What resources does a beauty copywriter use?

Being a beauty copywriter doesn’t come with a helpful handbook or list of resources you’ll need to write copy for beauty brands or businesses. Like most freelancers, a lot of it is figured out by using prior work experience or simply working it out on the job. (You’d be surprised how many expert web developers develop their skills by Google searching for answers.) Our experience working in various roles in the beauty industry has given us access to a wide range of useful industry resources that ensure our work is as accurate and amazing as possible. Here are some of Hadley Co.’s favourite beauty copywriting resources.

Media resources

If you want to see what brands are doing, when new products will be on-counter, and which promotional events are coming up, media resources are where you find that information. Many are exclusive to writers, editors, and freelancers (such as Hadley Co.), however, press release distribution networks can offer a snapshot of what brands are up to. Large cosmetic brands might have a public newsroom or media section that anyone can access. Even small brands typically have a PR specialist or agency who promotes their news, so following them on social media can give you access to that information.

Beauty news

Keeping up with current trends isn’t hard to do. With a media-savvy and discerning eye, you can spot trends among beauty publications. Over time, you’ll realise they report on similar news at the same time. A cool new ingredient here. A red carpet event there. Oh, look – another celebrity brand.

Publications receive millions of press releases from beauty brands. Of course, they don’t write about everything, but anything that will interest their readers is going to make the cut. And if news about an ingredient, person, or brand is across multiple publications, you can assume that consumers are generally interested in it. This is one possible way to gauge what consumers are reading about.

Raw material and ingredient suppliers

To make appropriate claims and really understand a unique ingredient, it’s necessary to look at the supplier’s technical specifications or marketing sheet. This is where the supplier provides facts about ingredient research and development, clinical trials, findings, ideal usage, and claims. Many of these documents are free and publicly accessible.

Trusted resources

Googling information about an ingredient isn’t really enough to write about it accurately. If you search for an ingredient that’s a bit unusual, the top results will probably be from brands that have written about its benefits. Because it’s in a product of theirs. And they’re promoting it.

While some ingredients are widely researched and have very well-known benefits (such as retinoids, vitamin C, and niacinamide), a lot of ingredient information can be speculative, anecdotal, biased, or just plain wrong. When writing about any ingredients, it’s so important to cross-check multiple trusted resources (preferably academic) to tease out the most widely agreed-upon claims. Sometimes this means having to write something simplistic but accurate about an ingredient, rather than repeating a fabulous but baseless claim. It can be a bummer, but it’s the most transparent way of communicating.

Amy Hadley

Amy Hadley is a beauty copywriter with a background in print journalism, digital media, public relations, and eCommerce. As someone contributing to the beauty industry, she encourages her clients to use words creatively, sincerely, and responsibly. This is to promote more honest and thoughtful communication in the beauty industry, and better serve its consumers.

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