There is no doubt that the world of beauty can feel totally overwhelming. With thousands of brands and products to choose from, settling on just one thing to buy can feel like a total stab in the dark. And most of the time, it is. Whether you're shopping for a new shampoo, moisturiser or foundation, venturing out of your beauty comfort zone into new territory can be quite intimidating.
It’s because of this, perhaps, that brand loyalty plays such a big role when it comes to deciding what products to keep on the shelves. With that being said, when we took to Instagram to ask you exactly the sort of content you’d like to see from us, we were inundated with messages enquiring about the best little-known brands around.
Luckily, as times have moved on, the terms indie and niche beauty no longer represent at-home brands made out of smooshed-up flowers in a pestle and mortar. In fact, if you ask me, thanks to reactive product development, strong personal messaging and, most importantly, incredibly impressive formulas (smaller beauty brands are far less likely to opt for cheaper ingredients as they’re not mass-producing), some of the bigger names in beauty have a thing or two to learn from these smaller brands.
So without further ado, keep scrolling to discover the best under-the-radar beauty brands I think everyone should know about.
The chances that you have heard of this all-natural brand are slim. However, its No.1 Nourishing Face Serum is widely adored by both beauty editors and skin experts all over the world. Using only organic or wild-harvested plant oils sourced from their origin countries for optimum potency, each product is full of skin-loving ingredients that focus on nourishment and healing. Vanderohe proves that science and nature can come together to produce truly wonderful beauty products.
Who says natural beauty has to be drab? This fun botanical brand boasts products that genuinely are as great as they look. Using natural oils to produce products aimed to hydrate without irritation, Neighbourhood Botanicals is the cool skincare brand I wish I could have made. Plus, did I mention that packaging? It’s all recyclable, too.
You might have seen this brand gracing the pages of Instagram feeds, but I promise that BYBI Beauty is much more than just a pretty face. Championing natural ingredients that don’t cost the planet, it puts formula and sustainability at the very heart of everything it does. Everything from the ingredients to the manufacturing and packaging is thoroughly considered in terms of sustainability. I don’t go anywhere without a tube of its famous Babe Balm.
Many celebrity facialists swear by this incredible little beauty brand. The thing I love the most about Willowberry (besides its incredible cleansing balm) is that it really stands by its ethos that hype doesn’t always mean results. Rich in vitamins, antioxidants and essential fatty acids (and without potentially irritating emulsifiers and preservatives), this British brand knows a thing or two about how to look after dry skin.
Proving once again that natural haircare can be just as good (if not better) than some other, more mass-market options, Innersense hair products contain organically grown ingredients to help give strands a helping hand. My favourite thing about these products though is the smell. Innersense also promotes a strong wellness message and encourages you to turn your shampoo into a calming ritual. And trust me—once you smell the products, you’ll struggle to refrain from taking a few deep breaths.
We Are Paradoxx
This 90% plastic-free haircare line is so much more than just another environmentally conscious indie beauty brand. Championing powerful natural extracts from Ireland, including seaweed and carrageen moss, these vegan, cruelty-free products are the ultimate hair treat.
If you haven’t heard of Dizziak just yet, trust me when I say it’s only a matter of time before this haircare brand is everywhere. Formulated specifically to offer deep nourishment and hydration to Afro hair without the use of harsh chemicals, Dizziak relies on blends of butters and oils to condition each strand.
I never took myself as the sort of person to get really excited over hand soap, but this brand proved me so wrong. Soapsmith is a London-based bath and body company that marries up delicious scents to some of London’s most well-loved areas. My favourite? The dreamy bergamot and sandalwood aroma of Hackney and the refreshing coconut and musk blend that Camden Town offers up. Plus, they make for the prettiest addition to any bathroom sink.
This is a beauty brand with a real difference. When UpCircle founders discovered just how many coffee grounds were being disposed across London every day (and subsequently being taken to landfill), they decided to do something about it. Offering beautiful body scrubs and other skincare products that utilise the skin-loving powers of food refuse, you’ve got to try it to believe it.
If you’re a fan of a bath, here’s one for you. Full of essential minerals, these bath products are here to offer up some well-deserved relaxation. With salts and oils for almost any occasion, my absolute favourites are the Drift Off and Breathe In formulas to give the senses a real treat.
She might have painted the faces of Jennifer Lawrence and Emilia Clarke, but rather surprisingly, if you ask me, Jillian Dempsey’s namesake makeup line really doesn’t get the credit it deserves. Effortlessly blendable formulas that take just a matter of seconds to apply, the Lid and Cheek Tints are up there with some of the best colour products in the biz.
Formulated in Italy by some of the world’s best manufacturers, ByMe products offer up unbelievable colour payoff and dreamy formulas. What really sets it apart from the crowd though is the way in which it is sold. MyBeautyBrand is a new platform that allows anybody to set up their own store, post images of themselves wearing the product and make a commission off anything they sell. Could this be the future of beauty retail?