A mature market in the U.S., deodorants have seen sales hovering just above the $1.2 billion mark for the past couple years. This saturation, combined with brand loyalty and a focus on performance by consumers, has created a category driven by innovations. Brands like Axe promise a high level of sweat protection, while others, like Degree, claim their formula adjusts its protection based on the user’s stress level. Unilever has developed deodorants for its various lines that contain odor and sweat-controlling micro-beads. Nivea has created a deodorant for women that calms and soothes skin, while Dove has a line that stunts the growth of underarm hair.
Dollar sales have increased slightly every year while unit sales have decreased, indicating that consumers are springing for these premium formulations. Look for more of the same in the near future, along with the evolution of the natural market, which has capitalized on shopper concerns over phthalates and other synthetic ingredients.