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Brand to Know: Ellis Faas

Photo: EllisFaas.com

Ellis Faas isn’t your run-of-the-mill celeb makeup artist. For starters, her website background is skin: a macro, super zoomed-in shot of unblemished skin. This unorthodox motif is very intentional. The Netherlands native, a favorite of Mario Testino and French Vogue editor Emmanuelle Alt, spent years working with brands like MAC and Loreal before launching her own line in 2007. Her line’s premise — and this is where the skin shot comes in — is that makeup should be based on the colors that exist in the human body. This goes for texture too: all her products come in liquid format, in specially designed bullet-shaped pens (great for travel - no spillage).

The skin theme doesn’t mean her collection is a wash of beiges and browns — quite the opposite. Her lip colors range from crimson red to warm peach, while eyeshadows have depth that you don’t get in traditional powder shadows. I’ve been playing with a bunch of the products and was a little intimidated at first - these formulas are no joke. To wit: the Holographic Bordeaux Eyes Light, one of her latest debuts, is an ultra iridescent shadow that slides on silvery green, gleams blood red in certain lights, and has an undeniable mermaid-ish look. But as intense as the pigments are, everything is super blendable, and the colors are some of the richest, most long-wearing that I’ve come across. And, naturally, Faas’s foundations and concealers come in lovely, nuanced shades that look like more glowing versions of your own skin. Starting in March, her culty Skin Veil foundations will be available in 30 ml bottles - keep it at home, and tote your pen applicator on the road!

Want to learn about other stellar brands we love? Check out our Brands page.


Brand to Know: Sulwhasoo

Korean skincare company AmorePacific has long been an insider fave for their ultra-luxe creams and serums that combine science and tradition. This month’s Birchbox Crush, Kim Phan, swears their Time Response Skin Renewal Cream works miracles on travel-wrecked skin. Now AmorePacific has brought their sister line, Sulwhasoo, to the United States.

If AmorePacific is the rigidly chic older sister, all tailored black dresses and Louboutins, then Sulwhasoo is the hippie gorgeous younger sister who teaches yoga and designs her own organic cotton fashions. The company’s skincare philosophy is that there are yin and yang ingredients and for effective products, you have to balance both types. All their products are made from traditional Asian herbs and ingredients, such as Korean red ginseng, white lily, and Chinese lotus.

Don’t let the herbal ingredients fool you — the serums and signature cream are just as pricey as the fanciest European tincture. But the products we’ve loved, namely the Cleansing Oil that breaks up makeup and leaves skin soft and the peel-off Skin Clarifying Mask, pack a huge punch for the price. Here’s hoping they bring their famed facials to NY soon!