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17 May, 2024

The UAE has experience a stable growth in the products concerning personal well-being. The total valuation of the market of beauty products stands US $1.64 billion. The annual growth percentage in the retail sector of UAE is expected to remain stable at 4.8% until 2019 (Rana, 2016). However, the prime segment to contribute to the rising trend of the beauty products is expected to contribute AED 5.6 billion by the end of 2018 to the economy of the country. The UAE market of beauty products is also characterised by a considerable volume of imported products. These products mainly consists of grooming products (Rana, 2016). According to the market distributors of the beauty products in the market, the growth of social media and other means of communication has provided a wide exposure to the latest fashion trends in the advanced countries like, the US and UK. Thus, the women in the Arab countries have also made looking beautiful as their important priority increasing the demand for such products. The market of UAE faces an increasing demand for high-quality beauty products and perfumes. This explains the demand for imported brands in the UAE market. The analysis of the GCC countries reveal that the per capita spending on the cosmetics and fragrances amounts to US$ 334 (Pivac, 2015). The market of perfumes is highly competitive in UAE with introduction of a large number of new perfumes every year.

Rasai Perfumes is one of the celebrated companies located in Dubai and has been in the business since 1979. According the managing director of the company, the UAE market faces intense competition from the international brands. According to estimates, UAE houses one of the largest consumer base in terms of beauty and personal care products (Pivac, 2015). Besides perfume, facial and eye make-up are of great demand in the UAE market. The trends of facial and eye make-up are very different in Dubai and other regions of the UAE. Women in this country prefer full-coverage foundation, bright lipsticks and dark eye make-up. This make-up style are inspired by the cultural practices. Therefore, this creates a strong market demand for full coverage foundations, trendy lipsticks, vibrant eye make-up consisting, eye-lines, mascara, eye shadows, kohl liners, etc. The most recent development in the trends of UAE is that young population is looking for permanent solution to their beauty problems resulting in the growth of cosmetic surgeries (Bedi, 2011).

The other significant trend in the UAE’s beauty and personal care products is the inclination towards product made from natural ingredients. This has also increased the number of companies engaged in the production of organic beauty products. BeautyworldME is the largest trade fair in the Middle East constituting products based on beauty and well-being was held in Dubai this year. It was noteworthy that 18 companies were present that manufactured natural beauty products against 12 companies in 2015 (Zakaria, 2016).

17 May, 2024

As the retail sector of the UAE continues to expand, marking its place as 5th among developing countries for future growth, the Health & Beauty segment emerges as a pivotal contributor to this dynamic market. Despite recent signs of saturation, Dubai was still expected to add around 717,000 sqm of new retail space in 2018, while more 467,000 were expected to be added in Abu Dhabi.

The overall market was estimated to be worth around USD 55 billion, with up to 16% of annual growth forecasted for the next years, surely benefiting from the Expo 2020 effect.

The sector is evolving. From one side, it is adapting to external stimulation such as the recent introduction of the VAT, that has led retailers to increase the value offered to shoppers. From the other side, the sector is innovating from within, given the increasing relevance of online shopping, direct selling and home shopping (6.5% of total market in 2023, from 4.2% in 2018).

The Emirates are indeed considered a shopping destination by international tourists, and their spending patterns are quite higher than the average tourist (USD 1,671 against USD 1,105 on average).

The country welcomed more than 21 million tourists in 2018 and this number is expected to grow up to 33.5 million by 2028. The expected amount spent by these tourists will exceed USD 55 billion, which will be a conspicuous boost for retail, among other side sectors especially given the traveler propensity to purchase and consume Luxury goods.

Many sectors are benefiting and boosting at the same time this general growth, establishing a virtuous circle that serves the entire economy of the country. Among them, the sales of Health & Beauty products almost doubled in the period between 2012 and 2019, when they overall value of product sold is expected to exceed USD 6 billion.

With the 46% of market held by the top 6 players, the sector in not particularly concentrated.

However, the big pharmacy chains have the lion’s share of this market, with the top 3 retailers recording double digit yearly growth in the last five years.

15 May, 2024

In recent years, the Middle East has witnessed a significant shift toward eco-conscious consumerism, and the beauty and personal care sector is not exempted from this trend. The Middle East beauty and personal care market was valued at $11.6 billion in 2022 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.2% from 2023 to 2030. Statista noted that in the UAE alone, per capita revenue per person is set to generate $130.50 in 2023.

“The UAE community has shown a growing inclination toward environmentally conscious choices, particularly in personal care,” says N.S. BALASUBRAMANIAN , CEO of Aster Pharmacy .

Trends they have observed include a preference for products with natural and organic ingredients and items that are sustainably sourced, cruelty-free, and packaged using eco-friendly packing materials.

This is a trend that Mukta Tewani Purain , Founder of MissPalettable | Clean Beauty in UAE , a conscious beauty platform, confirms. “We are seeing more brands take on the halal certification as well as vegan certification,” she says, adding that more brands are using traditional regional ingredients and opting for sustainable packaging such as bioplastic and clean and transparent formulations.


