Anti-aging consumption rises despite economic downturn

SEOUL, July 16 (Yonhap)-- A survey by the country's business lobby revealed Tuesday that more than 80 percent of consumers increased their spending on anti-aging products and services over the past three years despite the prolonged economic slump.

The rise in anti-aging products and services consumption was attributable to the fact that most consumers regard a youthful appearance as their competitive edge, the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) said.

According to the survey of 500 consumers by the KCCI, more than 60 percent of the respondents took dietary supplements, including vitamins and red ginseng products, to maintain a youthful appearance, while 59 percent consumed healthy foods such as blueberries and nuts.

A majority of the respondents said that they use functional cosmetics to get rid of wrinkles on their faces and lighten their skin tone, with 46.4 percent saying they use hair-care products to either prevent hair loss or dye their hair.

Asked whether they will increase their spending on anti-aging products and services in the near future, nearly all respondents said that they will increase or maintain the level of their current expenditures.

More than 55 percent said they will spend more on dietary supplements and healthy foods, while 39.4 percent said they will increase their spending on functional cosmetics.

The country's anti-aging market is estimated at 12 trillion won (US$10.7 billion), the KCCI said.

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