The Greek cosmetics market appears to be on a recovery course, as according to the estimates of the Panhellenic Union of the Industries & Representatives of Cosmetics & Perfumes (PSVAK) and Cosmetics Europe, retail sales are expected to come to 899 million euros in 2018, up from 881 million in 2017 and 851 million in 2016.
Still, even with this recovery, the market remains a far cry from the heady days of 2009, when cosmetics sales came to 1.3 billion euros.
Although Greeks appear more willing to spend some of their income on looking and smelling good this year than in 2017 and 2016, this improved picture in the market is mainly due to the advent of electronic commerce, which has become evident on all corporate distribution networks.
Data show that e-commerce started growing in 2016, when it obtained a 3.9 percent share of all cosmetics sales. That figure rose to 4.9 percent in 2017 and an estimated 5.8 percent in 2018. The presence of e-pharmacies as an alternative option for product distribution and sale has also contributed toward that growth.
Nevertheless supermarkets remain by far the biggest category of cosmetics retailers, accounting for 42.3 percent of all sales in wholesale terms according to 2018 estimates. Pharmacies follow with a 26.1 percent share, while selective distribution stores account for 19.2 percent.