Are there any brands that you'll be buying less of in 2022?

There aren’t any that come to mind where I’ll be tapering down per se. There are a few brands that I’m not currently reviewing that I used to review, but I already stopped buying from this year (like Hourglass and Viseart).

— Christine


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Christine Avatar

They have had a lot of lighter-leaning palettes (lots of light beige mattes) when that wasn’t always the case, and I asked if readers felt similarly on an Instagram post, where the brand owner responded in a way that made me uncomfortable, and they also replied to other readers on that post that seemed dismissive (which I later learned was something some readers experienced when asking questions/leaving comments on the brand’s/owner’s Instagram posts in the past). The majority of the comments were deleted within a few hours, as I did push back on the response to me specifically.

In general, I avoid brands with owners who are sensitive to feedback, especially when they don’t take it well and reply to readers or myself. With respect to the releases, I was already thinking of halting purchases and waiting to see if they improved, and the release of the “improved” Grande Pro Vol. 1 palette cinched it for me as one of the big critiques on that palette was just how light-leaning it was despite being billed as an artist’s palette, and the updated release did not address this at all. I continue to keep an eye out on Viseart to see if they improve their releases, but for now, I’m not reviewing.

kjh Avatar

Omg, who knew? Very disappointing. Unfortunately this behavior is not uncommon. Good call. Lack of transparency, response, and CS…poor idea, when indies are chasing your tail and have far more interesting products.

Genevieve Avatar

That is soooo disappointiing of the brand owner – especially when you have reviewed so many of their products and have basically put them on the map! Now I understand why you haven’t purchased their latest range.
They should have learnt the lesson of Kat Von D…..

Zizzie Avatar

That is odd. I wrote with a question to customer service on the website, and received the loveliest and most thorough response, are you sure it was the owners? I have never been on Instagram, and given the horrible things coming out about it now, maybe judging a company by Instagram could be hasty? Sometimes all it takes is one bad apple. I used to own my own business and hired a temp who was just awful. I was sure she would destroy my business I just one day! Keep us posted if you think this was a trend or just a one-off.

Christine Avatar

Hi Zizzie,

I’m sure there are lots of great experiences with Viseart. I’ve had positive experiences up until that point, too, over many years! This wasn’t just an off-hand, one-liner, and it crossed a line for me as a reviewer. I didn’t even give the product a bad review, I was just inquiring as to whether or not others had noticed the trend of lighter-leaning palettes to the point where they seemed less and less inclusive (despite being a brand I considered better than many years ago).

It was the brand owner’s Instagram account, and the owner also texted me as the conversation entirely derailed, so I am absolutely sure it was the owner. As that was happening, multiple readers reached out about issues they had with Viseart and their responses, including things like being blocked for asking about inclusion of plastic (PET) glitter in their products and several felt like any comments about lack of inclusivity were dismissed or ignored. I’ve since learned that they have had serious issues in shipping and handling their products, like single eyeshadows being glued into plastic clamshells (they were refills designed to be put into an empty palette), taking months to get back to emails/replace products that arrived damaged, and single eyeshadows arriving in empty Petit Pros (that didn’t have the plastic component that holds each shade in place).

Z Avatar

Hey, thanks for taking the time to write that out! I also wonder about the brands you do, don’t, and stopped reviewing. For no other reason than idle information gathering. I’m *really* in to watching where my money goes and who it supports and like having lots of real facts and customer experiences to compile mentally when browsing. I have always (like everybody else who comes here!) appreciated your unbiased reviews and legitimate criticisms.

Ya-Lin Avatar

Wow… I didn’t know that… Thanks for sharing! I have always wanted to try Viseart but it’s harder for me to get their products because of where I live (Taiwan). I guess now I won’t need to bother trying anymore. Thanks for helping me save some money!

Bet Avatar

I’m done with brands that aren’t making an effort to be inclusive in their skin tone shade ranges but I’m also looking to reduce my single-use plastic consumption. I’m switching to glass containers or refillables wherever possible. Fenty, PLZ make the powder foundation refillable!!

Mariella Avatar

This is pretty much my situation (although I do still love makeup but I just have so much of it). I stopped buying Hourglass a few years ago and the information that you provide, Christine, is the primary reason (the outright highway robbery of their “holiday releases” infuriated me and I never quite understood why so many were so excited by the holiday palettes that were even more expensive per ounce than their already pricey regular products…it’s like people were saying “Ooooh, I’m so glad that they’re doing me the honour of ripping me off!”). I only have one small Viseart palette and I really like it but, yet again, the unavailability in store was always an issue for me. Now, reading out the company’s behaviour, I don’t feel any compulsion at all to give them my money.

Nancy T Avatar

Very sadly, Urban Decay. Their quality has truly gone down the toilet and they’ve discontinued so many of my treasured products. Tragic, because they had always been a huge favorite beauty brand for me.

