Benefits for Soap & Cosmetic Handcrafters

Handrafter Membership in the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild is open to all individuals who make any kind of handcrafted soap and/or cosmetics at any level. There are several levels of Handcrafter Membership based on whether or not the handcrafter is selling soap to the general public, where the handcrafter is located and if he/she already has insurance coverage.

Benefits for Handcrafter Members are geared toward those things that assist in promoting handcrafted soap, increasing proficiency in the trade, improving business skills, encouraging networking opportunities and providing general exposure for the member's business and products.

As one of the most important benefits, members have the opportunity, through elections, participation and volunteerism, to shape the direction and future of the HSCG and the handcrafted soap industry as a whole.

Certain membership benefits are applicable based on the type of membership. (See the Membership Benefits Chart for more details.)

For Your Business

Product & General Liability Insurance  [Professional and Private Label Members]

Professional Handcrafter membership in the Handcrafted Soap & Cosmetic Guild, Inc. automatically includes $1 million product and general liability insurance as part of the membership benefit. The amount of insurance may be optionally increased to $2M. Property and/or professional liability coverage may also be added to the policy. The insurance is effective immediately upon receipt of dues and processing of the membership. See the Insurance FAQ for detailed information about the insurance coverages.

Canadian Members: Canadian members have the option to purchase product and liability insurance. The cost is C$400, with a small additional tax due for members residing in British Columbia, Ontario and Manitoba. The insurance is not available in Quebec. See the Canadian Insurance FAQ for more details..

Private Label Members: Special group rates for product and general liability insurance have been negotiated for Private Label Members. The insurance is optional, and must be purchased directly from Veracity Insurance Solutions after the membership has been purchased; Private Label insurance is not included as part of the membership dues.

International Members: The member benefit insurance is only available for soap and cosmetic handcrafters within the United States and Canada; for handcrafters from other countries the insurance is excluded from the membership and the membership price adjusted accordingly.

Existing Insurance Coverage: For handcrafters who already have product liability insurance, the insurance portion of the membership may be waived and the membership price adjusted accordingly. See Details

Free webstore at SoapGuildStores.com  [Professional, Vendor and Private Label Members]

The HSCG has arranged for members to have a free webstore at www.soapguildstores.com, powered by The Template Place. The store is fully customizable and may be used to actually sell products and take orders or as a brochure site directing visitors to your main eCommerce site. See Details / Sign Up

Online Store discount from Volusion  [Professional, Vendor and Private Label Members]

The HSCG has teamed up with Volusion Online Stores to bring a high-quality eCommerce option to all HSCG members. Volusion is offering a special deal for HSCG members including 25% off monthly hosting, 20% discount on SSL certificate and much more. See Details

Merchant Services at Group Rate  [Professional, Vendor and Private Label Members]

Through ProPay, Inc. HSCG members located in the United States can sign up for merchant services at a remarkably low rate. ProPal provides merchant services allows you to take payments in-person, online, offline or over the phone and provides buttons that can easily integrated onto your website. You also get a FREE ProPay JAK™ to use to swipe cards directly on your phone. [NOTE: US Members only.] See Details

UPS Discount  [Professional, Vendor and Private Label Members]

HSCG has partnered with UPS to offer members discounts on shipping services through UPS. Members can get up to 32% off shipping! Even if you already have a UPS account, you can still participate in the program. [NOTE: US Members only.] See Details

Office Depot Discounts  [All Members]

HSCG has partnered with Power Purchasing, the group-buying experts, to provide a Business Savings Program that will bring you significant savings on products you use every day including up to 80% off on 300 most-preferred products, 3,000+ products at 15% off retail web pricing and 93,000 additional products discounted below retail. Free, next-day delivery on orders of $50 or more. See Details

10% discount on SoapMaker Software  [All Members]

HSCG members receive a 10% discount on any version of SoapMaker Software. The Software, available for Microsoft Windows (7, Vista, XP or 2000), allows you to calculate lye and water for recipes using over 50 types of base oils, calculate costs per batch and bar using your ingredient costs, stores your recipes and organizes them by category, type, date and cost, provides inventory control and more. See Details

Craftmaster News discount  [Professional Members]

The HSCG has partnered with CraftMaster News to bring you a 20% discount on this fantastic publication. Find craft shows, street fairs, festivals, county & state fairs, home & garden shows, music festivals & more! See Details

Online Listings

OnLine Soap/Cosmetic Handcrafter Listing  [Professional Members]

Find a Soap/Cosmetic Handcrafter, linked to from the home page, allows handcrafted soap and cosmetic consumers to locate HSCG members by company name, state, country or product type. Listings include the company name, website, city-state-zip, a brief description, and an image (if any have been submitted). There is a "More Info" link which takes the visitor to a detail page displaying more information and contact information for the member. See Details / Set Up

Image in Soap and/or Cosmetic Gallery  [Professional Members]

The Soap and Cosmetic Galleries display images of soap and cosmetics handcrafted by Professional members. All images are linked to the Member's "Find a Soap/Cosmetic Handcrafter" listing and are displayed whenever the member's listing is shown. Gallery images also used at various places on the website where pictures of handcrafted soap and/or cosmetics are appropriate. Images are always shuffled and displayed randomly so all images get the same exposure. See Details / Set Up

Members in the Media  [Professional Members]

