How to Create the Perfect Packaging for Cosmetics and Beauty Products

Rosalique Rigid Box and fitting square copy

If you’re in the cosmetics industry, aesthetics are everything. This includes your beauty product packaging. Distinctive design, sustainability and accessibility are all major factors that influence the customers’ decision-making process. 

Stylish, eco-friendly and easy-to-open packaging can drive more sales for your brand. So how do you create the perfect packaging for cosmetic and beauty products?

As the UK’s eco-friendly packaging experts, we’ll guide you through every aspect of creating sustainable packaging for make-up, perfume, skincare and more, focusing on design, materials and the best eco-friendly practices. Let’s get started! 

Worried about your precious beauty products getting damaged in transit? Find out how to pack fragile items sustainably.

How Do You Package Beauty Products

How Do You Package Beauty Products?

With increasing consumer demand for natural, cruelty-free and eco-friendly products, sustainable packaging solutions are more important than ever. Beauty on the inside definitely counts, too!

Primary Packaging for Cosmetics

For internal packaging — what the product comes in — you’ll need to use specific materials to keep the contents safe and sanitary. This is especially important in the beauty industry, as many of these products will be applied to the face or be in contact with the skin. 

You’ll need to use internal packaging with moisture-resistant properties, such as glass, plastic or stainless steel. The last thing you want is your product spilling in transit, negatively impacting your customer’s experience.

Secondary Packaging for Cosmetics

The secondary packaging is the exterior packaging that contains the product. This is where you have a bit more flexibility. The external packaging for beauty products serves a different purpose than the primary, internal packaging. 

Your external packaging needs to protect your products but also showcase your brand, artwork and messaging. For example, certain colours elicit specific emotions and the style of font you use can tell consumers a lot about your brand’s purpose, as well as impact readability.

Use secondary packaging like folding carton boxes or luxury rigid boxes to connect with your target audience to drive sales online and in-store. Remember, presentation matters. 

Related: Can Good Packaging Increase Sales? 

Retail Packaging with Euro Slot

Shelf-Ready Packaging for Beauty Products

Shelf-ready packaging is used to transport and display your products on the shelves of stores and supermarkets. Your shelf-ready packaging — otherwise referred to as retail-ready packaging — needs to be designed to be easily and quickly reconfigured by retailers to display your products. 

Not only that, shelf-ready packaging should be easy to store, dismantle and recycle afterwards. If you can make it convenient for your chosen retailers, they’ll restock your products again in no time. 

Point-of-Sale Packaging for Beauty Products

Point-of-sale packaging (POS) is especially useful for boosting sales of beauty products, cosmetics, perfume and aftershave. Attractive packaging will encourage customers to try your in-store testers and samples before they commit to making a purchase — this is essential if you’re selling high-ticket items.

For more affordable products, point-of-purchase packaging (POP) can drive impulse-based sales. If your packaging is appealing, customers will snap decisions at the counter. This kind of packaging works particularly well for everyday items like lip balm, hand cream or moisturiser.

Consumers are still spending a lot of money in the retail beauty industry, so getting your retail packaging right is vital. As the economic situation fluctuates, it’s far more affordable for most consumers to buy lipstick over an entirely new outfit. 

Related: A Guide to Shelf-Ready Packaging: Boosting Sales for Retail Products

Flora & Curl Kraft Pak Boxes Digital Print 2 copy

Choosing the Right Materials for Cosmetics Packaging 

It’s no secret that consumers want eco-friendly products and packaging. Your beauty products can make your customers feel beautiful, but your packaging can make them feel good about their purchasing decisions too. 

At Packaging Supplies, we have plenty of options, from eco-friendly packaging options to custom creations for your cosmetics packaging.

Plastic-Free Postal Packaging for Beauty Products

It’s easier than ever for eCommerce businesses to protect their products while helping the environment. There are plenty of sustainable packaging options for online retailers of cosmetics:

Recyclable Postal Boxes

Our brown and white postal boxes are made from at least 80% recycled paper and can be recycled or home-composted after use. If you don’t want to use extra tape, check out our self-seal postal boxes. High-quality and immensely durable, these boxes can be assembled in under 20 seconds. Efficiency, sustainability and quality are all encompassed in our postal boxes and mailers range, offering a natural, organic aesthetic to your customers.

Cardboard Book Wrap Mailers 

For those on more of a budget, eco-friendly book wrap mailers can save money on buying multiple-sized shipping boxes for your products. The multi-depth feature means every size in our collection can pack a range of products at different measurements. In terms of accessibility, these mailers have peel-and-seal closures alongside a tear-open strip, making them easy to pack and even easier for your customers to unpack.

