How to Commercialize Cosmetic Products in Brazil

For a foreign cosmetics company, the very first steps to approach the Brazilian market may represent a challenge. It is sometimes difficult to understand some specificities of legislation and to find an adequate local partner to initiate business.


Brazil is one of the largest cosmetics markets in the world.

According to “Overview 2019” published by ABIHPEC, Brazil occupies the 4th position, with USD 30 billion sales and ahead of other consolidated markets like Germany, United Kingdom and France (USD 20, USD 17.4 and USD 15.3 billion, respectively) (1).

There are +2,400 manufacturers of cosmetic products in Brazil (2) and +5,000 companies performing importation and/or distribution of cosmetics.


For a foreign cosmetics company, the very first steps to approach the Brazilian market may represent a challenge. It is sometimes difficult to understand some specificities of legislation and to find an adequate local partner to initiate business.


The Registration Holder


Some of the frequent asked questions relates to the “registration holding” rules applied in Brazil. Here are some points to have in mind:


  • The registration holder must be a company located in Brazil, implying technical and legal responsibility for the product

  • The Company must be legalized by authorities under status Manufacturer or Importer. Companies which are legalized as simple Distributors cannot act as a registration holder.

  • The company must obtain the Authorization for Operation (issued by Federal authority) and the Operating License (issued by Regional authority); without these two documents, no company can operate inside Brazilian territory.


If the international company does not have an affiliate in Brazil, an agreement can be signed with a local partner, usually a legalized company that will be responsible for the Distribution of cosmetic products. The agreement shall include clauses regarding responsibilities and obligations in case of its termination, securing the ownership of the product formula.


Good luck!

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