L\'Oreal, the world\'s largest cosmetics maker, said Monday strong demand in Asia and performance by its luxury unit led to 1.8 percent gain in third quarter sales, and confirmed its forecasts for 2011. Sales rose 1.8 percent to 4.94 billion euros ($6.8 billion) in the three months from July to September, or 4.8 percent on a like-for-like basis. Over the first nine months of the year sales were up 3.9 percent to 15.1 billion euros. \"With a favourable cosmetics market trend despite the uncertainties facing the worldwide economy, we are tackling the last quarter with confidence,\" L\'Oreal chief executive Jean-Paul Agon said in a statement. \"We confirm our aim of outperforming the market in 2011, and achieving another year of growth in both sales and profitability.\" L\'Oreal earned 2.24 billion euros in net profits last year on 19.5 billion euros in sales.