Ingestible Beauty

Indonesia’s beauty foods market is set for a boom

Over the last decade, there’s been a meeting of minds between the beauty & personal care (BPC) and food & beverage sectors. 

Everything natural became the in-thing in food, which also seeped into the beauty space. BPC consumers felt that natural remedies – or at least derivatives of natural remedies – would be less harmful on the exterior much like how consumers see natural foods as being less harmful than processed versions. They wanted ingredients they recognized and could pronounce, similar to clean label trends in F&B. 

The food industry in turn has realized that there is plenty of opportunity for beauty benefits as a separate set of claims, promoting the concept of beauty from within – the idea that you are what you eat, or rather, your physical appearance is. BPC ingredients traditionally for topical use are now finding their way into ingestible formats with claims that you would normally have only seen in the personal care aisle. 

Beauty foods are lucrative!

Market Size: According to Insight Ace Analytic, the beauty ingestible market was worth US$3.56 billion in 2022 and was projected to reach US$9.22 billion by 2031. The category is expected to grow at a pretty strong 11.4% during this period and is also touted as one of the fastest growing segments within supplements. 

Top concerns: The areas of most interest for consumers are skin, hair, and nail health, though weight management also features significantly. 

Formats: Most beauty ingestibles are in the supplements category, in the form of capsules or tablets. But as the overall supplements category evolves, new formats are emerging, like gummies, gels, concentrated shots, strips, and others. Beauty ingredients have also entered mainstream F&B categories, like ready-to-drink beverages or powdered drinks mixes. 

Regions of note: North America is currently the largest market for ingestible beauty, but Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing region in the coming decade. 

GourmetPro expert Tassa Augustriana agrees that APAC is becoming a driving force for the beauty foods industry. Tassa, who specializes in quality assurance, food safety, and sourcing, has been keeping an eye on the evolution of this trend in Asia in general, and in Indonesia in particular. 

She highlighted how consumers are increasingly looking for a more holistic approach to improving their appearance and food and functional ingredients are seen as a significant part of this regimen.

Tassa said that in Indonesia, ready-to-consume beauty foods have been around for over 20 years, though the concept has been around for a lot longer. There have been ads on television for fiber drinks that were promoted as a slimming product since it would keep you fuller for longer or reduce your appetite. And then this expanded to products that had skin whitening claims – a beauty standard that is still prevalent across Asia to this day. These were still fairly niche products in those days. 

Recently, there has been a lot of interest in such food and drink products with beauty benefits, especially with the growth of the cosmetics industry in tandem. The interest started up again during the pandemic, when people had time and the convenience of online shopping really caught on. These products really appealed to women and they were accessible through mobile phones. And what’s helped is that the products have gone from being purely functional to actually tasting good – with a range of flavors, different types of functional ingredients, and convenient formats, like single-serve sachets.

- Tassa Augustriana

Why beauty ingestibles are relevant

Convenience and acceptance

One of the main reasons for the growth of beauty foods is pretty simple – convenience. For consumers, food and drink formats are easy to consume anywhere and at any time. Drink formats are especially popular because they also satisfy the need for hydration and are easier in terms of product development compared to food categories.

In addition to the convenience, there is already significant acceptance for such products, driven by influences from Southeast and East Asia (like Thailand, South Korea, Japan, China). 

Korean brands and products are incredibly popular in the region. And local brands have been taking a cue from Korean brands and even international brands to launch beauty food products based on Indonesian traditions and ingredients but with modern formats and packaging. They stand out due to their attractive packaging and are even available in major beauty retailers, further underscoring the holistic aspect of ingestible beauty products. 

Modernizing traditional remedies 

Traditional remedies with beauty benefits are very popular in the region and hold strong appeal for consumers.  

Indonesia and Malaysia have a significant population of ethnic Chinese consumers and so the market is also heavily influenced by Traditional Chinese Medicine. Indonesian traditional medicine – Jamu – is also quite popular. Jamu uses herbs and spices like turmeric, ginger, pepper, bitter curcumin, as well as honey, milk, eggs, and royal jelly.

The products were made fresh and sold by Javanese women and street hawkers who traveled to villages and towns. The recipes are also handed down from mothers to daughters, but have started to find their way into modern formats to add to the need for convenience. Jamu saw a comeback during the pandemic when consumers turned to these remedies for general health. 

