The Skift Wellness newsletter is our weekly dispatch focused on what’s happening in wellness from a global business standpoint. Skift Wellness lives where wellness meets commerce, mindfulness meets technology, the yoga studio meets the boardroom, and health meets business.
There are a number of cliches out there about men and wellness. For example, men don’t particularly value taking care of themselves, or they’re too embarrassed to seek personal treatments.
Whether those ideas were ever true doesn’t really matter now. Men are spending more money on wellness products and services, from supplements and facial serums to medications that help with issues like erectile dysfunction and male-pattern baldness. According to Alex Moshakis, an editor at The Guardian, “The women’s market, which has dominated the sector for years, remains enormous, but the male market is exploding.”
The reason for the rise of men’s wellness could be more targeted marketing. For example, Hims, the supplement and medication company geared toward men, relies on clever messaging and a change in the conversation around getting help for medical issues. “The point of it all … is making sure you realize this one specific thing: Having an issue isn’t weird. Not dealing with it is weird,” said Hims founder Andrew Dudum.
Meanwhile, in China, both men and women are jumping in on the CrossFit exercise craze, which has taken off as the country grapples with a rise in type 2 diabetes rates. While men have always taken up a large chunk of the fitness sector, the rise in men attending boutique fitness classes on a global scale is worth noting.
Whether it’s through tech, skincare, or supplements, companies would be wise to pay attention to the growing interest — and spending surge — happening in men’s wellness these days.
— Leslie Barrie, Wellness Editor
The Men’s Wellness Industry Is on the Rise, and Brands Want In: There’s now an “unprecedented openness” when it comes to men and self-care, according to Beth McGroarty of the Global Wellness Institute. As men become more comfortable seeking out wellness products and services, companies are all too happy to jump on board. Hims, a health and wellness company, for example, has worked to make men feel less awkward about buying medications to treat hair loss and erectile dysfunction. So far, sales numbers show that it’s working. Read more here.
Co-Working Company Convene Plans to Launch On-Location Clinics: Convene, a competitor of WeWork, will soon roll out Eden Health clinics at its co-working spaces across the country. The partnership is a smart one. Eden Health, fresh off $10 million in series A funding, will gain access to Convene’s clients, while Convene can market itself as a wellness company, allowing it to pull in employees who want more than just a desk to work at. Another perk: Its clients get the benefit of Eden Health’s digital tools. Read more here.
Apple and Stanford’s Apple Watch Heart Study Shows Promising Results: Good news for the tech giant. Stanford scientists presented new data this past weekend at the American College of Cardiology conference that shows the Apple Watch can pick up on heart rhythm problems — particularly atrial fibrillation, which contributes to 130,000 deaths in the U.S. each year. And of the almost 420,000 study participants enrolled in the trial, only 0.5 percent were alerted of a potential heart rhythm issue, which is a good sign that most people weren’t pestered with unnecessary alarms. Read more here.
Instagram’s New Checkout Feature Streamlines In-App Shopping: You’ll no longer have to go through the trouble of leaving Instagram to buy new tights or sneakers, thanks to the platform’s buzzy new Checkout feature — which is launching with around 20 brands, including athleisure favorites Nike, Adidas, and Outdoor Voices. Customers can purchase products right on the app (thus, will need to share their credit card info), which likely means more money for both Instagram and the brands, as buyers will have fewer shopping roadblocks. Read more here.
CrossFit Picks Up Steam in China: The high-intensity weightlifting workout has gained momentum in China. CrossFit now has 120 locations across the country, with a new store opening about every week. This comes at a time when fitness has taken off in the country amid mounting concerns over public health — problems resulting from chronic disease could cost the country $16 trillion by 2030, according to reports. CrossFit will host two “Sanctionals” competitions in China this year and has begun coach training in regional dialects. Read more here.
Food & Drink
Kind Battles the FDA Over Food Labeling, Again: In 2015, the FDA told snack bar brand Kind it couldn’t use the word “healthy” on its labels, pointing, for one, to the bars’ high fat content. Kind fought back, citing that nuts (which are high in fat but universally regarded as nutritious) are the reason for the elevated fat, and many criticized the FDA’s outdated guidelines for what it deems “healthy.” In a bold move, Kind has filed a petition over how the FDA regulates claims on food labels. Read more here.
How Indie Beauty Brands Are Entering the Wellness Industry: It’s no surprise that smaller beauty companies want to align themselves with the $1 trillion beauty wellness market and have started doing so in innovative ways. Beauty tech brand Foreo is planning RV pop-ups across America that showcase its products and offer yoga classes and healthy cooking demos, for example. Meanwhile, Sunday Riley, a skincare startup, introduced a wellness subscription box, filled with its products and wellness goodies like a free month of Headspace and a bkr water bottle. Read more here.
Skift Wellness Editor Leslie Barrie [firstname.lastname@example.org] curates the Skift Wellness newsletter. Skift emails the newsletter every Thursday.