50+ Best Blue Collar Business Ideas

50+ Best Blue Collar Business Ideas

There's a reason blue-collar businesses do so well - particularly because most people don't have the expertise (or the motivation) to do these sorts of jobs themselves.

If you're looking to start your own blue-collar business idea, there are several low-capital options you can choose from.

We put a list together below of the top blue-collar business ideas you can start today!

Here they are:

1. Start a waste management business ($492K/year)

Dustin from Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA started SOCO Waste almost 5 years ago, a waste management business.

  • Revenue: $41,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA

I came to the realization that I had a problem with staying at a job for more than 6 months. I would come in to work every day, learn the job, and about 6 months later I would be sitting there bored and wondering why they didn’t do things a certain way to make the business more efficient.

I tried working everywhere from door to door sales, fast food, shipping companies and at one point I was even an O.T.R. truck driver!

Eventually, I would find another job and move on because being inefficient wasn’t me!

how-i-started-a-41k-month-residential-waste-removal-service

2. Start a motorcycle parts business ($7.2M/year)

Justin Pflanz from Lincoln, Nebraska, USA started TAB Performance almost 18 years ago, a motorcycle parts business.

  • Revenue: $600,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 9
  • Location: Lincoln, Nebraska, USA

My Brother and I grew up in a very entrepreneurial family. Our parents had started, grown and sold several companies growing up and it’s something we both had a passion for.

We’ve also always felt that our personalities and experiences complimented each other well. Generally speaking, I tend to be more detail oriented and risk averse whereas my brother is better at looking at the big picture and is more comfortable taking risks. I went to college and got a degree in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in business and he got his degrees in both Business Administration and Marketing.

how-two-brothers-started-a-4-8m-year-motorcycle-parts-manufacturer

3. Start a roof inspection business

Examples of a successful roof inspection business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a roof inspection business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a roof inspection business ➜

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4. Start a junk removal business ($300K/year)

Sam Evans from Pennsylvania, USA started You Call We Haul Junk Removal over 5 years ago, a junk removal business.

  • Revenue: $25,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: Pennsylvania, USA

When I was ending my freshman year of college, I was sitting in my dorm room one day when I got a call from my cousin. Both of us had been flipping items on eBay since we were 14 and always loved to find ways to make some extra money. He told me about a book called Effortless Entrepreneur, written by the founders of College Hunks Hauling Junk which is currently the world’s second-largest junk removal franchise.

I ordered the book on eBay for $4 and as soon as it came to my dorm, I immediately started reading. About 20 pages into it, I called my Dad who is a used car salesman. I told him that I was going to start a junk removal company and that I needed his help finding a truck. After nearly a week of calling him telling him every reason I could come up with as to why I needed to start this company, he was finally in. He helped me find a $1,000 truck on Craigslist, a 1991 Ford F-150.

I bought the truck, printed out some flyers at my school’s library, ordered a few hundred horrible business cards, and was officially in business.

how-i-started-a-18k-month-junk-removal-company-before-graduating-from-college

5. Start a jewelry making business ($48K/year)

Lindsay Ann Gottschall and Courtney Joy Bleier from Miami, Florida, USA started Ann + Joy ago, a jewelry making business.

  • Revenue: $4,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Miami, Florida, USA

Courtney Joy always wanted to be a teacher as a little girl. She used to pretend to teach in her childhood home basement on Long Island, New York. Growing up in an artistic family, she became a figurative and landscape artist and eventually attended art school. After college, she decided to merge her two childhood passions together and became an art teacher.

Lindsay Ann expressed herself through art in a different way. She was in the theater and went to school for drama in New York City. While pursuing her dream of acting, she also made beaded jewelry on the side. It quickly became a passion of hers and would help lead her down a new path in life.

Within our first 3 months, we sold over 100 orders, resulting in more than $3,000 in revenue. By the end of our first year, we had sold over 2,300 orders, resulting in more than $65,000.

how-we-started-a-4k-month-handmade-flower-and-resin-jewelry-business

6. Start a diy business ($1.62M/year)

Mark Tyrol from Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA started Battic Door almost 9 years ago, a DIY business.

