Dubai's Mikyajy launches GCC's first fully halal-certified cosmetics line

With consumer-demand for hygienic and sustainable products on the rise, the market for halal-certified cosmetics has been growing exponentially, an opportunity which Dubai-based makeup brand Mikyajy capitalised on.

Launched 20 years ago, with presence across the GCC, Mikyajy was already halal-compliant but decided last year to take the rather lengthy journey to become halal-certified, meaning certifying the entire production process.

“Research indicates that the market for halal makeup is increasing in leaps and bounds and is expected to grow fivefold over the next 10 years, which is something that we want to be ready for obviously,” said Jim Ragsdale, deputy CEO for beauty at Mikyajy.

The global halal cosmetics market reached a value of $74.7 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow a CAGR of 6.4 percent during 2021-2026, according to research by IMARC Group.

Mikyajy’s first experience with halal-certified products was with its nail enamel line which proved to be a success, said Ragsdale.

“We’ve already had a foray into halal with our breathable nail enamel product and that has done extremely well for us, in addition to being Covid-resistant. So when we realised how well that segment was doing for us, that's when we decided that we needed to be here in a bigger way,” he explained.

Mikyajy conducted their own market research to determine their consumers’ needs and found out that their customers associate halal-products with hygienic and pure products.

“What’s interesting is that when we surveyed our Gulf customers, the responses they came back with made us realise that, for them, halal is kind of a proxy for what customers elsewhere in the world are calling clean or sustainable,” said Ragsdale.

“Our customers also indicated that while they want to buy halal-certified makeup, they are not willing to buy halal if it means compromising on the product’s quality of performance in terms of longevity and steadfastness and resistance to heat and humidity, especially for this area of the world,” he continued.

Mikyajy introduced its halal-certified line of products, starting with lipstick, late September after completing a lengthy process which included halal-certifying their European manufactures.

“When you decide that you are going to attack this market, it's a process – you can't just snap your fingers and have it done overnight. So we've been working on this for quite a while mainly on the certification,” said Ragsdale.

With consumers the world over working from home during the pandemic last year and even nowadays demand for makeup is shifting.

“With the pandemic and now remote working, people are mainly staying at home and when they go out, they’re wearing masks so that restricts the area of the face which is seen. This means that while eye makeup has been at a premium, sales in lip and face categories have been dampened for sure – during the pandemic,” said Ragsdale.

“At the same time, what we've seen is a very quickly evolving customer-demand on what she is looking for when she's looking for face or lip products. Notably, in addition to the drying climate conditions that we have in this area of the world, she's now up against the mask mandate as well which is why there is a demand for make-up that is mask-proof,” he continued.