From Gen Z and beyond, explore emerging markets and micro shifts in youth consumer behaviour.

Need to Know
05 : 06 : 23

Luxury cruise company Ponant hands the reins to nature, skincare made from ghee and why over half of women include masturbation in their self-care routine.

Nature is the guide in Ponant’s cruise itineraries

Nature Is Our Guide by Ponant, France

Global – Ponant is handing the reins to nature in its upcoming expeditions. To promote the luxury cruise company’s shift to a more socially and environmentally responsible approach to tourism, Ponant has introduced Nature Is Our Guide.

Written by Fred & Farid Los Angeles, the campaign showcases Ponant’s updated manifesto, where cruises initiate synergies between four actors – captain, scientist, passenger and nature. In this scenario, the tourism model invites visitors to take in not only the beauty of the landscapes but also to be active participants in conserving the land and communities they get acquainted with. In line with the ethos, Ponant is rolling out innovative and eco-friendlier ships to host sustainably minded educational excursions.

‘We believe travel has the power to transform individuals and communities,’ says Hervé Gastinel, CEO of Ponant. Although the cruise ship market at large still has room for improvement in terms of becoming sustainably viable, more brands are harnessing the transformative power of travel through slower-paced journeys that stun passengers as much as they educate them.

Strategic opportunity

Luxury and sustainability can – and must ­– go hand in hand in the next iterations of travel and hospitality experiences. How can your business embrace the nature as a stakeholder mindset?

Skincare brand Ghlee harnesses the power of South Asian kitchen staple

Ghlee, Canada Ghlee, Canada
Ghlee, Canada Ghlee, Canada

Canada – Toronto-based skincare business Ghlee was launched in May 2023 with the ambition to introduce ghee to the Western beauty market. This type of clarified butter is known on the South Asian continent and among the diaspora as a nutty alternative to any kind of fat used in cooking, but it is also traditionally used for its hydrating abilities on the skin. Ghlee is now blending Indian Ayurveda with modern scientific advancements. The first range of products released are all about lip care, with a balm, a mask and a scrub retailing between £9.60 ($12, €11.15) and £18.40 ($23, €21.40) in the US and Canada.

‘My dad has always made ghee from scratch in our house and he was also an engineer so he helped to fine-tune the ingredients for Ghlee,’ said co-founder Varun Sharma in a press release. 'He filters it in a 30-step process so it's perfect for skincare.’ The ghee-based formula also includes clove bud and coconut oil, cinnamon, ginger and beeswax. Along with his sister and co-founder Arati, Sharma wants to bring South Asian healing traditions to the masses while honouring his ancestors’ know-how.

In our analysis of the Indian Beauty Market, we previously highlighted how ingredient innovations similar to Ghlee, reformed beauty ideals and experience-driven retail are driving a boom in sales in the region.

Strategic opportunity

Informed customers on a global scale are ready to learn more about ancestral rituals but also want modern formulas. Highlight both the sensorial pleasures and the high-performance benefits of products while harnessing decolonising and authentic storytelling

LVMH pledges sustainable training for all employees by 2026

France ­– Cementing the group’s sustainability commitments, LVMH has announced plans to deliver training on environmental fundamentals to all its employees by 2026.

The luxury conglomerate revealed the ambitious project of training its 200,000-strong workforce off-site during the Change Now environmental summit in Paris. To achieve this goal, LVMH has established a partnership with Vallée de la Millière, a reserve located one hour outside of Paris.

The luxury giant will be taking its staff to the 75-acre wetlands for learning and awareness-raising activities about biodiversity and other sustainability fundamentals. Vallée de la Millière was a great match for purpose, not only thanks to its vastness and proximity to the French capital, but for the reserve’s regenerative farming techniques and garden following agroforestry and permaculture principles.

‘Each employee can be an actor of change, and providing expert training is key,’ said Hélène Valade, LVMH’s environmental development director, at the summit. In times when many employers face The Paralysis Paradox, such bold leadership is key to initiating positive change.

Forest Lungs by The Nue Co. Photography by Christina Nwabugo

Strategic opportunity

During the summit, LVMH revealed that staff were interested in learning about diversity and it created the company-wide programme in response. Take this learning to your own business, and audit the ESG weak spots your employees want support with

Stat: Masturbation part of self-care routine for over half of women

Smile Makers, UK Smile Makers, UK

US – Audio erotica app Quinn and Cosmopolitan USA have revealed how masturbation has become a critical part of women’s self-care routine in their collaborative State of Self-Love report released in May 2023. In what is claimed to be the largest study of women’s masturbation habits to date, the report analysed data from 18m Quinn user sessions and a survey of thousands of representatives from 39 countries aged between 18 and 56. Among the participants, 63% noted that masturbation is a part of their self-care routine.

Several respondents emphasised the normalcy of women regularly engaging in masturbation, removing the stigma surrounding women’s self-pleasure. A 22-year-old Gen Z participant said: ‘I think in order to be able to love or connect physically with another person, you need to be able to first do that with yourself.'

We previously interviewed Stephen Mai, the founder of wellness magazine and marketplace Woo, about how younger consumers have a new approach to wellness as a practice that includes mental and sexual wellbeing, recreational drugs and content-consumption.

Strategic opporutnity

Players in the beauty, health and wellness industries should consider how to channel Gen Z consumers’ openness on sexuality with bolder, more inclusive and fluid products and imagery dedicated to different usage and sexual preferences

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