Members can submit not only media mentions about their business, but also charitable contributions they have made, in order to make their businesses and community support known to consumers (and Google!). See Details

Store Locator  [Professional Members]

rofessional Members of the HSCG have the ability to list brick-and-mortar locations where their products can be found which consumers can search in the Store Locator. The locations are displayed on a Google Map with details on the "pin," including a link to their Online Listing. Locations in the Store Locator can include stores, craft shows, farmers markets and a date range can be specified so that the listing will automatically expire when your products are no longer at that location. See Details / Submit

Promotion and Marketing

Public Info Requests  [Professional Members]

Within the Consumers Section of the website, there is a form that a website visitors can fill make a special request. Often they ask for handcrafters who can provide a particular type of soap. These "Public Info Requests" are published in the "Members Only" section where Professional Handcrafted members may respond to them directly. See Details

Special Promotional Opportunities  [All Members]

From time-to-time the HSCG is able to offers special opportunities to the membership. In the past these have included donations to goodie bags handed out at a large natural products expo and free space in an HSCG booth at wholesale trade shows. Note: These promotional opportunities may be limited to specific memberships, depending on their applicability. Watch the member eNews and Member Area of the website for announcements.

Increased Professionalism

Soapmaker Certification Program  [Associate, Professional and Retired Members]

All members have the option to participate in the HSCG Certification Program. Certified members may use and display the Certified Soapmaker Logo, a nice way to increase customer confidence. Certified members who have an OnLine Soapmaker Listing have a "certified" icon by their listing. See Details

Use of the Member Logo  [Professional, Vendor and Private Label Members]

Qualified HSCG Members may used HSCG Member Badge on print, packaging and/or web materials to promote the fact they are a member of the HSCG, thereby increasing customer confidence. Download

Use of the Why Handcrafted Soap? brochure  [Professional, Vendor and Private Label Members]

The HSCG has developed and printed a high-quality brochure, Why Handcrafted Soap Cosmetics which explains the benefits of handcrafted soap and contains beautiful pictures. It is available to members for download for free or to purchase at a very nominal fee (about at cost). There is a space to add contact information and personalize the brochure. See Details

Teacher Program  [Professional Members]

Professional members who have achieved an HSCG Soapmaker Certification level and who have experience teaching soapmaking may apply to participate in the HSCG Teacher Program. HSCG teacher members may use and display the HSCG Teacher Logo, include a listing on the Find a Soapmaker Teacher pages and list upcoming classes on the Find Classes page. See Details

On-Going Education

Renaissance Online Classes discount  [All Members]

The HSCG has partnered with the Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center to offer members a tuition discount for Online Business Planning Classes. These classes can help you turn your ideas into concrete steps for starting or growing your business. The classes are co-sponsored by the SBA (Small Business Administration). See Details

Annual Conference Registration Discount  [All Members]

Every year the HSCG has an Annual Conference. It is 3 days, filled with classes and presentations on a wide array of topics pertinent to soapmaking (including actual soapmaking demonstrations and how-to's). Conference attendance is open to both members and non-members. Members receive a discount on the registration fee for themselves and up to three additional business associates. Vendor Tier 1 Members receive FREE conference registration for two of their staff to attend the conference (non-transferable). Register

Advanced Lye Calculator  [All Members]

The Basic HSCG Lye Calculator is available for members and non-members in the "Resources for Soapmakers" section of the website. Within the "Members Only" section, an advanced lye calculator is available which allows the soapmaker to set more detailed information about his/her recipe and the specific oils used. See Details

Journal Back Issue Library  [All Members]

For many years the HSCG published The Handcrafted Soapmaker, the Journal of the HSCG. All the back issues are indexed and available to all members at any time. There is a wealth of information at your fingertips. See Details

Community

eNews  [All Members]

eNews issues are sent by email to members to keep them up-to-date on news and activities of the HSCG, including legislation and other matters of interest.

Monthly Vendor Specials eNews  [All Members]

The Vendor Specials eNews is sent out monthly and contains the current month's specials submitted by HSCG Vendor members.

Referral Program  [All Members]

Members receive credits (called "Golden Bubbles") when they refer other soap and cosmetic handcrafters or vendors to join the HSCG. Golden Bubbles may be used toward membership dues, conference registration, advertising or HSCG merchandise. See Details

Directing the Organization

Right to Vote  [All Members]

The HSCG Annual Membership Meeting is held during the Annual Conference every year. All members may attend (whether or not they are attending the conference) and any member present at the Annual Meeting has the right to vote on issues presented at the meeting. All members have the right to vote in ballots sent by mail. For all votes, each Vendor Membership may cast only one vote, which must be by the designated owner or representative. See HSCG Bylaws

Right to Serve on a Committee  [All Members]

All members have the right to volunteer and to serve on a Committee if they so choose. See Committee Details

Right to Serve on the Board of Directors  [Professional and Retired Members]

The Board of Directors are elected at the Annual Meeting and serve for two year (staggered) terms. Professional or Retired Handcrafter members may serve on the Board of Directors so long as they will have been a member for one year upon taking office (July 1st after the election). See HSCG Bylaws

Right to Serve as President  [Professional and Retired Members]

The President is elected at the Annual Meeting in odd-numbered years and serves for two year term. A Professional or Retired Soapmaker may serve as President so long as he/she will have been a member for one year upon taking office (July 1st after the election). See HSCG Bylaws