  • Revenue: $135,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA

When I purchased my first house in 2000, I had a pull-down ladder in one of the bedrooms.

When attic stairs are installed, a large hole (approximately 10 square feet) is created in your ceiling. The ceiling and insulation that were there have to be removed, leaving only a thin, unsealed, sheet of plywood.

I have a colleague who told me “Businesses do not fail, people quit.” I decided to not quit.

how-i-turned-a-diy-project-into-a-million-dollar-business

7. Start a construction company ($4.2M/year)

Clifton Muckenfuss from Apex, North Carolina, USA started Carolina Exteriors over 11 years ago, a construction company.

  • Revenue: $350,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 10
  • Location: Apex, North Carolina, USA

The founders are childhood best friends from small-town America (South Carolina). We took different paths after college and approximately 9 years later, reunited in North Carolina. I (Clifton) was recruited from Florida to work for a Mortgage Company in Raleigh, NC and Wesley was already established here (Raleigh) working for a major building materials manufacturer (James Hardie). After the housing crisis, the Mortgage Company went bankrupt and I (Clifton) found myself without a job. I then founded a Residential/Commercial/Cleaning Company (still in operations today, Managed by my wife, Mary Ann) and grew that business from $0 - $500K rapidly.

Surround yourself with POSITIVE people.

Then, Wes and I were talking about the possibility of starting a siding/exterior remodeling company since most of the contractors were retreating after the recession and the ones that remained, didn’t focus on the customer, but rather, only on the transaction.

growing-an-exterior-remodeling-company-from-3-5k-to-9m-year

8. Start a campervan conversion business ($96K/year)

Bryan and Jen Danger from Portland, Oregon, USA started ZENVANZ almost 3 years ago, a campervan conversion business.

  • Revenue: $8,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: Portland, Oregon, USA

As a part of our nomadic lifestyle, we built out a campervan simply to facilitate our own travels, whether it be a summer spent on the coast of Baja or chasing snow from mountain to mountain in the Canadian Rockies.

We really never had the intention of starting a business… In fact, we said no for a couple of years to those asking us to either buy our campervan or for us to build one for them. We loved the process and loved the idea of helping others to get out and enjoy more nature/adventure the way we had, but the idea of giving up some of our own freedom to go back to working in the shop simply wasn’t attractive.

Eventually, friends came to us and convinced us to start the business. To simply show them how to do what we had learned and for us to simply continue “marketing” the business as we already had been (by camping and attending events and simply talking to others who saw the van when we opened the doors). Those friends were also looking to make a transition in life as they wanted out of their 9-5s, and we saw it as an opportunity we couldn’t refuse- both to help them and to help others we had talked to about van builds over the years.

how-we-started-a-8k-month-business-transforming-campervans-while-traveling

9. Start a crime scene cleanup business ($0/year)

Nick-Anthony Zamucen from Greenwood Village, Colorado, USA started Bio-One almost 14 years ago, a crime scene cleanup business.

  • Revenue: $/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 7
  • Location: Greenwood Village, Colorado, USA

I started Bio-One Inc. over two decades ago.

Bio-One is the nation's leader in Crime & Trauma Scene Cleaning with over 90 franchised to date and growing. Bio-One isn’t like any other business you get into, it’s not all about profit.

Let me explain a bit more. When a suicide, homicide or an undiscovered dead body is found, there are many people who get called to the incident. The police, coroner/medical examiner, fire department, detectives and the last responders are companies like mine, Bio-One the crime scene cleaners. Not all scenes we clean are crimes, but the term crime scene cleaner gives some mental picture of what gets done. We clean and remediate what is commonly left behind from EMT’s, police, fire departments and coroners to name a few.

how-i-created-a-1-2m-month-crime-scene-cleanup-business

10. Start a fishing boat charter business

Examples of a successful fishing boat charter business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a fishing boat charter business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a fishing boat charter business ➜

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11. Start a candle business ($1.2M/year)

DShawn Russell from Raeford, North Carolina, USA started Southern Elegance Candle Company almost 6 years ago, a candle business.

