What are some problems in the beauty industry you think should be fixed?


What are some problems in the beauty industry you think should be fixed? Share!

I’d like to see brands make more realistic claims or be more forthcoming with what a formula is supposed to do. I’d like to see ingredient lists posted as the standard across all retailers and brand websites–I don’t want to have to email and wait six weeks to get a list from the brand. I’d like to see greater diversity in marketing and base products, and I’d like to see less “this is universal” when it is clearly for fair to light skin tones.

Thanks to Lydia for today’s questions! Do you have a question idea? Submit yours here.

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Nancy T Avatar

Christine, you actually nailed the big three: 1.) Truthfulness in advertising, 2.) Transparency and being upfront with ingredients ( Hello Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette!), and this last one is HUGE, 3.) Diversity! We are not all shades of fair to med beige, so these companies need to address that! But I will also add that a few companies have done a decent job at this, so this is one of the main reasons I love MAC and newcomer ColourPop. But also, companies need to start showing more diversity in their advertising, too.
Adding one more pet peeve of my own; please stop putting highly allergenic ingredients in products without adding, like as is done with foods nowadays, a warning. Ie: This product contains: iron oxides, or sodium saccharin, or wheat gluten, or whatever!

Nancy T Avatar

Oh, and one more ; Ageism! I hate it when anti-aging products are shown on YOUNG women only! It’s crazy when wrinkle creams and skin tightening serums and such have 20 something or at best usually, 30 something y.o. models in the company’s ads!!! Ridiculous! ?

ilovemakeup Avatar

Yes! I couldn’t agree more! Why is someone not past the age of 21 talking about covering grays??? I know there are a few people who go gray really early in life, but most people go gray past 25 or so.

Anti aging products are modeled using 20-somethings or women in their 40’s or 50’s who are photographed with super bright lights which hide everything by bleaching it all out and then they’re photoshopped to the point of being unrecognizable. How is that realistic?

xamyx Avatar

That was the original reason I stopped buyingbLancome (now it’s because I just don’t care for the reformulations). When they got rid of Isabela Rosselini, I was still in my 20s, but it made absolutely no sense to me; here’s a brand that “prides” itself on their “revolutionary anti-aging skincare”, yet the face of the brand is a gorgeous woman, who looks decades younger, and they fire her for being “too old”…?

Nancy T Avatar

I will understand Lancome’s decision to basically fire Isabela Rossellini, ageism at possibly its WORST! She is a stunning beauty no matter her age!

Rae Avatar

Um… Yeah. I’m just gonna go ahead and say “ingredients” (WHY do brands go to such lengths to bury them??! They know that if they don’t list them, they still exist in real life, right?) and also “racism”.

Like, open-ended, on-all-fronts racism. There are so many things that the beauty industry really needs to work on having to do with race that you just can’t limit it to one or two points. From having non-white models as the faces of campaigns (and I’m talking other than foundation campaigns, thank you,) to stopping the production of products made to “correct” your ethnicity (ahem, violet primers that sales associates are instructed to push on Asian consumers “to hide your yellow skin,” I think casual racism (like in the universal shades that Christine mentioned) is still very much prevalent in the beauty industry — and it would be so wonderful to see that change.

Linda Avatar

Expiration dates would be helpful, sometimes we lose track and it’s nice to have a guideline. I’ve seen some drugstore foundation do this but not high end stuff or powders

CeeBee Avatar

Makeup doesn’t really “expire” as such – it may dry out or change consistency or have oils or waxes in it that go rancid and smell a bit off but the dates that companies put on products, like 12 months, etc are basically there to protect them against liability and make you think you eventually need to buy more stuff, not to actually be useful to consumers.

As long as you have good hygiene practices, clean brushes, temperature storage and don’t share your makeup with loads of people, makeup can last for years. I know people freak out over germs and bacteria and stuff, but unless you pick up staph or conjunctivitis or something equally nasty that can be spread around, they are not going to form mould colonies in your compacts.

Kuávsui Avatar

Also you can and should sanitize your makeup (even if youre the only one ever using it) if you want to avoid all issues with contamination. Creams and powders can be sprayed with disinfectant, and you can avoid contamination of mascaras, lipglosses etc. by using disposable wands and not double-dipping. But that’s a bit beside the point of this thread 🙂

Katherine T. Avatar

*I totally agree on full disclosure for ingredients. When brands don’t readily post the info, I get suspicious, then I usually find out later that the product is full of alcohol or fragrance
*Prices for cosmetics are escalating at a ridiculous rate. Pretty soon, they’ll be charging $50 for a single eye shadow, and $200 for a “value kit”. At that point, all my money will go to Colour Pop

Aj Avatar

Ending animal testing. There are so many companies that do not test since the damage has been done previously. I wish more companies and customers had compassion for the poor victims of this horror in the beauty industry.

