I would like to start a business making herbal products. Any advice?

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I would like to make soaps, bath oils, shampoos and conditioners. Probably sunscreens and lotions, as well as healthy, organic and gluten free foods in the long term. I’m just getting started and I’m low income, so do you have any advice? I plan on furthering my research on herbs and recipes. Do you guys have any tips?

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    April 7, 2013 at 2:38 am

    First of all you can not sell anything closely labeled as a sunscreen in the united states unless you are going register that product with the FDA which requires extensive testing and labeling as required by the FDA.

    Secondly if you are going to sell these products you need to have insurance. This is not regular homeowners insurance but a special type of insurance. You also need to read up on the FDA site under soaps and cosmetics. There are many laws that you need to follow when selling these types of products. Bath oils, shampoo, conditioners, lotions and even bath salts are considered cosmetics by the FDA and they do regulate how they are labeled and whatnot so by law you need to make sure your products are following those laws. You need to know what warning labels your products need to carry which is all explained on the FDA website. You will also be required to apply to your state for a sales tax license. Some states require more of small businesses than others. You also need to check out your city laws because some cities do not allow home businesses in the home. So there is a lot of legal red tape you need to follow.

    Third before you even consider selling. You need to do a whole lot of research and testing different recipes and ingredients. You need to understand the ingredients that you use and why they are used. You need to understand the proper usage rate for each ingredient. About safety procedures etc when making them. I would suggest you don’t ask friends and family to test your products because they are not going to know what qualities to look for the pros and cons of the product. Find other experienced people who can give you honest reviews of your products.

    I would highly suggest you join a forum. There are many forums out there and not all of them are created equal. So if you join one and don’t like it, then find another until you find one that suits you. There you can learn more about the products you are interested in making. A place to ask experienced members questions and learn from them. You can find out more about the legal side of your business as well.

    Good Luck

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