You’re in France. The city of love, the city of lights, the city where getting lost in the winding streets and narrow passages feels like an adventure. You’re on vacation, and your days are spent in leisurely strolls and eager visits to museums, galleries, and monuments. On one such day, your feet takes you through a small street, you’re on your way somewhere, but something catches your eye.
A window shop, and in it, a whole array of delicate little bottles, decorated with gossamer silk ribbons and handcrafted notes. You enter, intrigued, and inside the shop, you find a charming old lady who sells you a body lotion that smells like the coast of the French Riviera, like spring flowers in Jardin des Tuileries. “Made with love,” the old lady smiles at you, her English heavily accented. Not a big brand, not a famous company. But yes, made with love. And that, my darlings? That’s the essence and charm of indie brands. Let us explain.
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Before Makeup Geek became a name in the beauty industry, the founder Marlena Stell was a YouTuber who just really loved talking about makeup and showing us tutorials. Before ColourPop became famous, their Super Shock Shadows were a delightfully new, special, “magic in a jar” formula that slowly gained insane popularity because it was just so good.
Sometimes indie brands grow big, and sometimes they don’t, but they all share humble beginnings coupled with great love and passion for makeup or skincare. Just like the French lady from the beginning of our story, the beauty of an indie brand is its charm, its dedication to craft, its desire to bring something new to the game. Most of them are owned by women, and most of them push boundaries with new formulas, skincare rituals, and trends that sometimes surpass big brands due to sheer brilliance.
Ayurvedic Rituals Bringing in a Breath of Fresh Air
The face oil trend that most of us are loving right now is actually something that was started by indie brands. A lot of them take inspiration from Middle Eastern and Asian cultures, and the new cool thing we’re seeing right now is that ladies seem to be fully embracing the magic of Ayurvedic rituals. The process of cleansing, moisturizing, and caring for your skin is a complex one in Ayurveda, but that only serves to make it more effective.
Starting with turmeric soap (like the one from Reshma Beauty) to cleanse, then switching to face oils that suit your specific skin type according to the Ayurvedic philosophy can have some very transformative benefits. Something like the Swisse Argan Face Oil will moisturize your dry skin and provide it with extra care. It’s all about tailoring skincare to suit your specific needs, about figuring out a personalized routine that works for an individual.
Beauty Tools on the Rise
From eco-friendly makeup wipes, to vegan brushes, to brush holders that help us organize our ever-growing collections. Beauty tools that save us time or make the products we use more effective are having a bright moment, so now you can try the wonders of things like The Makeup Eraser, a set of wet wipes that will help your caked-on makeup vanish from your face, or something like face rollers that massage your face and help boost your circulation.
Crystal-encrusted handles, yes, but crystal-infused skincare and makeup as well! From Moonlit Skincare to Girl Undiscovered, we’ve got elixirs, oils, creams, salves, and glittery makeup that’s full of actual crystal fragments and brings us a fresh new dose of glamorous glow. This trend looks like it’s going to be big and undeniably fun.
Big and Bold
Most indie brands are actually fully organic, but this used to mean that most makeup produced ended up having very light, natural finishes. While this will still be present, now a lot of people have learned how to work pigments into their products a lot better, so we’ll be seeing big, bold, statement lipsticks, eyeshadows, and other makeup products.
Skincare for Men
Men are finally getting on board with us, and we’re seeing a whole range of products aimed specifically for skincare and grooming of beards and moustaches. A great trend that encourages guys to pay more attention to both hygiene and physical appearance, and lets them know it’s okay to care about how they look. We’re loving the boozy, alcohol-bottle appearance of 18.21 Man Made cosmetics.
Another benefit of indie brands? You’ll be supporting small businesses and local economies, not to mention getting a bunch of cool products that are made by brands that are women-owned, eco-friendly, and, let’s not forget, made with love.