Cyber Couture Chronicles: AI Unplugged in the World of Fashion Innovation

With the eventful year of 2022 coming to an end, every Indian can be seen to rejoice and prep for the new year as the same is happening after a pandemic-struck hiatus of 2 long years.

With festivities around the corner, there has been a significant surge in demand in the markets which are flooded with consumers. Every industry is witnessing the surge, and Beauty and Personal Care is not behind. However, the stiff competition for customers between online and offline brands has become more prominent than ever.

To understand the commotion among the brands this season, these brands give us an insight into their 2022 journey and their 2023 growth plans.

SUGAR Cosmetics

Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

This year SUGAR Cosmetics touched larger milestones, becoming one of the select few brands that have launched 120+ of their own stores in retail, reaching a total of 45000+ retail touchpoints across 550+ cities. 

SUGAR’s IG page garnered 2.4M+ followers, becoming the largest consumer brand in India on the platform, along with our experiment into gamified AR filters that hit virality on platforms like Instagram and Moj. 

The brand’s #ShukarHaiSUGARHai Campaign with campaign ambassadors Ranveer Singh and Tamannaah Bhatia was also a huge viral success allowing the brand to receive support from impactful investors namely LCatterton and Ranveer Singh. 

“At SUGAR in 2022, we managed to almost double our sales over the previous year, achieved the target of being one of the Top 3 brands in color cosmetics in India, and are looking at another year of massive growth,” said Vineeta Singh, Co-founder, and CEO, SUGAR Cosmetics.

She further added, “Our plans for 2023 include targeting and achieving a 100 percent Y-O-Y revenue growth over last year, expansion to more than 60,000 retail outlets, making our D2C platform base stronger and larger, and growing our team size to 3,000 employees.” 

Keeping its audience in mind, SUGAR is looking forward to tapping into different categories of the beauty industry. The brand will also focus on creating solid content to keep educating and engaging its community across all platforms–digital and others.

The Body Shop

“We at The Body Shop are embarking upon a new strategy of ‘Change Making Beauty’, which means that we aim to empower customers, employees, and partners to drive positive change for the world through our channels, our products, and our activism,” stated Vishal Chaturvedi, Vice President, The Body Shop, South Asia.

With this vision, the brand is aligned to reach its goal of 25 new stores in 2022 at various locations. Currently, having 200 highly visible and accessible stores all over India, including Tier I and II cities, with the latest additions in Itanagar, Surat, and Indore.

The brand’s current product portfolio is already over 60 percent Vegan, aiming to become 100 percent Vegan by 2023. This aim is the natural next step forward for the brand’s Cruelty-Free commitment, including reformulating all our core products from 100 percent Vegetarian to 100 percent Vegan, while focusing on making its product packaging 100 percent recyclable thus reducing its environmental impact.

“We are strengthening our retail and e-commerce channels by opening more workshop stores and launching new digital experiences. We are expanding our retail footprint with a clear focus on smaller cities and towns. Rolling out the new Workshop store format in as many stores as possible: 30+ new ACTIVIST Workshop stores per year, every year till 2025 bringing the brand to people where they love to shop,” added Chaturvedi.


Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

Plum would be closing the financial year at over 2x the revenue of the previous FY, complemented by the 44 percent growth seen in its overall customer base with a 96.54 percent increase in repeat buyers which is a great win in the D2C space. 

“We raised $35 million (Rs 270 crore) in a Series C round in March 2022 totaling our funding to over $50 million. With this, our efforts have been towards bringing in more salient brand communication, growing our omnichannel presence and onboarding high-quality talent with a focus on investments in marketing and technology,” said Shankar Prasad, Founder & CEO, Plum

Having launched over 8 exclusive brand outlets in the last year across cities, the brand plans to scale this up to 50 in the coming year. Furthermore, Plum onboarded Rashmika Mandanna and Mithila Palkar as its brand ambassadors for the Plum skincare range and Ananya Panday for the Plum Body Lovin’ fragrance range.

“We would be expanding our makeup range aggressively with a host of innovative product formats in the coming year. We would also be launching a line of products in the essentials and advanced ranges under both skincare and haircare categories,” added Prasad. 



The post-pandemic period has witnessed a radical shift in consumer behavior and expectations. As per research, the total retail sale is expected to reach $5.5 trillion by 2027 with online sales making up 30 percent of the market.

The retail industry has been largely shadowed by challenges across the supply chain, economic uncertainty, and geo-political factors. I feel that going forward, the only way for retailers to sail through is by exhibiting strong levels of adaptability, agility, and flexibility.

“As we graduate into the next year, we can expect a renewed focus on enhancing the customer shopping journey by providing a seamless experience for hybrid shopping. Re-invention of physical store designs along with a robust omnichannel strategy would, however, emerge as a top priority. Many companies will be seen adding features to support new shopping initiatives while integrating technologies supporting AR/VR advancements. We are aligned to lead the change and have a strong conviction that our strategy would create benchmarks of excellence in 2023,” stated Samir Kumaar Modi, Founder, and Managing Director, Colorbar Cosmetics.


Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

“We have been relentlessly working towards improving the health and wellness quotient of Indians with Ayurveda. Recently, we expanded in the US and UAE to enable this for the global audience as well.  Our focus this year was on increasing the effectiveness of our products. We’ve moved the needle on that front by successfully conducting a clinical trial for our Dia Free Juice. It has also proven to be effective in decreasing HbA1c to an extent of 11 percent and increasing insulin production in the body by up to 25-30 percent. However, the highlight of the year was definitely the recognition by Honorable PM Modi,” said Ameve Sharma, Founder, Kapiva.