Compostable Mailing Bags

Mailing bags are a must-have if you regularly send out products to your customers. Most are made of plastic, but our eco-friendly mailing bags are 100% compostable and recyclable. They’re made from natural, renewable resources and even the words on the bag are printed with water-based vegetable inks. These mailing bags won’t last forever and you wouldn’t want them to, either.


We can supply custom-made packaging with our product packaging. You’ll get exactly the right size boxes for the number of products you’re sending, helping you reduce packaging waste and save money on shipping costs. Whether you’re sending a pallet full of products to retailers or single boxes to your customers, we’re here to help!

Get in touch for a free custom packaging quote in just 48 hours.

Custom Eco-Friendly Cosmetics Packaging

A little branding can go a long way. Fonts, colours, logos and messaging all tell your customer what your business sells and why consumers should buy from you. It’s a simple, cost-effective way to get your brand noticed in a highly competitive market. Take a look at some of the most sustainable custom packaging options available for your beauty products.

Folding Cartons

Folding cartons are presentation boxes made using Folding Box Board (FBB). Rigid and perfect for protecting your products, this packaging can be altered into different shapes for an eye-catching design. We can use Kraft board to construct your folding cartons, which makes them recyclable and compostable.

Rigid Boxes

A high-end packaging solution ideal for luxury products, rigid boxes will really impress your customers. They’re perfect as packaging for cosmetics, emphasising your brand’s status and product quality to enhance the overall customer experience.

Branded eCommerce Packs

This is the ideal custom option for budget and eco-conscious businesses. The self-seal mailing box used is fully recyclable and the sleeve can be designed by you and digitally printed with eco-friendly inks.

Benefits of Eco-Friendly Packaging for Cosmetics

Choosing eco-friendly packaging for your beauty and cosmetics products can dramatically improve your brand’s image, especially if your range is already cruelty-free or vegan. 

We offer different kinds of packaging printing methods that have unique advantages. We can advise you on which printing methods are the most economical and ecological, but rest assured, we always use water and vegetable-based inks to print your designs.

Using eco-friendly materials isn’t just a positive act for the planet; it’s also a practical choice. Recent studies consistently show that sustainable packaging plays a huge role in influencing consumer purchasing decisions. Consumers want their packaging to be recyclable, biodegradable or compostable. By making your packaging for beauty products environmentally friendly, you’re also making sustainability easily accessible to your customers. 

It’s not only the planet you’re saving, either. It’s also your precious pennies! In April 2022, the UK government introduced the plastic packaging tax (PPT). Importers and manufacturers of plastic packaging that contains less than 30% recycled content are charged tax at £200 per tonne. You’ll be making long-term savings by switching to plastic-free packaging before plastic costs inevitably rise.

Related: How to Beat the UK Plastic Tax in 2022

Case Study: Dr.PAWPAW


Dr.PAWPAW was founded by husband and wife dream team Johnny and Pauline Paterson back in 2013. They wanted to find an organic remedy for their young daughter’s eczema, which is where their interest in using natural and sustainably sourced ingredients began.

Now, Dr.PAWPAW offers lip, skin, hands and hair cosmetics products in over 35 countries and all its products are cruelty-free and vegan, and we helped this fantastic company grow! 

We replaced the plastic packaging with eco-friendly folding carton boxes without compromising on fun, vivid designs. 


High standards and simplicity are central to Dr.PAWPAW’s packaging designs, as bright block colours are used to distinguish different ranges of lip balms or hand creams. Flowing, handwritten fonts add a touch of luxury, but all the key information is clear and easy to read, especially the added benefit that their products are natural and vegan. 

The success of Dr.PAWPAW is emphasised by its ethical values, from cruelty-free products to recyclable packaging. This brand clearly shows off its eco-friendly and moral credentials to an equally conscious customer in a bubbly, dynamic way. 

Read the full Dr.PAWPAW case study.

Ordering Beauty Products Packaging with Us

We’ve helped countless brands with bespoke cosmetics packaging for their products, maximising both shipping and storage efficiency and complying with retailer-specific sizing requirements. Our experienced in-house designers will make your products stand out in the retail environment and provide a memorable customer experience.

We print our designs using water or vegetable-based inks, using a variety of printing processes for different size runs. Try flexographic printing for a cost-effective direct printing finish or the flexibility of digital printing, which lets you personalise each packaging piece. 

By choosing us, you’re also going with a carbon neutral company. This means we offset all of the carbon emissions we make in every aspect of our business. 

Get a free, no-obligation design quote for custom cosmetics packaging for your products in just 48 hours.