Lizzie Avatar

I agree!!! There is no reason to test on animals! I’ve completely stopped buying from any company that continues animal testing. And so many large, well-known companies still do this!

Rachel R. Avatar

I hate that when China opened up its market, it required companies not manufacturing in China to test. A lot of companies can’t/won’t turn down the money and the economic realities of not selling there. I used to be 100% CF. Then China opened up, after I was out of the makeup loop a long time. I’m still working on finding out who’s completely CF. Even the CF brands are mostly owned by non-CF parent companies, so I know some of my money is going to animal testing in the end. Some CF brands are jerks in other ways and I don’t want to do business with them. Some non-CF have charities and causes I want to support. It all got so complicated, and I end up feeling guilty no matter what I do.

Jenn Avatar

I second your comment about product claims, and this idea of something being “universal.” I feel like every brand claims their product is universal, long-lasting, and highly pigmented. I’d also like to see marketing of makeup be more inclusive of WOC, not just the ones that fit European standards of beauty.

Julie Avatar

Totally agree. It’s really hard to find a shade match if you are very fair and also very yellow/green. This of course is a little further down the list from the biggies that Christine discusses and related to the lack of recognition by the industry on ethnic diversity. But still!

Ryou Avatar

What Christine said! It’s relatively easy for me to find a shade that matches my skintone, but many people aren’t so lucky. Something’s not right when the majority of the population is around NC42 but the darkest they’d go for foundation is around NC30, and this is certainly the case in countries like Indonesia.

I’d also like to see brands put less emphasis on limited edition products and focus on building a strong core product instead.

It would also help if brands would stop throwing around claims and/or marketing buzzwords that really means nothing, especially if accompanied by fear-mongering. “Paraben free” REALLY needs to go.

And finally, I’d like brands to stop insulting their consumer base by saying something is wrong with them, but worry not! Their product can fix it! Nope, that’s about the worst marketing strategy ever.

xamyx Avatar

I don’t think of terms like “Paraben Free” to be “fear mongering”, and it is something I look at when paying for HE cosmetics, along with talc &petroleum byproducts. These are the least expensive, lowest quality ingredients to use, and when several DS brands have omitted these, and haven’t raised prices significantly, why are HE/Luxury brands still using them…? If I’m paying top-dollar, I want top-quality; IMO, “quality” goes beyond wear-time & application, as ingredients should be quality, as well. In this day and age, there are alternatives, but they would cut into profit margins. I’m personally willing to pay more for products that don’t use these ingredients, but ironically, I find I pay less!

Brandi Kay Avatar

I think they need to have a wider range in most foundations and concealers across the board…. or have some sort of white shade to lighten colors. I think they should also change their profit margins. About a 75%+ markup! We all know its just dirt, oil, wax, and fragrance in a fancy package. xD

Desiree Avatar

You stole the one I was going to suggest, Christine — as a woman of color, it’s annoying to see products that exclude darker skin tones or even have only a handful of darker shades. It’s definitely getting better, but most companies who have expanded shades to include darker skin tones still ignore the tan-medium brown complexion, completely jumping from medium to dark! Currently, I have to mix three different foundations to make the right shade to suit my caramel-colored skin. Companies can stand to be a little more nuanced, I think.

TB Avatar

Yes!!! Especially the high-end foundations! I’m African American with 1/4 Asian and my undertones make my caramel-colored skin kind of tricky. Either I have to look ashy or too orange if I select only one shade. And at $55+ I REFUSE to purchase multiples just to get a shade even close to mine.

Emma Avatar

This is a Germany-specific problem, but there are zero products available for dark skin at German drugstores. My friend, who doesn’t even have very dark skin has to buy all her makeup at the PX. That is ridiculous. What are dark-skinned people who don’t have any connections to the army going to do when they want to wear makeup? They’ll either have to order online all the time, which means they can never be sure if they will actually like the product because they didn’t have a chance to try it out, or they’ll have to invest in high-end cosmetics. Which is pretty much undoable for younger girls (or boys) who’d just like to try out some makeup. There aren’t even medium shades available. Most drugstore brands have four shades of foundation/powder/etc available: Very fair, fair, light, light-medium. So there isn’t even makeup for medium skintones, when there are clearly so many people in Germany that would profit from makeup for non-light skin. And then influential bloggers who have connections to the brand convince them to come out with even more pale shades, because they say the foundations offered are “too dark”. That is ridiculous. I’m a ghost and I’ve never had problems finding a shade. Light-skinned people are clearly not the ones having a hard time with makeup in Germany! I think it’s selfish of those bloggers to keep saying “more light shades” without ever requesting more dark shades when there are dark-skinned German beauty bloggers that receive foundations etc. to review that they can’t even use. There’s one blogger in particular that I’m thinking about. She always writes positive reviews and then says: “Sadly I can’t use this as it is too light for me.” Hello! Wake up! Offer some dark shades! How hard can it be?

