13 Steps On How To Start A Skincare Line

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How To Start A Skincare Line

Have you always wanted to start your own skincare line? Or maybe you decided to pursue a different path and ended up in the skincare industry? The real question is, how to create a skincare brand?

No matter, we’re here to tell you how to make your own skincare line and to guide you through the steps to start your own!

What Does It Take to Start a Skincare Line?

Before we start, let’s talk about the skincare industry. Skincare is a rapidly growing industry worth over a hundred twenty billion US dollars. The top players in this market always keep up to date while maintaining their tried and true branding. 

The key to have your own skincare line is understanding your own brand and formulations, and making sure your products are well-researched and effective

That means it’s important to start off strong with a lot of knowledge and background research on skincare. There’s no one size fits all in skincare and at its current growth rate, there’s bound to be a lot of competitors.

Knowing that, you need to first do a lot of research on different skincare ingredients and a good starting point for that is looking at the current trends in skincare. However, it’s important not to build your brand around a trend but to use it as a foundation for where you want to start.

Why You Should Start Your Own Skincare Line

The skincare industry is also gaining a lot of traction on social media as more and more influencers and celebrities share their skincare routines. One of the top-liked videos on Tiktok about skincare has even reached more than 20 million views alone and that’s only on Tiktok. 

Why Start A Skincare Line

Reports show that the main drivers of the growth in the industry are the increasing awareness about skincare attributed to social media, as well as innovative and natural skin care products; with customers looking more closely at ingredients hoping to avoid harmful chemicals and toxins

In its current state, the skincare industry still has a lot of untapped potential especially when it comes to creating sustainable, all-natural products. So now is definitely a good time to make your own skincare line.

But what is the process of making your own skincare products to sell? Here’s a step-by-step guide.

Step-by-Step Guide on How To Start A Skincare Line

Step-by-Step Guide on How To Start A Skincare Line

Get ready to invest

Skincare is going to be a big financial investment especially when you’re starting off. Most of your expenses will go into formulating your own products, choosing ingredients and materials, and finding a credible supplier. 

On top of that, you’re going to inevitably spend most of your time contacting suppliers, consulting with experts, and experimenting with different ingredients. You can check out different private label companies like us, Rixin Cosmetics, we provide low minimum order quantities (MOQ) of 500 with fully customized ability so you can spend less on your tests.

With lower MOQs, you can test out the market and see how your product will be received while minimizing your losses. On average, MOQs start from 5,000 units to 10,000 or more according to packaging; but here, we take orders as low as 500 units so it’s easier to invest in and gives you more leeway for changes.

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You also need to factor in your lead time. Formulating your product and finalizing it can take around 12 weeks minimum not just for testing but also for designing your products. Some can go much longer depending on the ingredients you choose to add to your formulation.

As such, you need to be ready to invest a lot of time and money. It’s not going to be an easy ride but it could prove to be a worthwhile venture with enough research and dedication.

Zero In On Your Target

Before you start your research, you need to decide who your target market is. Different age groups have different skin types and skincare necessities which means whichever market you choose, you’re going to be dealing with different types of skincare products.

woman with cream on face

There are a lot of different niches in the skincare industry which you could choose from:

  1. Skincare for skin conditions.
  2. Adaptive Skincare.
  3. Multi-use products.
  4. Trending/Hot Ingredients.
  5. Hypoallergenic Products
  6. Skincare Cosmetics.
  7. Innovative Products.

Each of these has a lot of different types of products from which you can choose from. Some of these can overlap, that would be totally fine as long as you make sure you know your specific target.

Research, research, research

Once you’ve chosen your target market, you need to check the market itself. Check what’s trending and figure out why it’s trending. That’s how you kickstart your experimental stage with your formulations. 

cream on hand

Besides trends, you need to do a competitive analysis of other stakeholders in the market. Knowing what your competitors are doing and examining what makes them successful will help you decide how you want to formulate, package, and promote your products

The skincare industry is a fast-moving industry where trends can come and go pretty fast. While they are still worthwhile information or products, some can die out after the trends move on. 

While that gives rise to the necessity for constant research and keeping up to date with changes and trends in the industry, it also means new brands have good chances of getting a spot in the industry. 

Your job now is to keep up with the ebb and flow of the skincare river. There are several tools you can use like Google Trends, TikTok Content Trends,TikTok Top Product Trends and Pinterest Trends to help you kickstart your research.

