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'Strong Christmas' for Superdrug as consumers change shopping habits

Superdrug has reported strong Christmas results as consumers change their shopping habits because of the cost of living crisis.

The retailer saw total sales grow by 9.2% over the four weeks to 30 December, with like-for-like growth of 7.1% during the festive trading period.

In-store piercings were a particular bright spot, with 54% growth in demand last month when compared with the same period a year earlier.

The brand has been expanding this service to about 500 of its shops - and its Beauty Studio division, which offers treatments such as eyebrow threading - has grown 20% year on year.

Own-brand sales have increased as shoppers seek more affordable alternatives, and as customers prepared for Christmas parties, demand for cosmetics also rose by 20%.

Superdrug chief executive Peter Macnab said: "We understand the pressures customers are currently facing and are committed to supporting them and offering the very best in accessible health and beauty.

"The strong sales growth in own-brand really demonstrates that customers are seeking quality products from a brand that they can trust, at an affordable price."

He attributed this sales increase to continued investment in expanding Superdrug's store estate and digital services.

Superdrug is the latest retailer to report upbeat results for the all-important festive season.

Earlier this month, discount supermarket chains Aldi and Lidl both said that Christmas 2023 was their "best ever" in the UK.

Industry data also showed that, across all supermarkets, price cuts designed to lure shoppers led to record revenues in the four weeks leading up to Christmas Eve.

Tesco has raised its annual profit forecast after comparable sales growth in the six weeks to 6 January was 6.8% higher when compared with the same period in 2022.

Meanwhile, M&S reported a better-than-expected 8.1% rise in like-for-like sales over the 13 weeks to 30 December.