The shift in consumer preferences can be attributed to growing awareness of the benefits of eco-friendly products. UK board-certified dermatologist Dr Hamdan Abdullah Hamed says, “Investing in these products means investing in long-term health and beauty.”

He adds that common ingredients for eco-friendly cosmetics are natural oils and plants such as corn and soybeans.“Compared to traditional makeup, which has product contamination and harmful ingredients, these are helpful to the skin. Some cosmetic firms even have formaldehyde in their products, which is a carcinogen.”

Also, consumers know the power they hold to products, promising more ethical practices.

The sector has become acutely aware of consumers shifting priorities. Balasubramanian says Aster has been aligning with their customers’ growing interest in eco-friendly alternatives. “We focus on stocking up on eco-friendly alternatives within our product range.”

Tewani adds that MissPalettable also tries to onboard eco-friendly makeup. “Our beauty products are safe, conscious, and environmentally responsible,” she says. “We prefer to promote transparency and ethics to empower consumers to make conscious choices.”

20 April, 2024

As one of the most advanced and dynamic markets in the Middle East, the UAE already has a strong healthcare infrastructure and is quickly adding clinical research and manufacturing capabilities. Leveraging this world-class healthcare infrastructure to make the UAE into a regional healthcare innovation hub with medical tourism and medical-grade logistics is a top priority for the UAE.

The UAE healthcare sector has expanded to meet both the evolving needs of the UAE’s 11 million population and the establishment of Cleveland Clinic and Mayo Clinic-branded hospitals in the UAE that positions the nation to become a regional medical tourism hub for specialty treatments that are not available elsewhere.

The World Health Organization has determined that a third of the adults in the UAE are obese, and one out of five people live with diabetes or pre-diabetes. As the incidence of lifestyle diseases increases, these populations, supported by relatively high levels of income, continue to demand greater quality of healthcare. The government has focused on developing a healthcare infrastructure to address this demand.

Both federal and emirate-level governments regulate healthcare in the UAE. The most important federal regulatory authority in the UAE healthcare sector is the Ministry of Health and Prevention. Government commitment to the healthcare sector is one of the key drivers of growth within the UAE’s healthcare market, particularly given that public spending accounts for over two-thirds of overall healthcare expenditure. In the 2022 federal budget, a total of $17.18 billion (AED 63.066 billion) was approved for public spending out of which 7.6% is dedicated to healthcare. In addition, there are dedicated healthcare budgets overseen by the Dubai Health Authority and the Abu Dhabi Department of Health.

The COVID-19 pandemic led the UAE to redouble its commitment to investing in healthcare based on the success of a large-scale vaccine clinical trial and establishment of a vaccine distribution hub for the whole region. The UAE government quickly took precautionary health measures after the breakout of COVID-19 in January 2020. The robust efforts of the UAE’s leadership resulted in the UAE being globally ranked as one of the top countries, and the highest in the Arab world, in terms of its COVID-19 response.

The government is already building national capacities to fight future pandemics which include efforts to develop vaccines and medicines, digital immunization IDs, and a new strategy focusing on supply chains. A state-of-the-art vaccine fill and finish manufacturing facility is near completion and a biosimilars manufacturing plant is planned. The Ministry of Health aims to develop the sector by focusing more on telemedicine and digital medicine.

17 April, 2024

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) upholds a dynamic cosmetic industry, offering consumers a diverse array of beauty and personal care products. Cosmetic products in the UAE are subject to robust regulations, which are primarily overseen by two (02) key administrative bodies: the Dubai Municipality (DM) and the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA). The two (02) organizations play a significant role in setting Regulatory standards for cosmetic products entering the UAE market.

The UAE follows the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)’s unified regulations for cosmetics, thus aligning with international best practices. This kind of harmonized framework for regulations necessitates the registering of cosmetic products with both the DM and the ESMA before they are launched in the market. The registration process involves submitting comprehensive information on the product’s formulation, labeling requirements, and safety assessments.

The labeling of cosmetic products in the UAE is strictly regulated to provide transparency to consumers. Product labels must be presented in both Arabic and English, and they must include clear directions for use, relevant safety warnings, and other essential information. Cosmetic products containing specific substances must adhere to the corresponding labeling requirements.

The UAE takes a proactive approach to ensure compliance of products with quality standards and consumer safety. The DM and the ESMA thoroughly test and evaluate the products to verify their adherence to the established standards. In addition, the Emirates Conformity Assessment Scheme (ECAS) certifies products that meet the Regulatory requirements, thereby providing consumers with quality and safety assurance. Therefore, the cosmetic regulations in the UAE are in place to ensure safety, quality, and transparency. Cosmetic manufacturers are required to adhere to Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) guidelines, which help ensure the maintenance of high-quality standards throughout the production process. The DM and the ESMA conduct rigorous evaluations of cosmetic products so that they are certified as safe and compliant before being sold in the market. Partnering with an experienced Regulatory service provider like Freyr can help you simplify the process of bringing your cosmetic product to the UAE market and equip you to address any challenges that you may encounter. Consult our experts to get assistance in navigating the complex Regulatory landscape of the UAE cosmetic market!