The industry isn’t short on trade shows catering to indie beauty brands, but a recent venture only looks to spotlight those in the luxe space.
Beauty2, the new event’s name, is meant to express the duality of luxury and consciousness set forth by the indie brands the show cultivates.
“While there are shows catering to niche beauty, all of them tend to focus on ingredients rather than esteem,” said Amita Patel, Creative Director, who co-founded the platform with Samantha Silverberg and Linda McBride. “In our opinion, image is everything, and all too often there is a void in the presentation of conscious beauty that makes consumers feel like they have to choose between doing good and feeling good. Why can’t promises like clean, natural, cruelty-free and fair trade exist boldly alongside luxury, glamour and efficacy?”
On August 22, industry editors, retailers and select influencers were invited to the inaugural event to experience 21 luxury beauty brands at the brightly-lit Mercantile Annex in Midtown Manhattan. The number of exhibitors were purposely kept small to create a personal and manageable experience for guests, while avoiding what the organizers said is “inevitable show burnout”.
The show marks the beginning of what will be a seasonal occurrence held three times per year in NYC, with no immediate plans for expansion.
“New York is a melting pot of global beauty talent and one of our goals with this platform is to not just show diversity in products, but also diversity in creators,” said Amita. “It makes sense for us to be here.”
Here, a list of beauty brands Beauty Insider discovered at the event:
Formulated by Dr. Mariano Spiezi, a medical herbalist and skin expert, this oil and plant-based skin care collection features organic ingredients chosen for their natural therapeutic and preservative properties. A standout in the line is the brand’s supreme eye serum ($218), designed to restore skin’s luminosity with a trio of precious gemstones—sapphire, ruby and zircon—which are prepared over the course of two months by Dr. Spiezi. After the serum is finished, users are encouraged to collect the stones as a keepsake.
During her husband’s second battle with cancer, salon owner Lorri Weisen began questioning how toxins in common personal care products may lead to health issues. In 2012, she shut down her salon with the goal of developing a way to give people beautiful hair without the risk of toxic exposure. The result was a seven-piece line of hair styling products that combines “green” chemistry with natural ingredients for under $30. Noting the stricter standards used in Europe, Lorri’s products follow the EU Cosmetics Directive for safe cosmetics, which has banned the use of over 1,300 ingredients.
Java Skin Care
Offering a caffeine-fix for the skin, this all-natural, organic line of face and body products utilizes an infusion of green coffee and argan oil with the goal of nourishing, protecting and repairing skin. The idea came to founder Stephanie Additon at her family-owned café in North Kingstown, RI when she realized coffee’s antioxidant benefits could be supplied to the skin. The line now features a collection of bar soaps, scrubs, lotions, serums and lip care products, made with coffee sourced from a Smithsonian Certified farm in Guatemala. Products range from $4 to $60.
Khus + Khus
While practicing herbalism and ayurvedic medicine, Kristi Blustein formulated her 100 percent plant-based line with the notion that plants have the ability to naturally heal skin in a way that can’t be produced in a lab. The 99 percent organic, wild-crafted skin care line aims to support the natural synergy between humans and botanicas through an assortment of skin, lip and hair care products, ranging from $32 to $82. To reduce the brand’s ecological footprint, products are not packaged in boxes. Instead, they arrive in reusable miron violet glass bottles, designed to keep ingredients fresh.
After growing frustrated with the amount of baby products featuring loud prints and baby animals, Montreal-based founder, Marie Custeau, developed a toxic-free line of products, featuring minimalist, sleek packaging parents could be proud to display near their changing tables. Although the products have names such as “Diaper Rash Balm” and “Baby Sleep Oil,” they are designed to be used by all ages. Additionally, many products in the range are multifunctional. The brand’s Pure Baby Soap ($11), for example, can be used a cleanser for both skin and hair.
This makeup and skin care line was developed as a result of co-founder Meryl Marshall’s desire to find non-irritable and carcinogenic-free luxury products. After surviving breast cancer, Meryl began exploring skin-healthy lines, but couldn’t find any that were high-performance and non-toxic. She launched a line of color cosmetics for the eyes, lips and face, as well as two skin care products, all of which include plant-based, skin-caring ingredients. A standout in the line is the brand’s moisturizing lipstick ($29), which contains a small mirror and lip conditioner housed on top the tube for easy on-the-go applications.
Mimi Kim, the brand’s creator and founder, developed her own natural skin care line after years of blending organic therapeutic oils and botanicals to help her heal from an autoimmune disease. The blends include anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, essential fatty acids and antioxidants, which aim to deeply penetrate the skin’s layers and protect it from free radical damage and stimulate cell turnover. The brand also has a Jade Massage Roller ($18), an Ancient Asian beauty tool that is believed to aid in supporting lymphatic circulation.