OEM vs ODM: Know the Differences

Understanding the Differences Between OEM vs ODM

In the world of technology, there are two commonly-used acronyms you may have heard of before; OEM and ODM. But what exactly do they mean? And more importantly, how do they differ in the realm of private labeling and contract manufacturing? 

Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at both OEM vs ODM in order better to understand the differences and main advantage between them. 

What is Original Equipment Manufacturing (OEM)?

The term OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturing (OEM), is a favored option for companies seeking to penetrate the cosmetics industry or broaden their existing product range. The concept behind OEM manufacturing is relatively straightforward; a third-party manufacturer creates products based on the specifications listed by a company. This approach enables the manufacturers’ clients to have their custom-branded name labels on the product produced without spending millions on equipment, product development, and production procedures.

Outsourcing manufacturing to an original equipment manufacturer is a smart strategy for businesses looking to develop and launch their private-label products according to the buyer’s specifications. By partnering with an original equipment manufacturer, a company can leverage the manufacturer’s expertise, equipment, market research, and production facilities to create high-quality private-label products without the need for significant capital investments.

In OEM companies, the manufacturing business can focus on marketing strategies and branding, while the contract manufacturer takes care of the manufacturing requirements and production process. This way, the company can launch their private label product with confidence, knowing that it has been produced to its exact specifications and meets the standards of its target market. In addition, by partnering with a contract manufacturer, businesses can achieve their private label goals and grow their brand presence.

Example of Using OEM Services to Mass Produce & Sell Products

Apple has been partnering with Foxconn for several years to provide OEM services for its products. Apple provides Foxconn with detailed specifications and design requirements for its products, and Foxconn manufactures the products according to these specifications. Foxconn also provides additional assembly, quality control, and logistics services.

By outsourcing its manufacturing to Foxconn, Apple is able to focus on product development, marketing, and other core business activities, while taking advantage of Foxconn’s expertise, economies of scale, and supply chain management. This allows Apple to get a competitive production cost, while maintaining its reputation for innovation and design excellence.

Advantages of OEM for Skincare, Cosmetics & Beauty Brands

The benefits of OEM manufacturing for cosmetics businesses are numerous. For starters, OEM manufacturing allows companies to have their own brand name and identity on the OEM products, which can help them stand out in a crowded marketplace. It enables businesses to offer customized products that meet the specific needs and preferences of their target customers, without having to invest in expensive R&D.

By partnering with an experienced original equipment manufacturer, businesses can also benefit from the manufacturer’s expertise, resources, and economies of scale. In addition, the manufacturer can leverage their existing equipment, processes, and supply chain to produce high-quality products at a lower cost.

For example, if a skin care company needs new formulations or packaging, it can hire an OEM to produce them. This way, the skin care brand can focus on what it does best while leaving the production up to experts in that field.

What is ODM? 

ODM manufacturing, also known as Original Design Manufacturing (ODM), is a business model (ODM Model) in which an outside company designs and manufactures products based on the company’s specifications. The third party that provides the design and manufacturing services is called the Original Design Manufacturer.

ODM manufacturing is popular among companies that want to create new products, but do not have the resources or expertise to design and build them in-house. By partnering with the original design manufacturer, these companies can access the necessary design and manufacturing capabilities to bring their products to market.

Product differentiation is an important factor for companies looking to compete in a crowded marketplace. By utilizing the design and production capabilities of an ODM model, companies can create unique and innovative products that stand out from the competition.

In addition, the ODM manufacturer can help with product design and design products that meet the company’s specifications, resulting in a high-quality ODM product without incurring high production costs.

Advantages of ODM for Cosmetics

If small businesses want to create a new skin care product but don’t have the know-how or manpower to do it themselves, they could hire an ODM to design and manufacture it for them. 

ODM (Original Design Manufacturing) can offer several advantages for cosmetic firms, including:

Faster Time to Market

ODM products can be manufactured and marketed much faster than custom-made products, as the ODM company has already completed the design and development process.

Reduced Production Costs

As ODM products are pre-designed and mass-produced, the cost per unit can be significantly lower than custom-made products. This can help cosmetic enterprises minimize production costs and increase profit margins.

Flexibility and Customization

Although ODM products are pre-designed, they can still be customized to meet the specific needs of cosmetic firms. This means that firms can have some control over the product design and specification without having to invest in the entire design process.

Access to New Technologies

ODM manufacturers are often at the forefront of new technology and innovation, meaning that cosmetic firms can take advantage of the latest trends and developments in the industry.

Intellectual Property Protection

By working with an ODM manufacturer, cosmetic firms can benefit from the protection of intellectual property, as the manufacturer owns the design and development of the product. This can help to prevent counterfeiting and infringement.

Differences Between OEM vs ODM

OEM and ODM are two common business models used for manufacturing products. The key differences between them lie in the ownership and control of product design. In OEM, the buyer designs the product, and the manufacturer produces it based on the specifications provided. In ODM, the manufacturer designs and develops the product, and the buyer can customize it to meet their specific needs.

ODM has a shorter product development time since the supplier already has a predetermined design. The product development time is typically much faster than that of OEM, which can take up to 6 months. ODM can be completed in as little as 1-4 weeks.

In the OEM model, all manufacturing occurs within the company’s facilities, while with ODM, the designing and manufacturing process takes place outside of the company’s own premises. With OEM arrangements, companies produce components or systems, while with ODM arrangements companies produce complete products from scratch according to their customer’s specifications.

In OEM, the buyer is responsible for creating the product spec sheet with guidance from the manufacturer, while in ODM, the supplier makes the spec sheet.

In short, OEM is ideal for businesses that want to have their brand on existing products, while ODM is a better fit for those seeking a product differentiation advantage. ODM allows businesses to get their product to market quickly while avoiding the time and expense of developing a product from scratch. OEM, on the other hand, offers greater control over product design and intellectual property.


Knowing when it’s best to use either ODM vs OEM services can save businesses time and money and ensure that the final product meets all necessary standards and regulations. In addition, it is known that these manufacturing models are the best solutions to manufacture beauty products with uncompromised quality.

At Sky Resources, we understand that each company knows how to sell their skincare, personal care, hair care, or cosmetic products best. That being the case, with our bespoke skincare and beauty OEM manufacturing, rest assured that you will have total creative control as our solutions for you are tailored to your white label needs.

Are you ready to market, sell, and take your beauty company to new heights? Sky Resources is here to bring your beauty brand products one step ahead towards success.


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