Starting your own skincare line from home can turn out to be an excellent business venture, especially if you’re passionate about beauty products and innovating personal care practices.
Lately, there’s been a lot of emphases placed on natural, organic products. Based on current growth rates, the natural beauty sector is estimated to reach a worth of $23.6 billion by 2025.
This means that when it comes to marketing, being transparent regarding what ingredients you use is the key to attracting customers. With the number of skincare products available on the market right now, it’s hard to get consumers to trust your new line.
Focus on a Hero Product
The key is to do your research and come up with one hero product. Add only a few other products to complement it. The hero product refers to the main product you sell and advertise for. This is very important because you’re competing with huge brands that have made a name for themselves over the decades.
To gain even the slightest bit of attention you need to come up with a product that offers something the others don’t. It can be an ingredient, a manufacturing technique, something that addresses an issue which has been ignored so far, even a clever marketing approach will do as long as this one product, your hero product, stands out.
Make Sure Your Products Are Safe
When opening a home business selling skincare products, the legal requirements will be similar to other small businesses but there is one very important distinction. Your products will be regulated by the FDA under the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act). You are legally responsible for the safety of the ingredients used as well as the manufacturing process.
You can make them at home but expect a visit from an inspector who will check if you’re complying with the Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) Guidelines/Inspection Checklist. Your products must be unadulterated and properly labeled. When creating the formula for your hero product, be careful that you don’t use any of the prohibited ingredients.
This brings us to our next topic.
The Science of Skin Care
Go to any supermarket and pick up a simple moisturizer. Now check the label and read the ingredients. Doesn’t it feel like you need a chemistry degree to understand what all that means?
Well if you want to create your own skincare line, you’ll need to learn some of the basics of chemistry. Zero in on the chemistry of cosmetics. Of course, there are plenty of reasons why you might want to learn chemistry. You might have found it boring in high school but maybe by now, you realized it’s everywhere around you: the air you breathe, the water you drink, the food you eat, the clothes you wear and, yes, in the products you put on your face.
There’s no way around it, simply researching renowned cosmetic lines will require you to learn chemistry concepts. You’ll also begin to realize why some of those treatments you used to get rid of your acne as a teenager had disastrous effects.
You don’t have to become a cosmetic chemist but you need to gain an understanding of how the skin works and what makes a product more effective or safer.
Understanding the Human Skin
The human skin is much more than just the surface on which pimples, wrinkles, and unwanted hair appears. It’s the body’s largest organ and functions as a protective shield between the inside of your body and outside damaging elements such as extreme temperatures, sunlight and harmful chemicals.
It’s made of three main layers, each with other sublayers:
- The epidermis – which is the most exterior layer of the skin
- The dermis – middle layer, contains the sweat glands and hair follicles
- Hypodermis – directly under the dermis, connects the skin to the fibrous tissue of the muscles and bones
The Epidermis, the layer on which these skin treatments are applied, has another 4 or 5 layers depending on the region of the body. The outermost layer is the stratum corneum made of another 10 to 30 layers depending on the region, it provides most of the barrier of the epidermis – this will become relevant in a bit.
Now, why does skin become dry? Or why do we need moisturizers at all?
Water is supplied to the skin through blood vessels located in the dermis (middle layer), from there it travels to the epidermis right up to the stratum corneum. Ideally, this last layer should keep the moisture locked in as much as possible but if the air outside is particularly dry, it causes more of it to evaporate. Chlorinated water or sitting in hot water also removes moisture from the skin. Some of the cosmetics you’re already using might be, likewise, drying your skin.
Moisturizers work either by helping trap the water inside and reducing the rate of evaporation or by restoring some of the moisture that was lost.
Occlusive moisturizers like Vaseline create yet another barrier over the barrier provided by the stratum corneum and keep the moisture inside quite efficiently. The problem is that they’re sticky and make the skin look oily and shiny. Most people don’t want to go out in public looking like they just smeared oil all over their faces.
Emollients also help keep moisture locked in, not as efficiently as a thick layer of Vaseline but they have a lighter texture and penetrate the skin, replacing some of the lost moisture. They’re the most commonly used type of moisturizers.
Humectants, on the other hand, work by attracting water molecules from the dermis and locking them in. You may have noticed a growing trend of using hyaluronic acid in face creams. Hyaluronic acid is a natural humectant, it’s found in the human body and the kind used in cosmetics is extracted from rooster combs or produced through microbial fermentation.
Fascinating, isn’t it? And this is just about moisturizers. Anti-wrinkle treatments are a whole different chapter and sadly, the limited format of this article does not allow further exploration. But we hope we have piqued your interest and you’ll do some further research on your own.
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