As to be expected, across the industry salaries vary widely with experience. Most salaries fall within the £30,000 to £75,000 range, with the average across all sectors at £61,300. This compares favourably with the average UK salary at £28,677. The greatest % of high salaries are within Operations, which includes MDs, FDs and company owners. But everyone has to start somewhere, and it is possible to reach high salaries within all sectors.

Sectors and salaries within the cosmetics industry

There is a real passion for the industry with 89% of respondents working in it for 3 years or more. 43% have been in the industry for more than 10 years. People tend to change employer and/or roles after 5 years.

For 41% of Respondents the main reason for a move is to progress their career or attain a promotion. Although this would potentially lead to a bigger financial reward, only 15% of individuals put this as their main reason to move. The third largest driver at 12% is to obtain a better work life balance.

Marketing & Creative

The Cosmetics Industry is dynamic with consumer led innovation and demand fuelling constant growth. Huge opportunities exist within Brand Management and Product Development, with Digital and Social Media content becoming more and more vital to brands of all sizes and their communities.

Marketing salaries, including creative roles, ranged from £20,000-£180,000. Salaries by job title are below. The average shown is not a mathematical equation, but an estimate based on Survey feedback and our Industry knowledge and experience.


Multiple sales roles exist within the industry, from sales direct to consumers, business to business sales of raw materials, packaging and services to manufacturers and brands, and product sales to retail. Of our respondents within Sales, 17% were at Director level with 57% at Account Manager level and 16% in Business Development.

Sales salaries range from £18,000 to £250,000 at Director level.


Operations is our largest and broadest sector, incorporating general operations, HR, packaging and supply chain.

Operations salaries range from £20,000 to £160,000 excluding the highest levels, Managing Director and General Manager. At MD/GM level salaries are up to £350,000.


There are many specialisms within the Scientific and Technical sector with a variety of different career paths from research and formulation through to testing, quality and regulatory roles.

Scientific salaries range from £16,000 to £300,000.


Perfume salaries range from £18,000 at a junior technician level to £400,000 for a Creative Perfumer or Fragrance Director.

To download the full survey go to the Arthur Edward website here.