You’re Going To Start Seeing These Skin Care Brands In Every Celeb’s Shelfie

The next generation of cult products is here.


Whoever said there’s nothing new under the sun clearly never bothered to check the “new arrivals” tab on the Ulta website. Skin care in particular is a category that’s better and more innovative than ever. With an exciting emphasis on science-first concepts like microbiome health, hybrid skin care-makeup, and ever-improving sustainability practices, it really looks like there’s never been a better time to spice up your existing routines — and treat your skin to a little extra love in the process.

The only issue? With the sheer volume of all-new products and just-launched brands, it can be hard to know where to start without feeling completely overwhelmed. To help guide you (and your bathroom cabinet), we’ve put together a non-nonsense guide to the best, buzziest, and editor-approved skin care brands on the market right now that seem poised to be The Next Big Thing. And what do they all have in common? Other than aesthetically-pleasing packaging (it helps!), we think a cult brand needs to have three things: innovation (either in sustainability or ingredients), a hyper-engaged following, and of course, the ability to deliver serious results.

Ahead, find 14 new(ish) skin care brands on the track to cult status. Think of it as your sign to hit the refresh button on your beauty routine, just in time for the new season.

We at Bustle only include products that have been independently selected by our editors. We may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.


It’s a pretty common thing to see skin care described as self-care, but how much of it is just feel-good jargon? At selfmade, a true link between mind and body is steeped right into their products’ formulations. Developed with BIPOC mental health professionals, the AAPI-founded brand’s three-product roster is made for all-over use that’s safe for sensitive skin and delivers other benefits, too. For example, the brand’s cult-favorite serum is a moisturizer, makeup primer, and is loaded with Cortinhib G, an ingredient that actually reduces stress hormones in skin.


No matter what your freshman biology grades looked like, you’ll find something to love in BYOMA’s science-made-simple view on healthy, hydrated skin. Their whole thing is protecting and fortifying the skin’s barrier— the delicate layer of lipids that keep bounce-boosting moisture in, and stuff like pollution and irritants out. In fact, BYOMA even features its own “BYOLOGY Class” to help make sense of it all. But really, even if you didn’t know much about how they work, a few uses of their all-star lineup prove that it does work — the proof is in the plumpness.


For too long, melanated skin has been ignored by skin care brands and the beauty world as a whole. Things are finally starting to shift, but not without take-charge, industry-shaking innovators like Eadem. Made for skin of color by people of color, the ingredient-focused, undeniably luxe line is already earned lifelong fans with its three powerhouse products. Eadem’s trademark Smart Melanin Beauty technology is at the core of every topical, ensuring that each included ingredient is both suitable and fine-tuned for melanin-rich skin.


Think scientists have discovered everything there is to know about the human body? Think again. Ourself, a high-tech, just-launched skin care brand and its team of respected scientists, managed to find a brand new peptide — and a groundbreaking new way to deliver it to skin without penetrative needles or costly lasers. Called the first-ever “subtopical skin care line,” Ourself’s formulas identify precise locations of common skin issues (think hyperpigmentation and dryness) to correct them as well as prevent further damage. It’s like having the power of an entire dermatologist’s office sitting right there on your shelf.

Isla Beauty

It’s impressive (and rare) when a brand’s commitment to radical transparency and social responsibility is on par with its commitment to creating legitimately good products. Isla Beauty’s in-house team spent years making best-selling products for other beauty brands. They took that experience and applied it to Isla, which boasts clean, no-frills formulas that get right to the point. At Isla, not only are the actual products well-made and effective, but a full breakdown of the price (including self-reported labor costs and profit margins) gives customers confidence in what they’re paying for throughout the entire transaction. If you’re not sure which product to start with, we suggest the skin-soothing Tone Balance Elixir or super-gentle Snow Scrub.

Eighth Day Skin

Eighth Day Skin’s development journey is a pretty unique one in the beauty world. Dr. Antony Nakhla parlayed his extensive knowledge as a world-renowned reconstructive skin cancer surgeon into a line of clinically-backed products built around a proprietary blend of peptide-filled plasmas. That blend — and all of the products’ formulas — are built around what are called bioidentical ingredients, which actually mimic your skin’s natural biological functions to effectively empower skin to heal itself.


