About Ilia: Ilia products don’t contain unnecessary ingredients, and they’re high in bioactive ones – 85% are entirely organic and there are zero sulphates, silicones or parabens. Plus, everything comes in recycled packaging. Experts swear by the pigment-rich lipsticks and gentle foundations, which are suitable for sensitive and problematic skin types – most products in the range double up as skincare, thanks to a slew of nourishing ingredients.
What To Buy: The silky Liquid Light Serum Highlighter comes highly recommended – which is no surprise given how seamlessly it blends with other formulas. It also has minimal shimmer, so it never looks too theatrical – just soft and glossy. The Multistick is so easy to use, too. With a chunky, crayon-like design, simply scribble it on, blend it with your fingers and you’re good to go. It works on lips and cheeks as well. Finally, check out the Chromatic Eye Tints to create that on-trend wet-lid look, while the Translucent Powder protects (with SPF20) and offers soft luminosity.
What the Pros Say: Make-up artists like Caroline Barnes swear by the brand for the numerous glow-giving formulas on offer. She says: "Everything in the Ilia range is beautiful, but I love their Multisticks the most. Sheer and delicate, their silky illuminator are so easy to build on and layer up. They give the perfect amount of luminosity, which catches the light beautifully. Plus, the shimmer particles are minimal, so it never looks too dusty or theatrical.”
Jones Road Beauty
About Jones Road: The beauty world went mad for this brand when it launched a few months ago. The brainchild of make-up legend Bobbi Brown, it’s a line you can trust. Full of high-performing hero products – all of which are multipurpose and full of quality ingredients – think of Jones Road Beauty as a capsule wardrobe for make-up. There’s something in the range to suit all ages, skin types and tones, and everything has been formulated following the retailer Credo’s clean beauty standard – one of the strictest set of ingredients guidelines in the industry. That means zero phthalates, sulfates, petrolatum, PEGs, cyclic silicones or EDTAs – in other words, anything unnecessary has been vetoed for maximum safety and efficacy.
What To Buy: If you only have the budget to buy one thing, make it the Miracle Balm. Full of nourishing ingredients, it cocoons the skin in moisture while the soft, peachy tint brings out a bit of warmth to help you look healthy and well-rested. Meanwhile, soft shimmer particles provide a touch of radiance. If eye make-up is more your thing, don’t miss the Just A Sec cream shadows, which are so easy to build up for extra intensity – ideal for beauty novices. Finally, the brushes are some of the best we’ve tried, while the Miracle Cream is new interpretation of the famous Bobbi Brown Enriched Face Base – perfect if you’re looking for a moisturising primer that won’t clog up your pores.
What the Pros Say: Jones Road Beauty already has a roster of fans, including make-up artist and SheerLuxe beauty contributor Zoe Taylor: "I absolutely love the formulas and how easy the textures are to build upon. My favourite from the range is the Miracle Balm in Sunkissed Gorgee de Soleil. It can be used all over the skin for a veil of glowing colour, or as a contour or bronzer in place of blusher. It looks so natural and it gives skin a youthful, glossy glow.”
About Jouer: Make-up artists love Jouer’s dual-purpose, long-lasting formulas. A brand which embodies Californian cool, its glossy, sun-kissed make-up buys are cruelty-free, with some entirely vegan options on offer, including the high-coverage crème foundation, powder highlighter and high pigment lip glosses.
The Products To Buy: Jouer’s Travel Brush is a must-try if you’re serious about good tools. Not only are the bristles soft, they’re dense enough to give a good blend – plus, it comes with a neat, compact lid. The sheer Pigment Lip Glosses are a standout – with a rich dry down, they apply sheer but quickly turn matte for extra staying power. The Blush & Bloom stick is also great for those constantly on the move – double-ended, it works on both your lips and cheeks, with two soft tones that are universally flattering. Finally, experts rate the brand’s silicone-free Moisture Primer. Full of skin-plumping peptides and protective antioxidants, it provides a smooth base for make-up and dries down fast, so you never have to worry about any pilling afterwards.
What the Pros Say: Jouer is often spied in pro make-up artists kits. Beloved for its soft tones and suits-all textures, it continues to grow in popularity. The likes of make-up artist Nikki Larose love the Blush & Bloom duo for "when time is of the essence." Nikki also swears by the Long-Wear Crème Lip Liner in Fawn and Nude: "They are brilliant because the shades are beautiful neutral hue and the creamy formula glides right on."
About Milk: Founded by former beauty editor Zanna Roberts Rassi, Milk has made serious waves in the industry since its launch five years ago. With cool packaging and 100% vegan formulas that blend and layer beautifully, it’s easy to see why it’s become such a favourite among influencers and pro make-up artists. The brand’s multi-use make-up and skincare staples are designed to slot in seamlessly with busy lifestyles, while the solid textures put an end to handbag spills. With colours that are bold, but surprisingly wearable, not to mention textures which are so satisfying to apply, it’s one of our favourites on this list.
