market.1
  • The global hair care market value is expected to reach $102 billion by 2024.9
  • The Asian Pacific market was the largest hair care market in the world, valued at $22.6 billion in 2016.10
  • The United States hair care market was valued at $13.9 billion in 2016.10
  • In 2016, over 548 million units of shampoo were sold in the United States.10
  • 890,000 Americans spent $500 or more on hair care products in 2020.11
  • The market for natural and organic hair care products is expected to grow at a 8.3% CAGR through 2027.13
  • Hairdressers and hair stylists can make the most in Massachusetts, Washington, the District of Columbia, Colorado and New Jersey.22
  • The industries with the highest employment of hair stylists and hairdressers are: personal care services, general merchandise stores, health and personal care stores, motion picture and video and traveler accomodation.22

America’s beauty attitudes

  • The revenue of the United States beauty industry is estimated at $49 billion per year.2
  • In 2019, the average American spent an average of $197 per year on cosmetics, perfume, and bath preparation products.2
  • 27.6% of U.S. residents purchased cosmetic products at a Walmart or Walmart Supercenter in 2017.3
  • The sale of soap generated $7 billion in the United States in 2020.4
  • U.S. consumers purchased mascara most frequently, buying an average of 2.13 units per year.5
  • Women who invest in their appearance spend an average of $3,756 per year; men, on the other hand, spend $1,928 per year.6
  • Women spend the most on facials, haircuts, manicures and makeup; men spend the most on facial moisturizers, gym memberships, shaving products and supplements.6
  • The United States cosmetic industry earned $49.5 billion in 2019.2
  • 34% of American women wash their hair every day.10

The future of the beauty industry

  • The global cosmetics market is projected to reach $463.5 billion by 2027.8
  • The global cosmetics industry is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5.3% through 2027.9
  • The global natural and organic personal care product market is expected to reach $23.6 billion by 2027.13
  • Online sales of cosmetic products is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.6% through 2027.8
  • Supermarkets and hypermarkets are expected to retain their position as the top avenue for people buying cosmetic products through 2027.8
  • Jobs for hairstylists, beauticians and barbers in the United States are expected to decline at a rate of 1 percent per year through 2029.15

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It’s unlikely that people are going to want to stop looking good. And the beauty industry encompasses many different aspects to help people do just that, from hair styling and coloring to makeup application and even personal training. If you’re looking to enter this industry, get a beauty business insurance quote from Thimble to help keep you on-trend and ready for whatever comes your way.


  1. Cosmetics Industry – Statistics & Facts
  2. Revenue of the cosmetic and beauty industry in the United States from 2002 to 2020
  3. Share of consumers who bought cosmetic products at selected retailers in the past 12 months in the United States as of October 2017
  4. Leading health and beauty care product categories in the U.S. 2020
  5. Transactions per capita of cosmetics in the United States in 2015, by product type
  6. True Cost of Beauty: Survey Reveals Where Americans Spend Most
  7. How COVID-19 is changing the world of beauty
  8. Cosmetics Market by Category
  9. Hair care product and shampoo market in the U.S. – Statistics & Facts
  10. Value of the hair care market worldwide in 2016, by region
  11. U.S. population: How much money did you spend on haircare products in the last 3 months?
  12. Cosmetic & Beauty Products Manufacturing in the US industry statistics
  13. Global Natural and Organic Personal Care Products Industry
  14. Thimble
  15. Barbers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists
  17. US Color Cosmetics Market Report 2020
  18. How Much Is Your Face Worth? Our Survey Results Revealed!
  19. HAIR STYLIST: Demographics And Statistics In The US
  20. Hair Salons in the US – Market Size 2005–2027
  21. Market size of beauty salons (hair, skin, nails) in the United States from 2017 to 2020
  22. Hairdressers, Hairstylists, and Cosmetologists
  23. MAKEUP ARTIST: Demographics And Statistics In The US