Continuous Professional Development (CPD) is a key aspect of growth and success for professionals across various industries, but nowhere more so than in the realm of natural cosmetic formulation, where trends, ingredients, and technologies are constantly evolving.
CPD is critical for you as an indie beauty formulator if you aspire to create exceptional, safe, and innovative products that not only capture your formulation ethos and business mission, but also meet the demands of your target customers. CPD comes into play by offering invaluable opportunities for ongoing learning, skills’ enhancement, and staying at the forefront of the industry.
In an era where consumers are increasingly conscious of what they put on their skin and seek out products with natural and organic credentials, formulators must continuously adapt and refine their knowledge and techniques. CPD serves as a pathway to not only maintain professional competence, but also expand your horizons, exploring new ingredients and formulations, and deepening your understanding of consumer preferences and market trends.
In this post, we discuss why CPD is a path you should be thinking about in your career as a natural cosmetic formulator. We introduce The Lab at Formula Botanica – our membership site that offers a gateway to CPD through its unique training approach and extensive resources to support you whatever stage you are at as a formulator.
3 reasons why CPD elevates you as a natural formulator
1. Keeps you up to date with the latest trends and research
With CPD, at whichever stage you are on your path as a natural formulator, you gain access to cutting-edge information on emerging ingredients, and innovative techniques. With The Lab at Formula Botanica, you stay ahead of the curve as we do the heavy lifting in research to provide you with comprehensive resources that keep you abreast of latest industry developments, the rising stars in natural ingredients and new formulation methods and tools. The Lab’s aim is to ensure you have the resources to be at the forefront of natural cosmetic formulation, so you can create products that are relevant, effective, and appeal to your target market.
2. Enhances your formulation skills and expertise
CPD presents a unique opportunity for natural formulators to enhance their formulation skills and expertise. The Lab at Formula Botanica provides you with a platform to expand your knowledge and refine your craft. Through monthly thematic training modules – we call “Mini-Labs” – we provide you with targeted and in-depth training on various aspects of natural cosmetic formulation from advanced formulation techniques to specialised ingredient insights and deep dives on the latest product categories. These monthly modules provide the right balance of information and praxis so that as a member you have invaluable training that is actionable and not overwhelming.
3. Builds your credibility and professionalism as a formulator
Building credibility and professionalism is paramount for you as a natural formulator to gain recognition and trust from your customers, as well as retailers and industry peers. CPD plays a significant role in establishing and maintaining this credibility.
The Lab’s accreditation by the CPD Certification Service UK adds a layer of distinction to its training modules. This third-party accreditation offers a seal of approval that adds credibility to the expertise of its members. Each Mini-Lab is accredited individually, giving you the opportunity to build module by module on your professional expertise and to choose topics that resonate most with your own formulation and business needs.
In addition, this external accreditation provides you with peace of mind, giving you, as a member, the assurance that you are accessing high-quality, industry-approved content. Formula Botanica’s Education and Lab Manager Ana Green emphasises the importance of this accreditation, stating that it is a vital component in helping formulators on their journey to becoming better professionals.
Now, we’ll take a closer look at the content offered in The Lab at Formula Botanica, highlighting its unique features and how we support you as a natural formulators on a personalised CPD journey.
The Lab’s unique support for natural formulators
The beauty industry typically does not offer structured, CPD programmes once a formal course, whether online or in person, is completed. Most ongoing training is informal, and delivered in the place of work by colleagues in a piecemeal fashion. What makes the accredited CPD training at The Lab at Formula Botanica unique is that is offers up-to-the minute, ongoing structured training, yet in manageable, thematic modules that are delivered regularly in a flexible way to accommodate everyone’s work-life-study needs.
Originally conceptualised as a route to support our graduates with resources and specialised, advanced training to complement the material in our core courses, The Lab quickly took hold in our community. Now expanded in scope, The Lab welcomes not just our alumni or current students, but anyone interested in the sphere of indie beauty and natural, organic formulation who wishes to keep updated and loves the challenge of furthering their knowledge.
What the Lab offers you
Monthly Mini-Labs: thematic and topical training modules
Now with over 35 Mini-Labs, all of which are available to new members the moment they join, The Lab has covered a diversity of topics relevant to indie beauty and natural formulation. To give you an idea of the scope and depth of its modules, take a look at this list of just some of its highlights:
- Cactus ingredients
- Sustainable sandalwood
- Retinol alternatives
- Fragrance-free formulation
- Marine ingredients
- Male grooming
- Vitamin B
- Brand story telling
- Lipsticks’ mini-lab
The Mini-Labs as CPD in cosmetic formulation
Each month, a new Mini-Lab is published comprising five core aspects:
- The Lab Lecture: this forms the foundation training on the latest topic;
- The Masterclass: this is usually held with an industry expert or external professional and offers you the chance to field your own questions;
- Your Mission: a series of actionable and practical assessments;
- A Quiz: a fun way to test your new-found knowledge; and
- New resources compiled to both support the Mini-Lab theme and to extend the Lab’s unique research library.
In addition, The Lab provides new formulations each month for you to try out your skills on.
As a Lab member, you can work in sequence as the Mini-Labs arrive or simply choose any legacy training module. With content always available to you as a subscribed member, you have chance to pick and choose topics to suit your own path, and also to revise and access learning from previously published Labs.
You have the freedom to shape your learning journey using the personalised online dashboard that allows you to plan your own path of exploration, track your progress through the CPD modules and assessments, and download CPD-accredited badges and certificates. These valuable credentials can be proudly shared on your personal and professional media platforms, highlighting your dedication to continuous professional development.
Expert resource libraries for natural formulators
Within The Lab, you’ll find an extensive wealth of resources that include over 80 comprehensive ingredient profiles. These profiles offer in-depth insights into the chemical constituents, cosmetic properties, and scientific research associated with each ingredient.
In addition, members can select from over 100 formulations devised by Formula Botanica’s in-house education team. You can used these as framework formulations with which to practice your skills and to gain expertise using, for example, the latest emulsifiers, bio-active ingredients and techniques.
What sets the Lab apart is its dedication to providing up-to-date information. Unlike traditional printed cosmetic textbooks that require costly reprints and significant time investments to keep pace with advancements, The Lab’s online libraries are constantly refreshed, ensuring that you have access to the latest knowledge. This means you can rely on The Lab to stay informed and knowledgeable without the hassle and expense of outdated reference materials.
Join the Lab for CPD in cosmetic formulation
To embark on your CPD journey and be at the forefront of natural cosmetic formulation, you can receive updates on when The Lab next opens its doors to new members. Join our vibrant community of formulators, gain access to invaluable resources, elevate your skills and stay ahead of industry trends. Take the next step by pre-registering here for The Lab.
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Liz is Formula Botanica’s Content Coordinator and joined our team in August 2020. Liz worked as a professional blogger, journalist and site developer for many years and was also part of the Formula Botanica student community. Read more about the Formula Botanica Team.