Lilac Avatar

I agree that there are not many or at all truly dark foundations available in drugstores, but I would like to add that foundations in Germany labelled “very fair” are not actually that_fair at all, to compare to MAC shades to get an idea, most which are named that way are rather in the area of NC/NW 25, where the lighter medium range already begins.

Meanwhile there are a couple of pale shades outside of MAC and NARS, for example by Manhattan or Catrice, and some of Bourjois, but it should be considered that not every formulation agrees with every skin-type, so it is not just the colour that has to be right but also the formulation.

A couple of foundations also darken considerably on some people due to their skin chemistry, so that you apply light foundation and an hour later it is medium-orange.

If you have found the right colours for you as fair type, then you are lucky but I can assure you that for many pale people it is an ongoing battle for decades, probably similar to the troubles your darker-skinned friend goes through in order to get the right shade of foundation.

(If you’d like to see some proof, try the beautyjunkies.de-forum and the thread on pale foundations ).
And of course pale bloggers would lobby or more pale foundations to the market, why not, as it is their problem, too. Additionally some people choose some of “their bloggers” according to their own look / colouring, so that the swatches and product recommendations actually suit to the readers.

Overall I rather have the impression that the majority of foundations available in Germany are in the medium range (kinda “dark ivory” to “light dark”,). Those labelled “fair” are a medium colour also when you compare the foundation-numbers on the brand homepages and choose a different country.

I totally agree with you that there should be more colours available in general and that there is a significant lack of dark colours, too, and most of the brands do offer them, but mostly in other countries (for example in the UK and US). So they have the product ready, it is just not on display here.

CeeBee Avatar

Stop using fake lashes in mascara ads. Seriously. We’re not idiots, we can actually SEE them, y’know…

For skincare, conduct some actual scientific based blind studies, not just a sample of 24 women, 95% reported blah blah blah (basically because the brand TOLD them what to expect and gave them free stuff, etc)…

Stop airbrushing and photoshopping women to look like plastic mannequins without any flaws. It goes beyond “enhancing an image” into something fundamentally dishonest in most cases.

And for goodness sake, if you are marketing something high end and expensive, make sure the product is actually decent!!!

Katherine T. Avatar

I’m with you on the fake lashes. That’s like advertising a hair growth product, but the model is wearing a wig and 20 hair extensions. Uh, hello….there should be truth in advertising for not only product claims but for ad pictures

Ericca Avatar

I would have to agree with second part. I want companies to stop acting like its by magic that new darker shades come in. Start making more darker shades with varying undertones.they act like computers don’t make the shade

Ninni Avatar

I would like the prices to be the same in every country. I live in Sweden where cosmetic products are very expensive. I know some brands have a policy to have the same prices all over the world, one of them is Kiehl’s – that is very good! Go Kiehl’s! The price differences lead to parallell import which means some shops sell old or fake products bought from other countries that cannot be controlled properly. If the prices were the same in all countries then the black market would not be so big.

xamyx Avatar

It’s not always the brand that sets the price across the board. When illamasqua lowered the price in Australia, the retail price went up several dollars in the US, and I don’t think that was a simple coincidence; the base price was lowered there, so the brand had to make up the loss elsewhere, which was here. Now, we don’t even have immediate access to the brand, and I have a suspicion the two are connected to some extent…

Melanie Avatar

Amen! I have to second wanting mandatory easy access to ingredient lists — if it’s on my mouth, around my eyes, and all over my skin, what’s in each product shouldn’t be a secret. I’ve emailed companies for ingredients before and the turnaround time is suspiciously long sometimes — makes a gal nervous!

ilovemakeup Avatar

This is probably a lot of people’s response, but I really wish they would stop using teenage models for literally everything. It’s getting better in some sectors, it seems, with brands like Cover Girl using women in their late 20’s and early 30’s (Katie Perry comes to mind), but it seems like high end brands use only teenagers or women in their very early 20’s to market their products. I’m a millenial, but it’s really hard for me to identify with a woman who isn’t even old enough to drink legally in the US, much less has fine lines from working a 40+ hour week for several years or being up with a baby several times a night, or doing both.

