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4 Top Tips for Buying Lipsticks from China

Table of Contents

When importing custom lipsticks from China, you must clarify your needs and market preferences with your supplier. In addition, your initial order must exceed the minimum order quantity, and samples need to be viewed to confirm the quality before placing your order.

Express your needs clearly

When communicating with the factory, if you know nothing but want the factory to recommend, then there is a 50% probability that the goods you import will sell out quickly and a 50% probability that they will become inventory.

If you want to sell out all the imported goods in a short time, then you try to do two things: first, think clearly; second: speak clearly.

a. Think Clearly

For importers, before importing the most thought every day is the requirement for the product, the requirement may be obtained from the end consumer, may be obtained from the boss, but also from the importer’s own brain emerged.

It often happens in a company that the boss gives a requirement, and the person in charge of importing thinks, “Well, that seems good, let’s do that!” It turns out that the product is very slow to sell in the market.

For importers, the requirement is not entirely under their control. Whether the requirement is fulfilled or discarded, each requirement that comes before them requires the person in charge of importing to take it seriously and to think about it.

  • What problem does this requirement solve?
  • What does it mean for the user? What does it mean for the company?
  • Is there an alternative way to implement this requirement?

b. Speak Clearly

Thinking clearly is the basis for speaking clearly.

The realization of demand/requirement requires the cooperation of many parties, but it is human nature that the factory only knows what the factory wants to produce, the consumers only know what they want, and the boss only knows the profit of this product, whether this product is in the growth or maturity period. But the person responsible for the import needs to know how to speak clearly with the factory about the demand and realize the idea of the consumer and the boss as much as possible.

When you think clearly, it becomes easier to speak clearly.

After you have built up every detail of a requirement in your mind, you need to communicate it in detail and without ambiguity to the realizer, i.e. the factory.

Here you can refer to my other article about importing from China.

Market preference

Before purchasing, importers can go online to see what similarities and differences there are in products sold in online stores, or go to supermarkets to see what kind of product packaging can be better displayed on the shelves. At the same time, importers can also ask their suppliers for suggestions.

A competent importer can purchase a market research report on the item from a consulting firm. This method gives the most accurate information, but such reports are usually very expensive.


Purchase order quantity needs to be greater than or equal to the minimum order quantity, which is required by the factory.

Today’s competition is not simply between products, but precisely between industry chains and industry chains.

For example, the core of lipstick is produced by a factory (usually this is the factory contacted by the importer), the tube of lipstick is produced by a factory, the box of lipstick is produced by a factory, the raw materials for the core of lipstick are produced by a factory, the aluminum or iron for the tube is supplied by a factory that produces aluminum and iron, the paper for the box is supplied by a factory that produces paper, and so on and so forth.

The cost of the product has been reduced thanks to the large machines used in modern factories, which operate 24 hours a day. We know that a hand can produce one piece at a time and a machine can produce at least ten thousand pieces at a time.

Since the machines have a minimum quantity for each batch, all upstream factories have a minimum order quantity for the products they produce.

The importer usually purchases the finished lipsticks from the factory that produces the pencil cores, this factory buys tubes from the factory that produces the lipstick tubes, buys colored boxes and brown cases from the factory that produces the packaging boxes and brown cases, buys raw materials the factory that produces the raw materials for the lipstick cores, etc. In addition, each customer’s custom lipstick is different from other customers, for example, the lipstick tube printing is different, the packaging box printing is different, which leads to each customer’s order needing to be purchased separately and produced separately.

Therefore, the factory that produces the finished lipstick will take into account the minimum order quantity of each upstream factory and then set its own minimum order quantity.

The order quantity is the same as MOQ, which is a small order for the factory. While it is only the larger orders that really generate profits for the factory, the smaller orders just keep the factory running.

Importers may feel that the starting order is too large, which can be risky, so importers try to do some market research before importing. If the goods can sell out quickly in the local market, the importer will definitely make money.

Samples required

Why are samples important?

  1. Samples are the image of a company.
  2. Samples are representative of product quality.
  3. Samples are representative of the price.
  4. Samples are representative of production.
  5. Samples are the basis for inspection and claims.

The main types of samples

In different industries, there are many kinds of samples, such as promotional samples, reference samples, approval samples, final production samples, etc.

a. Promotional Sample

Promotional sample refers to the physical objects used by enterprises for domestic and foreign exhibitions and external displays. Generally extracted from a batch of goods, or by the production and use of the department designed and processed to represent the quality of future delivery of physical goods, through the physical form of the sample to the public to reflect the full picture of the quality of goods.

b. Reference Sample

Reference sample refers to the sample provided by the seller to the buyer only as a reference for negotiation between the two sides. Reference sample is different from the nature of the transaction sample, not as a formal basis for inspection. The sample is sent to the buyer only for the reference of quality, style, structure, technology, etc., to create conditions for a consensus on a certain aspect of the product.

c. Approval Sample

Approval sample is the sample approved by both buyer and seller and finally confirmed by the buyer.

After the completion of the confirmation sample, it must be evaluated by the technical inspection department, and only the samples evaluated by the technical inspection department can be sent to the customer.

What are the key aspects of the evaluation of the confirmation sample?

  1. whether the selected material is exactly the same as the customer’s requirements;
  2. whether the dimensions of each part of the sample are exactly the same as the customer’s design drawing;
  3. whether the color and packaging of the sample are exactly the same as the customer’s requirements;
  4. whether the quantity of the sample is exactly the same as the customer’s requirement;
  5. whether the company has retained samples. At least one sample should be retained for future production of large orders based on the physical.
d. Final Production Sample or T.O.P Sample

Final Production Sample is the sample of product ready for shipment, also known as “T.O.P sample”. Some customers base on this sample to decide the quality of the batch.

Suri Luo
Suri Luo

Hi, I’m Suri Luo, the funder of ivorye.com, I’ve been running a factory in China that makes Lipstick Makeup Products for 8 years now, and the purpose of this article is to share with you the knowledge related to Lipsticks from a Chinese supplier’s perspective.

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