Investor Alert

May 23, 2022, 10:05 a.m. EDT

Beauty category showing resiliency with Ulta, Estee Lauder and Olaplex among analysts' top picks

Consumers might be cutting back on some items due to inflation, but a survey conducted by Cowen analysts shows people plan to stick with their beauty regimen. Cowen surveyed 1,000 respondents and 70% to 75% indicate they will spend the same amount on beauty products this year compared with last year. Cowen puts the total addressable market (TAM) for the beauty category at $55 billion. Ulta Beauty Inc. (NAS:ULTA) is the analyst group's top pick. "We believe Ulta will be less affected by waning consumer demand and continue to drive share gains, given the resilience of beauty," Cowen's report says. Other top picks include Estee Lauer (NYS:EL) , Olaplex (NAS:OLPX) and Neutrogena. Raymond James analysts note that Target Corp. (NYS:TGT) called out the strength of the beauty category in the first-quarter despite a profit miss. E.L.F. Beauty Inc. (NYS:ELF) is scheduled to report fiscal fourth-quarter earnings on Wednesday after the closing bell. The beauty brand has gained shelf space at Ulta, and D.A. Davidson says E.L.F. could double its shelf space in Walmart Inc. (NYS:WMT) , Ulta and Target in the coming years. E.L.F. shares are down 35.2% for the year to date.

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