By 2025 two thirds of the world’s population could be at risk of water shortages
At current consumption rates the World Wildlife Fund estimates that by 2025 two thirds of the world’s population could be at risk of water shortages. In a future where water becomes a protected resource, bubble baths and lawn sprinklers will become unthinkable luxuries and rationing will be second nature to people everywhere.
Consumer awareness is on the rise, and water conservation is high on their agendas. In the UK, one third (33%) of consumers say they would pay more for fixtures that save on water or energy bills, while 27% always try to take shorter showers.
Next generation of beauty products will work without any water at all
An additional 27% of UK consumers use less or reuse water. As consumers cut back their usage they expect brands to do the same, and some are already taking notice. Where water was once an essential part of any beauty regime, new formulations require little or no extra water in order to function. Cleansing and treatment face powders currently require only a splash of water to transform into rich creams or lathers. Already, we are seeing the rise of water-saving beauty solutions such as wipes, dry shampoos, nonrinse body washes, and alternative toothpaste formats.
But the next generation of products will work without any water at all. Mintel research highlights the appeal of such products, especially among younger age groups. In the UK, 13% of all consumers say they are interested in dry use soap, bath and shower products with interest rising to one quarter (24%) of consumers aged 16-24. There is even greater demand in France where 15% of consumers overall say they are interested in these products, rising to 28% of those aged 16-24.
New Water Sources
There is also a growing interest in alternative water sources that do not place any additional strain on existing resources, and we will see brands scour the earth to gain a competitive edge. These products can be positioned as co-friendly, as well as a source of exclusivity.
Brands will not only source water from different oceans, lakes, lagoons and glaciers, they will climb mountains and harvest fog to gain the purest possible droplets. Plant waters will also play a part, moving from traditional health drinks into beauty products, with the most extreme terrains offering super-strength solutions.
Brands will also need to focus on the transparency of their actions around the issue of water as skeptical consumers want access to the specific details of their water usage habits.
Provenance – a new Customer Trend
This focus on provenance will also include the production location, with brands detailing where their products are made, whether the water supply there is plentiful or compromised and whether the production methods save or recycle water.
Younger consumers will be the key market for future innovations. Brands can tap into their youthful idealism, passion and desire to change the world with products that clearly state how they are addressing the issue of water shortages.
There will be a greater need for brands to help consumers control their water usage and form better habits by creating devices that can switch off when an allotted amount of water has been used or can inform consumers when a certain amount of time has elapsed. Transparency will be key. Providing easy-to-access information about water usage will be something empowered consumers come to expect.