Top 10 Careers In Chemistry That Are Marketable In 2021

Chemistry is important to meeting our basic needs for food, clothing, shelter, health, energy, air, water, and soil. It is a fast-growing profession in the physical science field with a wide variety of incredibly fascinating majors but which one is really in-demand?

Studying chemistry is very useful, and in a bit to prepare you for the real world, we will connect you with the 10 top chemistry careers that are marketable including their salaries and job prospects. It is your responsibility to choose the one that suits your carer goals.

Chemistry is a scientific discipline that deals with elements and compounds, the transformations they undergo, and the energy that is released or absorbed during these processes. It applies to the food industry, retail, transportation, the arts, housework

Chemical technologies enrich our quality of life in many ways by offering new solutions to problems related to health, the consumption of materials, and energy.

With a bachelor’s level education in chemistry, you are well prepared to assume professional positions in industry, education, or public service. Therefore, choose your major wisely.

The table of contents will give you an overview of what you should expect in this article.

Why Choose a Career in Chemistry

There are many significant reasons to study chemistry, even if you aren’t pursuing a career in science. Some of the reason include but no limited to the following:

  • Chemistry helps you understand the world around you: How leaves change color in autumn, why plants are green, and many others. Chemistry is solidly behind all these transformations.
  • Basic knowledge of chemistry will help you read and understand product labels.
  • Chemistry can help you make informed decisions: Understanding how chemistry works allow you to separate reasonable expectations from pure fiction.
  • Chemistry is at the heart of the kitchen: Understanding the chemical reactions involved in rising baked foods or neutralizing acid makes you a better cook.
  • A mastery of chemistry can help you be safe: Knowing which household chemicals are dangerous to keep together or mix and which are safe to use.
  • Chemistry teaches useful skills: As it is a science, learning chemistry means learning to be objective and to discuss and solve problems.
  • It helps you understand current events, including news about oil, product recalls, pollution, the environment, and technological advancements.
  • Chemistry explains how things work: It makes life’s little secrets and less mysterious.
  • Chemistry opens up career opportunities: There are many careers in chemistry, but even if you are looking for a job in a different field, the analytical skills you acquired in chemistry will come in handy.
  • There are many interesting chemistry projects that you can do with everyday materials: Chemical projects are not just booming. It can glow in the dark, change colors, create bubbles, and change states.
  • Life is incomplete without chemistry

Steps to Pursuing a Career in Chemistry

Gain Work Experience

Work experience is the pre-requisites for advanced and doctorate degree as chemistry doctoral programs like to see applicants with prior relevant work experience.

Also, acquiring the necessary work experience improves the learning outcomes, as students will have the experience and knowledge to put their learning into perspective.

Pursue a Doctorate Degree

The doctoral degree options are more academic in nature can prove to be beneficial for individuals with leadership characteristics.
During a doctoral program, advanced methods will be regularly utilized which will prepare students for analyzing and conducting high-level research.
Common classes for doctoral students can cover a wide variety of topics, theoretical, experimental and applied.

Best Chemistry Schools

To get the best career in chemistry, you must attend a good school that offers quality chemistry programs.

Below is a list of well-accreditated institutions that offer the best chemistry programs and their corresponding subject scores. We selected these institutions based on the USNews and World’s rankings.

SchoolsSubject Score
University of California-Berkeley 100.0
Nanyang Technological University 96.9
Northwestern University95.0
Tsinghua University94.4
King Abdulaziz University93.2
University of Science and Technology of China92.6
École Polytechnique Federale of Lausanne92.3
National University of Singapore92.3
King Abdullah University of Science & Technology88.6
Peking University88.1

Highest Paying Chemistry Jobs

There are many, many chemistry-related courses you could take, so ensure you research courses thoroughly, and understand the length and content of each option available to you.

The major areas of chemistry are the identification of prominent occupations and relevant specializations and provide employment and salary data.

Below is a list of the top marketable careers in chemistry:

  • #1. Nanotechnologist
  • #2.Chemical Engineering
  • #3.Water Chemist
  • #4. Toxicology
  • #5.Hazardous Material Management Chemist
  • #6.Geochemist
  • #7.Analytical Chemist
  • #8.Academic Research chemists
  • #9.Pharmacologist
  • #10.Forensic Scientist

#1. Nanotechnologist 

Nanotechnology is one of the top rated careers in chemistry. It is the design, production, and application of structures, devices, and systems by manipulation of size and shape at the nanometer scale.

Nanotechnologists plan and conduct experiments to investigate and analyze nano-scale systems. They typically work a 37-hour week, although you might have to put in overtime to meet deadlines. Their job is mostly lab-based, but they may need to work in other settings depending on the nature of their current project.

Salary: According to, Nanotechnologists earn an annual salary range from $52,000 to $150,000 with an average of $95,000.

Job Outlook: BLS reported that the employment of Nanotechnologist is expected to grow by 23 percent between 2014 and 2024, much faster than the average across industries.

#2. Chemical Engineer

Chemical engineering is a marketable career in chemistry that involved the design and development of new products from raw materials.

