Identifying a real gap in the market is somewhat of a skill. Our beauty halls are filled to the brim with thousands of products that claim to revolutionise our beauty regimes and offer something that’s truly never been done before, but realistically they’re often copies of other formats and replications of previous products with just a minor few tweaks. Creating something with a genuine unique selling point, story or offering is incredibly hard – but equally it can be an incredibly exciting when beauty junkies like myself stumble across something groundbreaking. A couple of weeks ago I was at The Beauty Exchange to talk about blogging, social media and the rise of influencers; this yearly event is attended by new beauty brands who want to find out how they can best develop and market their wares from those that know. Attended by beauty buyers and experts from some of the UK’s biggest names, this is a real opportunity to make connections and get insight that’s not normally available. Although there are hundreds of brands out there that think they’ve got something special, more often than not they blend into the background and don’t have what it takes to make it into the ‘big time’; however, I managed to speak to some incredibly passionate individuals and take away some fabulous products that was excited to try. After some deliberation, I’ve narrowed down the six brands I think have huge potential and will be sure to reach dazzling heights in the coming few years.
1. Apharsec Nail Art Stamps (From £7.99)
I have to admit I’m a bit over nail art in the traditional sense, but Apharsec has tempted me back over to the dark side with their easy to use and effective nail design stamps. Unlike the metal ones I’ve used before (which tend to create more of a mess than a piece of art,) after applying your chosen polish these can be wiped onto a piece of paper before use to prevent overloading the nail. With designs inspired by fashion and art, this is grown up nail art for those that just want to add a subtle hint of something without slaving over a pot of polish for hours. They’re affordable, easy to use and create stunning looks in seconds – great for us lazy girls that get bored of something after a few minutes.
2. Samaya Ayurvedic Skincare (From £69.00)
Based on the Ayurvedic principles, which help you to achieve a ‘perfect balance’ in your life, Samaya skincare uses herbs that have been used for millennia to balance particular doshas or constitutions; the result should be an overall feeling of wellness. A combination of the finest authentic elements of Ayurveda, clinically proven active ingredients and anti-ageing compounds, Samaya provides effective skincare through a relaxing, holistic experience. With three ‘doshas’ to choose from, each range contains a cleanser, face cream and treatment oil that are all beautifully formulated; the scents are incredible, while the textures sink in beautifully to the skin to hydrate and treat areas of concern. It’s lovely to see a brand focused on something other than dry, oily or combination skin – and even lovelier to see a brand that’s paid as much attention to the presentation as the formula inside.
3. No Sweat Underarm Sweat Pads (From £12.00)
Although I don’t suffer from excessive sweating personally, I know it’s a big issue for many. If you’ve ever struggled with unsightly sweat patches on your clothing during the warmer months, then these little disposable under-arm pads may offer a solution you never knew you needed. Made with natural bamboo fibres, these re-useable antibacterial pads slip under your arm and fasten to your bra to keep them in place; they absorb excess moisture, preventing any sweat marks and helping to reduce odour simultaneously. They’re thin enough to be invisible under clothing, plus you can pop them in the washing machine after every use to freshen them up. Available for both men and women in a multitude of sizes, this is such a simple yet effective idea; even Harrods has snapped them up.
4. My Roo Organic & Free From Skincare (From £8.00)
Organic skincare is nothing new, but with increasing numbers of us becoming even sensitive to essential oils and all manner of ‘natural’ ingredients, the ‘free from’ market is booming. However, it’s still tricky to find effective skincare products without all the fragrances and added oils that aren’t verging on the ‘made by Farmer Jo last Tuesday’ and smell like cow pat. My Roo skincare is what we’ve been missing: beautifully crafted organic skincare products that target key issues, without any added fragrance if you need to avoid it. Personally, I’m obsessed with the Spearmint Lip Balm and Starflower & Orange Blossom Skin Boost Serum (which sinks into skin to leave a smooth oil-free surface and a delicate scent,) but it’s fab to know the exact same products are available fragrance-free too. Affordable, well packaged and a pleasure to use, catch them in John Lewis this Autumn.
5. Pure Soap Luxury Handmade Soaps (From £3.99)
With about a million handmade British soap brands available right now, it’s hard to stand out and catch the attention of consumers who have collectively moved on from soaps and prefer all manner of conconstions instead. However, Pure Soap have created a couple of bars that really spiked my interest, including their Charcoal Detox Bar and Green Clay & Tea Tree Bar which both provide cleansing and skincare benefits simultaneously. With other creations including Peppermint & Mocha and Honey & Oat (mmmm), this is a brand that has managed to nail something that so many before them have missed: a formula enriched with hardworking ingredients and a little moment of indulgence. Created using 100% premium natural ingredients and pure essential oils, the soaps are made using the traditional cold process method in Lancashire; they’re hand stirred, hand cut and hand wrapped – but they’re still nice enough to work as a gift.
6. The Bristle Brush Company Brushes (From £28.00)
I never thought much about my hairbrush until I had extensions fitted. Something that seemed so basic and functional became a real tool and way of styling my hair properly, helping to minimise exposure to heat and ensure my locks stayed looking fab for as long as possible between washes. It wasn’t until I started paying attention to how I styled my hair using a hairdryer and brush that I realised most brushes were so heavy I was left with a numb arm five minutes in. The Bristle Brush Company has overcome that issue thanks to a light-weight cork handle; paired with a mahogany barrel to absorb heat (and therefore reduce damage to the hair) and reinforced boar hair (with the boar bulb intact to spreads the sebum along each hair shaft) the result is ultimate shine and manageability. The brush is easy to use, helps to style hair with very little effort and even helps women in India who are being freed from a life of exploitation by the charity Freeset.
Have you made any great beauty discoveries recently? Have any of these new brands caught your eye?
Features PR samples unless otherwise stated. To read my full disclaimer, click here.