Then there’s the late teens/early 20’s models in hair dye commercials who talk about how well it covered their grays. Every time I see that I think, “Um…what?”

We’re such a youth obsessed culture, but as a consumer I find it a little insulting that they market anti aging products using women who aren’t old enough to have aged or with women who are so obviously photoshopped that you know your results will be literally nothing similar. That being said, I’m not particularly interested in looking 19 anymore and I have absolutely no interest in looking like a photoshopped android or something, either.

Quinctia Avatar

CoverGirl’s not bad with their spokespeople, Ellen DeGeneres was one for awhile. And…I think Revlon has done a few lipstick lines with celebrities with varying ages.

EM Avatar

They need to stop preying on insecurities and using demeaning language, ie “size zero” or “body tuck” creams, and sponsoring studies to determine who looks better: women without makeup, women with makeup, or women using [brand specified] makeup. What the heck–I’m looking at you, IT Cosmetics. For the last alone, I won’t be buying your products.

MissJae1908 Avatar

“I’d like to see greater diversity in marketing and base products, and I’d like to see less “this is universal” when it is clearly for fair to light skin tones. ”

Honey, you said a mouth full! Companies need to accept the fact that medium to deep skin tones are part of the makeup conversation…and we’re not going anywhere! I have made it my mission to support brands that showcase and support women that look like me…Colour Pop, Milani, Black Opal, Lancome, Black Up, Sacha, etc

Jane Avatar

Prices are out of control – there is no earthly reason prestige lipsticks should average $50, as an example. I would love to see older models; 18 year olds possess an exquisite beauty, but it’s such a young beauty. More truthful ads would be great. If a product has to be ‘shopped into performing well or looking like a different color, then don’t do that product! And why does so much skincare still had alcohol and fragrance?

xamyx Avatar

Estee Lauder started the “prestige pricing” model, and if you look at most brands in that price range, you’ll find they’re owned by EL, or have been long-time direct competitors. EL figured if a product was really expensive, the consumer would assume it must be exceptional, and spend their entire beauty budget on one product, squeezing out some of the more reasonably priced brands. Instead, many other brands figured it out, and raised their prices. They also started the whole LE/Exclusive craze, which is why MAC has a collection every few weeks, and brands like UD are now jumping on the “hype train”, as they are in direct competition.

xamyx Avatar

Well, at least it’s in line with the rest of the brands ridiculous pricing, LOL! I mean, $750 for one pair of simple pumps, that aren’t particularly comfortable or unique…?

El Avatar

The thing is, EL isn’t wrong. There definitely is that perception of low price = low quality. I actually find that attitude is even more prevalent in the UK than it was in Canada. There’s a lot of, “It was cheap so I didn’t expect much”, and the flip side is also true, where there *are* expectations of higher quality with a higher price.

I had a discussion about Etsy pricing for handmade goods with some friends a while back, and an example was cited of someone who’d been selling her stuff at what she thought was a reasonable profit margin, and doing okay out of it. Then some of her supplies got more expensive, so she put the prices up a fair bit, and suddenly couldn’t keep up with demand, because the higher price said to potential buyers that the item was worth more. The same principles apply elsewhere – people will pay what they think an item is worth. Whether or not that has any relationship to reality, well… Lol.

Rachel R. Avatar

I’m not a luxury buyer, but I think with the luxury market, the high price is part of the appeal for many of their customers. I think status statement is involved. Some people may genuinely feel the quality is better and worth paying for. If that’s what people want to charge, I don’t mind. If that’s what people want to pay, I don’t mind. I don’t have to buy it.

Adwoa Avatar

1. Agreed on the supposed universal shades- I would really like to see an end to this. It is so disappointing to receive a GWP or sample in a beauty box that is a shade for a fair person. Darker (and very fair) women are left out. 2. I’d also like to see a better range in foundation, bb/ cc creams, and “your lips but better shades.” Not all dark women have red undertones or super pigmented lips. 3. I want better accountability for high end product releases. My fav brands are high end but I really dislike seeing $60 eyeshadow quads that get a C rating on here. Do better! 4. No more crazy limited edition releases. Have a more orderly process for processing purchases and be upfront about scarcity. 5. Better rewards programs! I’m looking at you, Sephora. The deceptive marketing has to stop. 6. Lastly, id like to see more diversity in advertising. Great question!

Nicole Avatar

I think most brands need to cater to more ethnicities. I feel like a lot of HE brands have been on a slope of inconsistent quality while consistently rising their prices, which is wrong. I would like to see more counters brought back into retail chains.

