What Is Cosmetic Science?

If you're you interested in making or marketing hair products, make up, nail polish and other cosmetic items, you may want to consider a career in cosmetic science. Continue to learn more about this field and associated careers. Schools offering Allied Health degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Cosmetic Science Defined

Cosmetic science is the study of the effects that raw materials and mixtures can have on parts of the human body like hair, skin, lips and nails. In recent years, cosmetic scientists and associated workers have been trying to advance the field in a positive way. Professionalism and ethics are a large part of this field because of the public protests with animal-related testing and the use of animals in the manufacturing of cosmetic products.

Important Facts About Cosmetic Science

Certificate Levels Graduate
Prerequisites Graduate Record Examination (GRE) test and bachelor's degree in science generally required for admission into graduate programs
Online Availability Degree programs available online, but may require some classroom hours
Possible Careers Chemical ingredient manufacturer; drug analyst; quality assurance; nutritional productions formulations; coloring specialist for a pigment; odorant manufacturer

Career Opportunities

Research and development is a huge area that offers career opportunities in cosmetic sciences. Products have to be created and then humanely tested. There are careers with big businesses to discover and test new marketable products. However, an alternative route available to you is getting involved in research for purely scientific purposes.

Sales and marketing are other career options available to you. After research and development is done to create a product, that product needs to be properly marketed and sold. Understanding the materials that go in to creating the product is necessary to describe them to consumers. Having a thorough understanding of cosmetic science allows you to honestly market and sell products.


In research and product development occupations, a bachelor's, master's or doctoral degree in biochemistry with a cosmetic science emphasis may be what you pursue. Some cosmetic science classes that you might take include skin care raw materials and formulations, product development, microtoxicity, perfumery, quality assurance, color cosmetics, polymer chemistry and dermal pharmacology. A bachelor's degree in business with a marketing emphasis is ideal for sales and marketing careers in cosmetic science. Your marketing courses could include marketing research, international marketing, product and brand management, sales, advertising and marketing strategy.

Career Outlooks

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that chemists and materials scientists, a group that you'd belong to if you worked in research and development, were projected to see only a 3% increase in employment from 2014-2024. Job prospects were expected to be best for those with advanced degrees, particularly PhDs. Employment of advertising, promotions and marketing managers was expected to increase by 9% during the same time frame. There is strong competition for these positions, and those experienced in Internet-based advertising should have the best prospects.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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