May 07, 2021 | By WGSN Insider
Big data meets consumer insights, Experience WGSN.
It’s that time of year when health and fitness are traditionally a focus for many, so what does wellness mean in 2021. This booming global sector is more relevant than ever amid the challenges of the pandemic. Healthy eating, exercise, meditation and self-care all have the capacity to make us feel good, improving our overall sense of physical wellbeing and mental resilience.
We cover these topics in episode 18 of our Create Tomorrow podcast. Host Petah Marian is joined by three strategists: Claire Lancaster from Food & Drink, Harriet Kilikita from Lifestyle & Interiors and Theresa Yee from Beauty.
We’ve been tracking how the boundaries between physical and mental wellbeing are increasingly blurring, creating opportunities for different categories. In beauty, brands are optimising the radiance and healthy appearance of consumers for online interaction, while in food and drink, brands are prioritising immune-enhancing ingredients and products, although as Theresa Yee notes, products today have to deliver on performance and function, and it’s vital brands are transparent about their claims, employing regulatory credentials where necessary. “In beauty people want products that are backed by professional experts and proven with scientific research and clinical evidence, consumers no longer want that product that is just gimmicky or Instagrammable,” she says.
When considering strategies for improving wellbeing, sleep is increasingly being recognised as fundamental. So what does this mean for the food industry? “We’re looking at things like adaptogens and aromatic ingredients, botanicals and zootropics,” says Claire Lancaster, “as well as real foods like melatonin-rich tart cherries – things like that can that can be leveraged in products that fit into your lifestyle, like late night snacks before bed.”
We’ve also been tracking this obsession with sleep in the interiors market. “We’ve seen a big focus on the bedroom as a key space that consumers are really investing in,” says Harriet Kilikita. “People take one of two different routes to sleep: one is a tech-enabled approach, like sleep tracking and smart bedding and things that tap into quantifying health. Others take a more holistic, natural approach, which is based on creating a cocooning space to enable a calming bedtime routine.”
In keeping with the greater focus on rest and relaxation, brands are also tapping into elevating everyday rituals and routines, from home cooking to self-care and meditation apps, to bathing and showering. “Everyday rituals have become elevated,” says Theresa, “providing a therapeutic experience to combat stress, anxiety and help calm the mind. Beauty brands are tapping into this, taking a mindful approach to beauty with ritual kits that pair skincare products with meditation and breathwork, helping consumers transition between work and rest mode.”
The past year taught us more than ever that wellness is a communal act. In lockdowns we recognised the importance of supporting local neighbours and businesses for the health of all. Plus with food at the heart of wellness, the pandemic made it clear that for many sectors of society, food poverty is a serious issue.
“Brands are really embracing that movement towards creating more transparency and understanding the concept of wellness being less about the individual and more about the planet and the entire system – such as supply chains – that we’re working within,” says Claire. As a result, we predict a move towards inclusive wellness and also targeted approaches, which are specifically designed to work for particular groups of people.
Tune in to the podcast to find out how to detox your brand for a healthy future.
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