The Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild is the only international non-profit trade association serving the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry. The object and purpose of The Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild is:
- to promote and educate the public about the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry;
- to act as a center of communication among, and to circulate information beneficial to, members of the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry;
- to foster the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry through education and training; and
- to represent the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry in matters concerning legislation and regulations affecting the industry.
Membership is open to all soap and cosmetic handcrafters anywhere in the world who make any type of handcrafted soap and/or cosmetics, as well as to the vendors who provide products and/or services to the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry and private label companies that market (but do not make) handcrafted soap and cosmetics.
Benefits of Membership
The Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild is a non-profit trade association, supported by membership dues. As a trade association, the main goal of the HSCG is to keep an eye on the big picture and promote, improve, protect and defend the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry. So the first benefit of membership for all members is knowing that the dues paid are supporting the only non-profit association that is actively involved in education, promotion and legislative advocacy for the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry as a whole.
There are also plenty of more direct membership benefits - usually you can recoup the cost of your membership and more by taking advantage of just some of the possible benefits.
Since there are different levels of soap and cosmetic makers and vendors and their needs differ, membership benefits and dues are tailored to both the type of membership and the level. The various membership levels and dues are detailed below. Also see the Membership Benefits Chart for a comparison of benefits and the detailed benefits for each membership type (linked to below).
Soap and cosmetic makers of all levels - from beginning to retired - are welcome as members of the HSCG. Benefits for Handcrafter Members are geared toward those things that assist in promoting handcrafted soap and cosmetic products, increasing proficiency in the trade, improving business skills, encouraging networking opportunities and providing general exposure for the member's business and products. There are several levels of Handcrafter Memberships:
The Associate Membership is for individuals who make soap and/or cosmetics, but do not market or sell to the public. It is intended for those who are learning the craft and making product, but are not yet ready to go into business. Associate Memberships are limited to five (5) years. For more information on this limitation, see the Membership FAQ.
Associate Memberships include all member benefits except those that specifically relate to marketing and selling handcrafted soap and cosmetics. Associate members may vote and serve on committees, but not hold office.
Dues: $100 per year. Join as Associate Handcrafter
The Professional Handcrafter Membership is for individuals who make handcrafted soap and/or cosmetics and market their products to the public. Benefits for Professional Handcrafter Members are geared toward promoting handcrafted soap and cosmetics, increasing proficiency in the trade, improving business skills, encouraging networking opportunities and providing general exposure for the member's business and products.
Professional Handcrafter Members have the right to vote, participate on committees and serve as President and on the Board of Directors.
Since Professional Handcrafter Membership includes insurance in some cases, there are different types of Professional Memberships depending on the country of residence and other insurance issues:
Professional Handcrafter - United States
The Professional Membership includes product and general liability insurance for members in the United States, which is provided by Veracity Insurance Solutions. Please note that the HSCG does not sell insurance or receive any commissions on insurance purchased by members. See the insurance faq for details.
Dues: $520 per year. Join as Professional Handcrafter (US)
Canadian Professional Handcrafter Members
General and product liability insurance is available to Canadian handcrafters. The legal requirements are that the funds for Canadian insurance and all administration are handled through Canadian businesses. The HSCG does not collect your payment for insurance, nor does it administer the insurance or act as a broker in any way. That is all handled through the broker in Canada. However, once you purchase a Canadian Handcrafter Membership, you have the option to purchase insurance coverage at a discounted rate. See the insurance faq for details. (Insurance is $400 plus applicable taxes in certain provinces.)
Dues: $140 per year. Join as Canadian Handcrafter Member
International Professional Handcrafter Members
The general and product liability insurance arranged for HSCG members is only available in the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada. For soap and cosmetic handcrafters from other countries the insurance is excluded from the membership and the membership price adjusted accordingly.
Dues: $140 per year. Join as International Handcrafter
Handcrafter with Existing Liability Insurance Coverage
For Professional Handcrafter in the United States who already have general and product liability insurance coverage, the insurance portion of the membership may be waived and the membership price adjusted accordingly.
Dues: $140 per year. Join as Professional Handcrafter (US - Insurance Waived)
Retired Professional Handcrafter Membership
Since making soap tends to be a life-long passion, the Retired Professional level is for handcrafters who have retired from their soap/cosmetic making business and no longer market to the public, but still want to be connected with and support the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry. In order to qualify for a Retired Professional membership, the individual must have been a member at the Professional Level for a minimum of two (2) years.
Dues: $100 per year.
Benefits for vendors and suppliers are geared toward assisting vendors in gaining exposure to soap and cosmetic makers and providing ways for vendors/suppliers to inform and educate soap and cosmetic makers about new or existing products or services.
By facilitating improved communication between vendors and soap and cosmetic makers, the HSCG provides another avenue by which soap and cosmetic makers can keep abreast of new technical developments in the industry and can take advantage of members' only special offers, should vendors choose to offer them.
Vendor Memberships are for those who provide products or services to those in the handcrafted soap and cosmetic industry. Vendor Benefits are geared toward assisting them gaining exposure to soap and cosmetic makers.
Vendor Membership is in the name of the business (rather than an individual). Vendor Members may not hold office (Board of Director or President) as the membership is in the business name, not that of an individual.
There are three tiers of Vendor Membership. Suppliers may choose the level that is most fitting for their personal goals and business model.
Tier 1 membership is designed to provide the HSCG products and services most often purchased by larger vendors as a single, all-inclusive package. For example, Tier 1 Vendor Membership includes an Exhibitor Table and a Sponsorship Banner at the HSCG Conference.
Dues: $3,000 per year. Join as Tier 1 Vendor
Tier 2 benefits are designed to provide the HSCG products and services most often purchased by vendors as a single, all-inclusive package, but at a smaller level. Tier 2 Vendor Membership includes an ad in the Conference Program book and a discount on Exhibitor Space at the Conference.
Dues: $1,500 per year. Join as Tier 2 Vendor
Tier 3 is designed for businesses working on a smaller budget but who still want to gain exposure to soap and cosmetic makers and support the activities of the HSCG.
Dues: $500 per year. Join as Tier 3 Vendor
Private Labeled Membership is for companies that purchase and then resell handcrafted soap and cosmetics under their own label. Benefits for Private Label Members are geared toward promoting handcrafted soap and cosmetics, as well as providing communication channels with handcrafted soap and cosmetic makers. Optional product and general liability insurance is available to Private Label members in the United States at a significantly reduced rate through the HSCG's agreement with Veracity Insurance Solutions.
Dues: $200 per year. Join as Private Labeler
Benefactor Status is an add-on status for individuals and businesses who want to provide additional financial support to the HSCG. There are three levels: Friend ($100), Supporter ($250) and Patron ($500).
Benefactor members are acknowledged on the Benefactors page with a link to their website. Professional members who upgrade to Benefactor Status may have their business logo placed on the Find Soap and Cosmetic Handcrafters search pages.
To add a Benefactor Status to your membership, select the add-on in the shopping cart when you purchase your membership.