The New Indie Beauty Brands That Editors Can't Stop Talking About (Or Using)
While classic beauty buys will probably always have a place in your heart (and your bathroom cabinet), it’s never a bad idea to refresh your collection with a few carefully considered new arrivals. And the 2019 indie beauty brands have so much more to offer than skincare innovations and stellar ingredient lists. They're worthy of posting to your main feed, too.
Of course, as the saying goes, you can’t judge a book by its cover… and the same line of thinking applies to beauty products: A beautiful label and Insta-worthy bottle do not an effective elixir make. Luckily, the latest crop of beauty brands recognizes the importance of both substance and style. Take, for example, skincare company Supernal. Cosmic Glow Oil, its single SKU, is a potent formulation of natural ingredients like golden camellia oil and calming blue tansy essential oil — which just happen to create the most gorgeous green hue when combined. Paired with a classic black-and-white label and a logo that feels equal parts modern and medieval (no easy feat), this is one product that’s as easy on the eyes as it is on the skin.
Ahead, the 11 brands about to take over the beauty space — and the best (and best-looking) skincare products each has to offer.
The Inkey List
The Brand Basics: Think of The Inkey List as 2019’s answer to The Ordinary. The brand calls itself “your beauty translator” — meaning it aims to demystify somewhat-confusing industry jargon. Expect trendy, effective ingredients (think: Hyaluronic acid and vitamin C) at affordable prices. Like, under-$10 affordable.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Black and white and minimalist all over.
The Product To Try: Hemp Oil Moisturizer
The Brand Basics: Founded by Neada Deters, the former managing editor of Atelier Doré, LESSE is revolutionizing the industry with three products and three little words: Less is more. The brand’s simplified approach to skincare relies on active naturals like turmeric, sea minerals, and charcoal.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Earthy elegance.
The Product To Try: Bioactive Face Mask
The Brand Basics: After years of trying to find the perfect face oil to prep his clients’ skin for makeup application, artist Dillon Pena decided to make it himself. His homemade oil — a blend of luxe botanicals — evolved into new skincare line Leland Francis.
The Aesthetic Appeal: A touch of glamor, a touch of goth.
The Product To Try: Twenty-Nine Botanical Serum
The Brand Basics: “Supernal” is defined as “celestial or of exceptional quality or extent” — and that pretty much sums up all you need to know about this new beauty brand. Its Cosmic Glow Oil promises supernatural radiance via super natural ingredients.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Mystical-meets-minimal.
The Product To Try: Cosmic Glow Oil
Grace + Tonic
The Brand Basics: Grace + Tonic is the first COSMOS-certified brand to launch at Target — which is kind of a big deal. COSMOS certification is essentially the gold standard for sustainable, organic cosmetics. What does that mean for your skin? Clean ingredients that deliver results.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Looks expensive. Isn’t.
The Product To Try: Eye Serum
The Brand Basics: The three female founders of Wildling are basically a holistic health dream team: There’s Britta Plug, an NYC-based aesthetician known for her natural approach to skin health; Jill Munson, a plant alchemist and herbalist; and Gianna De La Torre, an acupuncturist who created the Cosmetic Acupuncture Method. Naturally, their product lineup is a curated offering of wild-harvested, “farm to face” ingredients (Balm of Gilead, olive oil, rose) and even features a bian-carved gua sha tool.
The Aesthetic Appeal: For the beauty-loving bohemian.
The Product To Try: Empress Stone
The Brand Basics: Inspired by Southeast Asian beauty traditions (the Radiating Rice Pebble Mask is a must), Li Organics features time-tested ingredients and small-batch beauty products handmade in Malaysia. Bonus: The brand’s packaging is 100 percent sustainable and recyclable thanks to glass bottles and cornstarch labels.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Simple and timeless — just like the products.
The Product To Try: Radiating Rice Pebble Mask
The Brand Basics: Follain is most well-known as an e-commerce platform for clean beauty brands — but with the recent launch of its in-house line of personal care products, that’s about to change. The private label features items Follain felt were missing in the space; including the Everything Soap, an eco-friendly soap that can actually be used on everything, from your hands to your body to the dishes in the kitchen sink.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Literal green beauty, with hints of rose gold.
The Product To Try: Sugar & Shea Body Scrub
The Brand Basics: It's pronounced baby-skin, and it's a nod to how Bejbiskin’s founders want you to treat your face: "Baby" it, with gentle-yet-effective ingredients that are backed by science. The formulas contain potent actives (like the 12 percent concentration of AHAs and BHAs in the Acid Exfoliator) with no fillers, no alcohol, no fragrance, and no known irritants.
The Aesthetic Appeal: The neon-meets-pastel color palette begs to be photographed.
The Product To Try: After Acid Serum
The Brand Basics: Launched earlier this year, ITADI is built around a single key ingredient: Organic coffee berry harvested from the founder’s family farms in Togo, West Africa. With high levels of antioxidants, coffee berry extract is known to boost the body’s natural production of collagen, soothe inflammation, and even prevent sun damage, according to the brand.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Low-key and African-inspired.
The Product To Try: Face Wash
The Brand Basics: You may recognize Golde as the supplement brand behind your homemade turmeric golden latte — but in April 2019, Golde official entered the beauty space. Its brand new face masks are filled with “superfoods” (papaya, spirulina, mango) that are good enough to eat.
The Aesthetic Appeal: Kitchen cabinet meets beauty cabinet.
The Product To Try: Clean Greens Anti-Pollution Face Mask