There is this perception that made in China means 2 things - cheap and nasty.
I say this because l too held this perception, until now.
Mini Latif | Streets of Hong Kong
Cosmoprof is the internationally renowned Beauty Expo tailored for manufacturers in the industry. Three years ago, l was at the final stages of cementing my very first product line and one that l wanted to stay true to 2 things. Either made in Australia, because l am made in Australia and/or Made in Turkey, as this is where the Ottoman3 brand was inspired from.
After months of dead ends to finding Australian companies that did full end to end manufacturing in this beautiful country l call home, l was left defeated in knowing that at least a portion of my product line would have to be made in Asia, as l simply could not find companies that offered the full end to end service. Have you heard of the manufacturing term OEM? It stands for Original Equipment Manufacturing and it essentially refers to companies that provide a product that forms 'part' of another companies total offering. Let me break this down for for you. Think of that French hand cream that you see at David Jones on your lunch break. The likely hood is that the cream is from France, but the tube in which it lives, is most likely from Asia. This Asian company would be referred to as the OEM.
Now any good business player will tell you not to give all your secrets away and though l am committed to sharing my trials and tribulations of running my own businesses through this blog, please forgive me when l do keep company names out of the process, as l will lead you to the water, but you must learn to drink for yourself. Still friends?
I am sure you have had the pleasure of using the Ottoman3 Brow Pencils and these darlings do come all the way from Germany! I was fortunate enough to find the land of pencil greatness and this my friends is Germany. France is for Fragrance, Italy for leather, India for Tea, Brazil for Coffee, Portugal for cork, Belgium for Chocolate, Cyprus for Pomegranate and God damn it, ALL of Asia is for everything else. This place is on time, on budget and on the go.
My latest products are filled in Australia and they are the new Ottoman3 Brow Gel and Brow Powder. The Australian company/chemist l have partnered with has been in the industry since ALMOST l was born and they are in my humble opinion the best in the biz. I have personally been testing these 2 products with them for over 2 years! So when l say, l have tried and tested everything l mean l really really truly have. It was early in discussions with them when they advised me that the containers that the product was housed in had to be sourced elsewhere and this is when my futile search for an Australian packaging company led me inevitably to Asia. I came kicking and screaming.
l walked the 5 levels (yes l did every floor, with my poor fiancé in tow), think Jeff's Shed , double the floor space and then multiply it by 5 stories) and this is COSMOPROF ASIA 2014!
Though this one is in Asia, Cosmoprof does not only exhibits Asian companies. The reality is, it is only the hub and the world of cosmetics come here to showcase their treasures. Hanging from the roof are flags of the world and quickly under one roof l was able to compare and do product quality check in one space. Now if you know me well, you know l love me a cliche and here l go - You get what you pay for! This my friends is truly what sets a product apart, because super cheap means something needs to go a miss to justify the price cut. At manufacturing level it does come down to this simple truth. Oh and just when you think your Parisian lipgloss was fully from Paris, l hate to break it to you, but they too are using the same fantastic Taiwanese company l am using to hold the lipgloss in - l know because they had them there for me to play with! That American dream of a moisturising brand that you love so much, well we do use the same Chinese packaging manufacturer too. I will not name them here, because well it is not about them.
Today as l look out my hotel window in Hong Kong, holding a sample of my custom made cases that will soon land in Australia to be filled with the products that l have been delicately manoeuvring around the globe for the last few years, l think to myself of how sorry l am. Sorry for the stereo typing, sorry for the narrow mindedness and sorry that l was gullible enough not to think for myself.
Now l am happy to say Made With Love and expertise is the formula you need to bring your products to life.
Mini Latif xoBLxo
xo Beauty Lover xo