Light Incontinence Market: Exploring Growth Opportunities and Industry Innovations

The light incontinence market has experienced remarkable growth in recent years, driven by demographics, increasing consumer demand and industry innovations. According to Euromonitor International, the global adult incontinence market is predicted to experience a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4% in volume terms from 2022 to 2027, leading to an additional 14 billion units[1]. Within this market, “demographic trends such as ageing and urbanization, and health-forward lifestyle shifts are gaining prominence,” particularly in high-income countries[2]. As a result, light incontinence products are growing in importance, catering to the needs of a diverse consumer base. In this article, we will delve into the factors driving the growth of the light incontinence market, explore segment possibilities, highlight industry responses and innovations, and showcase GDM’s cutting-edge solutions.

Light Incontinence Market Overview

The light incontinence market targets individuals suffering from light bladder leakage (the involuntary passing of a small amount of urine)[3].It has recently arisen as a significant segment within the global adult incontinence industry. The light inco format is particularly popular in developed markets such as Western Europe and Australasia, where it accounted for over 70% of retail incontinence volume sales in 2021. Additionally, North America, Japan, and Europe are expected to contribute to more than 60% of the projected increase in volume consumption of retail adult incontinence goods from 2022 to 2027[4]. This is owed to “ageing, increased incontinence-inducing health conditions, product availability, and income power.”[5] According to Euromonitor, in fact, lifestyle changes, the creation of value, and the emergence of disruptive alternatives are influencing growth in mature markets, while demographic trends, increased awareness, and improved income levels are driving long-term penetration in developing markets[6].

Consumer Needs and Market Drivers

A shift in consumer preferences and evolving demographics have played a crucial role in driving the growth of the light incontinence market. The 2022 Lifestyles Survey by Euromonitor International revealed that 52% of women desire products and services tailored to their needs. Additionally, as the global proportion of female household heads is projected to reach 42% by 2040, and nearly 26% of the female population will be over 55, the demand for effective and discreet light incontinence solutions is expected to soar. Female empowerment is an opportunity for businesses to accommodate demand for the “changing female body narrative” by catering to a broader range of women’s needs[7]. Besides, changing consumer spending habits  and economic uncertainties have forced consumers to think more carefully about budgeting, which is driving some to trade down on everyday goods and “spend occasionally on accessible luxuries” and high-performance premium products[8].

Educating consumers on selecting the right product is a crucial aspect to consider, and brands and manufacturers still have much work to do in providing this education. By enhancing consumer awareness about suitable product choices, there is a potential for increased demand in the light incontinence solutions market. For instance, some consumers insert bladder control pads into their underwear for added absorbency, which not only increases costs but also diminishes effectiveness[9]. Additionally, women often resort to using period products for bladder leakages due to accessibility and reduced embarrassment, despite these products not fully meeting their needs[10]. Consequently, incorrect product choices may limit their participation in certain activities and forms of physical exercise. This presents an opportunity for investors to develop new market segments and guide consumers towards products that cater to their specific requirements.

Potential Growth Markets

Despite the growing demand for light incontinence products, market potential warrants further exploration. Many consumers struggle to find the right product that meets their needs, leading them to rely on sanitary napkins or liners for light incontinence management. This presents an opportunity for manufacturers to develop specialized products targeting younger adults, women, and individuals experiencing light incontinence due to various health conditions. By addressing the specific requirements of this group of conscious consumers, manufacturers can tap into a market that is yet to be fully explored. For instance, one example of a specialized product is disposable pull-ups, which have been gaining traction among individuals with minimal leakage. This emerging segment shows promising growth potential within the light incontinence market. Excluding Asia, the market data suggests a robust annual growth rate of over 20% for this segment over the next five years, highlighting its substantial potential for expansion[11].

Industry Response and Innovation

Changing consumer spending habits and shifting health priorities have led to a growing demand for products that offer a higher cost-benefit ratio[12]. In response, manufacturers in the light incontinence market are proactively addressing these consumer demands by prioritizing key factors such as absorbency, odor control, value for money, and design aesthetics. According to Euromonitor, consumers are seeking products that demonstrate “stronger performance, security and mobility assurance[13].”

One notable trend is the concept of product premiumization: consumers are looking for high-performance products that provide discretion and comfort and employ high-quality raw materials. In response, manufacturers are investing in advanced technologies and machinery to deliver exceptional products that meet market requirements and provide the desired level of performance. This innovation is particularly evident in the development of thin, high-absorbency pads and pull-ups, which continue to be an area of substantial progress within the light incontinence market[14]. By embracing these advancements, manufacturers can stay competitive and meet the industry’s growing demand for innovative solutions.

Another crucial aspect to consider is the request for a  more sustainable supply chain, with particular attention paid to reducing the use of plastics and petroleum-based materials through the adoption of plant-based sourcing and end-of-life management practices[15]. In fact, Euromonitor identifies “clean, green and natural features” as top innovation tactics to focus on in the coming year[16]. Additionally, consumers have responded to the cost-of-living crisis by embracing alternative methods of accessing products, such as reducing unnecessary spending and seeking out budget-friendly or private-label brands[17]. By prioritizing eco-friendly practices and introducing innovative sustainable solutions, companies are aligning with consumer expectations and contributing to a greener future.

GDM Technologies for Enhanced Product Performance

When helping manufacturers tackle new market challenges, GDM is a reliable partner. LI6-Red technology, featuring Extra Thin Core, is the ideal solution for those interested in delivering a high-performance product with superior absorbency and comfort. Driven by a strong commitment to sustainability and cost-effective production, GDM has also designed Option Zero, a program that maximizes operational efficiency while reducing costs, ensuring a win-win solution for both the brand and its consumers. The program comprises four areas of value: Zero Waste, Zero Defects, Zero Glue and Zero Time. These areas are designed to maximize raw material savings, reduce time for size changing and make production more effective while delivering performing and more sustainable products.

In conclusion, the Light Incontinence market holds immense potential for manufacturers and investors to capitalize on. As the awareness and demand for light incontinence products continue to rise, it becomes crucial to offer customized solutions that excel in performance, comfort and affordability. By staying attuned to industry trends, fostering a culture of innovation and placing a strong emphasis on meeting consumer requirements, companies can tap into the vast possibilities presented by this flourishing market.

Are you ready to seize the growth opportunities in the light incontinence market? Partner with GDM for cutting-edge solutions and tap into the potential of this thriving industry. Contact us today to discuss how we can drive your business success, together.

[1] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[2] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
;Nonwovens Industry
[3] Source:TENA
[4] Source:Euromonitor 2022
[5] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[6] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[7] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2023
[8] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2023
[9] Source: Nonwovens Industry
[10] Source: Nonwovens Industry
[11] Source: Nonwovens Industry
[12] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[13] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[14] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[15] Source: Nonwovens Industry
[16] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: World Market for Disposable Hygiene
[17] Source:Euromonitor International 2023: Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2023
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