From artsy Brooklynites to sleek Upper East Siders, it’s no secret that New Yorkers are a style-conscious bunch. When the winter blues hit, we turn to an eye-catching red lip or moody smoky eye to pick up the slack. Helping you put your best face forward, here are ten of New York City’s best indie beauty brands.
The local beauty brand that made it big, Glossier is a makeup and skin care brand made for women, by women. The spin-off of founder Emily Weiss’ popular Into the Gloss beauty blog, the brand has made waves with its nourishing face masks, barely-there skin tints, and fan-favorite all-purpose balms. Perfecting the everyday products women depend on, Glossier redefines what it means to be basic.
A savior for sensitive skin, vegan skincare line Soapwalla produces gentle yet effective products your body and wallet will love. The brand’s sugary almond body polish, bergamot-cinnamon soap bar, and fan-favorite deodorant cream have made Soapwalla a staple in beauty supply stores from Brooklyn to Paris.
Copper and Sage
Skip the spa; thanks to Brooklyn beauty brand Copper and Sage, you can now achieve a truly pampering experience without the punishing price tag. Utilizing organic and locally-sourced ingredients, the brand produces everything you need for a luxury stay-cation: ginger-cornflower facial steams, green tea masks, geranium body butter, and more. Stock up now for the impending snow days. Your skin will thank you later.
Considering inner as well as outer beauty, Benshen’s all-natural skin care products are packed full of healing and mood-boosting ingredients. The brand’s serums, scrubs, and scents are specially designed to benefit the body and spirit, clearing away impurities and nourishing both skin and soul. Also offering customized products to meet your unique needs and goals, Benshen shows that living well looks good on you.
Marrying whimsy and practicality, MAKE creates an arsenal of beauty products that allow you to take on Monday morning and Saturday night with confidence. The brand’s soft focus foundation and barely-there blush have your morning meetings sorted while the evenings call for super matte lipstick and the artsy New Medieval eye palette. Whether you choose to stick to the classics or break a few rules, MAKE each look your own and MAKE them look twice.
For high-end quality at low prices, look no further than Winky Lux. Dedicated to delivering luxury to the masses, this playful brand produces silky glosses, matte lipsticks, and picture-perfect #NOFILTER foundations. Tip: For when the beauty bug bites, the site even offers same day delivery service to lucky locals.
Brooklyn skincare line Isa’s Restoratives knows beauty begins with body care. The brand’s exciting selection of hand-crafted herbal goods includes a matcha facial mask, brightening Brazilian skin serum, and a body oil specially designed to protect stretching skin during pregnancy. Partnering with independent retailers in New York, Portland, and Berlin, Isa’s Restoratives puts a personal twist on the global beauty brand.
LAQA & Co.
A dream come true for on-the-go girls, LAQA & Co. specializes in products that multi-task almost as much as you do. Cut your morning routine in half with the brand’s lip pencil-cum-cheek stain and all-in-one balm, liner, and gloss. The Birchbox regular also offers a handy nail polish pen perfect for making the most of ‘train traffic’.
For when chilly temps or cash flow woes- keep you from the salon, Priti NYC offers everything you need to recreate the experience at home. Only with Priti’s organic hand creams, soy nail polish remover, and quality polishes in shades like ‘Cornflower’ blue and ‘Fire Glow’ burnt orange does a DIY manicure bring luxury to your living room.
Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics
It’s easy to get hooked on Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics, a beauty brand dedicated to having fun with fashion. Glittery eyeshadow, creamy cheek, eye, and lip stain, and the popular long-lasting ‘lip tar’ come in classic neutrals as well as unexpected hues including blackened purple, primary blue, and pale olive.
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meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.