Lisa Avatar

I really wish animal testing for cosmetics would be stopped. Secondly, I wish companies would stop adding fragrance to face products, as that is one of the most universal irritants. I really don’t understand why moisturizers and treatments (especially ones designated for the eye area!!) would need to be scented. I do enjoy some flavored/scented lip products, though. I wish jar packaging would be updated to something more sanitary and protective of active ingredients. I wish companies paid more attention to undertones and were also more inclusive of shades for very pale AND very dark complexions. I wish there were better sunscreen options available in terms of texture and finish. Finally, I would like for companies to make more travel- or trial-sized products available because I like variety but hardly ever use up color cosmetics.

Russel Ndip Avatar

You hit the nail on the head with the topic of face product and irritants. This is something I didn’t even think about till I started reading Paula’s choice and then it donned on me that so many of the companies have jar moisturizers when the studies clearly show they unsanitary and not protective of their active ingredients but continue to do so because they claim the consumers liked me better. I suppose it comes down to the public being more educated for them to change their practices. And also why lavender oil in face products??

Heather Avatar

I would like all animal testing to be banned. It is simply incredulous to me that in 2015 large beauty manufacturers (I’m looking at you big 3) are still testing on animals when there are countless alternatives that are known to work just as well, if not better. I am beyond disappointed that MAC is no longer cruelty free when that was one of the brand’s hallmark offerings.

TB Avatar

I’d like to see half sizes for high-end foundations so that we can buy more than one color and mix. Although many lines are now trying to offer multiple shades, it seems to ignore certain shades for mixed skin (I’m Filipino and Black and I ALWAYS fall between two caramel-brown shades!).

The Silver Nail Avatar

You’ve all already hit my biggest concerns — two shades of concealer does not “fit all,” we shouldn’t have to be web detectives to find ingredients, and so on. My biggest pet peeves are the use of young models for anti-aging products such as wrinkle creams and spot removers, and the use of false eyelashes and excessive Photoshopping in mascara ads. Just show the mascara! I no longer believe ANY mascara ads and so I stick to my one tried and true brand.

Oh, another peeve is when a makeup or nail polish company re-introduces a shade and renames it, trying to trick you into buying it again, thinking it’s new. OPI, I’m lookin’ at you!

Lacey Avatar

Definitely cut out “universal” claims when those rarely stretch outside of fair/medium skin tones. I’m not impressed with the teasers and hype-building around products that are released online and out of stock within minutes (ahem, NYX Suede lip creams). There’s a difference between generating buzz and constantly dangling a carrot that you don’t drop for 4 months. I’d like to see more drugstore brands leave animal testing behind.

Anastasia Avatar

1. Include WOC, we are more than three shades – if we are included at all******
– Question: Christine, can you ask some companies as to why they don’t cater to women of all complexions, especially deep skin women? Like, they think they don’t want makeup?

2. Stop using fake lashes in mascara ads, like that’s stupid… Really it is.

3. Use age appropriate models for anti-aging/ skin correcting products.. 20 somethings should already have good skin, why not actually use someone that had fine lines or even an older model!

4. DO BETTER WITH LIMITED EDITION RELEASES… MAC, I’m looking at you, Lorac, should I continue. Be upfront about quantities as well as produce MORE. Simple.

5. Sephora, figure out a Rewards Program ..

Christine Avatar

You and I both know if I asked that I’m going to get a PR-type answer. Something along the lines of 1.) We start with the shades we think are going to be most popular and 2) are working on or will work on additional shades if and when it is popular. Given how large most companies are, it’s unlikely that it is a flat out racist mentality, but it is driven by their idea of what does or doesn’t sell. I wish brands would at least take the hit on cost to formulate the shades, and they could at least offer them online through their own e-comm site if they can’t get all the SKUs on Sephora’s gondola or whatever (many brands are limited on space for offerings at larger retailers like Sephora) – but you DO have brands who have wider base products available so it can be done – it just has to be a priority.

In general, while people of all ethnicities are buying beauty products in greater quantity and their purchasing powers have increased, it will take the market much longer to appreciate it, I think. We are seeing more diversity in base in more brands but not all brands. I’m seeing more of the high-end and luxury brands at least have a few darker shades, rather than stopping at medium. If you look at the shade ranges for Guerlain’s foundations from 3-5 years ago compared to ranges today, they’re almost double in size — same with Dior, particularly for their top selling foundations, those ranges do get expanded. It’s just disappointing that they don’t do it all at once. (Though none of this is true for anything that is BB/CC/Tinted, those are all way too short in range across the majority of brands — I think MAC is one of the few that actually covers their regular shade range.)

Shruti Avatar

We really need lip swatches, eye swatches and even general hand swatches of products on various skintones! It’s much easier now with so many beauty gurus with different ethnicities but companies themselves need to release swatches and product demos on different skintones. Colourpop has started this and while it’s refreshing, colourpop still needs to incorporate lip swatches from different ethnicities because the product looks different on a brown wrist than on purple/mauve lips!

Mary D Avatar

This is such a great question! I would LOVE to see companies that claim their primers work on very oily and scarred faces, actually use(in video/print ad campaigns) women and men with deep acne scars(and show TRUE before and after photos). And then, say that the scarring won’t totally go away, but MAY be blurred a bit and that the oiliness MAY go away for a few hours(instead of 16 hours). These primers are expensive and don’t do what they claim to. I’m a 48 year old African-American woman and still have acne, deep scarring(and I’ve been to 9 dermatologists…it’s genetic) and very oily skin(I could pass for 30, but my skin problems still suck!). Another thing: bring back foundations for different skin TYPES. Back in the day, I could shop for OILY skin foundations. Now, nearly every foundation is ALL SKIN-TYPES and then they try to sell you a primer on top of that. I shouldn’t have to pay $28+ for a foundation, just to be told that I SHOULD be wearing a primer(which would cost another $28+) underneath. And even then, the primers would make my makeup separate. I’m not in show-business and don’t wear makeup when I workout, so the sweat-factor shouldn’t come into play for everyday life. I’m just grateful that stores like Sephora allow me to bring things back(without an attitude) if they don’t work, especially if I’ve just spent $40 on ONE item. I’ve been telling salespeople that I’m that “one in a million” person that always has problems with makeup for the last 25 years and I always pray that the stuff works. I just wish makeup companies would stop making false claims(ie. using someone with barely any scarring) and be honest…tell me about the product, give me a weeks-worth sample(especially if it’s over a certain price) and ask me to follow-up with them at the counter(with my opinion of the product). They can give my opinion to whomever is in charge of creating the product, see how many others are experiencing similar issues and possibly make changes. Lastly, and this is a big one, for me: can these makeup artists(at the counters) stop trying to match foundation to my face and look at my neck/chest instead? After 35 years of acne, my face is nearly the color of a cooked meatball(although, it’s gotten a bit better over the last couple of years) and the rest of my body is medium caramel. I DO want everything to match and don’t want to walk around looking like a sideshow runaway. It is refreshing when an artist “get’s it” and swipes the foundation lower than my jawline. ***SIGH*** Okay, mini-rant over! Love your blog, Christine!

Natalie Avatar

I have fair skin and I don’t find it so easy to find tinted mineral sunscreens. Usually a “universal tint” in tinted mineral sunscreens of the ones I tried are way too dark for me such as Skinceuticals, LaRoche Posay, Clinique, Paula’s Choice, to name a few. Also I know these tints are too light for deep complexions. Asian brand BB’s are sometimes light enough but usually have a weird pink tone. Makeup bases used to be impossible to find my color, but are getting better. Some companies still don’t make bases light enough. I don’t want to go mixing white foundation in my bases to get my shade, I just want to buy one product that works. So I wouldn’t say fair skin has it that easy.

Laura Avatar

So agree on your list! I feel particularly strongly about ingredient information being readily available. I have some sensitivities and allergies, and if I can’t find an ingredient list I won’t order.

IRockFaces Avatar

As a WOC I find it hard to find foundations that compliment medium brown skin with golden undertones. Some brands either assume I want my skin to look redder than it should be or pumpkin orange (I’m calling you out Mac). Or worse yet they give a color that could work if I bronze the heck out of my face but it leaves me with grey or ugly pinky colors that shouldn’t be there anyways (Think drugstore brands). It’s truly frustrating that the only brands to make a real effort to match me the closest also charge between $30+ a bottle. If it wasn’t for sephora’s IQ I’d system I still might not have found my current foundation stash. Secondly, more companies need to realize eye shadow shades on pale skin don’t show up true to color on deeper skin so please make it more pigmented. I have returned plenty of palettes for that exact reason. It’s cruel and unfair to expect us to wear off white, taupe, and beige as “a neutrals palette” when many of us need warmer shades for lid and transition colors. Last thing is to make more lipsticks with peach or caramel bases instead of white so we don’t have to wear lip liner every time we want to grab a nude or everyday shade. Nobody wants to have chalky lips like they ate handfuls of baby powder before they applied a neon looking lipstick. Rant over.

Olivia Avatar

BETTER SHADE RANGES! There are so many foundations I have tried and would love to try but there isn’t a shade match for me. I am very fair and I know this ghostly skin isn’t super common compared to tan skin but trust me there are so many other pale gals and guys that desperately need shades for them. Same thing for deeper complexions! I have a yellow undertone and everything pale tends to be pink! Same thing goes for deeper complexions, there needs to be a wider variety of undertones. Also I wish the drugstore would stop going up in price!

Lulle Avatar

Excessive, sometimes delirious claims should stop. They hurt the entire industry because everybody feels compelled to exaggerate the benefits their product might offer to remain competitive. How can you hope to sell a face lotion by saying “it’s moisturizing and protects your skin with antioxidants” if your competitors claim “it’s botox in a bottle! Result in 10 minutes!”?
The annual price hike is also a problem. Apparently beauty brands have not realized that salaries have stagnated for years!

K Avatar

A recent one, but I’m really tired of companies trying to use instagram or youtube beauty gurus or popular bloggers to sell me stuff. I don’t mind press samples or swatches, but it’s really easy to tell when a post is clearly coached or a little too enthusiastic, and it makes me really feel alienated. I don’t want to be seen as some kind of money fountain. I don’t want to be tricked or coached or manipulated into buying things through people that are presented to me as someone everyday and trustworthy. I’d love to be able to actually trust people’s opinions again without being extremely skeptical.

Lulle Avatar

Oh, I just thought about something else: the training of sales associate needs to improve. I regularly have to deal with SAs that know less about their brand than I do, have no clue (and sometimes no interest?) about future collections when promo pics are already everywhere online, and are unable to suggest shades that could flatter me based on my skintone/coloring. In this day and age if SAs are not experts in their field and not able provide valuable help to informed customers I don’t see a bright future for brick and mortar stores.

Rachel R. Avatar

I agree with everything you said, Christine.

As far as diversity, I’d like to see not just more diversity in skin tones, but age and gender, too. I’m so tired of nothing but matte neutrals everything being marketed to the 40+ crowd. I’m tired of seeing beuty vloggers on YouTube who are in their early 30s getting slammed for being “too old” to be doing beauty blogging, and being told their hair and makeup does not suit women their age. If 30 is “old, ” I must be ancient!

I’d also like to see less sexism. I think grooming and skincare for men is much more widely accepted and marketed. However, I don’t really think men wearing makeup is very well shown, or accepted. I think men should feel free to express themselves and look good, too.

Rachel R. Avatar

Sorry, I got interrupted by a kid and posted too soon. It goes along with truth in advertising and ageism. I think they need to stop it with the unnecessary photoshopping. If it’s an ad for eyeshadow, and the model got a zit on her nose the day of the shoot, I’m fine with that being retouched. But if a brand is trying to sell me a foundation, I want to see what it really covers, how the finish looks, etc. They can use hot 40-something actresses in their ads, and I’ll believe they’re gorgeous women. But I don’t believe any foundation will remove all their wrinkles and make them look 20. I can’t believe anyone buys that BS, and I wish the beauty industry would stop insulting our collective intelligence.

Judy H. Avatar

I’d like to see cosmetic companies maintain more consistency in their production. More than one, I have purchased the same product twice from the same company, (one was a lipstick, the other a blush) and the constency of each product was very different. The second lipstick I bought in the same shade as the first was much creamier and moisturizing. The second blush I bought in the same shade as the first was like dry dusty powder with streaky application.

Judy H. Avatar

I forgot to mention the price! Cosmetic companies know they pretty much have women over the barrel sincethe majority of women use some degree of makeup or skin care. The rising prices of makeup are ridiculous and hardly match what we are buying. $65.00 for a bullet of lipstick?! Nothing is that good!

Rox Avatar

DIVERSITY! There needs to be more people of color represented in ad campaigns and swatch photos. People of all ages and all sizes too! Basically, the whole industry needs to stop perpetuating the idea that beauty is only thin, white, and 20 years old.

Also, can we get some more accurate color swatches on retailer websites please? I don’t know why they even bother with them most of the time because they don’t help at all.

Morgan Avatar

1. Stop with all the limited edition stuff! Besides when MAC worked with Cinderella for the movie and stuff like that, it’s so silly! All these collections that sell out in seconds! I’ll just come here and find an accessible dupe! And be open about the quantity of LE products!

2. I’m very white so I’m lucky, but going with the diversity issue… Why can I NEVER find a natural lipstick for black people? I have black girl friends and it’s honestly so hard for them to find their lips but better colors! Also foundation and stuff that others already said.

3. Most importantly, fix the hiring process! MAC COSMETICS THAT IS ALL YOU. How many people here have had a problem, even one, with the rudeness of MAC employees? That’s what I thought. I really struggle with this because I’m obsessed with their products, but they are MEAN. They ignore you and make you look stupid, and if you correct them, ITS ON. I’m gonna stop here because I’m probably preaching to the choir.