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Professionals in this field apply the principles of chemistry, biology, physics, and math to solve problems that involve the use of fuel, drugs, food, and many other products. They may spend time at industrial plants, refineries, and other locations, where they monitor or direct operations or solve onsite problems.


Chemical Engineer worker salary varies according to location, year of experience, and qualifications. They earn a median pay of $108,770 per year $52.30 per hour.

Job Outlook

BLS postulates that the employment of chemical engineers is projected to grow 4 percent from 2019 to 2029, about as fast as the average for all occupations.

#3. Water Chemist

Water Chemistry is a highly interdisciplinary field that is linked fields such as microbiology and geology.

The primary responsibility of Water Chemists is to analyze and take care of the maintenance of the quality and condition of water, essential for human life on Earth. You may find similar roles under a variety of names, for example, hydrologist or hydrogeologist.

Salary: Water Chemists salary range from $14,017 to $372,983, with a median salary of $67,315

Job Outlook: 7% project

#4. Toxicologist

Toxicologists study the effects of drugs on biological systems but also look at the effects of other substances, both natural and man-made. They work with and develop methodologies, diagnose, and treat exposures to toxins and toxicants. Toxicologists mostly work in the lab monitoring of experiments and interpretation of results.

Salary: According to, Toxicologist salaries currently range between $67,500 (25th percentile) to $95,500 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $111,000 annually across the United States.

Job Outlook: Projected to continue to grow 17% to 2026.

#5. Hazardous Material Management Chemist

Hazardous material management chemists(hazmat) responsible for detecting and identifying hazardous materials. They use their expertise to identify chemical pollutants in the air, water, or soil, evaluate the danger they present and coordinate their removal and containment.

Their ultimate goal is to eliminate hazards that result in illnesses and injuries related to work and the work environment, as well as their prevention and control.

Salary:  Hazardous Material Management Chemist can earn as high as $134,000 annually

Job Outlook: Hazmat has a great employment outlook

#6. Geochemist

Geochemistry is a marketable career in chemistry that deals with the study of the composition, structure, processes, and other physical aspects of the Earth. Geochemists use physical and inorganic chemistry to investigate the amount and distribution of chemical elements in rocks and minerals. They typically work with research institutions, consultancy agencies, or oil companies.

Salary: $89,850

Job Outlook: 7%

#7. Analytical Chemist

Analytical chemistry is a major career in chemistry that pays well in today’s job market. Professionals in this field spend most of their time in laboratories and office environments. They use their skills and expertise to conduct various experiments while handling possibly dangerous chemicals in the lab. 

Analytical Chemists analyze substances like drugs and food, identify what components are present and in what quantities, as well how these components may behave and react with one another.


Analytical Chemists earn an average of $71,770 annually. Pay will depend on experience, location in the country, and employer, among other things.

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Job Outlook

Analytical Chemists employment is projected to grow 5 percent from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations.

#8. Academic Research chemists

Academic Research chemists carry out original, high-level research that generates new knowledge and progresses current understanding. They apply their expertise and skills developed through study and research.

Academic researchers are mainly based in universities, a lot are employed as higher education teaching staff who also carry out research.

Salary: $20,519 to $27,358

Job Outlook: Great employment prospect

#9. Pharmacologist

Pharmacology is one of the most popular careers in chemistry. Pharmacologists study the effects of drugs and other chemicals on animals, humans, and plants. They investigate how drugs interact with biological systems.

Pharmacologists job is lab-based and they typically work for non-standard hours in order to monitor ongoing experiments. The majority work full time.

Salary: $96,070 per year

Job Outlook: 6 percent

#10. Forensic Science

If you possess an analytical mind and desire to help others and a drive to succeed, a career in forensic science is a great opportunity to put your strengths to work for you.

Forensic Science involves planning and processes to reduce health risks during urgent situations, such as natural disasters, terrorist attacks, disease breakouts, and other situations.

forensic scientists are the professionals in their discipline and their role is to critically analyze evidence such as body fluids in order to determine if DNA in those fluids matches blood found at a crime scene. They may help identify, collect, and evaluate physical evidence at a crime scene.

Unlike other careers in chemistry, forensic scientists work with law enforcement, and so you may have to undergo training in criminal justice or criminology at your undergraduate level. However, postgraduate studies should focus on a relevant area of forensic science.

Salary: $35,620 to $98,224 annually

Job Outlook: 14 percent from 2019 to 2029


Most of the chemistry jobs listed above require some qualification in chemistry, regardless of whether it is a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate. Some roles you can fill with a qualification in a related field, such as Biology, Environmental Science, or Pharmacology.

Many chemistry jobs are done in the laboratory, but not all. A variety of roles can include fieldwork, office work, or even teaching in a school, university, or other academic settings. Other management functions may include human resource management, liaison with the company, and department and budget management.

FAQs On Marketable Careers In Chemistry

Are careers in chemistry in-demand

Yes! There are a wide variety of marketable careers in chemistry including Nanotechnologist, Chemical Engineering, Water Chemist, and many others.

Is Chemistry a science discipline?

Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with elements and compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions

Can I become a Forensic scientist with a degree in chemistry?

Forensic science is a major in chemistry that focuses on identifying, collecting, and evaluating physical evidence at a crime scene.

Which country is best for chemistry?



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