These are some of the most used sites when it comes to skincare or skincare inspiration so learning how to search for trends through these platforms can give you an easy way of determining what’s currently trending.

Find a spot in the Industry

The way the market works is it evolves from new discoveries and formulations. That means you need to take risks and really explore your options. A lot of times, trends emerge from previously under-researched ingredients that turn out to give skin more benefits than it was previously credited with. 

serum drop

For instance, although niacinamide has been around for a long time, it became a trend recently because of dermatologists promoting it on social media and people realizing its potential.

The best way to set up your brand is to make yourself unique and stand out among your competitors and the best way to do this is to set up your own niche. Identify that unique selling point of your product and use that to promote your product. It will help a lot, especially during the launch when people still don’t know your brand. Don’t go too largescale especially when you’re starting out. 

You also need to make sure not to only hop on bandwagons. That’s a surefire way of losing a lot of mental and financial resources. Spotting worthwhile trends is essential in building your niche but you also have to make sure the trend you’re building on isn’t a fleeting one. 

Most of the time, fleeting trends come and go in a few months, and product development itself can last that long. Once you release your “trending” product, it may well be far behind already. 

This is where innovation comes in. That’s how small skincare brands secure their standing in the industry. Innovating on one specific niche lets you keep your products around a single field of study as well as avoid big changes that could possibly kill your products.

If your goal with your skincare line, however, is to appeal to the general skincare audience, that’s going to be a lot more work but as long as you’re sure your formulations are effective and you can back up your choice of ingredients, you’re already off to a strong start.

Create a business and marketing plan

Business plans are the foundations of your business’s survival. With a good business plan, you can plan out your finances, resources, logistics, and of course, launch. Set a consistent brand voice and maintain your presence in all the platforms you choose to be active in.

create business & marketing for creating a skincare line

There are going to be a lot of things happening at once so if you’re unprepared, it could lead to some delays and additional expenses on your end. 

At the same time, you also can’t forget about your marketing plan. For this, you’d want to research the proper marketing strategies that would go well with your brand. There’s no right or wrong answer here and the success of your launch depends on how well you market your products.

pre launch on social media

You can also set up a pre-launch marketing plan to generate positive buzz about your brand even before you launch it. This way, there will already be some degree of interest from your customers and they will be more willing to trust your brand and buy from you.

Pre-launches don’t have to be overcomplicated. You can start small by sharing your brand with communities you’re already a part of or talking about it with your personal connections. For one, social media can go a long way in spreading posts between friends and friends of friends. On top of that, word of mouth can also be very powerful. When people recognize something or hear something from someone trusted, they are more likely to also trust that brand or product.

You can also use this chance to gather feedback from your target customers. See what they like and don’t like and adjust to what their needs really are. At the end of the day, it’s not just about researching online, but also studying your target audience and identifying their needs and what they want from skincare.

This way, you can curate your products specifically for your target audience, all while building trust and rapport with the community as an open-minded and detail-oriented brand.

You might also find a new demographic that can also benefit from your formulations through the pre-launch. It’s a great way to gauge who your potential buyers are.

Just make sure to always have your branding in mind when posting or sharing your products, and stay consistent and transparent while making sure your branding is iconic and sustainable. Maintain a consistent brand voice and presence and you can secure your spot in the market.

Formulate your Skincare Products

Now, this is where you have to get into the nitty gritty of your skincare products. A good entrepreneur always understands their products deeply in order to effectively market and sell their products. 

The industry is currently leaning toward vegan skincare products. This is slowly becoming the norm for all skincare products so at this point, you have to make sure all your ingredients and materials are cruelty-free and vegan.

Natural skin care products are also taking the stage as the preferred option. Although these products have a shorter shelf life, many consumers still prefer natural alternatives. That’s because of the wellness movement that’s taking over the industry. As a result, products with natural ingredients are gaining more and more attention.

Use the research you did and formulate your own skincare products. Better yet, you can pull in some experts in the industry to help you formulate your skincare products. 

skincare product professional

There are private-label skincare companies that could help you not only in picking out high-quality ingredients but also in formulating safe and effective skincare products. They’re typically certified and have a lot of experience with a variety of formulas. 

Having an expert opinion will make sure your products are safe and will also increase the credibility of your skincare line. 

To start out, here is a list of private label skincare companies that you might find useful as a start-up. Each private-label skincare manufacturer has its own system of producing a customized skincare line so you should also look into which one suits your needs the best.

