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Empowerment of SME’s sustainability in halal cosmetics’ ecosystem by diagnosing growth constraints

Adlin Masood (Faculty of Economics and Muamalat, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia, Nilai, Malaysia)
Aisyah Zaidi (Faculty of Economics and Muamalat, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia, Nilai, Malaysia)

Journal of Islamic Marketing

ISSN: 1759-0833

Article publication date: 4 November 2021

Issue publication date: 26 January 2023




This study aims to identify and examine the growth constraints of the halal cosmetics ecosystem in which SMEs are operating in, with special focus on the situation in Malaysia.


The study adopted a qualitative methodology consisting of a systematic literature review and interviews with selected consumers and policymakers. The instruments were developed based on cybernetics and a systems-based approach, which allows for the understanding of the dynamics of growth variables in the halal cosmetics ecosystem. Based on data gathered, their relationships were mapped and major growth constraints were identified.


Cybernetics and systems approach coupled with growth diagnostics framework has enabled identification of comprehensive growth constraint variables for halal cosmetics ecosystem and mapping of growth constraints (variables) in a relationships network. The study found that the enforcement activities of the National Pharmaceutical Research Agency (Cosmetics Unit) directly affect five growth constraints and is associated with three other growth constraint variables; subsequently the most binding growth constraint. The relationship network derived from the mapping of the growth constraints indicated that changes in the behaviour of any element will affect the overall operations of the ecosystem.

Research limitations/implications

While the cosmetics industry is large and varied, this study is centred on halal colour cosmetics only. The growth constraint variables studied are those chosen by researchers and other growth constraints could be studied to guide policymakers. Future research can revolve around other halal cosmetics business sectors; impact of IR4.0 technology, COVID-19 pandemic impact; crisis and risk management issues, in the halal cosmetics industry.

Practical implications

The results derived from the cybernetics analysis affirms the “outside-in” marketing perspective, thus stakeholders should continuously monitor changes in the halal cosmetics ecosystem to ensure to ensure sustainability and profitability. Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and policymakers can initiate pre-emptive actions by conducting simulations of various situations on the halal ecosystem.

Social implications

Enabled to simulate the effect of changes to the halal cosmetics ecosystem, stakeholders are able to take intervention initiatives, safeguard accessibility to halal cosmetics and make the halal cosmetics industry sustainable.


To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first comprehensive research to identify the growth constraints of the halal cosmetics industry in Malaysia that focusses on three groups of stakeholders (consumers, SMEs and government institutions) concurrently. The growth constraints relationship network of the halal cosmetics ecosystem can be further used to simulate the impact of changes within the system.



The authors acknowledge the financial support of Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia matching research grant for “Halal Cosmetics Gateway Sustainable Development: Growth Diagnostic of Binding Constraints in Malaysia and Indonesia” Code No.: USIM/MG/UI/FEM/055012/70819 and Universitas Indonesia research grant from “Penelitian Dasar Unggulan Perguruan Tinggi”, Indonesian Ministry of Higher Education.


Masood, A. and Zaidi, A. (2023), "Empowerment of SME’s sustainability in halal cosmetics’ ecosystem by diagnosing growth constraints", Journal of Islamic Marketing, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 622-644.



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