Customer Experience Analysis Of D2C Beauty and Cosmetic Brands in The USA

Category Analysis – Beauty & Cosmetics – Makeup

Region – USA

The global beauty industry is worth $511 billion and is expected to hit the $716.6 billion mark by 2025. And the global makeup market will probably be worth around $85 billion in 2024 as per the studies. According to the Direct-to-Consumer Purchase Intent Index, 43% of American consumers are familiar with D2C brands. It also says that 69% of those consumers have made at least one purchase from a D2C brand in 2020. Within this, wellness & beauty is one of the largest categories for consideration in D2C, at 29%

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The analysis is based on customer reviews and conversations online in the segment. The analysis results presented are completely unbiased and not based on any subjective judgement. The source data used for the analysis are user conversations available publicly online like public forums and social media.

Total number of customer conversations analyzed


The beauty and cosmetics market landscape today is vastly different from that of ten years ago. Through the use of social media, email marketing, and shoppable apps, direct-to-consumer (D2C) beauty consumer brands have been able to sidestep the big giants.

When entering into the makeup industry, it is quite seamless for customers to pick a DTC brand since there is overcrowding of DTC beauty brands in the market. 

The hyper makeup obsession and the changing consumer behavior of millennials and Gen Z have totally been reflected in the D2C makeup industry. Through multiple online stores and physical stores, customers can browse, compare and get the desired one as and when required. 

But the real question is what are the secret ingredients that give a customer the exceptional customer experience?

Key Considerations For D2C Brands in Beauty and Cosmetics

To set themselves up for success and remain competitive with third-party retailers, a beauty brand must have a solid customer experience strategy in place and consider the following factors. 

To create a pleasant customer experience, businesses must ensure that the customer experience is better than or equivalent to that of the beauty trailer store when implementing a D2C strategy, which means they must first define the customer journey they want their customers to take using the consumer data.

Clootrack’s customer experience tracker that analyzes millions of customer conversations gives us a sneak peek into the 5 major factors that drive customers to choose or reject a makeup product.

top category drivers of makeup brandsTo see where Beauty and Cosmetics is headed, start with understanding the makeup revolution.

Drilling down into the key drivers of the makeup industry:

1. Color of the Makeup Products

‘Color’ of the makeup products stands out as the number one driver of customer experience.

top-drivers (1)

As per Clootrack’s customer experience tracker, 92.28% of customers love the color of makeup they bought, shooting up the customer experience to a great extent.

color - sub themes - beauty and cosmetics

Customer experience insights show that it’s hard for customers to go with a bit darker or a bit lighter, they need the exact color they are looking for. 

2. Ease of Use

Ease of Use is the second most popular category that drives customers to pick makeup products. 

Convenience itself is a kind of customer experience. The easier to use a product, customers will stick to that product.

As per our customer experience insights tracker, 87.56% of customers like products that are easier to use. 

Removal of makeup products is as important as the right application of them. The convenience in the application as well as removing the beauty products makes customers more satisfied.

ease of use - sub themes - beauty and cosmetics96.36% of customers reported their satisfaction with the simple application of makeup products.

Customers consider a product as ideal when it is easy to apply, easy to carry, long-lasting, and very easy to remove from their skin.

3. Design and Looks

Beauty and Cosmetic products that enhance beauty, highlight facial features and truly do their job, satisfy their customers exponentially.

Consumer insights show, a whopping 92.65% of customers like products that make them pretty, beautiful, and look more natural.

Customer experience

“I love this eye shadow stick in the color dreamy haze and it is gorgeous looking and makes my eyes stand out more.” says a happy customer.

Customers are happy with the products that leave a healthy skin tone rather than a dry cakey look. 

4. Effect Longevity of Makeup Products

Long-lasting is one of the preferences of all makeup lovers. Customer experience fades with the fading or smudging of makeup when traveling, sweating, or even drinking water.

As per the consumer insights, 80.77% of customers found satisfaction with the long-lasting makeup products.

Customer experience

It is waterproof. As for washing it off, you will need a good lathering cleanser, and after that, it will still not all be gone, so you will need a few cotton pads with micellar water or sea breeze to get the last traces of it off your skin, it’s that long-lasting.” says a customer.

5. Price of Makeup Products

Pricing of products is crucial in makeup products. Overpriced products with poor quality will be washed out from the market since customers always seek products that are worth spending.

As per our customer experience tracker, 93.66% of customers are satisfied with products that provide good quality with an affordable price range, while 98.21% of customers are concerned about the money they wasted on products with less quality. 

Customer experience

When customers see a price range, they come to an expectation of quality in terms of that price range. If they get better results at an affordable price, they will be more satisfied. Hence, fixing the price of products needs to be decided based on the quality that cosmetics brands offer.

Emerging Brands Begin to Dominate the Beauty and Cosmetics D2C Space 

Which D2C Beauty And Cosmetic Brands Are USA’s Favorites?

USA is home to many established beauty and cosmetic brands such as Revlon, L’Oréal, NYX, and has seen emerging DC brands play a major role in the online beauty space. Although traditional brands tend to still dominate the overall market, new-age D2C brands are giving them a run for their money.

Customer experience

As per the customer experience tracker, xo Fetti is emerging as the leader for the key driver ‘Color’ leaving behind all the established brands

What Challenges Face Beauty and Cosmetics D2C Brands? 

The biggest challenge faced by makeup brands is the side effects and allergic reactions faced by customers. 

A whopping 44.41% of the customers raise concerns around the side effects of makeup products.

When we drill down using the customer experience tracker, it’s crystal clear that the underlying issues are skin irritation, skin burn, skin itch and a dry eye. 

Customer experience

One customer says,  “It also irritated my eyes – one eye developed a stye-like reaction.”

This is definitely not something that the brands want to hear from their customers. 


The makeup industry is evolving and widening day by day as customers are excited to try new products and variants. Providing the right color that truly satisfies the expectation is one of the best ways to provide a top-notch customer experience with makeup products.

When the products are very convenient to apply and remove, that will definitely make customers stick to the DC brand. Furthermore, the longevity and price of products also contribute to providing a better customer experience and satisfaction.

Detailed Report

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