The rise of the beauty influencers and beauty bloggers has made the world of cosmetics seem that much smaller. Our social media channels are abuzz with all the latest in skincare and make-up brands, yet most of them aren’t readily available in South Africa. If you’re lucky enough to find a local stockist, you may find yourself paying an arm and a leg, all in the name of looking flawless. We feel your pain and want to help make your beauty routine a little easier and way less expensive.
Here’s a list of local beauty brands that you should know about and you might be surprised to find out that some of your favorites are actually proudly South African.
A list of South African beauty brands you should know about:
This range of products for skin and hair will leave you looking, well, gorgeous. And using these all-natural goodies will make you feel even better as they are cruelty-free, vegan (with the exception of the honey-based products) and free from synthetic ingredients. But what’s really impressive about Hey Gorgeous is that they are able to customise your favourite products to suit your specific needs – from combining skincare products to better suit your budget to adding in sun protection in the form of zinc oxide (which is safe and effective as an SPF). Based in the Western Cape, the brand ships locally and internationally, and has something to sort out just about every skin and hair niggle you can think of.
Nature meets science in this skincare range founded by South African engineer Stella Ciolli. The brand prides itself on sourcing local ingredients for their products wherever they can, and travel far and wide to bring the finest oils and extracts to their lab in Cape Town. Their team is committed to creating the most effective formulas without having to test on animals. Did we mention how effortlessly clean and elegant the Skoon. range looks? See for yourself:
With over 30 years of experience in the skincare industry, the creators of Pradiance wanted to bring quality, natural products to women of all skin tones at an affordable price. At the heart of the brand is a strong sense of responsibility to care for the environment and ourselves when choosing what we use on our skin. Only sustainably sourced ingredients are used in the development and formulation of all products right here in South Africa. All products are vegan-friendly, free of harmful synthetics and you can recycle the packaging once you’ve used up all your moisturiser.
So much more than just a gorgeous spot to have a fabulous manicure or quick wax, the Sorbet group has expanded over the last few years to include hair products and services (Sorbet Dry Bar, Candi & Co Hair, and Sorbet Man) as well as a range of skincare products for men and women. Their latest offering comes in the form of a proudly South African make-up collection. The range consists of cosmetics for the face, lips, eyes and accessories to help you create a look for any occasion and every skin tone.
African Extracts Rooibos
The core ingredient in this ‘skincare inspired by nature’ range is organic rooibos extract harvested in the Western Cape. While rooibos tea is widely consumed today as a soothing tea, the plant has been used for its anti-inflammatory properties too. Combined with natural ingredients like chamomile, shea butter, tea tree oil, vitamins and sun protection, the range includes shampoo and conditioner, bath-time spoils and luxurious moisturisers for just about every part of your body. African Extracts Rooibos is cruelty-free and most of their products are vegan-friendly too.
And what’s not to love? This skincare brand ticks all the boxes: vegetarian-friendly, cruelty-free, and made from certified organic ingredients. And best of all? Everyone in the family will find a product they love. Soothe baby’s bottom with an all-natural bum balm, keep your body moisturised and soft with a body oil, and make sure everyone is looked after with natural sunscreen for the face and body. Key ingredients include raw beeswax and olive oil and all Oh Lief products are free of the synthetic stuff we’ve been warned to avoid, including parabens, sulphates, and artificial fragrances.
After years of living and working within the wellness space both in South Africa and abroad, founder Nicole Sherwin was invited to create natural beauty products live on SABC3’s Expresso Show. Viewers were eager to use the products but too busy to make them at home – and so Nicole created a range that would be available to purchase. Eco Diva consists of everything you need to nourish and protect the skin. Specially formulated with vitamins A and E and made from organic ingredients high in essential fatty and amino acids, your skin will look and feel great. Whether you’re in need of an exfoliating polish or a hydrating lip balm, this unisex brand has you covered.
Red Dot Cosmetics
We might have our very own Kylie Jenner. In 2014, a then 14-year-old Rabia Ghoor decided that South African make-up fanatics needed more of what she was seeing beauty gurus use on YouTube and so Red Dot Cosmetics was born. Four years later and the brand has created lips, eyes, and face palettes reminiscent of your favorite international brands, which are not only high in quality and pigment but also surprisingly affordable.
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Lulu & Marula
The word ‘treat’ comes to mind when looking at this range of natural skin care. Something about the packaging and labelling makes it feel like you’ve just mixed up your own batch of tropical delights. As for the products themselves? Who wouldn’t love cleansing with a balancing soap bar that looks and smells good enough to eat? If your skin is particularly prone to break-outs, dryness and irritation, Lulu & Marula might just be the one for you. Choose from a collection of body balms, bath oils and face masks to help get back your glow.
Suki Suki Naturals
They’re calling themselves an ‘African Natural and Indie’ haircare line but their offering has expanded to include skincare products too, such as facial oils and lip treatments. Suki Suki Naturals is made of all things organic and specially formulated to restore your skin and hair to optimum health. A unique feature of this brand is the fact that some of their products can actually be used on both hair and skin. That’s what we call getting your money’s worth!