The Beauty Industry at the Forefront of the Platform Revolution

Eva Bearryman
February 1, 2021
The Beauty Industry at the Forefront of the Platform Revolution
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In recent years, the global beauty industry has been valued at $532 billion and is set to grow 5-7% annually to reach or exceed $800 billion by 2025. Find out how beauty Platform Pioneers Feelunique and Douglas are winning big thanks to their marketplaces.

Beauty eCommerce on the rise

Luxury and beauty brands have responded sensitively to the crisis. The likes of L’Oréal, LVMH and Sephora have pivoted manufacturing efforts into producing hand sanitizer and masks. While the pandemic may have had an impact on the industry and salons, online sales for beauty products are showing strong resilience.

In these difficult times, consumers are looking for self-care products that bring some relief or an emotional lift. Small or large beauty products are an affordable luxury many consumers are willing to pay for, such is the “lipstick effect”. Alternatively, consumers on a tighter budget (often because of Covid-19) are looking to purchase do-it-yourself beauty treatments.

Beauty eCommerce is rapidly on the rise. In April last year, McKinsey reported that beauty-product brands and retailers with scaleable inventory and shipment operations were seeing e-commerce sales twice as high as pre-pandemic levels.

The generation of shoppers inspired by vloggers and celebrities are open to shopping online. Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty line counts 10.5 million Instagram followers. She has also tapped into a trend for “clean formulas that are vegan, cruelty-free, gluten-free and earth-conscious” with the launch of the Fenty Skin range.

Beauty retailers that have already committed to, or are planning step up their digital transformation will reap the most benefits from the current eCommerce opportunity. The marketplace model allows them to scale their product offering at speed through third-party suppliers so they can guarantee the diversity of products and brands customers want.

Mirakl beauty Platform Pioneers leading the pack


Pure-play online beauty retailer and Mirakl Platform Pioneer Feelunique is passionate about the marketplace model as a retail platform and reported strong sales growth from its marketplace during the 2020 Christmas period.

Sarah Miles, Chief Executive Officer, spoke of their marketplace strategy, “We chose to partner with Mirakl on our marketplace because of their proven expertise and first-class technical solution. In 2020 we saw excellent growth increasing our customer base to 1.3 million and growing our online offering to 35,000 products from more than 800 established niche, independent and challenger brands."

Feelunique is proud of the exponential momentum created by their marketplace and their success in onboarding 10,000+ products and 250+ new brands, including one of the most successful brand launches in their history - Jo Malone London.


Leading European beauty retailer Douglas marked a significant milestone on their digital growth trajectory with the successful launch of their marketplace at the end of 2019. In late 2020, Douglas celebrated the first anniversary of its marketplace. Starting with a select few highly curated trading partners and 10,000 products, the marketplace offering has multiplied since launch, empowering the company to offer a total portfolio of more than 100,000 products. In the 2020 calendar year, the number of visits to Douglas’ online shop went up by 50%._

*“With the excellent support of our partner Mirakl, Douglas has become the leading beauty platform in Europe with more than 100,000 products. The partner program is a key strategic pillar of our platform strategy and an enabler for achieving sustainable success,” says Vanessa Stützle, Chief Digital Officer at Douglas._ *

The Marketplace has allowed Douglas to maintain a roadmap created prior to the pandemic. Last week Douglas reported an impressive €1 billion in eCommerce sales in 2020, defying the Covid-19 crisis. In addition, Douglas has leveraged their platform for good during the pandemic by supporting small retailers and brand shops that did not have the same capacity or presence online by onboarding them as sellers to the Douglas marketplace. To aid them through the difficult period, Douglas offered their new partners advantageous terms to open shops on their marketplace.

Contact the Mirakl team to kick-start your marketplace strategy.

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Written by
Eva Bearryman
Communications, PR & Content Manager

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