We are in a time where more people are making the decision to become an entrepreneur. One of the many reasons for this is that it is now easier to start a business with little to no money. This epiphany has caused people to become resourceful in the pursuit of financial freedom – which is fantastic. In the beauty industry, there is an increase of suppliers and manufacturers recognising the trend for small cosmetic brands and are willing to do business with them. With those business relationships and the use of social media, it means that it is possible for a brand that was started in the kitchen, to make it into a high street retailer in the future. Here are 6 things to consider if you want to start a cosmetic brand:
Test your formulation
Cosmetics need to be tested. Whether it is 100% natural or not. Many natural cosmetics have food ingredients that are just as tasty to bacteria as it is to humans. Yes, testing can be expensive but it allows brands to progress quicker as high street retailers require safety documentation – of the final formulation and the ingredients used. It’s good to have a file of all the updated MSDS‘s for each ingredient used in your products, along with the testing data.
Create A Beauty Canvas
Business plans take up so much time. So one of the things we recommend is to use a lean business canvas. Why? It has all the elements of a business plan, but instead of numerous pages like a traditional business plan, a canvas is set out in a way that is easy for any inexperienced founder to fill out. We created a canvas specifically focusing on the beauty industry and you can purchase one here with examples from different brands.
Think about the packaging
The packaging is just as important for the final product as is the formula. This should be considered from the beginning of your ingredient choice. Many don’t realise that some plastics interact with ingredients within the formulations or that a formulation can be too thick to pump/squeeze out. Think about your market positioning as well when it comes to your packaging - the packaging for products sold in Space NK is different to the packaging of products sold in Superdrug. Designs of the packaging can change numerous times, so don't waste time trying to get the perfect packaging.
Understand the definition of a cosmetic:
Many think they know what a cosmetic is, but don't realise that they don't. This is why we recommend reading our definition of what a cosmetic is so that you aware whether or not your product is a cosmetic in the intended countries you want to sell it in.
Testing a product is the first step in staying legal when starting a cosmetic brand. However, the claims that any product makes has to be tested. It is illegal to say on your product that olive oil makes your hair grow without adequate/no testing. That is misleading information. Yes, there are cosmetic brands that of doing great things – remember that those claims were tested. An easy thing to do is to re-word your claims so for the olive oil claim – olive oil nourishes the hair strand which may help it to grow strong and healthy. Some ingredients are regulated by law so read around to see if an ingredient of interest is regulated (some manufacturers can offer advice on this as well).
Talk about your idea and do it
Many people have dreams to launch their brand but get afraid of a crowded marketplace, not having enough experience/knowledge or by having a family. Then you have people who are afraid of talking about their idea because they think someone is going to run off with their idea (or worse that Beauty Founder will sell on their formulations). There will always be space for a brand that meets the needs of its target market. And the amount of time, money and effort it takes to launch a product, you can sleep well at night knowing that no one is going to steal your idea (especially us at Beauty Founder!). Whatever fear you have as a blocker, we can assure you that they won't happen. For that reason, we challenge you to launch your business. You will never know if it will work or not unless you try.