First off let me start by defining what ‘white label’ means for the benefit of those who might not know. Generally, a white label product/service is developed by a particular business/company then other businesses/companies can rebrand it. They rebrand it in such a way that it appears as if it’s actually them who developed it. Some term white label as private label so just know they refer to the same thing, more or less. White labelling has been on the rise lately for various types of products and services. It’s generally said that profit margins for white labelling tend to eclipse those made through just buying and selling. Today my focus is on fragrances or perfumes; discussing how you can start your own white label perfume business.


Primarily you must understand the whole essence of why white labelling is done. White labelling enables you to stand out amongst other competitors as well as exercising absolute control over your brand. All these are critically important elements when it comes to your marketing campaigns. One strategic feature of white labels is that you get to offer relatively cheaper products but with superior quality or at par with established major brands. So you’ll have to do your research to find out about affordable producers/manufacturers. Then you’ll also have to comprehensively go through their terms and conditions so that you get to do everything using the proper frameworks. The perfume business is highly competitive so you better ensure you have a robust and unique selling proposition. So your brand name, description, your niching, your pricing and alluring packaging are some of the things you must thoroughly research on.

Key Requirements

You must have a detailed breakdown of your intended fragrance that you want to come up with. You will then have to approach white label perfume manufacturers who’ll create fragrances as per your expectations. They usually have bottle type ranges for you to choose from or you could specify what you want. Then the packaging again will be done according to your specifications. So as you can see it’s important that before everything else you must have done your homework on what brand identity you want to assume. Some manufacturers even offer you the option to have promotional samples developed for instance when you want to do your launch or other promotional functions. Then, of course, you’ll need to have a website and well-structured social media accounts for the business. Unfortunately, I’ve noticed that locally what’s popular is the purchasing of perfumes for resale of which most of the perfumes are imported from as far as, for instance, Dubai. Perfume making seems to be something that’s not yet a thing locally. The downside also is that necessary ingredients would have to be sourced from outside the country. That’s why later on you’ll realize that I’ll mention that the business might need quite a lot of startup money. However, despite all that, the profit margins can be way more than ordinary buying and reselling.

Human Resources

This is solely up to your discretion but at least 2 people can start this business. The need for more people will be premised on how the business scales. The usual crux is to keep human resources costs to a minimum in order to balance out the cash flows.


Significant amounts of money are needed to start this type of business. This is because you’ll normally have to approach a manufacturer and specify what you want them to develop for you. You’ll most likely find such manufacturers outside the country. Even the promotional and marketing campaigns might need substantial amounts of money.


I’ve already alluded to the highly competitive nature of this line of business. This means you must conduct rigorous public relations and publicity campaigns. Leverage on digital marketing to have a wider and easier reach. One approach to employ for brand awareness is the use of network marketing. Though network marketing is somewhat controversial it’s one way of pushing for brand awareness. You could also have vendors who earn commissions on selling your product; that can be another approach. You can also identify key retailers and enter agreements to display and sell your product in their outlets. As you can see I’m citing various types of approaches to marketing because there’s fierce competition – so think broadly.


As always I emphasise on the importance of registering your business. Then due to the nature of this business, there are a number of variables that need close attention. Some of them are guidelines or frameworks on labelling, legal aspects, accreditations and so on. These are pertinent issues that must be adhered to lest you get into legal battles for violating certain things.

You can easily find white label perfume manufacturers from across the borders as opposed to locally. In South Africa, there are a number of such manufacturers that you can approach. An example is NF White Labels which is under Novus Fragrances. They offer development and manufacturing services of perfumes for a wide range of clients from airlines and celebrities to individuals or businesses. Overall, perfume white labelling is a potentially lucrative business given the vast untapped potential it wields locally.