What To Buy: We might be as bold to say that Milk’s Kush Mascara is one of the best we’ve ever tried. With a CBD oil-infused formula, it glides on without any stickiness or clumping – plus, it lasts the whole day without a single smudge. One swipe will cover all your lashes, but just keep going for a more amped-up look. As for the Hydro Grip Primer, make-up artists love this clear, green gel which contains aloe water, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide and cherry blossom to hydrate and calm the skin before red carpets. Lastly, don’t miss the glow-giving blushers. The Mini Oil Lip + Cheek stick provides a subtle wash of colour while the Bionic Blush is a pigmented liquid that’s easy to tap on with fingers for a plump, dewy sheen.
What the Pros Say: Make-up artist and beauty contributor Adeola Gboyega loves MILK for its versatility. "Their products are spied everywhere and for good reason. My favourite is their Hydro Grip Setting Spray. It has two phases, one that's blur, and another green. As you shake it up, the two work together to hydrate, provide good glow and set everything firmly in place. Unlike other mists it never feels tight or too harsh, thanks to ingredients like moringa oils and hyaluronic acid."
About Roen: A brand pioneered by two industry insiders – celebrity make-up artist Nikki DeRoest and renowned photographer David Roemer – Róen has only been around for a couple of years, making it a relative newcomer. Loved by the likes of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, the brand is vegan and cruelty-free but doesn’t compromise on results. All the pigments are rich, opulent and eye-catching, while the soft brushes and brow grooming products promise to keep you looking your best at all times.
What To Buy: There’s no doubting all the Róen products are beautiful, but we love the Summer Disco Eye most. A single, rounded eye palette, it comes with crushed, glittery pigments that enhance and suit all skin tones. The ultimate product for trying ‘grown up’ shimmer, blend it out for a more pared-back look. As for the Cake Mascara, it has a buildable formula that instantly plumps lashes without clumping them together – the flexible bristles mean you can nail the definition too. If a balm-type gloss over matte lipstick is your preference, don’t miss out on the Liquid Lip Balms, which offer speedy moisture and youthful colour that looks healthy and pretty. Finally, VowBrow is a must-try for those serious about their brows. The tiny, fine brush nib means you can build up your natural shape and mimic natural-looking, hair-like strokes.
What the Pros Say: Nikki DeRoest is one of the coolest make-up artists working today, so if she's vetted something, you can guarantee it's going to be good. "As a makeup artist and lover of all things beauty, Róen is something I've obsessed over this last year, working hand in hand with my chemist in L.A.," DeRoest explained when the brand launched. "Creating my own formulas and line has been a dream of mine since getting into the beauty industry over 15 years ago. As a beauty expert, it's important to me that Róen is made with original, clean formulas that are able to pair well with all the other incredible beauty brands that fill my artistry kit. I've been fortunate enough to use my products on some of the most stunning faces and red carpets in the industry, and I can confidently say it's always a WOW moment."
About Vieve: Founded by influencer Jamie Genevieve, this entire range completely exceeded our expectations. Everything in it is designed to add a bit of glamour to your routine, but in a way that’s easy, fuss-free and never OTT. Full of warm tones, suits-all shades and creamy formulas, the collection has something for everyone. We love the sleek black packaging that’s compact and lightweight. Like others on this list, the products are also vegan, cruelty-free, paraben-free and gluten-free.
What To Buy: We love creating a simple, speedy smokey eye with the Eye Wands. With one swipe, a rich colour provides instant definition, while the buttery texture makes blending a dream. Look out too for the Skin Dew – loved by make-up artists like Lisa Potter-Dixon, it lends a soft glow to the skin thanks to its sheer, easy-to-layer formula. Just use a tiny amount – as you squeeze, you’ll notice a lot comes out at once. Taking a new approach to sculpting lips, the Lip Definers are another hero in the line. With a long-lasting formula that won’t smudge, the creamy texture makes application quick and easy. Simply scribble them on all over your lips for just a hint of ‘something’ with minimal maintenance required throughout the day. Finally, the new Muse Palette has quickly become one of our go-tos. It also makes for a great gift with a range of beautiful, sultry tones to reimagine the traditional smokey eye – think antique roses, bold berries and pearlescent pinks.
What the Pros Say: Make-up artist and author Lisa Potter-Dixon is a big fan of Vieve for its silky, lightweight textures. "My go-to is the Skin Dew. It gives a beautiful glow to the skin, thanks to its sheer, glossy and easy to layer up formula. Use a small amount only – as you squeeze it, you’ll find quite a lot comes out, so remember a little goes a long way.”