What companies will buy a unique cosmetic idea?

Hi Everyone,

I have created a personalized cosmetic.  The market for this could be very good.  The product is complete and the marketing is started.
Who would I approach to buy the idea?
A large cosmetic company?
A small cosmetic company?
Invention company?

Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you!


  • johnbjohnb Member, Professional Chemist
    You will have difficulty in getting any company interested in your concept unless you have legal protection, that is have a patent or patent application filed.

    To have any chance of successfully obtaing a patent you idea has to be novel - that is to say unlike any previous invention and has industrial/commercial viability. This requires a comprehensive search of patents filed worldwide.

    I don't know where you are based but, in the UK, it is free to file a patent (that is after it is written up) and you then have one year to try sell/market the idea before more fees are due.

    Details of taking out a patent and for go-it-alone patenting are available from the UK Patent Office online.
  • johnbjohnb Member, Professional Chemist
    I've just noticed that you state that marketing has started. Patenting must be confidential in its early stages, at least until filing with the authorities.
    If you are considering going along the patent route, you must get confidentiality agreements with all who know details of the product.
  • MarkBroussardMarkBroussard Member, Professional Chemist
    Couple of issues here:

    (1)  While you might consider your creation "unique" others may not.  But, then, perhaps it is since you have not given any details about what your unique product is.

    (2)  Look for companies that may have a similar line of products and this would be a good extension to their line.

    (3)  I think your best bet would be to move forward with your marketing efforts and prove that your unique product is something that consumers like and are willing to pay money for.  That will maximize your value.

    (4)  The problem with cosmetics is that once you start selling your unique product and your LOI is on your label ... it becomes fairly easy to knock-off.  So, if you do not have a patented product or idea, you're taking a risk.  But, some companies will pay for the speed to market of a developed product as opposed to trying to knock it off if your price is reasonable enough.
    Chemist/Microbiologist formulating in the Organic & Naturals arena under ECOCert/Natural Products Assn/Whole Foods/National Organic Program guidelines focused skincare & haircare products. 

    See website for details www.desertinbloomcosmeticslab.com
  • BobzchemistBobzchemist Member, PCF student
    Getting a patent is a good first step, but it's relatively worthless, and not usually a good use of your time. Why? Because a patent is only as good as your lawyers and the size of your legal budget can make it.

    Honestly, companies buying an idea is extremely rare, whatever the size. Cosmetic companies already evaluate hundreds if not thousands of ideas from their own staff every year. Yours will probably not stand out enough.

    What gets bought on a regular basis is other successful companies.

    Coming up with an idea, taking it to a finished product, and having it ready to sell is only about a third of the total cost. Launching a product, distributing it, advertising it, and getting consumers to buy it is the other two-thirds. Just buying an idea, no matter how good it is, is an enormous risk. No one actually knows how the buying public will react to it until it is on the market. Even if you do manage to sell an idea, or even a patent, you won't get much for it.

    On the other hand, if you start up a small company, contract manufacture your product, successfully market your product and show a profit, even if it's tiny and you only sell on the internet, your chances of being able to sell the whole thing go way up. 
    Robert Zonis, Sr. Formulation Chemist, Beaumont Products "All opinions and comments expressed are my own, have no relation to Beaumont Products, are fully copyrighted, and may not be used without written permission."
  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    I agree with @Bobzchemist.  If you want to sell your product idea, turn it into a successful product line. It will be much easier to sell then.  No cosmetic company wants to buy an idea.
  • Thank you so much everyone for the help!
  • BelassiBelassi Member, PCF student
    I will say just one phrase, absolutely essential:
    Test Marketing.
    Cosmetic Brand Creation. Concept to name to IMPI search to logo and brand registration. In-house graphic design inc. Pantone specs. Cosmetic label and box design & graphics.
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