Once upon a time, you had to search high and low for creative, niche, and often underground beauty finds. But now a TSA-approved fragrance atomizer, nail polish pens, and intense lip glosses that actually stay put can be yours for the browsing on new beauty sites that specialize in the unusual and rare.
“Beauty is similar to food in a way—frequently the indie/artisanal products are ‘where it’s at.’ We’re foodies for beauty,” says Laura Bronner, co-founder/CMO/COO of Gloss48. This newly launched site takes the unique to the extreme by offering temporary exclusives, and at a special price. This week Comodynes Get Glowing Mask + 16 Tanning Towelettes are just $25 (regularly $37)—and just perfect for getting the right tone for that holiday vacay, Other great brands include LAQA & CO., whose Fat Lip lip pencils are packaged in cartons designed by emerging artists; LVX nail lacquers, which are cruelty free, vegan, and somehow chip resistant; Lift Lab, an anti-aging skincare line that works to protect cells and preserve youth; and the coolest ever travel fragrance atomizers from Sen7.
Gloss48 is all about discovery, and what’s there one day may not be there the next. “Some days you’ll find something completely new to the market on our site, and sometimes you’ll re-discover a cult favorite that you had always wanted to try,” says Jill Kravetz, co-founder and CEO.
“How do we decide which brands to carry at b-glowing? We focus on brands that operate with an independent spirit. We believe there is an honest passion behind these brands,” which reaches out to the consumer, says Lisa James, advertising exec turned beauty retailer and b-glowing’s founder. Originally launched eight years ago, the site was just relaunched to include a curated collection of 145+ brands. You will find Eve Lom skincare, By Terry and Kevyn Aucoin makeup (faves of BITB’s EIC), Etat Libre d’Orange fragrances (faves of BITB’s managing ed), and SachaJuan hair products.
You can navigate the b-blowing site by brand, age range, concern, formulation, or ingredient type to help you identify the perfect item for you or as a gift. Plus, you get three free samples with every order.
Speaking of samples, that’s the specialty of niche retailer LuckyScent.com. Be whisked away into the world of rare perfume and fragrance at LuckyScent, which carries hundreds of independent and niche scents. To help with the challenge of buying fragrance online, this site will send you a sample of nearly any scent. That service costs but is oh-so worth it before slapping down $150 for the wrong Naomi Goodsir scent. Some of the harder to find brands available at LuckyScent are Fueguia 1833, Keiko Mecheri, and A Lab on Fire. Check out the site’s monthly Lucky Seven fragrances picked by the staff to fit the mood of the month.