Go Hands-on with your products

Get close to your manufacturer and stay up to date with the manufacturing process of your products. Make sure you know what’s going on in your products and whether or not the ingredients are right.

Test out your products

Before you release your products, make sure to make some final tests to see whether the product does what it claims to do and is safe for human skin

test your product

Sometimes, some things can happen and the formula doesn’t turn out the way you want and if this comes out not what you claim it to be, it could ruin your reputation and destroy your credibility.

Look for Sustainable Packaging

One of the ongoing trends at the moment is sustainable skincare. Not only your ingredients but also your packaging play a huge part in getting your customers’ approvals. 

beautiful skincare packaging

Packaging is the first thing the customer sees when they check out your product. Make it iconic, distinguishable, and most importantly, sustainable. This makes your brand easily recognizable and makes it look classy and credible.

According to a study on customers’ purchase decisions, over 73% of customers rely on the packaging to decide whether or not to buy the product. 

Bad packaging can make customers feel as if the product is also of bad quality and there wasn’t much thought put into it. On the other hand, good packaging can make customers feel a sense of excitement and anticipation when buying your product as it looks good on the outside.

It’s basically a big hit or miss and in some cases, could be the losing factor for failure. That is why you also need to invest in good packaging services.

Luckily, we at Rixin Cosmetics offer free package design services accompanied by free product photoshoots for all our private-label clients. We always make sure it is of the highest quality not only to build credibility for your brand but also to catch the eyes of passing customers.

Check safety and labels

Plan out your products’ shelf lives. Each one, depending on their ingredients, can have different shelf lives and if you’re not expecting orders, it’s better to underproduce than overproduce.

Because of that, natural and organic ingredients tend to cost a lot more and are bigger investments although they are typically more desirable. So how to make natural skincare products? As long as you have the shelf lives planned out, you should be good to take the risk. 

Of course, it’s still a risk so be prepared to take the losses should there be any.

label & packaging

Also, make sure that the labels are clear, legible, and follows the labelling guidelines on all your products. For this, you have to check your country’s regulations regarding cosmetics as this may vary. Always stay informed about this.

As for business licenses, this also varies across countries so you’d have to do your own research for this. Typically, they aren’t needed for homemade skincare lines but there are some ingredients that may require approval.

Launch and Market your Products

Your products are finally ready for launch! What comes next? This is where your marketing plan comes into play. Some common marketing methods make use of digital marketing especially on social media and content marketing to build your brand’s credibility. 

Make sure to really bring out your design and branding into your marketing. Your design is the first impression your customers get and this will become your unique selling point so it’s very important to have your design fleshed out and really eye-catching.

skincare products & plants

On top of marketing, you also need to jump into the crowd, the skincare community. It’s good to attend skincare events and shows so you can make connections with professionals in the industry. This will help you learn more about the industry as well as keep up to date with the latest tea.

Don’t forget to use the resources you have to expand your reach too. While some might be scared to invest in marketing, even a little could go a long way in giving your brand exposure and helping you reach more people. 

Some marketing strategies you should consider include:

  1. Virtual Consultations

With the rise of personalization in skincare, virtual consultations have also become increasingly popular. Through consultations, you can exhibit your expertise, thereby increasing your credibility in the field. You can also curate specific bundles for your customers to pair with your specialized advice for them. 

  1. Content Marketing

Transparency goes a long way in building trust with your customers. Putting out honest reviews of your products alongside other products in the market in an unbiased light can really attract the attention of your clients. 

On top of that, you can showcase the results of using your skincare line on social media to show how effective your products are. Showing the before and after photos of past clients really resonates well with people as they can really see the difference there.

  1. Skin Care Package/Bundle

Putting together skin care packages or bundles that are curated to fix very specific problems or conditions is a great way to attract new customers. 

A lot of times, skin care can get really confusing especially if there are too many products or ingredients they have to know. By creating a bundle that addresses specific conditions, the customers can instead pick among the bundles that resonate more with them.

  1. Influencer Marketing

Partner with your local influencers, those that are within your target audience and preferably already recognized by the community. This will help you expand your reach to even more people, and possibly those outside your locale. 

Make sure these online personalities are aligned with your brand and establish a good rapport with them but not influence their opinions. While sponsored ads are good for exposure, most of the time, people appreciate the honesty and transparency so your partners should review your products without bias.