BYBI’s philosophy is a simple yet powerful one: healthy skin, healthy planet — and vice versa. Plant-powered and earth-friendly, BYBI’s range of cheerfully bright products range from preventative treatments to full-fledged heavy-fitters chock full of actives, but they all share the brand’s serious commitment to environmental sustainability. Even the ingredients used are only harvested from suppliers who clear BYBI’s rigorous standards — which means the products will meet yours, too. Oh, and did we mention all of the products are super affordable?


If there’s anyone who knows about non-stop beauty brand innovation, it’s former beauty editor and Editrix founder Dahlia Devote. Together with her sister, a well-respected leading microbiologist, the pair developed a line of products all made to strengthen skin’s microbiome, also known as the acid mantle. Editrix is intentionally minimalist, launching with a four-product library that helps skin strike the perfect blend of beneficial bacteria that helps keep skin balanced. Consider it the ultimate skin care edit.


Calling all angels — this heavenly skin care line is the one for you. A return to form in every sense, Dieux’s lineup of mercifully simple products are clinically-tested, sustainably packaged, and infused with an “everyone’s-invited” ethos you just want to get behind. The brand’s first launch instantly reached cult status: the Forever Eye Mask, a reusable, highly-’grammable eye mask to pair with any eye cream you already own. Since then, Dieux’s ethos is to take the guesswork out of buying skin care by releasing a slow trickle of well-researched products that just make you feel, well, better by the time the serum sinks in. Skin care’s pearly gates have opened, and all you have to say is “I dieux.”

Shielded Beauty

Think of Shielded as your skin’s no-nonsense bodyguard, physically defending it from anything that would ravage the all-important microbiome — even while you sleep. The six-product system is as much about prevention as it is restoration, with clinical trials and dermatology tests backing the claims. Invisible irritants like free radical-trigger blue light, environmental pollution, and low-quality air, for example, are all turned away by the citrus-scented daily mist. One spritz and your skin is fully shielded.


There’s a solid chance you’re already familiar with Rèphr’s pro-loved lineup of high-quality makeup brushes, but the brand’s freshly-launched skin care might just rival them. Réphr is so committed to making endless improvements in pursuit of perfect products that they’ve implemented a pay-what-you-wish program that can make the price of their moisturizer as low as $0 — yep, as in free — in exchange for honest user feedback. The thing is, though, with deliciously- emollient meadowfoam seed oil at its base, how could it even get better?

Glass Lizzard

Glass Lizzard is a family affair of the best sort. A Korean line — its name is a hat-tip to the K-beauty glass skin phenomenon — the family-run brand is dedicated to producing fun-to-use, high-quality skin care that’s versatile in use and audience. Equally focused on the mental health component of skin care, Glass Lizzard isn’t afraid to walk the walk — a full percentage of profits go to assorted organizations supporting global mental health.

54 Thrones

Born from the rich cultural history of various African beauty rituals and their original intentions to celebrate and heal the body, 54 Thrones is committed to staying true to its roots. The brand’s collection of decadent beauty butters, oils, soaps, and masks are all inspired by its founder’s Nigerian heritage, with ingredients sourced directly from African soil and names derived from revered goddesses, queens, and legends.

Three Ships

The bar for highly-active, plant-derived skin care just keeps getting higher, and the 100% natural formulations from Three Ships Beauty prove exactly why. Originally conceived by a pair of go-getter friends around the kitchen table in 2017, the brand has grown a cult following for anyone after effective, gentle staples designed to coax out the dewiest, bounciest skin through the power of plants. The thing that sets the brand apart, though, is its hyper-engaged community, which founders Connie Lo and Laura Burget frequently tap to conceptualize and weigh in on new products — setting a new standard for “community-led skin care.” Not sure where to start? We highly recommend the Dream Night Cream, a retinol-infused moisturizer that doesn’t irritate, or Dew Drops, which plump and brighten the skin over time with hyaluronic acid and vitamin C.