Beauty & Style

5 new home-grown beauty brands to spend your money on

Think artisanal, animal-friendly, non-toxic, fuss-free and relevant. Local beauty offerings have never been so enticing. We round up five home-grown brands you should check out on your next shopping trip.
 

FOR HOME SPA ESSENTIALS

Mmerci Encore
If you love natural body products and aromatherapy, you’ll adore the offerings from this artisanal brand. This online store carries small batches of body products made with raw ingredients and 100 per cent therapeutic grade essential oils sourced from farms and apothecaries in Melbourne and Paris, and free of parabens, sulphate and synthetic fragrances.

Aside from the staples available online at http://store.mmerciencore.com and in occasional pop-up stores here and overseas, you can also meet with brand founder and product creator, Aletheia Sim, to discuss customised gift options for loved ones.

FOR NON-TOXIC NAIL POLISH

Coat
The nail lacquers by Coat are “5-free”, which means they don’t contain harmful chemicals like toluene, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), camphor, formaldehyde and formaldehyde resin. These chemicals harm the body in different ways – in the mildest amount, they can irritate the skin, while overexposure may cause cancer or birth defects in children of pregnant women.

Frustrated with the limited eco nail colour options available for her customers, Caryn Lim, owner of nail salon, Hands+Feet Studio, together with three friends, decided to create a 5-free nail lacquer brand, offering 20 richly pigmented and lasting colours, a base coat and a quick-drying top coat. Made in the United States, these polishes also come with a specially designed brush for smooth and even application. Available at Hands+Feet Studio, 44 Siglap Drive, tel: 6448-7187.

FOR BRUSHES THAT CARE

13rushes
Combining a love for makeup and animals, two friends, Tay Yu Hui and Charlene Liew, decide to create affordable makeup brushes that are cruelty-free, of good quality and suited to Asian eye contours. Most synthetic makeup brushes in the market are made with nylon polymers, which have smooth surfaces that don’t capture makeup particles efficiently.

The ones by 13rushes use Taklon bristles that are developed with a textured surface to allow easy pick-up and release of powder particles. The one-year-old brand also works with factories that don’t process any animal products to make sure every element of the brand remains animal-friendly. Yu Hui adds that Caucasian eyes are larger and more deep-set, which means that other crease brushes on the market aren’t entirely suitable for Asian eyes.

You can purchase the brushes online at http://www.13rushes.com or hop down to the pop-up store at Space Invasion (#03-15/16 The Cathay) to try them.

FOR NATURAL SKINCARE

Katfood
The natural home remedies from Katfood are handmade with ingredients you’d likely find in your kitchen, with key ingredients certified organic, says the brand’s founder, Kendra Liew. The brand also has a penchant for coconuts – most products contain nutrient-rich coconut oil while others would have some form of coconut extract.

Available online at http://www.ilovekatfood.com, Katfood’s collection of hair, face and body products are made in small batches to ensure product freshness, with varying products expiring after three to six months.

FOR FLAWLESS SKIN AHEAD

Dermagold
From a hobby that started a decade ago, this homegrown cosmeceutical skincare brand offers products that address common skin concerns faced by Singaporean men and women, like skin sensitivity and acne-prone skin. Created by medical doctors and childhood friends,  , Dermagold products are made without parabens, and come in lightweight textures that are perfect for our humid climate. Available at Hadara Aesthetics Boutique, 23 Lorong Telok, tel: 6969-3022. 

This article was originally published in Simply Her February 2015.

more from around the world