Do you want to start a lipstick business from home? If YES, here is a 6-step guide on how to make money selling lipsticks, makeup and cosmetics from home. Due to the increase in fashion consciousness among the general populace, there has been a boom in the use of cosmetic products. Lipsticks are one of the many lifestyle products, which are quite affordable and as such, within the reach of almost all individuals belonging to every section of the society.

In developed countries, the demand for lipstick has been on the increase. This can be attributed to the ever increasing number of working women. Also, people spend a lot of time on social media- uploading pictures and videos and when taking these pictures and videos, they want to look their best.

The increasing young population in the developing countries, along with the growing disposable income of the people, is resulting in increased cosmetic product sales including lipsticks, which is further fueling the growth of the global lipstick market.

In the United States of America alone, there are more than 68 registered and licensed lipsticks manufacturing companies scattered all across the country that are responsible for directly employing about 3,783 people and the industry rakes in a whooping sum of $4 billion annually.

Lipsticks present a lot of opportunities to entrepreneurs and the industry is booming and is quite profitable especially when it is well planned and marketed. The market for lipsticks is readily available and the products are always in demand.

In fact, the sale of lipsticks is recession proof. According to professionals like Mary Kay CEO David Holl, even though a lot of people may not want to purchase many skincare products due to cash crunch in time of recession, they will still always buy their beloved shade of lipstick.

When the recession hit in 2009, Mary Kay hardly saw an impact in sales. In addition, retailers like Estee Lauder and Essie Weingarten actually saw an increase in sales during the recent economic downturn. Selling lipsticks from home can be quite a cash cow if done right. So how can an entrepreneur take advantage of this booming industry?

How to Make Money Selling Lipstick and Makeup from Home

1. Create Your Brand Identity

In order to start selling lipsticks online from the comfort of your home, you will need to first try to create brand recognition. This is because consumers are much more likely to buy into a brand with a strong image. Irrespective of if you are making the lipstick yourself or you are buying from a third party, you will have to know who you want to be the final consumer of your product.

To create brand recognition, you will have to outline who you target customers are. Are they made-up of mainly busy mothers? A creative 20-something? A fashionista on a budget? Makeup your mind on who your target customers are and then create an inventory of lipsticks that will best attract that particular customer.

Achieving this feat will involve a lot of market research. Don’t forget to create a logo and branded, active social media accounts for your online cosmetics business. The following are examples of a niche market and target audiences you can choose from:

  • Mature audiences: providing lipsticks that are best suited for a mature audience can be a great solution for your e-commerce store. Personal care cosmetics are in a high demand today.
  • Younger audiences:  younger audiences might prefer certain bright colors over others. The top trends are products for making mermaid eyes, unicorn eyeliners, ombré and matte lips.
  • Environmentally conscious audience:  you can start selling chemical-free products. Selling organic products and goods for that minimalist natural look is an excellent choice for an e-commerce store.
  • Fitness industry: focus on developing waterproof products that are not affected by sweat. Today, customers pick natural products with knowledge of materials and origins like never before.
  • Makeup products that suit all skin tones:  develop shades and colors that can complement different skin tones.
  • Professional products:  this market usually requires very professional high-quality products in some cases lipsticks adapted for cosplay.

So if you want to win the beauty market, you just have to follow the unique needs of today’s customers. It is also important to remember to stick to the safety regulations when making any cosmetic products from your house.

2. Obtain a Permit

Selling your lipsticks online does not mean that you will not be required to get a license. If you are selling your lipsticks through a third-party such as Etsy or eBay, you can be able to skirt around the law undetected, but you probably need a resale permit, sales permit and tax permit. Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS using your business name. Use this to fill out the paperwork and get your business license.

3. Select Your Platform

In order to sell your lipsticks online, you will need an online store. Many online cosmetics businesses choose to use services like Limited Run and Shopify to create their own branded e-commerce websites.

Others choose to use an online marketplace like Etsy, Storenvy or eBay. Each of the aforementioned options have their own merits and demerits. A branded e-commerce website is more professional than an eBay store, but services like Etsy offer more visibility to beginners and Veterans alike.

4. Get your lipsticks

Inventory is the heart and soul of your business as such, it is important to sell a product that meets customers’ standards. The most important thing when it comes to running your own online cosmetic shop is your product.

In order to purchase your lipsticks and still resell them at a healthy margin, you will have to buy them at a wholesale price and then sell to your customers. You should however beware of counterfeit makeup on sites like DHGate and Alibaba, which frequently market knockoffs as high-end brands at wholesale prices.

5. Market your lipsticks

When you have your product, you will have to let your target audience know about it. Some cosmetic companies make use of social media websites such as Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram to show off makeup looks. You may even want to consider posting video tutorials to YouTube.

You can also make use of influencers to market your lipstick. Influencer marketing puts your products in the hands of the internet’s most influential users. What’s better than someone with a massive following touting your online store? Affiliate programs which give influencers a small commission for each sale they send to your business, are a great way to create real conversions and raise brand awareness.

Above all, don’t forget to use social media to do everything from promoting new products and sales to thanking customers and showing off their creative looks. Creating a community around your brand also inspires customer loyalty.

6. Expanding the Market for Your Brand

The lipstick industry is filled with bigwigs who have a ton of cash to throw into advertising. This can prove to be a major challenge for a newbie in the industry. However, this does not mean that such new businesses cannot make a large impact trying to sell on the online marketplace.

The key to making sure your startup Online business is a success lies in the effectiveness of your initial plan. How much effort did you put in identifying the best possible audience for your product? Did you identify the most popular trends and how did you incorporate them into your product?

Some niches are overlooked and as not considered to be profitable. So, try to check every niche and figure out which one suits your business needs and requirements the best. You may find out that a niche that has been dismissed as not so profitable can turn out be quite profitable when you do your research well. If you want to expand the horizon, you can create or buy cosmetic products that satisfy a vast audience.

In conclusion, the key to successfully selling lipsticks from home is based mainly on how well you planned your marketing process before the actual execution of the business. You will have to carry research in order to find out the major obstacles you will face and draw up a plan on how you will surmount them.

Another important tip that will help your lipstick business to succeed will be to always stay on top of trends. For instance, if matte lipsticks are what many people are currently drawn to, you can make or buy these products in order to get in on the trend and reap your share of the profit.

You can alternate between selling lipsticks that you have made yourself and selling cosmetics that was purchased from large manufacturers at wholesale price and then reselling to make a profit.

Searching for a type of business to get into can be quite daunting; however, the lipstick industry has proven to be quite reliable and profitable when it is done right.