Also, while I’m not a fan of less inclusive brands, I will still continue to buy my Dim Light Ambient Lighting powder from Hourglass, as it is perfect for my NW30-35, Fenty 260 skintone and I have yet to find an exact dupe that has the same blurring effect as this particular powder.

Grace Avatar

I’ve found it hard to boycott some brands that aren’t as inclusive as I’d like to see because I fall on the lighter end of the spectrum and sometimes have a hard time finding adequate dupes. I’m with you on hourglass, and I try to limit my purchases to the items I already know work for me without buying additional or new items. I hope someday people with deeper complexions can enjoy the same hourglass products I love in shades that work for them.

Leslie Avatar

The Laura Mercier candlelight powder is comparable in my opinion. I’ve used and loved both of them, and I always re-purchase the LM one. I have bought it three times now and recommend to everyone when I do their makeup. They have a wider shade selection and are a little less expensive than Hourglass.

Erica Avatar

Colourpop. I’m not interested in fashion fashion brands and how heavily they are pushed. It’s not environmentally sound and irresponsible imo. But in general I’m cutting back on all brands and enjoying what I have. I’m using things up and not buying until I have a need

Anouk Avatar

I remember when you said that you weren’t going to but from Hourglass anymore because the shades weren’t inclusive at the time..but seems like they heard you and now they have released two Ambient lighting palettes and one was definitely for deeper skin tones (I am fair and couldn’t wear one of them as is too dark for me definitely). Are you definite with you decision regarding Hourglass?

Christine Avatar

Hi Anouk,

I don’t feel the recent release was actually well-done with respect to inclusivity, though I did not personally swatch it, so colors could appear different, but it by no means addressed products for medium-dark or darker skin tones based on reviews I did see from others. Hourglass has to show a commitment to and actual improvement in the brand’s range, which can’t be done in a single release, let alone something that’s limited edition – they actually have to improve their core offerings and show continuous improvement to even be worth reconsidering.

Shani Avatar

I have a deeper skin tone (Fenty 450; Nars New Caledonia or Manaus) and gave in and bought the Ambient Lighting Volume III, and it honestly doesn’t really show up on me. I can see a bit of something if I lean in close to my mirror, but they can stand to go several shades deeper. I’m back to being done with them.

Christine Avatar

Thank you for sharing, Shani! I’m sorry it didn’t work well for your skin tone 🙁 Hourglass has had so much feedback re: making more inclusive shades because they DO have fantastic formulas, so it remains strange to me that they haven’t seen fit to expand their core products (Ambient Lighting Powders, Bronzers, Blushes, etc.). Like it gets to the point where it’s almost like they’re actively resisting expanding, which then makes you go why on earth… and no answers I can come with are good answers!

Lucie Avatar

I think 2022 is going to be the year of shopping my current collection so I’m hoping that my shopping overall will be minimal. I would say ColourPop is probably the one brand that I buy from regularly enough where I think it’s safe to say I need to just stop. I need to stop supporting their frenetic pacing of releases and I doubt they can bring anything new to my collection at this point.

Otherwise, looking at my 2021 purchases, it was like 80% skin care. My most shopped makeup brand last year was Becca and they took care of that for me by going out of business.

Deborah S. Avatar

None that I can think of as I had already stopped purchasing from several of my older favorite brands. I don’t even look at UD, Too Faced, Tarte, Hourglass or Stila anymore. Many others are near the chopping block for me as I am just not interested in what they have been producing.

Nina Avatar

Totally agree. Was a time I was looking and buying Tarte, Hourglass, Lorac and Stila. No more. Utterly uninterested and uninteresting brands. Tom Ford is coming up fast in my no look book too.

Deborah S. Avatar

I have never been a huge fan of Tom Ford, with the exception of some of his scents. His makeup leaves me wanting something more. I have a couple of quads that I paid a small fortune for and never use because they are just so lackluster on the eye. I would rather buy Pat McGrath and get some actual pigmentation and usually, a carefully curated palette.

Z Avatar

I’d already stopped buying from Colourpop. Fast fashion and PET glitter just aren’t something I’m interested in supporting. I think a few other brands are owned/backed by trump supporters, I’ll look further in to fact-checking that before slandering their names, but if true they’re out. I’m basically cutting out everyone who isn’t environmentally responsible (yes, it’s a business, but there’s a difference between creating products and really going ham with creating microplastics that never break down, raping nature (palm oil)), slave labor with a PC name, non-inclusive, all the usual social justice bullet points. And at the end of the day I also factor in my skin and its sensitivities.

Unlike a lot of folks who stop boycotting out of convenience (“yeah, chick-fil-a is homophobic…but I’m hungry. what difference does it make if I keep eating there?”); I’m pretty hardcore about the morals I’ve committed to so… takes a lot to sway me off a brand misbehaving.

Nina Avatar

Yes! As a matter of fact a few of us were talking about this today. Mine is Lancôme. One minute they have everyone touting a lipstick and bronzer (not LE) and boom I go to reorder Coquette and a few others today and I see the entire lip line ‘discontinued’. They also have the worst website. How does the biggest cosmetic brand just last month talk up products and with no warning just discontinue them??? MAC does this too. So, yes, I’m done with Lancôme and MAC.

