Global halal cosmetics market booms

Entrepreneurs producing "halal" cosmetics say the global market is booming as more Muslims opt for beauty products that conform to Islamic rules.

Famiza Zulkifli made her first halal soap four years ago, after searching in vain for the right products to bathe her baby. Now her business has an annual turnover of 1.6 million dollars.

"Halal is an issue for Muslims. At the end of the day, everyone will die and God will ask you what have you done," said the Malaysian singer-turned-entrepreneur.

Famiza, who unusually for a Malaysian woman wears the black niqab that only reveals her eyes, now exports dozens of top-to-toe beauty products to Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand and Brunei.

The concept of halal, which means "permissible" in Arabic, is mainly applied to food. Pork and its by-products, animals not slaughtered according to Koranic procedures and alcohol are all "haram" or forbidden.

But manufacturers are cashing in on the concept that virtually all goods and services can be certified halal, including cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, clothing, financial services and even tour packages.

Like their conventional counterparts, halal cosmetics - including lipstick, deodorant and alcohol-free perfume - can contain animal ingredients but they must be prepared according to Islamic codes on slaughter and preparation.

"Even the small amount of collagen in our night cream is derived from halal sheep raised at a Muslim-run farm in Australia," said Famiza, adding that she plans to expand her business from Southeast Asia to Europe next year.

Nearly a quarter of the world's population are Muslims and the global halal business, estimated by a Malaysian research company to be worth 635 billion dollars a year, has expanded from Islamic countries to Western nations with growing Muslim populations.

In France, which is home to about five million Muslims, sales of halal food are forecast to hit 5.5 billion euros (7.2 billion dollars) in 2010 according to an industry spokesman.

The halal cosmetics business - estimated to be worth 560 million dollars globally - is seen by analysts as next in line for growth after the lucrative halal food and Islamic finance sectors.

Mah Hussain-Gambles, founder of the first halal cosmetics company in Europe, Saaf Pure Skincare, said the industry has also benefitted from a "green wave" and that 75 percent of her customers are non-Muslims.

"The principles are the same - they want something that doesn't harm the body, the purity and that is exactly the same as the halal movement," she said.

"I create an eco-ethical brand which is organic, vegetarian and halal - they are all important elements to me," she said, adding that demand "is getting out of control".

"The enquiries are from everywhere. Last week there were enquiries from Bangladesh, Canada, Australia, Belgium and Malaysia - it's just too much work."

Abdalhamid David Evans, a British expert on the halal business, said more manufacturers will jump on the bandwagon as Muslims choose halal products to reinforce their identity while others become more eco-conscious.

"People are becoming increasingly concerned about those things and they become a marketing issue," said Evans, of Imarat Consultants.

"Without a doubt, (the halal cosmetics industry) is going to be big," he told AFP on the sidelines of the first international halal cosmetics and toiletries conference, which was held in Malaysia last month.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Recruitment Genius: Experienced Special Needs Support Worker

    £12 - £14 per hour: Recruitment Genius: We are looking for someone to join a s...

    Recruitment Genius: Content Assistant / Copywriter

    £15310 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has arisen for a...

    Recruitment Genius: Sewing Technician

    £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This market leader in Medical Devices is...

    Recruitment Genius: Operations Manager

    £24000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Situated in the heart of Bradfo...

    Day In a Page

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

    Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
    Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

    Aviation history is littered with grand failures

    But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

    Fortress Europe?

    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
    Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

    Never mind what you're wearing

    It's what you're reclining on that matters
    General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

    Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

    The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
    Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

    Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

    Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
    Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

    Marginal Streets project documents voters

    Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
    Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

    The real-life kingdom of Westeros

    Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
    How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

    How to survive a Twitter mauling

    Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
    Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

    At dawn, the young remember the young

    A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

    Follow the money as never before

    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

    Samuel West interview

    The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
    General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence