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Highlighting the inventiveness and trends shaping our industry and its future.

Clean Beauty Trend

This Year’s Buzziest “Affordable Clean Beauty” Launches

Clean beauty, or beauty products formulated without a long list of common ingredients found in many skincare and personal care products, continue to soar in popularity amongst consumers.

And according to Nielsen, one of the three biggest systemic shifts for beauty today is a growing desire for consumers to purchase more natural products, “because a focus on health today isn’t confined to what consumers put in their bodies. Now, we’re just as aware of what we put on our bodies.”

In short? Clean beauty is here to stay.

Check out these four recent clean beauty launches, all offering products at highly affordable price points, that have beauty publications, consumers, and social media buzzing:


Versed, a non-toxic skincare line, launched exclusively in 1,440 Target stores on May 19, 2019. All Versed skincare products will be free of artificial fragrances, silicones, and sulfates, as well as a number of other common skincare ingredients. Every item is priced at $20 or under.

“If you have the right access or discretionary income, you have so many new options when it comes to clean, effective skincare,” said Melanie Bender, GM of Versed, in an interview with Fast Company. “But if you’re among the 60% of women who buy their beauty products from the drugstore, those aisles haven’t changed much over the last few decades. We wanted to change that.”

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While Versed owns its own supply chain, the new brand is backed by Clique Brands, the company behind women’s lifestyle blog Who What Wear. In a symbiotic twist, data and surveys from Who What Wear’s online community members were used to create the Versed product line and thus target consumers “most anxiety-inducing skincare issues like wrinkles, under-eye circles, and blemishes.”

Naturally Derived Skincare

Garnier recently launched their Naturally Derived Skincare line this year, featuring products that are formulated with 96% naturally derived ingredients. The new line includes 13 facial care products like masks, scrubs, mists, washes, and moisturizers. All of the Naturally Derived products highlight the power of natural and botanical ingredients like rose water, green tea, and aloe and clock in at under $13 a pop.

Additionally of the products are also multi-functional, like the Glow Boost 2-in-1 Facial Mask and Scrub, or the popular Skincare Soothing 3-in-1 Face Moisturizer with Rose Water.

Beauty publications like The Zoe Report have named the line’s products as one of the “16 2019 Drugstore Skincare Launches That You Need In Your Life,” with Allure and Women’s Wear Daily joining in on the praise.


Brandless, a direct-to-consumer e-commerce brand that sells household and personal products under their umbrella “Brandless” label,” recently increased their skincare product selection with an expansion of clean beauty offerings.

The expanded product line includes 100% plant-based facial wipes, rose water facial toner spray, eye gel featuring natural ingredients like green tea and pomegranate, and vegan makeup brushes. All of the new products are “free of over 400 questionable ingredients…and synthetic fragrances,” according to Fortune.  Plus, all of the products are under $10, with many as low as $3, and highlight their cruelty-free claim.

Grace + Tonic

Grace + TonicThis higher-end four-piece skincare line debuted at Target in January 2019 to great fanfare. Why the excitement? Grace + Tonic is the first product line sold at Target with the Cosmetic Organic and Natural Standard (COSMOS) Natural label.

The COSMOS standard divides the type of ingredients used in cosmetic products into five categories and specifies the requirements for each.  Here they are, with some of the key standards:

  1. Physically processed agro-ingredients – may be plant, animal or microbial origin but no GMOs, no critically endangered species, only products of (not a part of) animals;
  2. Chemically processed agro-ingredients – same as above, and the chemical treatments must respect the principles of Green Chemistry with the resulting ingredients complying with strict limitations of toxicity and biodegradability;
  3. Water – must comply with hygienic standards;
  4. Minerals and ingredients of mineral origin – must be of natural origin and may be modified with simple chemical reactions;
  5. Other ingredients – a very limited list of preservatives and some other ingredients and petrochemical moieties are temporarily allowed and are reviewed on a regular basis, taking into account availability of acceptable alternatives.https://cosmos-standard.org/

The Grace + Tonic line contains three hero products: cleansing mud, eye serum, and a moisture cream, and all feature botanical and natural ingredients like Brazilian purple clay, rosehip oil, and mango butter. With a higher price point (between $20-40), Grace + Tonic represents a more luxury-end skincare purchase – but at an easily accessible location for consumers.

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