  • Revenue: $100,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 20
  • Location: Raeford, North Carolina, USA

I started Southern Elegance right after my son was born as a hobby. Initially, I made a bunch of random bath and body products in addition to the candles. When I decided to get serious, I looked at everything and decided to just focus on one product and chose candles because they had the potential to be the most profitable. I chose a niche that I could speak authentically about. My ideal customer was easy to identify because it was basically me. (But, don't use that a marketing strategy. It just happened to work in this case) I was born and raised in the South. I LOVE living here and couldn't imagine living anywhere else. I created a company around all the things that I love to do.

Choose your partners carefully and trust your gut. I made very bad decisions by going against what I thought I should do and listening to “experts” and lost a ton of money.

I was working in education at the time and I absolutely hated it. One day walked into work and quit my job to make candle making a full-time career. I had absolutely no background in sales, manufacturing, marketing or anything business-related. I basically had no clue as to how it was going to work or if this was even a viable plan. Everything was a learning curve, and I spent hours learning a new skill then implementing it.

With very limited resources, (basically no money) I went to the school of Google and Youtube. I took some online classes on Branding and Wholesaling. I hired a business coach and I literally hit the streets selling. For the first year, I would sell my candles at any Church function, fair, festival, school bazaar… I did not care. I sold candles outside in the middle of the summer and the dead of winter. I also sold on any and every online platform that would accept me. Etsy, Amazon, Faire, Modalyst, Houzz, etc. All the money I made went back into building the brand, I was lucky to have a husband to pay the bills but it was tight financially. When I finally felt comfortable I approached stores to carry my products. And we slowly built a base of stores to sustain the company.

how-i-started-a-20k-month-southern-inspired-candle-business

12. Start a home building company ($6M/year)

Michael J Parnell from Manasquan, New Jersey, USA started MPC Builders over 9 years ago, a home building company.

  • Revenue: $500,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: Manasquan, New Jersey, USA

I started my career in a large scale, the commercial construction industry in the NJ and NYC markets. I was a project manager on $50-100+ million dollar projects, for clients such as the NY Red Bulls, Goldman Sachs, Princeton University, GlaxoSmithKline… large, multi-year projects.

After the downturn in 2010, I was just finishing up the Red Bull Arena soccer stadium project, and my employer decided to all but shut down our NJ business unit, laid off a ton of employees and pulled the ones they kept into our NYC office. I was commuting from Monmouth County, NJ to lower Manhattan, and after a year and a half, I had enough. My son was just born, and I was leaving for work at 5:30 am and getting home at 7:30 pm, and never home when he was awake other than on weekends. I knew that wasn’t the life I had envisioned having, and I needed to make a change.

So at first, I tried getting another job, in northern NJ for a small general contracting firm. I was hired as the Operations Manager and had a deal to work my way into an ownership position after a few years. But shortly after starting with the company, I knew it wasn’t going to be a long term position. It was very unorganized, with a culture in place that was not interested in making any changes to the way things were run. They also didn’t have solid business relationships, and after coming in 2nd place in nearly all of our bids (without the relationships to bring in those opportunities), I saw the writing on the wall. I was the second-highest salary, in a sinking ship, and I was laid off after only 5 months in the position.

how-i-started-a-500k-month-custom-home-building-company

13. Start a machine building and design agency

Examples of a successful machine building and design agency:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a machine building and design agency:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a machine building and design agency ➜

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14. Start a woodworking business ($78K/year)

Sasha Weekes from Hunter River, Prince Edward Island, Canada started Timber Grove Studios over 4 years ago, a woodworking business.

  • Revenue: $6,500/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: Hunter River, Prince Edward Island, Canada

I was always the art kid growing up, so I naturally began my post secondary education by pursuing a degree in Fine Arts. I spent my summers refinishing furniture and doing photography and that’s how I got my feet wet with business, so by my second year, I was also pursuing a minor in Commerce.

I had never really done much woodworking at all but became a lot more interested in design and home decor during those years. After finishing my third year, I was itching to do something more practical than becoming a gallery artist, so I set my sights on furniture design and enrolled in a college cabinetmaking course instead. It really wasn’t where I had ever expected to end up, but it was sort of a natural progression and I’m so glad I did it!

I started making mountain shelves in the morning before class to sell on Facebook and Kijiji. It was intended to be a fun side project but they were so popular that I started my business shortly after graduating with the mountains as my first product.

how-i-took-my-woodworking-hobby-full-time-to-build-a-successful-brand

15. Start an electronics repair business ($0/year)

Allen Chiang from Connecticut, USA started Retro Radio Farm almost 8 years ago, a electronics repair business.

  • Revenue: $0/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Connecticut, USA

One day back in 2012, I happened to go to a local flea market. I wasn’t looking for anything in particular, and I'm not a flea market or garage sale regular.

I noticed these two old radios for $15 each. I had not been interested in old radios before, and I was not a collector or a retro guy. These particular radios were from 1950s, bright and colorful, oozing with retro pride, but in sad, neglected shape.

As far as my professional background, I have an electrical engineering degree but never worked on radios. My understanding of these things was only basic at best. I knew analog audio sounded better than digital from my guitar days.

finding-and-repairing-retro-radios-turned-into-a-successful-side-hustle

16. Become a general contractor

Examples of a successful general contractor:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a general contractor:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a general contractor ➜

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17. Start a car wash

Examples of a successful car wash:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a car wash:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a car wash ➜

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18. Start an instrument repair business

Examples of a successful instrument repair business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a instrument repair business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an instrument repair business ➜

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19. Start a concrete cutting service

Examples of a successful concrete cutting service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a concrete cutting service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a concrete cutting service ➜

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20. Start an auto repair business

Examples of a successful auto repair business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a auto repair business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an auto repair business ➜

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21. Start a guard dog security service

Examples of a successful guard dog security service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a guard dog security service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a guard dog security service ➜

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22. Start a cabinet making business

Examples of a successful cabinet making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a cabinet making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a cabinet making business ➜

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23. Become a countertop manufacturer ($13.2M/year)

Examples of a successful countertop manufacturer:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a countertop manufacturer:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a countertop manufacturer ➜

And for some real world inspiration, give Ed Baldoni's story on creating Concrete Countertop Solutions a read:

Hi, all DIYR’s and pros alike.

Our Z Counterform System for countertops and Z Poolform System for concrete pool coping are the go-to solutions for cast-in-place concrete forms. With a small but dedicated team, we grew this business from an idea to over $12M in revenue in 10 years.

What our customers have achieved using our products

i-make-13-2m-year-selling-concrete-countertops-for-diy-ers

-  
Ed Baldoni, on starting Concrete Countertop Solutions ($1,100,000/month) full story ➜

24. Become a bicycle manufacturer

Examples of a successful bicycle manufacturer:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a bicycle manufacturer:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a bicycle manufacturer ➜

25. Start a generator repair service

Examples of a successful generator repair service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a generator repair service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a generator repair service ➜

26. Start a holiday decorating service

Examples of a successful holiday decorating service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a holiday decorating service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a holiday decorating service ➜

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27. Start a machine building and design agency

Examples of a successful machine building and design agency:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a machine building and design agency:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a machine building and design agency ➜

article

28. Start a lawn care service

Examples of a successful lawn care service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a lawn care service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a lawn care service ➜

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29. Start a bitcoin hardware mining business

Examples of a successful bitcoin hardware mining business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a bitcoin hardware mining business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a bitcoin hardware mining business ➜

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30. Start a graffiti removal business

Examples of a successful graffiti removal business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a graffiti removal business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a graffiti removal business ➜

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31. Start a carpet cleaning service

Examples of a successful carpet cleaning service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a carpet cleaning service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a carpet cleaning service ➜

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32. Start a landscaping business ($13.2M/year)

Examples of a successful landscaping business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a landscaping business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a landscaping business ➜

And for some real world inspiration, give Terry Morrill's story on creating Pacific Outdoor Living a read:

I'm Terry Morrill, the owner of Pacific Outdoor Living, Pacific Pavingstone, and creator of the AIMM System. At Pacific Outdoor Living, our main product that we sell is a complete landscape design-build project to high-end residential customers. We refer to our primary customer base as the "mass affluent". I run Pacific Outdoor living and its sister company, Pacific Pavingstone, with my two sons, Trent and Chad Morrill.