Christine Avatar

It’s funny because I asked them on IG and through their website live chat about the L’Absolu range and if it was, in fact, discontinued… and they assured me it wasn’t… but alas.

They have been posting (at least what I’ve seen on Instagram here and there) about the revamped L’Absolu formula (which I know I’ve seen more info on their non-US websites, too), which I assume is gonna be fairly close. Lancome is a legacy brand that may reformulate, but they don’t seem to deviate to the point where it turns off most customers.

Nina Avatar

We have looked at their official website and said lipstick line has clearly written DISCONTINUED in red lettering. It’s fine, I’m an attorney and told lies often, ergo they lied when they said it wasn’t discontinued. As for customers being ‘turned off’ and leaving a brand, I’ve known and seen people leave brands over simple human error or what they have perceived to be religious, racial, et al. It’s life. We are talking about cosmetics not human life or welfare.

Lacey Avatar

Urban Decay. After Born to Run none of their releases have appealed to me. I’ve purchased a few eyeliner pencils in the past two years, but I’ve found the Sephora, Makeup Geek and MUFE pencils are just as long lasting, good colors, and with sales they’re half the price. All nighter spray is awesome of course, but so is coverFX, since I use a few of their products I can order once or twice a year and get good discounts.

Pat Breslauer Avatar

Thank you for your standards in purchasing and reviews, they’re very much appreciated. I don’t want to support brands that are insensitive to their customers.
I have given up on Urban Decay, Stila, Hourglass (overpriced for their offering) Laura Mercier ( also overpriced, blah new products and easy to dupe). Charlotte Tilbury while quality is a one look wonder and Pat McGrath along same line. I look more for quality and value; compliments to Sephora Collection and am interested in the Indie brands you discover and review. Thank you for your excellent editing!

Genevieve Avatar

There’s actually a very narrow range of brands that I buy from these days: Lorac, being the most popular one over the past year or so; CP’s and Maybelline’s For Me lipsticks; SG x Temptalia On the Horizons palette and By Terry’s Bonjour Paris (the first one I have bought from the brand).
I always go for the colour story, reviews, ratings and accessibility – as nearly everything I buy is internationally shipped.
I steer clear of really expensive products like Tom Ford and have only one PMG palette (purchased at a huge discount) and one ND palette, that was more reasonably priced – Glam.
Even CT has a lot of similar sorts of eyeshadows, apart from The Rebel/Green Lights.

I am not interested in purchasing any of UD’s offerings anymore or Too Faced, Tarte or even CP’s eyeshadows as they are all similar or of poor quality.
Really, I just need to shop my stash!

Cara Avatar

I’ve already curtailed a large amount of my makeup shopping in general because there’s rarely anything that adds something unique to my collection. The lack of creativity and innovation plus the rise of the fast fashion model has really pushed me away from the beauty industry as a whole; it’s just not fun anymore. I used to check IG pages like Trendmood daily to see what was coming out but since the summer, I’ve gone weeks at a time without looking and I haven’t missed anything exciting. The makeup world is oversatutated and has largely stagnated.

Jen Avatar

The list of brands I still purchase from would be shorter, lol. ABH (brow wiz excluded), Rephr, Tarte, Colourpop, Sigma, Too Faced (better than sex excluded), and Bobbi Brown don’t interest me. My collection is set for the foreseeable future. Something luxurious with beautiful packaging still gets me, though.

janine Avatar

Omg viseart! They are a staple for me. But you are right the second color after the lightest in a palette is light beige and or pink. A lot of repeats in their palettes although I’m looking at that new colorful one. I’m sorry to hear about their cs. That’s why I’ve never bought drunken elephant after 1 purchase I heard about it.
People can’t take criticism ! They should really have a pr company handle their social media as their egos are too big to listen To all their customers. You were being objectively honest and they take it so personal.

Overall I’m cutting back. It’s really fun to try new formulas but I have enough makeup for perhaps 4 people.

I’ve never been a fragrance person as I thought I was extremely picky. But I recently discovered niche fragrance and I love a lot of them!! I’ve been purchasing during Xmas sales but gonna try to enjoy what I have in a lot of areas.

Cherie Avatar

I hope to avoid all of them this next year as I definitely have too much, but alas a few get my attention. I love Lisa Eldridge’s offerings and the Lorac holiday palette has definitely caught my eye.

As for absolute no’s – Urban Decay, CP, Lancome, and Hourglass. I bought two hourglass palettes to see if I could make them work, but I promptly returned both of them. I do like dim light and their blushes are my go to for long days at work. But that’s it.

Daniella Avatar

I need to stop buying less makeup in general, but a brand that is just meh for me and is not worth import taxes to Norway is colourpop. I enjoy my The Child palette and the Mulan matchmaker blush, but their eyeshadow formula doesn’t last on my eyes

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