Traditional Indonesian Jamu

Faster regulatory approval

In Indonesia, F&B formats for beauty ingestibles are becoming popular among companies because these are easier from a regulatory perspective. 

Tassa says, “The majority of ingestible beauty products available in the Indonesian market are registered under food and beverage instead of supplements because all of the ingredients used are acknowledged in food and beverage. If the active ingredients that are used are already accepted and approved by the regulatory authorities in Indonesia, getting the permit to sell the food/beverage is very fast. But there’s a limit to the dosage that can be put into the product.”

On the other hand, to sell as a health supplement or traditional medicine product, the approvals can take 8-12 months. A lot of compliance-related documentation and certifications are needed. For higher dosage of the active ingredients or for new ingredients, clinical trials may need to be done and the process could take more than two years. So it’s important to consider this lead time for new products.

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Main areas of focus and solutions

Skin care 

As with much of Asia, skin care is a major area of interest for consumers. Youthful looking and glowing skin are important features that consumers look for and thus ingredients that aid these benefits are very popular. 

Collagen is a popular ingredient with F&B manufacturers, since there is regulatory approval for the ingredient in Indonesia as well. In fact, the bulk of products that fall under the purview of beauty foods contain collagen. Brands are also communicating with consumers in specific ways to highlight these benefits. Some brands don’t just say they contain collagen – they are specific about the source. Indonesia has a strong seafood industry and marine collagen is becoming a popular ingredient. Some brands go even further, calling out their use of salmon collagen for brighter and dewy skin

Glowing and bright skin are other important areas of focus and glutathione is an ingredient that is popping up in the beauty foods space, taking cues from the beauty industry. 

An ingredient that is very popular for skin health is bird’s nest, which is said to promote collagen production, moisturize the skin, and slow down aging. Bird’s nest is a traditional ingredient with a number of other health benefits as well, including boosting energy levels, metabolism, and energy levels. It has been traditionally consumed as a soup or juice. Indonesia produces around 80% of the world’s edible birds’ nests, made by swiftlets using their starch-like saliva.  

Indonesian health brand Flimty has introduced a skin health powdered drink featuring collagen, glutathione, and bird’s nest extract as well as a range of other ingredients. The brand says this product can be effective for dry, dull, and acne-prone skin.

Source: Flimty platform on Shopee

Source: Flimty platform on Shopee

Acnology offers a drink powder that contains niacinamide, zinc, and selenium for acne control.

Source: Shopee


Slimming drinks are very popular across Southeast Asia and many of the products include fiber, like psyllium husk. Balans offers a range of collagen and fiber drink powders aimed at weight management and glowing skin. The product uses psyllium husk and prebiotic fibers.

Source: Balans

What’s next

Single issue to multi-functional

Tassa highlights that when this concept first emerged a few years ago, products were limited to single issues, like slimming or glowing skin. Now as this concept of beauty foods becomes a more mainstream trend, we’re seeing its evolution to slightly more sophisticated offerings. In particular, the beauty foods market is expanding to offer multiple functional benefits. We’re already seeing drinks with collagen and psyllium husk, which offer both skin health and slimming benefits. But this segment has a lot of opportunities for growth:

  • The ingredients that are suitable for skin health are also beneficial to hair and nail health, so these claims will also see growth in the coming years.

  • In other markets, the beauty foods segment is expanding to to include other functional benefits, like immunity and gut health. 

  • In addition, there is growing interest in newer functional benefits, like stress relief, emotional wellbeing, and sleep, as consumers see these manifesting on skin as signs of rapid aging. 

Tassa says that some of these newer functional benefits are just starting to emerge in Indonesia, but are currently limited to large city centers. 

Halal certified products

Indonesia has the largest Muslim population in the world, with 241.5 million Muslims, according to Statista. Around 87% of the population is Muslim, making Indonesia an attractive destination market for brands that have halal certification. A number of European beauty brands with Halal certification are already looking to tap into this massive consumer base, says Tassa.

Read our deep dive into Halal certification here

The functional beauty foods market has just started to make its mark and is an interesting area for growth around the world, especially as consumers seek out solutions for healthy aging and to look photo ready.

If you’d like to leverage Tassa’s expertise in this area and on the Indonesian market…

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