Whether it’s makeup made by a trained painter and chemist or an esthetician-led line that protects against pollution, L.A. is fertile ground for innovative, clean beauty. Here, we catch up with the founders putting a fresh face on the industry.
Sheena Yaitanes, Kosas
Yaitanes’ background as an artist and chemist informs the flattering shades and skincare-focused formulas of her makeup line, which includes cult-favorite lipsticks, liquid eye shadow and the newly launched Revealer Super Creamy + Brightening concealer. “From packaging to application,” says Yaitanes, “it’s about keeping it easy, and not having so much pressure to ‘get it right.’”
Nicole Simpson, Amethyst Skincare
After 15 years working as an esthetician, chemist and educator, Simpson launched Amethyst Skincare, a sustainably made line aimed at protecting skin from environmental stressors. “All of our products are clean and formulated only with what is necessary,” says Simpson, who names the Nightly AOX micropeel—which blends botanical retinol with glycolic acid, salicylic acid and phytoceramides to smooth wrinkles, scars and large pores—as a standout. For spring, she’s developing Blue Light, a serum that will help protect skin from the long-term effects of digital aging.
Allison McNamara, MARA
Packed with moringa oil and a proprietary algae blend rich in omega-3, -6 and -9, MARA’s Universal face oil was the first product launched by the L.A.-based beauty editor. New items include a clean retinol and the luxurious Algae Enzyme cleansing oil. “Algae retinol face oil totally transformed my skin,” says McNamara of the nondrying, clarifying formula.
Randi Christiansen & Nick Axelrod, Nécessaire
“Treat your body like you treat your face” is the mantra behind this clean and sustainable line of body essentials that contain powerhouse ingredients like niacinamide and peptides in its sandalwood- and eucalyptus-scented products. What started as a small line of lotions and cleansers has grown to include an extraordinary body serum and, most recently, deodorant, which took more than two years to develop. Look out for a new bergamot fragrance to launch in the coming months.
Carina Chaz, DedCool
“Smell is the strongest of our five senses,” says Chaz. “It’s incredible how it can take you back in time.” The genderless, vegan, nontoxic and sustainable line contains 11 unique fragrances, including Milk, an enchanting amber-musk hybrid. Recent offerings, such as laundry detergent in the brand’s Spring and Taunt scents, focus on elevating everyday essentials.
Jamie Pelayo, JP Collett & Kendra Mark, natureofthings
Consisting of CBD-infused bath potions, body lotions and more, natureofthings offers clean, nontoxic and cruelty-free products designed to alleviate stress, anxiety and pain while beautifying the skin. “The Floral Bath is an incredibly effective way to reset the body and mind in what I call a water meditation,” says Pelayo, who also calls out The Superlative body balm as a favorite. “It’s the most elevated version of a pain creme that I’ve come across.”
Photography by: Necessaire portraits courtesy of Violet Grey; Kosas portrait
by Christopher Brown Photography; Amethyst Skincare portrait courtesy of brand; natureofthings
portrait by Kate Berry; dedcool portrait courtesy of brand; Mara portrait by KIMBERLY GENEVIEVE