In an effort to cover more of what matters with our small team, we’re kicking off a weekly round-up of brand and product launches. As brands continue to flood onto the market and new products continue to launch at a rapid pace, we’re committed to curating our inbox for the ones we think should be on your radar.
The year started with three new brands setting out to invigorate the color cosmetic category and one haircare brand tackling sustainability with form and function.
About-Face: Multimedia award-winning artist and bestselling author Halsey has thrown her hat into the beauty ring with a brand inspired by music, fashion, and art. About-Face honors inclusivity, acceptance, experimentation, and the democratization of beauty for our multiple identities. This is not just another celebrity beauty brand that has some serious industry cred. Entrepreneurs Jeanne Chavez and Dineh Mohajer, co-founders of Hard Candy, and Luxury Brand Partners–incubated beauty brand Smith and Cult have teamed up with Halsey on the venture-backed brand.
“Makeup is an art and art is about happy accidents, not any one ideal of perfection,” said Halsey, founder and Chief Creative Officer of About-Face. “I always feel the most free when I am creating looks without following any rules. The beauty industry has norms, but I want to encourage people to challenge those standards and allow things to be imperfect and fun.”
The brand will launch with three color collections: Light Lock (highlighters), Matte (high-intensity lip and eye color), and Shadowstick (multipurpose cream eye shadow crayons), all with their own identities and logos. Products are vegan, cruelty-free, and formulated without gluten, phthalates, parabens, or synthetic fragrances, with some products drawing their names from Halsey’s friends and muses. The business is employing a “small-drop” strategy with launches planned monthly through March. Launches have been developed to live together and perform with each other.
The brand will be sold direct-to-consumer in the US, Canada, UK, and Europe, with products priced from $17 to $32, as well as via an exclusive yearlong partnership with Ipsy, featured in the newly launched and limited-edition Glam Bag X.
Everist: A new clean, zero-waste beauty brand debuted, unveiling its first high-performance products in the haircare category—patent-pending waterless shampoo and conditioner concentrates. Built from the ground up through a zero-waste lens, the brand is focused on being part of an important pivot in the beauty industry away from single-use plastic and harmful chemicals. Founded by Jayme Jenkins and Jessica Stevenson, with a collective 25 years of big-brand CPG experience, they are on a mission to create category-defining, revolutionary beauty essentials that deliver on performance while also being kind to the planet.
“Coming from big beauty, we understand what goes into making great products,” said Jayme Jenkins, Chief Brand Officer at Everist. “We also know and care about the impact that the beauty industry is having on the planet. To make eco for the masses we had to do things differently. Our approach is not to solely focus on the ‘desire’ to be conscious but to have formulas that are best in class and maintain sustainability throughout their entire product lifecycle. Our haircare concentrates will change the way people look at eco-beauty.”
Packaged in infinitely recyclable aluminum tubes, a closed-loop CapBack program, light shipping footprint, and carbon-neutral supply chain, all elements of the business were put under the microscope in order to be free of plastic waste and have as little impact on the environment as possible. The products are formulated as cream pastes that are 3x concentrated, meaning now a whole bottle of shampoo or conditioner can fit in a 100ml travel-friendly aluminum tube, a first-of-its-kind in the industry. Containing coconut-derived cleansers, aloe vera and peppermint, amla, and rosemary oils, among other clean ingredients, the formulas are completely waterless and activated with the water in the shower.
Priced at $24, the brand is taking pre-orders and will begin shipping their patent-pending shampoo and conditioner haircare concentrates in early 2021 across the United States and Canada.
TooD: A line of clean and colorful cosmetics made for every body, everywhere, founded by Shari Siadat, whose story begins as a beautiful and hairy Iranian-American child with a unibrow living in a sea of blond hair and blue eyes. This experience caused her to internalize the message of being “other.” She spent decades trying to alter her appearance to fit the narrow definition of beauty reinforced by the culture at large. In creating TooD, Shari seeks to redress some of the harm done by the beauty industry’s historical reinforcement for Eurocentric beauty norms.
The genderless beauty brand has launched with six brow- and body hair- focused products using glitter, crystals, and color to adorn and celebrate the unique parts of ourselves that we have been socialized to be ashamed and encouraged to conceal or obliterate. The Brow Color Creams are $24 and available on the brand’s website.
Merit: This is the second beauty venture for lifestyle entrepreneur Katherine Power, founder and CEO of Who What Wear and skincare brand Versed. Merit was developed over two years, and after conversations with 4,000 people, to hone in on white space in the color category informed by consumers’ wants and needs:
- 65% wish their makeup routine was cleaner
- 86% want to look “natural but better”
- 70% are seeking more effective makeup products
- 77% wish more cosmetics brands aligned with their lifestyle
The result is a brand that reimagined luxury beauty by making it well-edited, holistic, and accessible. All first orders ship with a complimentary makeup bag. For second orders onward, products are shipped with 100% dissolvable Green Cell Foam, made from corn starch in FSC-certified and 35% PCR boxes.
“I felt compelled to create a brand that would reimagine luxury beauty for modern consumers like myself, by making it cleaner, well-edited, and accessible,” Power tells Allure. “Merit is the antidote to the overwhelming, saturated world of beauty with too many steps and 50 shadow [palettes] being dropped every week. It’s built around the concept of minimalist beauty, and the fact that we just want to look like ourselves, but better.”
Focused on responsible luxury, and creating products that are safe for the body, skin, and planet, the seven-piece collection of high-performance products can be applied with one hand, creating a polished look in just minutes that last all day. The collection is priced between $24-$38 and will debut in January on its own direct-to-consumer website.
Product Launches of Note:
Beautycounter: The brand launched via livestream from their Abbot Kinney store an aluminum-free deodorant packaged in a sustainable, refillable case. Available in three essential oil and naturally derived fragrances: Clean Rose, Soft Lavender, and Fresh Coconut. Price: $28 for the initial purchase and $18 for refills.
Bevel: Since revolutionizing men’s grooming with its flagship shaving products, the brand has grown into a one-stop-shop for male personal care needs by creating products for men, by men. Spring launches include additions to skincare and haircare with 2-in-1 Exfoliating Pads ($13.95), Curl Creme ($11.95), and 2-in-1 Pomade. New launches will be available at select Target, Walmart, CVS, and Sally Beauty stores and on Amazon.
IGK: Introduces a new addition to its Good Behavior line with Spirulina Protein Smoothing Blowout Balm. The heat-activated, anti-frizz formula mimics the results of a keratin treatment at home. Price $33 and available at Sephora and Ulta.
Murad: Adds Intense Recovery Cream to its Hydration franchise—a comforting cream targeted for super stressed-out skin to reduce visible signs of stress-induced aging and redness. Price $80, launched exclusively at Ulta.
Muri Lelu: Bloomrise Sativa Serum is the latest launch from the luxury clean skincare range that embraces the full power of whole-flower cannabis—from the seed up. Inspired by its namesake sativa strains of cannabis, Bloomrise is infused with an activating terpene-rich essential oil blend that invigorates mind, body, and skin, all while promoting focus and an uplift in mood. Priced at $135 and available on the brand website and launching at Credo on January 19.