  1. Ads

65% of users click on ads when making purchases. Ads are a great way to increase your exposure and possibly convince people to buy your product. 

There are also different types of advertisement marketing and the two main ones that are great for you are PPC and social media advertising. 

PPC, or pay-per-click advertising, is exactly what its name says. You pay for every time a user clicks on your ad. This type of ad appears at the top of Google searches and it’s the first thing your customers will see when they search. This is a great way to reach a lot of people at once even without them clicking.

Social Media Advertising, on the other hand, appears on people’s social media feeds. These ads blend seamlessly into their feeds which also make it more likely for users to click on your ad, given that it is compelling enough. Also, now that ads are more targeted towards the users, they’re more likely to already have some interest in skincare and possibly your niche, which means they are way more likely to click.

It’s worth to try out both and checking to see which one your target audience is more likely to come across based on engagement and clicks. Gauge out your options and see which one is more cost-effective.

Be Transparent

On the topic of credibility, encourage your customers to publish reviews about your products. Get their feedback and don’t be afraid to be put under criticism. This is also where content marketing comes into play. 

social media review

By being upfront with the pros and cons of your products and showing honest reviews from your customers, you’ll become more trustworthy and this will encourage customers to lean towards your brand more.

Build into your niche

Don’t try to create a one-size-fits-all product catered to multiple audiences. The best way to build your brand is to build on your niche. Keep working toward your products’ strengths rather than trying to tap into a different market.

If you do want to target other markets, it’s important to stay on brand and only do this if your first line of products got overwhelmingly good reviews. This way, your customers know your products are legitimate and they will be more willing to buy your other products.

FAQs

First of all, start from the basics. You have to get the feel of the foundation of your products. Get a feel of the color, consistency, and scent so that you can tell if it’s good or bad once you’re experimenting further.

You can try using different ingredients to test different product types. Some ingredients would need testing with professionals for safety reasons so make sure to check the safety guidelines of the ingredients you use.

First and foremost, you have to know what you want for your brand. Research what you want to do, then look for a private label manufacturer by searching online or through connections

It’s important to make sure you do a deep dive into their background and make sure the manufacturer has a good reputation and is reliable when it comes to delivering the best quality products that match your vision.

Rixin Cosmetics is one such private label manufacturer and we’re ready to cater to your skincare product needs. Our top priority is professionalism and we take pride in the quality of our products. 

Our packaging and ingredients are tried and tested, of the highest quality, and ethically sourced. But of course, we conduct our own research for each of these to make sure they are legitimate.

From there, you can discuss with your manufacturer what you want to happen, what products you want to manufacture, and whether it’s feasible or not.

These may greatly differ based on issues such as product complexity, ingredients, packaging, and manufacturing methods. On the low end, start-up costs for small operations would total between $5,000 and $10,000. This would include small-batch production, basic packaging with the initial formulation, and possibly a marketing description of the product.

For those looking to start with a broader range or higher quality of ingredients, one would be looking at an investment of between $20,000 to $50,000. This would include professional formulation services, higher-end packaging, initial inventory, and branding and marketing efforts. It is also very important to consider business setup costs, legal compliance, and insurance costs that might add up to several thousand dollars to your initial outlay. 

Larger-scale operations, or ones targeting premium market segments, may see startup costs explode to over $100,000. This would usually involve intensive market research, superior formulation of the products, original packaging design, and larger initial production runs. 

There’s no shortcut to pricing your products. You have to calculate all the expenses you incurred including manufacturing, transportation, partnerships, and equipment costs. 

Calculate the industry’s current standard profit margin and add that to your costs and that should be a good price point. Make sure you don’t stray too high or too low from the market prices either. 

Competition is always present in the skincare industry so keep up to date with their prices and adjust your products to fit the market.

Conclusion

Creating your own skincare line can be intimidating at first, but with all the resources readily available online, it makes it more accessible to you.

As long as you plan everything out first, your business model, marketing strategies, formulations, projected costs, contacts, manufacturer, and branding, you should be able to create your own skincare line.

Remember, research goes a long way, and being prepared won’t necessarily eliminate the risks but as long as you invest enough time and effort in perfecting your brand, your customers will trust you.
Given its untapped potential, don’t be scared to step out of the box and explore different products and ingredients. Also having the help of experts who can assist in your experiments and formulation process, the end product becomes so much more legitimate and ultimately, safe and effective.

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