Ask the cosmetic product tester.

So, I have no idea if anyone is keen - some of my IRL friends seem to think this is a bit interesting, so I thought I would fly it up the flagpole and see if anyone is interested.

I’m a cosmetic product tester. You know when you read a woman’s magazine and there’s an ad for Product X that makes certain claims and when you read the fine print it says 'Based on review from 100 consumer testers." or whatever? Well, I’m one of those testers.

Perks are that I get lots of very expensive products for free. Negatives include the fact that I have to put all sorts of different crap on my face and some of it is pretty bad.

So, ask away, if anyone is interested. :slight_smile: And if my first (and possibly only) Ask The thread dies like a dog - well that’s ok too.

What are some of the cosmetics you’ve tested - makeup, or lotions, or lipstick?

I do have a few questions and I’ll ask them if no one else does later.

How did you get into it?
How much does it pay?
Have you had any bad reactions from products?

I am looking for a new facecream since burt’s bees stopped selling the one I like…any suggestions?

Usually just skincare products - generally no one cares if a particular shade of lipstick looks nice one someone else - just themselves which they have to check by trying on. I have tried lip treatments though.

Well, that sort of depends on your skintype, budget and what your hoping the product will do.

I have had products that burnt and some that smelled really bad.

Oops - I missed this.

I used to work in the industry and am still an advisor for an industry magazine.

It pays nothing - companies don’t really want to be seen to be paying for good reviews or whatever - the only perks I get are the free products.

As I mentioned, I’ve tried products that burned my skin and a few that didn’t do what they were supposed to do although usually in those cases they did nothing.

You wrote that companies don’t want to be seen paying for their reviews.
But do you work for a cosmetics company, or for a magazine that reviews lots of different company’s products?

So what happens when a product burns or stinks?
Do you write a bad review?
Then what happens?
Do bad review ever get published anywhere? Are they only seen internally by the “company”? (If you are working for a magazine, do reviews get sent back to the product manufacturer?) Do bad reviews just get buried? Or do the products get buried?

The whole process of cosmetics testing has a bad rap in itself – The first thought that comes to mind is all that stuff about them squirting crap into cute little bunnies’ eyes until they are just burnt out holes in their heads – all the horror stories like that.

How does one become a product tester?

alice_in_wonderland, I hope nothing makes you larger and smaller and you’re not being ordered about by mice and rabbits

who are now clearly out of a job.

Nope - I don’t work for the magazine - I’m on their advisory panel which pays $0/year. Advisory panel sounds a bit official but generally members nominate leaders in the field, vote on Best New Product in Category X for Year 20XX! or whatever. I get no remuneration, whatsoever.

Yes, I write a bad review.

Although to be fair, in the ‘burning’ category, that’s generally a function of my skin type - the company would make a note such as *May not be suitable for more sensitive skin types. If it stinks - well, again that’s sort of a preference. I think that Poison stinks but some ladies seem to like it - that’s really subjective.

If you’re asking if a product would be pulled because of tester reviews - it doesn’t happen very often, but once and a while the release date will be pushed back (sometimes by a lot) so they can tweak the formula, or change the scent or whatever. By the time a product gets to me it’s pretty well ready to go to market though. Occasionally I get something with ‘test packaging’ which they will ask for feedback on as well. Sometimes it’s ONLY the packaging they want feedback on although I don’t find that out until after the test when it’s time to do the review.

No, the bad reviews don’t get published (at least not as far as I’m aware) - they are provided to the manufacturer who then does what they will with the info. Sometimes projects are changed, or released in a different form, or just never released.

Listen, pretty well every cosmetic company USED to test on animals because that was just what was done. Also, even companies that say ‘Not tested on animals!’ are fudging a bit, because while their final product was never tested on an animal, pretty well every ingredient that goes into it was, at some point.

Finally, and most importantly, pretty well NO cosmetic companies currently test either final products or individual ingredients on animals. Instead, new active ingredients are generally swiped from dermatological preparations, or tested by folks like myself.

Generally you have to have some previous (or current) involvement in the cosmetics industry.

What sort of involvement did you previously have with the industry?


Do you have to put all of the cosmetics in your eyes, since you’re not a bunny? :frowning:

Thankfully, no. :slight_smile:

Can you mention any specific products that actually lived up to their claims? Anything that was surprisingly effective?

Umm - I’m not sure how that would work - I’ve tested a lot of products and most of them worked pretty well, and some of them didn’t work at all. FWIW, most of the brands I test tend to not be all that available in the US (assuming that’s where you are), and the less expensive brands I typically see people talking about around here don’t tend to test (which is, in part, why they’re less expensive, I’m sure.)

But if you want to know about a particular item or brand I’ll answer if I can.

If you’ve seen ads for the ‘New Amazing Thing!’ that costs $150!!! I’ve probably tested it so I could answer about that.

hello …very intersted in cosmetic testing…i live in the US are there any companies willing to let me test their products…any info would be appreciated…thanks…