While we all see stars hitting the red carpet looking beyond gorgeous, it's no secret that professional makeup artists, hair stylists, wardrobe stylists, and more are responsible for all that behind-the-scenes glamour. So when celebrities decide to launch beauty brands, we're admittedly a little leery—do they really know the secrets when it comes to creating products that will provide stellar results?
While many celeb-backed brands have left us wanting more, we have to admit—over the years, a few superstars have taken us by surprise. Read on to find out which celebrity beauty brands have colored Byrdie's editors thoroughly impressed.
Founded by Ariana Grande, the pop sensation notable for her signature ponytail and liquid eyeliner, r.e.m Beauty is a makeup line that anyone would feel comfortable wearing. With bestsellers such as the Space Shape Brow Gel ($20) and the Midnight Shadows Eyeshadow Palettes ($24), Grande hit all the high notes when she launched this stellar brand.
"To me, the best celebrity makeup brands immediately evoke their founder—after all, they exist (at least in part) to help us put our own spins on their iconic looks. Much like its founder's music, the best offerings from r.e.m. Beauty strikes the perfect balance between sexy and dreamy. My favorites are the On Your Collar Liquid Lipstick ($19) and Interstellar Highlighter Topper ($22); they help me create high-femme, bold looks that I'd like to think would make Ari proud." - Eden Stuart, associate editor
Founded by Selena Gomez, Rare Beauty has undoubtedly had its fair share of viral product moments on TikTok (hello, Soft Pinch Liquid Blush, $20). Some fan favorites are the Perfect Strokes Universal Volumizing Mascara ($20) and the Positive Light Liquid Luminizer ($22).
"Selena Gomez's Rare Beauty is one of my favorite makeup brands of all time—celebrity-owned or not. Everything is efficacious, fun to use, and packaged beautifully to contribute to a genuinely joyful experience. TikTok goes crazy for the brand's Soft Pinch Liquid Blush —an everyday staple in my routine—and the Kind Words Matte Lipstick ($20) is my favorite non-drying formula for intense color without flaky lips. And most importantly, via the brand's Rare Impact fund, Selena Gomez and her team have pledged to donate $100 million over the next ten years to improve access to mental health services for those in need. - Holly Rhue, associate editorial director
Rihanna knew what she was doing with this one. Almost immediately upon launching, Fenty Beauty became one of the most significant brand disrupters the beauty industry has seen in quite some time.
"Rihanna has not blessed us with an album since 2016, but she has given the world skincare, makeup, and fragrance through Fenty Beauty. When the brand launched its foundation with 40 shades—instead of launching with light shades and introducing deeper shades at a later date—I knew it was going to be inclusive and unique. Rihanna sees and hears people of color, and Fenty Beauty reflects that. A few of my favorite products are the Fenty Eau de Parfum ($140), Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush ($22), Pro Filt’r Longwear Foundation ($39), and Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer ($20)." - Jasmine Phillips, social media editor
If you want your skin to glow like a dewy, glazed donut, you've come to the right place. Shoppers went into a craze over Hailey Bieber's minimal beauty line: One of the most popular products, the Peptide Glazing Fluid ($29), has more than 1,000 reviews and is currently waitlisted. And while this is technically a skincare brand (so far), everything in the line really does make your skin super glossy and primed for makeup.
"Hailey Bieber did her research for this one, knowing full well she'd be scrutinized as just another 'celebrity brand.' She worked with knowledgeable industry experts to create a curated collection of affordable, effective products. I'm definitely a fan." - Hallie Gould, senior editorial director
After serving iconic look after iconic look onstage, It's only fitting that Lady Gaga would launch her own makeup line.
"When Lady Gaga’s Haus Labs relaunched in June, I was eager to try the new and improved range. With the rebrand, the award-winning singer aimed to create supercharged, 'clean,' innovative products. In my opinion, she nailed it. I’ve tried several launches—including the Atomic Shake Lip Lacquer ($26), Triclone Skin Tech Foundation ($45), and Edge Precision Brow Pencil ($22)—and they have blown me away. I’m excited for all that’s to come from Haus Labs." - Olivia Hancock, editor
Launched as a partnership between Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and biotech company Amyris, Rose Inc is a makeup brand that brings the science and chemistry of clean beauty to color cosmetics.
"Like many of us, I roll my eyes a little whenever a new celeb beauty brand pops up. But I’ve been genuinely impressed with everything Rose Inc has released. The products are thoughtful and chic, and though they are made to be natural and glowy, they are buildable and can adapt to any routine. Like me, Rosie HW has struggled with acne for years, so I appreciate that everything in the line is non-comedogenic, so I don’t have to worry about breaking out. My favorites are the Softlight Luminiating Concealer ($30), which provides medium coverage with the prettiest radiant finish, and the Dual-Ended Concealer Brush ($32) that literally makes me look Photoshopped." - Bella Cacciatore, news editor
If a pop of color is what you're after, make a point to check out Halsey's bright and creative brand. With products in the eye, lip, face, and body categories, About-Face Beauty had a strong launch (with even stronger pigments).
"Halsey blew us all out of the water with her brand About-Face, launching some of the best, most beautifully pigmented makeup I've ever had the pleasure of trying. Go for the Matte Fluid Eye Paints ($16) and the Light Lock Fluid Highlighter ($18)—you won't be disappointed." - Hallie Gould, senior editorial director