Top Beauty Brands For Millennials Survey Shows Quality & Value Are Key, But High-End Makeup Still Attracts Gen Y Buyers

According to a recent survey conducted by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, the top beauty brands for Millennials include affordable, perennial favorites such as Cover Girl, Maybeline, and Neutrogena. Some of the most popular cosmetic and personal care companies also made the list, with a surprising number of high-end or "prestige" makeup brands like Clinique, MAC, and Chanel rounding out the Top 25. In the era of Instagram selfies and YouTube beauty tutorials, it's no surprise that Generation Y is buying more makeup than ever, and the survey shows that product quality and value strongly influence their purchasing decisions.

“The results of the survey is fascinating in the sense that prestige did so well,” said Olivia Tong, research analyst and director of U.S. cosmetics, household, and personal care. “It shows that although Millennials have limited purchasing power, they are willing to spend more on [certain brands].”

One thousand women between the ages of 18 and 29 participated in the survey, which looked at 160 beauty brands. Those who were polled were also asked what factors affected their decisions to buy certain makeup and personal care products. Aside from the price and effectiveness of each item, the survey also found that this demographic preferred natural and organic products. This resulted in brands such as Bare Minerals and Burt's Bees making it to the Top 25.

Another interesting fact that resulted from the survey is where Millennials buy their makeup and personal care. Forty percent said they shopped at Target, Walmart, and drug stores like CVS and Walgreens. However, the survey does not rule out high-end department stores as a source for their test subjects' makeup later in life.

“While we expected value to be particularly important to cash-strapped Millennials, we believe that emphasis on product quality suggests potential for trade-up over time,” Tong said. Head over to for the full list of Top 25 beauty brands favored by Gen Y.


Image: @covergirl/Instagram; Giphy