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Cosmoprof Report: Inside the China Pavilion

A number of beauty manufacturers were looking for trading companies to expand their reach.

BOLOGNA, Italy — Among those companies populating Cosmoprof’s extensive China pavilion were beauty makers from Yiwu, which is a manufacturing hub outside of Shanghai in Zhejiang Province.

Jim He, general manager of Lucy Cosmetics Co., a family-run business founded in 1993, summed up the group’s collective mission. Like him, a number of the manufacturers were looking for trading companies to expand their reach and generally produce low-cost private-label makeup for selling in what they call supermarkets. These were as wide-ranging as Wal-Mart, Target, Dollar chains, Family Dollar and Disney.

Twenty percent of Lucy’s business comes from its own brands, which include Luoys, which targets the international market, and Shedella, which is sold domestically. He said his company’s business has been growing about 25 percent yearly for the past two years.

He explained his clients — from countries such as the U.K., Spain, Italy, France and Holland — have been asking for new functional products, such as lip plumpers.

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The Chinese manufacturers were also producing novelties, such as lip glosses in small cupcake shapes being shown by Zhejiang Yasi Cosmetics. Those were being aimed at the teen market. Generally, retail prices for goods made by the company retail for the equivalent of $2.50 to $9.99.

According to Jack Zen, Yasi’s sales manager, the firm inked deals with two to three new customers at Cosmoprof. He said the company’s sales rose 20 percent last year.

Like other Chinese firms, Yasi already distributes to countries such as the U.S., U.K., France and Spain.

Meanwhile, Yiwu Yaqi Cosmetics’ largest markets are China, followed by North and South America. In the U.S. lipstick and lip gloss are the company’s bestsellers, whereas in Europe they’re nail polish, lipstick and eye shadow, said Christine Lee, Yiwu Yaqi’s sales director.

Beside private label, Yiwu Yaqi manufactures two brands of its own: Fate of Flower and Miss Me.

Showing its creams, lotions and body mists for the first time at Cosmoprof in Bologna was Coloyo.

“We want to contact new importers,” said Xiong Xiong Wen, the company’s sales director, who added Coloyo’s products are currently sold in the Middle East, Southeast Asia and a few European countries. Its top seller is body mists.