In the upcoming year, Kapiva aims to double down, concurrently increasing brand awareness and recall to become a household name.

Modern consumers are less concerned with outward appearance than they once were, and are more concerned with their complete well-being, which encompasses physical, mental, and emotional health. In order to capitalize on this trend, Kapiva is constantly creating consumer awareness by keeping the emphasis on the paramount importance of Ayurveda and how it can enable people to live a holistic lifestyle.

Earth Rhythm

Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

2022 was a favorable year for Earth Rhythm, as it brought in a lot of positive changes in terms of organization, growth, and product. At an organizational level, the brand was able to double the size of the team with its customer base growing 4x times compared to the previous financial year. 

The brand also went offline with the launch of its exclusive kiosks at 12 different locations across India. “We are expanding our makeup category which will go on to strengthen Earth Rhythm’s wide-ranging portfolio, we have also been intensifying the existing categories. True to our digital-first identity, it was also a natural step for us to continue investing in technology in a bid to further streamline operations and give our customers every convenience they desire. We successfully launched our very own mobile App for both Android and iOS platforms this year and have been gaining steady traction on it. Next year, we plan to further build our portfolio by deepening the makeup category launched in 2022. We reckon 2x growth over FY 2021-22,” said Harini Sivakumar, Founder, and CEO, Earth Rhythm.

In keeping with this shift in the consumer’s preference, the brand aims to reinforce its multifunctional product range in both makeup and personal care (face, body, hair), aimed at eliminating the need for and use of multiple products in everyday makeup and skincare routines.


Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

This year at Arata launched over 20 products and 30 offline stores across India, steadily growing 10 percent month on month with respect to GMV. 

“In the upcoming year, we will go full throttle to bridge the gaps in our product line and be a one-stop shop for all hair care needs. We have already begun our groundwork and have set processes to create formulas in the anti-hair fall, hair colorants, and hair styling segments,” said Dhruv Madhok, Co-Founder, ARATA.


Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

2022 has been the year of the first full-fledged operations for Blushbee. Beginning with just three products and later expanding to 10 categories with 64 unique SKUs, the brand has witnessed massive organic growth in its customer base.

BlushBee as a cosmetics line is a product of careful decisions in choosing what it wants, the other advantage is that being a clean and green beauty brand which is an important factor in the value proposition.  

“We hope to grow into a one-stop shop for all things related to color cosmetics, so we are actively looking into introducing new products like foundations, gloss, and so on. We have also discussed extending our horizons beyond just the realm of color cosmetics very soon,” stated Shobana and Navneethan, Founders, BlushBee Organic Beauty Brand.

Crazy Owl – Your Skin Co

Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

The brand was launched in 2022 with the mindset of embracing the true self and exploring the crazy side. The brand is PETA and IFRA certified, FDA approved, and currently provides the best possible sensorial experience in Hair Care with India’s First Date Seed Oil Shampoo, Conditioner, and Hair Oil.

“In the short term, we are working towards expanding on two fronts- launching more affordable luxury products across categories in which we operate. With the right set of team, products, and marketing strategy we were able to launch our brand, and today, 6 months post the launch we are happy to serve more than 2000+ households,” commented Damanjit Kohli and Karishma Sahni,  Founders, Crazy Owl – Your Skin Co.

Increasing its touchpoint and interaction with the product, currently, Crazy Owl has signed up on all major marketplace platforms – Amazon Launchpad, Flipkart Propel Program, Purple, Snapdeal, Tata 1 mg, First cry, Myntra, Nykaa, Bigbasket and will be launching itself on Blink it, Paytm, Pharmeasy and Shopperstop planning to grow its channel every month.



“As one of the fastest growing personal care brands in India, we have seen significant growth in the last 12 months and clocked a sale of Rs 10 crore per month along with a growth of 6X. With the trust that the brand has built throughout, we have had some great partnerships this year for our campaigns. Celebrity shout-outs from personalities like Soha Ali Khan, and Vidya Balan, and association with Kalki Koechlin in our most recent commercial have been one of the key highlights,” said Anurag, Co-Founder and CEO, Pilgrim. 

With a strong consumer base of 1 million, the brand aims to improve its interaction and thus upgraded its technology. Along with updating its technology, the brand is also using innovative ways to reach its target audience. 

Pilgrim aims to be a Rs 1,000 crore brand in the next 3-4 years by facilitating new product and category launches and exploring newer international markets like the Middle East. Moreover, planning to double down on its R&D capabilities and increase brand investments by bringing in global experiences for its customers, both online and offline. 

Along with establishing its presence internationally, Pilgrim aims to achieve an annualized run rate of Rs 500 crore by December 2023.

iluvia Professional

Year Ender: How India is embracing New-Age Beauty and Personal Care Brands

As a new-age, self-care brand pioneering product-driven innovation and technology, during the course of the year iluvia witnessed growth across different channels, and new launches, and hit several milestones.

The organization has grown 25x in revenue between October 2021 and 2022 along with a 20x growth in its online consumer base, currently present across key marketplaces and in over 1800 salons in India across 70+ cities. 

“It is a very exciting time for us as we are working on introducing new patented treatment technologies and new launches in the haircare category. We also expect a positive growth trajectory of 6x to 7x in the coming year,” stated Nishant Gupta and Palash Pandey, Directors, Renaura Wellness Pvt. Ltd. 

Beauty and Skincare, as a category, has burst forth since the onset of the pandemic in late 2019. The D2C space, especially, has seen remarkable growth which we expect will continue in 2023 and beyond. Moreover, The Indian beauty and personal care segment, which stood above Rs 54,500 crore only two years ago, is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11 percent over the next five years.