Beauty brands are constantly competing to be on the radar of Gen Z and Millennials, who have a growing appetite for personal and beauty care products. According to YPulse’s recent WE Personal Care and Beauty Shopping Report, the number of young consumers who use skincare products has only increased between 2021 and 2022. At the same time, their makeup use is on the rise as well, as social routines pick back up post-pandemic. But notably for brands, these number aren’t just increasing among young females; young males are also increasingly using skincare and beauty products as well. Over half of Gen Z and Millennial males in Western Europe now use skincare products, and almost one in five are interested in makeup for men.
Beauty brands are constantly on the hunt for the coolest brand ambassadors, and as young males become more interested in personal care products, we’re beginning to see some of the biggest names in the business partner up with young male celebs as their newest faces. Here’s a roundup of some of the new male Gen Z brand ambassadors from three European beauty brands…
Rimmel x Tom Dailey
The announcement of Tom Daley as Rimmel’s latest brand ambassador came as a surprise in the beauty industry. The global cosmetic powerhouse—one of the oldest in the world—has collaborated with iconic models such as Kate Moss and Cara Delevingne in the past, but this is the first time ever that a male celeb is representing the brand. The Brit sportsman made his Olympic debut at age 14, and went on to win a gold medal in the 2020 Tokyo Games. But he is probably even more famous for being openly gay and supporting charity work on LGBTQ+ rights. The beauty products industry is aware that young consumers are redefining gender norms (see YPulse’s Gender Blur Trend Report for more insights) and are more open to gender fluidity than previous gens. With Gen Z sportsman Tom Dailey as their new brand ambassador, Rimmel is hoping to appeal to this growing segment. Not only is beauty and skincare booming in Western Europe with young men, YPulse’s data shows that LGBTQ+ males are even more enthusiastic users of these products. In other words, showcasing the 28-year-old activist as their new brand ambassador was a clever move from Rimmel.
Yves Saint-Laurent Beauty x Lil Nas X
Yves Saint-Laurent Beauté has made Lil Nas X their U.S. brand ambassador in an effort to break down gender stereotypes in beauty. The French beauty and fashion brand recently released the first video clip of the promising collab, which features the 23-year-old rapper putting on the iconic YSL “The Bold” lipstick and Lash Clash mascara, followed by a group of men in leathered crop-tops while dancing to the sound of—you guessed it—Lil Nas X’s own soundtrack. Of course, the artist himself also posted about his new role in a post that has over 600K likes. Although Lil Nas X is not one of young Europeans’ top 15 favorite artists, the 23-year-old is still a real cultural phenomenon who excels at going viral (we all remember the controversy over his “Satan Shoes” and his Marvel-inspired album trailer) and smashing gender norms. YPulse’s Gender Blur trend research found that 75% of 13-39-year-olds in the U.S. say it’s okay for girls to be masculine and guys to be feminine, and Gen Z, TikTok, and young celebrities with “a more expansive sense of masculinity” have been championing the blurring of gender lines. Meanwhile, a recent report from Bigeye found that young people not only prefer genderless fashion, but they’re also demanding it, and brands are increasingly leaning into gender-fluid fashion and marketing.