How to Get Your Natural Skincare Brand into Stores

How to Get Your Natural Skincare Brand into Stores

When starting a natural skincare brand, the idea of seeing your products on the shelves of high-end spas, specialty boutiques, department stores, or even big box stores seems like the dream. It’s certainly true that getting your handmade natural skincare brand into stores is a great way to build your brand–but how do you do that?

It can definitely be a challenge, especially if you don’t know how to navigate the process. Whether you’re looking to get into local stores, specialty stores like Sephora or Ulta, online retailers like Credo Beauty and Integrity Botanicals, or bigger retailers like Target or Nordstrom, certain steps need to be taken for your products to appear on those coveted retail shelves.

Knowing how to craft a compelling pitch deck, who to contact at each store, and how to best present your brand (and yourself!) are all key elements of this process. In this blog post we will discuss what natural skincare brand owners need in terms of information and steps to take to make the dream of having their products sold in stores a reality. Skincare entrepreneurs should find it easier to break into retail locations for their handmade skincare line by following these tips and advice.

Cosmetic section with facial cream, conditioners, shampoo and hair treatment in store

The pitch deck

The first and most important step for getting your handmade skincare line into stores is to have a well-crafted pitch deck. Your pitch deck should include information about your products, including:

  • How they differ from competitors
  • How they can benefit the store and why they are a good fit for that store’s ideal customers
  • Any sales the brand has already achieved
  • What kind of sales goals you’re hoping to hit
  • How you plan on marketing them in order to reach those goals
  • How much you intend to charge for each item wholesale, and what the suggested retail price will be

This is the foundation that any store will base their decision on when deciding whether or not to accept your products.

Natural cosmetics for the body, handmade soap, bath bombs on the store counter.

Send your natural skincare brand’s pitch deck out to stores

Once you have your natural skincare brand’s pitch deck polished and ready to go, it’s time to start looking for places to send it. Start with local stores and beauty boutiques, as they will usually be more likely to take a chance on new products.

From there, you can move on to larger specialty stores like Sephora or Ulta and online retailers. Before you hit send on that email, first, scour the website of the store or online retailer to see if there’s any information or guidelines for how to submit pitch decks for consideration. Many of them have open submission policies, whereas others prefer to work with brokers or investors.

Stack of soap bars in abundance inside wicker basket

How to get past the gatekeeper

When trying to get into bigger stores especially, it can be difficult to get past the gatekeeper – meaning the person in charge of vetting prospects and deciding who gets to talk to the buyer, owner, or other decision makers–and who will remain in retail purgatory at the “gate.”

If you find yourself stuck at this stage, don’t despair! There are still ways for you to get in. One way is by taking the time to actually build rapport and a genuine connection with the gatekeeper. This is a case where good old-fashioned “soft” communication skills are a real plus. If you can get the gatekeeper on your side, by showing how passionate you are about your products and how you plan on differentiating your handmade skincare line from other brands, that’s a great way to pass through that gate.

Another way is to ensure that your pitch deck is compelling, professional, concise, and thorough – as this will be what the gatekeeper looks for when making their decision on whether or not to forward your pitch to their boss.

Bars of soap in store

Network, network, network!

Another way to introduce your natural skincare brand to buyers and other decision-makers who can help you get your products into stores is to attend industry events and exhibit at trade shows. Shows such as Natural Products Expo East, Natural Products Expo West, and Adit Live are great places to showcase your products and meet with decision-makers.

In addition, you’ll also get your products in front of beauty editors, influencers, and others who can help you get publicity for your brand. Publicity is a great way to gain buzz and social proof for your natural skincare brand, which adds credibility to your overall pitch.

If your goal is to get your products into salons and spas, instead of stores, then look for aesthetics and cosmetology-specific trade shows like the International Congress of Esthetics and Spa, thze International Esthetics, Cosmetics, and Spa Conference, or Live Love Spa.

Bright multi-colored bath bombs in a basket., Colored bath bombs on a store counter.

Remember that getting your natural skincare brand into stores doesn’t happen overnight.

It requires taking initiative, following up, and having patience and diligence. With the right information, contacts, and presentation, you can make it happen! So keep hustling, be passionate about what you’re doing, and don’t give up on your dreams of having your products in stores all across the country. You can do this!

handmade ,bombs, and bubble bath different colors nicely laid out in a pyramid

Do you need help starting your natural skincare brand, or taking it to the next level?

I can help! I offer both hourly and retainer-based consulting services for skincare startups and established brands alike. We can talk formulation, marketing, branding, funding, distribution, marketing–whatever you need. Book a Hash it Out session with me to get started.

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