About $1.45 billion is spent on cosmetics each year. Arbonne, a Swiss-based company, is doing its best to get a piece of the action. Promoting botanical and herbal organic ingredients as the foundation of its product line, Arbonne began focusing on skin care and cosmetics. Its product line has grown to include nutrition and weight-loss products.
Petter Morck, with the help of bio-chemists, biologists and herbalists, developed the Arbonne company to provide a skin-care line in Switzerland in 1975. Using the techniques of network marketing, Arbonne became available in the United States in 1980. The Arbonne international market has grown to include Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom.
Skin-care products make up the bulk of the Arbonne product line. Arbonne's products are organically based and vegan certified. Arbonne independent consultant Holly Sharp reports that her fastest-selling products are the anti-aging line, which minimize signs of aging in the skin. The anti-aging system for the face includes Day Cream with SPF 8, Renewing Gelee Cream Hydrating wash, Restoring Mist balance toner, Corrective eye cream, Reactive Facial Serum Day and Night and Recover Night Cream, and retails for $298.50. There are a variety of other products for facial and body skin care including a skin-care line for teens, an aromatherapy-based line and products for people of color.
Arbonne's Figure 8 weight-loss program has a variety of products designed to help control appetite and increase metabolism. After breaking a bone in her foot, Sharp was forced to be inactive for three months to allow the bone to heal. During this time she put on several pounds. In 2008, Sharp competed in Arbonne's Figure 8 Weight Loss challenge. Using the Figure 8 products Sharp lost 25 pounds in eight weeks, winning first place and a $1,000 prize.
Arbonne products are not available in stores; rather, the company embraces a network marketing technique that allows consultants to meet privately or in small groups with customers. A customer called the "hostess" invites friends and family to a class where they meet with a consultant. The consultant then provides an opportunity to sample products while teaching about their benefits and proper use. In return for hosting the class, the hostess often earns discounts and may even receive free products. Arbonne places high value on the importance of face-to-face contact between consultants and customers.
Arbonne consultants work as independent home-based businesses. They earn money through the retail sales of their product to customers, commissions for helping new consultants develop their business, and special bonuses. The Arbonne company provides ongoing training to its consultants to help consultants reach their personal goals.