Our office, located in Sun Valley, has a staff of over 80 employees. Within the staff, we have specialized crews in demolition, landscaping, pavers, and pools. These specialized crews are experts in their field and have been trained with the highest certifications in each division.

This year, we will end up grossing around 16 million in gross sales, which is a significant increase from the years prior.

how-i-started-a-16m-year-landscape-design-company

-  
Terry Morrill, on starting Pacific Outdoor Living ($1,100,000/month) full story ➜

33. Start a pest control business

Examples of a successful pest control business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a pest control business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a pest control business ➜

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34. Start a window cleaning business

Examples of a successful window cleaning business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a window cleaning business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a window cleaning business ➜

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35. Start a recycling business

Examples of a successful recycling business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a recycling business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a recycling business ➜

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36. Start an ac repair business

Examples of a successful ac repair business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a ac repair business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an ac repair business ➜

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37. Start an industrial laundromat business

Examples of a successful industrial laundromat business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a industrial laundromat business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an industrial laundromat business ➜

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38. Start a drain repair service

Examples of a successful drain repair service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a drain repair service:

Learn more about starting a drain repair service ➜

39. Start a carpet installation business

Examples of a successful carpet installation business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a carpet installation business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a carpet installation business ➜

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40. Start a plumbing business

Examples of a successful plumbing business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a plumbing business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a plumbing business ➜

41. Start a gardening business

Examples of a successful gardening business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a gardening business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a gardening business ➜

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42. Start a boat repair business

Examples of a successful boat repair business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a boat repair business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a boat repair business ➜

article

43. Start a christmas lights service

Examples of a successful christmas lights service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a christmas lights service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a christmas lights service ➜

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44. Start a christmas tree farm

Examples of a successful christmas tree farm:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a christmas tree farm:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a christmas tree farm ➜

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45. Start an aviation cleaning service

Examples of a successful aviation cleaning service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a aviation cleaning service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an aviation cleaning service ➜

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46. Become a camera manufacturer

Examples of a successful camera manufacturer:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a camera manufacturer:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a camera manufacturer ➜

47. Become a carpenter

Examples of a successful carpenter:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a carpenter:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a carpenter ➜

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48. Start a plant stands business

Examples of a successful plant stands business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a plant stands business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a plant stands business ➜

49. Start a furniture delivery and assembling business

Examples of a successful furniture delivery and assembling business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a furniture delivery and assembling business:

Learn more about starting a furniture delivery and assembling business ➜

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50. Become a laundry detergent manufacturer ($240K/year)

Examples of a successful laundry detergent manufacturer:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a laundry detergent manufacturer:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a laundry detergent manufacturer ➜

And for some real world inspiration, give David Watkins's story on creating Dirty Labs a read:

Hello there! I’m David Watkins, CEO and a co-founder of Dirty Labs. Dirty Labs is a cleaning innovation lab created with a mission to take the ‘dirty’ out of cleaning.

The first products from the company are a line of laundry detergents that solve what we call a cleaning trilemma. For years, products have either been safe, sustainable, or effective, but rarely, if ever, all three. Our goal is to create solutions that leverage nature-inspired green chemistry to solve this problem. We’re making a significant change in the way cleaning products are formulated. We think we’ve achieved this goal with our first line of detergents tested for market-leading levels of efficacy while also making a giant leap forward in safety and sustainability.

we-created-a-240k-year-laundry-detergent

-  
David Watkins, on starting Dirty Labs ($20,000/month) full story ➜

Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story

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