When you're looking for luxury products, you can often find yourself buried in unrecognizable words and terms you have to google before you hit "purchase." It shouldn't be that hard, particularly when you're just looking for something high-end that also performs well, with the added bonus of looking gorgeous on your counter. Chantecaille ticks all of those boxes, as well as has a family-heavy background.
For Sylvie Chantecaille, the brand's roots came from her young life in France. "I have always loved nature and felt at peace when outdoors, surrounded by plants and animals," she tells Byrdie. "As a young girl in France, I was constantly surrounded by nature, art, and beauty. Then, when I was a debutante in Paris, I did my own makeup and it intrigued me—I found it to be an incredibly fun and artistic invention. I saw it as art."
Founded: Sylvie Chantecaille, in 1998
Based In: New York City
Best Known For: Luxurious, botanical-forward makeup and skincare products backed by extensive scientific research and technical innovations
Most Popular Products: Just Skin Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15, Bio Lifting Mask
Fun Fact: It was one of the first brands to use plant stem cells in its skincare.
Other Brands You’ll Love: Augustinus Bader, La Prairie
Sylvie Chantecaille moved to New York in the 1970s, where she worked with fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg on a beauty and fragrance line. "In 1979, the Lauder family asked me to create a new company for them: a revolutionary brand called Prescriptives," she explained. "Creating brands is hard, but it's also great fun to create new things and move the needle forward. We did this with Prescriptives, but by the time I was ready to create my own company, my life had evolved, and I was completely focused on health."
Chantecaille wanted to create a company based on plants that used ingredients that were healthy for you. "I saw it as the next level of holistic medicine, translated into beauty," she explained. Alongside her daughter Olivia, she started Chantecaille (the brand) in 1998 with high-end fragrances based on her recollection of incredible trips and memories. At that time, looking to plants and flowers for their skincare benefits wasn't de rigueur, so the brand's innovative approach took off. "We were the first luxury company to use flowers and botanicals in an advanced, scientific way. More than 20 years later, it’s what we’re known for all over the world. Looking back, it's quite amazing how things happen."
The launch of Chantecaille was a precursor to the natural beauty movement, as the brand was one of the first to draw on high concentrations of pure botanicals in a technologically modern way. "We make beautiful, healthy botanical formulas that are super luxurious with a focus on high-quality, clean ingredients," explains Alex Chantecaille, vice president of sales and promotions (and Sylvie's daughter). The brand prides itself on setting trends, not following them—they want to tell you what you want before you even know. "At the end of the day, it is the actual product, its effectiveness, and how it makes someone feel," says Olivia Chantecaille. "We put our efforts into making the purest products, and our clients recognize that skincare and makeup should also be good for you."
The Chantecaille customer is someone who appreciates natural beauty and healthy, natural-looking skin, and also loves to support the brand's give-back partnerships, which work to care for endangered species, the planet, and animals. They love the brand's high-quality naturals and botanicals, selected for their scientific efficacy and sustainability, and assembled in the most thoughtful way for the customer and the environment. "The idea of using naturals, botanicals, and florals is the foundation of the line and the basis of every product we create," explains Olivia Chantecaille. "Our instinct for seeing ahead of the trends sets us apart—we know what women want, often before they do. We’re always the first to incorporate the latest advancements, both in our skincare and our makeup. When you use the highest quality botanicals and the latest lab developments, the results are superior in every way. Our customer sees that and it’s what keeps them coming back."
Just Skin Tinted Moisturizer SPF 15
You'll love this lightweight, fast-absorbing, lightly tinted moisturizer. Whether worn on its own or with another moisturizer underneath, this tinted moisturizer perfectly blurs imperfections and smoothes out skintone. People will be begging you to tell them what foundation you're wearing.
Bio Lifting Mask
This mask feels like luxury: Using botanicals to reduce the looks of lines and wrinkles, as well as hexapeptide to soften the appearance of expression lines, this moisturizing mask will be a go-to in your cabinet. You can wear it either as a standard wash-off mask, or wear overnight to wake up glowing.
Luster Glide Eye Liner
A liner that goes on so soft you'll worry about breaking it—but don't worry, it's far more resilient than you think. It has the payoff of a liquid, all in pencil form. Drying out liquid liner is not a concern here, either. This pencil stays on all day long, and doesn't budge—raccoon eyes are a myth.
Bio Lifting Serum+
One of Chantecaille's bestsellers since the brand introduced it in 2011, its signature rosewater base combined with nearly 80 percent natural ingredients promises to leave your skin glowing and firm. We're not saying this is a face lift in a bottle, but it's pretty close.
This fragrance smells like that summer you spent in your treehouse where you lost your innocence. With notes of amber, woody vanilla, and herbal elements, it is both elegant but badass, a bold and intense fragrance designed to invoke memories, or help you create new ones.
Jasmine and Lily Healing Mask & Night Cream
Trust us on this one: One use of this night-cream-slash-sleeping-mask will have you ordering a backup (or two) immediately. Perfect for anyone with sensitive skin, this soothing and gentle cream is great for anyone dealing with rosacea or skin redness. It's also fantastic if you live in a climate with rapid weather changes—it'll make those feel like a breeze.
When they say this lipstick feels weightless, they mean it—you'll forget you even have on lipstick when you wear it. Full of sustainable, FairWild-certified organic baobab oil, this lipstick is nourishing and promises to leave you with soft and smooth lips. Oh, and the brand created Lip Veil to support charity Space for Giants, which works to protect Africa's elephants as well as the landscapes they depend on.
Luminescent Eye Shades
We don't say this often, but there are truly no other eyeshadows on the market quite like these from Chantecaille. These pearlescent shadows have a unique gel-powder formula designed to be endlessly buildable. They have a little shimmer to them, meaning they're lovely on their own, but equally beautiful worn over other shadows.
Rice and Geranium Foaming Cleanser
This cleanser may feel delicate on the skin, but it performs like a beast. You'll reap the benefits—and scent—of rose, geranium, and orange blossom, all which can brighten anyone's day. Oh, and it won't leave your skin feeling bare and stripped, an extra bonus.
Sylvie Chantecaille loves this rosewater spray so much, she goes through 12 bottles a month. "I spray it nonstop, all day," she told us. "I spritz around 15 times in the morning, between when I wake up and when I start my day, then again mid-morning—usually between or during Zoom calls—and throughout the workday, especially if it's hectic or stressful." She'll even spray it in the afternoon, to signal the end of the workday. And in the evening, she'll keep a bottle next to her bed in case she wakes up in the middle of the night, or has a bad dream. "It's incredible—400 Rose de Mai rose petals per bottle, amazing for the skin, and soothing for the soul. "
Hwang W, Kim D, Kwon OS, Kim YS, Ahn B, Kang NG. Topical application of Zanthoxylum piperitum extract improves lateral canthal rhytides by inhibiting muscle contractions. Sci Rep. 2020;10(1):21514. doi:10.1038/s41598-020-78610-w