Holland & Barrett

The Wellness Trends for 2024: Hydro hacks, turkey tail and cortisol conscious workouts

15 November 2023


– Holland & Barrett recaps on the wellness winners of 2023 and unveils the trends to watch out for in 2024 –

– A year that will see more health taboos being broken, a desire to support brain health, hot new functional ingredients and a mission to live better, for longer –

Holland & Barrett, the UK’s leading health and wellness retailer, has released its highly anticipated annual trends report, revealing its wellness predictions for 2024, alongside a lookback at the most talked about trends of the past year.

2023 was the year of #ashwagandha, #lionsmane and #chiaseedwater as billions took to TikTok for the latest hot takes on wellness. Yet it was the unassuming underwater find, Sea Moss, which fast became the breakout star, with searches peaking at 158 per cent on H&B’s website and over 500 million views on TikTok, as customers supercharged their daily smoothies and soups with the nutrient-rich ingredient. 

As consumers continue to balance cost-of-living pressures with the desire to improve their wellness, Holland & Barrett’s team of expert nutritionists, forecasters and innovators have continued to scour the globe to help predict and bring the hottest ingredients, products, services, and wellness trends to the market.

H&B’s trend predictions for 2024: 

Water’s having a makeover: water is not simply water anymore. With 90 per cent of the UK saying they have experienced signs of dehydration[1]; we are seeing a sharp rise in innovative products to aid H20 intake. Adaptogen-enriched kombuchas combining both hydration and functionality, and water with added collagen and fibre will be the liquid on everyone’s lips in 2024. Expect to see consumers adopt ‘micro-drinking’, a form of topping up water consumption in the form of sachets, edible drops and gummies.  

Natural energy seekers: in a world where increased workload and digital fatigue cause us to feel tired constantly, raising our energy IQ has never been more important. Enter the new age of ‘natural energy’. This trend sees natural rituals and ingredients key to boosting energy levels that free us from our reliance on coffee and sugar-filled energy drinks grow in popularity. We will see caffeine show up in new formats, such as caffeine infused toothpastes, supplements and even in stick-form which can be stirred into hot drinks. H&B is also piloting a new barista-made ‘Coffee with Benefits’ service – a new range which combines hero wellness ingredients with popular drinks. 

Inside-out beauty: retinol and collagen soared in popularity in 2023, but 2024 will see edible skincare go mainstream as new developments that support the evolving trend for ‘beauty from within’ reach the market. Protein and collagen infused beauty bars, microbiome balancing skincare and readily available bone broths, rich in calcium, will be added to beauty regimes as skincare solutions continue to move beyond the surface.

Cortisol conscious workouts: exercise for physical strength and psychological resilience is the movement ‘movement’ in 2024. By considering levels of cortisol, gym goers will be prescribed more mindful movements as part of their training regimes, while protein supplements and sports nutrition will become bigger and better for non-athletes too. One of the biggest ingredient trends in supplements will be Haskap Berries – celebrated in Japan as ‘the elixir of life’, this powerful antioxidant is made from blueberry-like honeysuckle berries. 

New wave ageing: no longer content with just living for longer, consumers seek support to thrive for longer too, so expect to see more anti-ageing remedies that help to deliver ‘quality’ not just quantity. Look out for wearable wellness patches, attached directly to the skin, that target issues like stress, poor sleep and low energy. The ingredient, Taurine, will rise through the wellness ranks as early research suggests it may support the ageing process. Plant points will go mainstream as consumers look to supercharge their diets. 

Period positivity: the menstrual cycle conversation will take the spotlight in 2024, with more money and knowledge invested into sustainable and effective solutions to support women at each stage of their cycle. Look out for regulation of hormonal activity supporting foods such as menopause chocolate, as well as CBD-infused tampons and pads, and a greater choice in leak-proof clothing as bigger sports brands launch in this space.

Brain health: our focus has shifted to the different ways we can protect and support our minds, memory and attention. There’s a new ‘shroom on the block, with Turkey Tail taking centre stage as early research explores the functional benefits of the fungi on cognitive health. ‘Intelligent aromatherapy’ sees essential oils such as rose and lavender being inhaled as early research conducted on a small sample size investigated the impact of this action on word recall. 

April Preston, Global Production Director, Holland & Barrett, comments: “With over 150 years of expertise in the wellness space, our team of nutritionists, forecasters and innovators are constantly analysing the hottest ingredients, products, services, and emerging behaviours, that we believe will shape the future of wellness. 2024 promises to be an exciting year in wellness, and we’re always looking at ways to bring many of the science-backed breakthrough and evolving trends and ingredients to our customers as we continue to support them on their health and wellness journey.” 

[1] Hinton Magazine (2022)