How much is that recipe in the window (and can I have it?)
It often seems to me that people think of formulations as something that should be just given away or handed out left, right and centre. Sometimes they are and sometimes those formulations are great but most of the time, when it comes to creating a great formula there is no such thing as a free lunch.
Maybe this mindset has something to do with the fact that many feel that cooking up a cosmetic recipe must be like cooking up a storm in the kitchen. And they would be sort of but not entirely right.
Maybe it is because the internet via various ingredient suppliers, hobbyists, bloggers, beauty experts and tutorials dish up the odd recipe as part of their promotional packaging.
I think that it is probably a mix of both really.
We are all looking for that money tree…….
But don’t let that trick you into thinking and feeling that recipes are ten-a-penny or something to be handed out on a whim just because you asked for one.
A good cosmetics formula takes time, money and knowledge to create.
A good recipe takes experience, patience and an appreciation for the method to re-create.
A good recipe will always require testing to ensure it performs to YOUR company/ brand standards and with YOUR packaging.
A good recipe will make you money but only after you have invested in ‘growing’ it.
I will let you into a little secret now. I have been formulating cosmetic products as a full-time job for 6 years now, before that it was a mixture of hobby/ secondary part of my full-time work requirements as a sales/ marketing/ product manager. As such I have been making emulsions (creams and lotions) for a long time but I have to confess that it has only been the last year that I have managed to tweak my knowledge to within an inch of its life to give emulsions that perform well on the skin, feel about right, look good, perform in terms of stability AND hit my clients financial goals. Saying that it doesn’t happen every time as everyone wants something different and as such I find myself on a never-ending journey of discovery.
I find that learning curve exciting and even though it can be expensive and time-consuming by the end of it all I have something that both myself and the brand owner can be proud of. The process gives me and the brand owner a deeper connection and respect for what has been created and more importantly an understanding of the products strengths and weaknesses – in short, we know what we know, what we don’t know and the difference between the two.
So next time you find yourself asking for a freebie in terms of a formula, formulating tip or bit of inside help please remember that somebody had to sweat blood, cash and tears to bring you that little nugget so don’t be surprised if they ask you to pay for it.