Imagine a massive, echoing, high-ceilinged room packed to the walls with booths upon booths of under-the-radar beauty brands, all with their coolest wares on display and ready for sampling—a Costco of the coolest beauty products, if you will. Chances are, whatever you're seeing in your mind's eye probably resembles the Indie Beauty Expo, an annual convention event highlighting the best indie beauty brands in North American and beyond. This year's event took place in both New York and Los Angeles—and it most definitely called for a Byrdie editor field trip. (It's a tough gig, we know.)
You can also probably imagine that we left with all kinds of swag and product samples, not to mention dozens of phone memos of the coolest items we wanted to investigate further—from a face peel that instantly removes the dead skin from your face (so gross, in the coolest way) to detox supplement powders that we'll be dumping into our smoothies pronto, there are quite a few products we still can't stop talking about.
Keep reading to see our favorite finds!
This French brand has some serious history behind it, not to mention quite the movie-ready story: This hero product in particular was first crafted in the 1920s in Paris when a Hungarian apothecary specially formulated a beautifying blend of essential oils for the woman who served as his muse. Fast-forward nearly a century, and Huile Absolue is still the best-kept secret of women with gorgeous complexions everywhere.
It's been a few months since we were first introduced to Kopari, a beauty line solely based on quality, painstakingly sourced coconut oil—and we have yet to be anything less than impressed with the entire range. This moisturizing formula in particular is one of our favorites of the line, thanks to its soft tropical scent and dry finish.
What Baby Foot does for calloused, winter-beaten feet, this epic gel does for your face, faster—as soon as you slather it on your complexion, you'll see dead skin shrivel, pill up, and fall away before your eyes. It's slightly gross but oh so satisfying. (And we still can't believe that this sorcery is all-natural and better for your skin than most peels.)
This Icelandic brand's entire collection is crafted with minerals, crystals, and sea kelp sourced out of its native environs. It all comes together as pure magic, so to speak, if this lightweight moisturizer is any indication. It has the refreshing feel of a toning face mist, but it still penetrates deeply into the skin for an instant illuminating effect. (Pro tip: Follow the brand's gorgeously ethereal Instagram account to beautify your feed, too.)
It's no coincidence that a few different Byrdie editors have a habit of dumping this superfood blend in their morning smoothies—it's that good. Some effects, like improved digestion and a boost of energy, are immediate—plus you'll see bonuses like glossier hair and glowing skin down the line.
For those of us with thirsty skin that rarely seems to be satisfied, this ultra-moisturizing treatment is a godsend: Chock-full of antioxidants and botanical ingredients that enhance absorption, the serum-like moisturizer is all-natural and can be used morning and night.
Our love of Paris-meets-L.A. skincare line Odacité is well-documented on Byrdie (especially if you happen to follow us on Snapchat or Facebook live). The concentrated serum-oil blends are formulated for every single skin issue that plagues you, whether you're aiming to tackle redness, aging, dark spots, or anything else at all. This recent collab with Moon Juice is just as on point as we would expect, pairing an aloe and rose face mist with a brightening oil formula.
Formulated with castor oil, coffee, and all kinds of botanical antioxidants known to promote hair growth, this elixir is the key to Cara-worthy brows.
Even if this clay bath powder doesn't cure your Netflix addiction outright, it'll still encourage you to unplug for a few minutes at the very least. (Plus, it makes your skin so soft.)
Mesmerizing pigments are Rituel de Fille's thing: That's easy to see with just a swipe of the brand's Forbidden Lipstick ($23) or a few dabs of Inner Glow Cream Blush ($24). But while it's all worth stocking, we're particularly obsessed with the Eye Soots, which come in spellbinding colors that layer just beautifully. You can also dip a small brush in the chic little pot and use it as an eyeliner.
Ultra-refreshing with a delicate, marine scent, this mist gives our skin an instant pick-me-up; it's a must-have for your purse. (Infusions of sea salt, kelp, and tea tree oil tone and refine pores.)
It was love at first sniff with this sandalwood and citrus-scented face oil, which is jam-packed with vitamins to brighten skin tone, catalyze cell turnover, and moisturize deeply. Use it to calm your skin and your mind—the scent is that soothing.
Want some more indie intel? Check out the best under-the-radar products we've found at Target (yes, really).