Genevieve Avatar

There are several problems that the beauty industry needs to fix:
1. Better quality control for products – it is not good enough these days for brands to put out products that get a C or below rating.
2. More realistic claims – not 24 hour wear, lasts for 16 hours – when it doesn’t.
3. Wider range of foundation colours for drugstore and other brands. Not everyone fits into a 6-8 range of colours. It is so disheartening to discover that your favourite brand does not care for your patronage by not delivering a wider range of foundation colours to suit your complexion.
4. Brands to ship overseas – a constant battle for those who live outside the US/UK/France
5. Brands such as Maybelline, L’Oreal etc. to ship their full range to participating countries and not just half.
6. Fair pricing – although that also depends on the respective countries’ tax mark up too.
7. Products should contain ingredients that are non allergenic. There is no need these days to include known ingredients that cause allergic reactions. Greater transparency of ingredients needs to be standardized across the brands.
8. Cruelty free – all makeup products should be cruelty free.
9. Models for advertising should not just be young and Caucasian – a wider diversity of models to reflect our multicultural heritage.

Susan Avatar

Great question! Add my voice to the chorus for ingredients lists. They are required on the product package, so how hard is it to post them on your website? I also find the rapidly escalating price of products to be ridiculous.

jenni Avatar

the most disappointing thing would be that when a brand becomes popular or is in the “meta” they suddenly decide to raise their prices like all the extra revenue isn’t enough. look at the skyrocketing prices of the naked palettes! i’m just glad i got the first one when it was reasonable and cheap.

Diana Avatar

I agree with everything you said but for me the most irritating is “for all skin tones”…sorry but no…just no. If brands like Colourpop can provide such large shade ranges why shouldn’t more luxurious brands be able to?

Flaky Avatar

Everyone here has great ideas & I agree wholeheartedly!

The one other thing I’d add to this wishlist is that companies would just ditch the cheapo applicators. either make it something of good quality that we actually want to use or skip it altogether.

Kecia S. Avatar

I’d love to see a greater & more accurate variety of foundations for deeper skintones. I’m roughly an NC45, depending on the formulation, but the number of foundations that actually match me is small, & I’m still searching for a holy grail product. Tom Ford’s Traceless Perfecting in Warm Almond is pretty darn close, but do I really want/have to pay $80 for foundation???

Lilac Avatar

Plenty of suggestions here that I can agree too. I am also strongly supporting the concept of a larger variety of foundation colours and also of types of foundation.
That is a good idea, Christine, to at least offer the shades that don’t fit into the drugstore shelves online. Additionally there should be testers for all colours at the stores, if possible, though.

Also I don’t want fragrances in skin-care products unless I specifically choose so, but the majority of items are fragranced and buying un-fragranced lotions often is more expensive (!) I get the concept of fragrance as a “wellness”-factor but it should not be automatically in everything. The brands could divide their offerings into half un-fragranced and half-fragranced maybe. Neither do I want fragrance in make up and unscented is still rare.

I also agree that the ingredients should not need to be searched most of the time, every brand should have them on their homepage.

Another bug is that stores / brands apparently find it cheaper to let people buy and return a full size of an item because it´s not right instead of selling smaller trial sizes. It would be wonderful if there were available 10ml of foundations and skincare, miniatures for decorative make up and more smaller sizes for perfumes, too. In some countries brands hand out a lot of samples but sometimes only of a few shades, and in other countries, samples are hard to come buy. It’d be much easier if everyone could buy smaller sized products in the actual shade they want first.

El Avatar

Everything you already said, Christine. The ingredients one is the one most pertinent to myself, given my allergies, and nowadays if I can’t locate the ingredients for a product, I don’t buy it, end of.

Related, I’d like to see a change in the SA culture. So many people are intimidated and shamed into buying something at a beauty counter, and I think that’s disgraceful. I always ask to see the packaging of a product so I can look at the ingredients list (checking for allergenics), and the type of response I get determines whether I will purchase anything at all, as I’ve had SAs get huffy and offended by the request. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to want to know exactly what they’re selling to me!

kati Avatar

i would love for makeup companies like MAC and L’oreal to not directly fund Palestinian genocide so i can buy my favorite products without worrying about my money being used to blow off children’s faces and destroy neighborhoods… just a thought.

Helene Avatar

I think all I’d like to be fixed in the beauty industry have been mentioned already.
Claims, universility, is that even a word, ingredients, ridiculous photoshopping especially in the mascara adds.
Ageism is a big peve of mine, not being in my 20s anymore, it was quite a long time ago to tell the truth. I don’t want anyone to tell me what makeup I can wear, or indeed clothes. I follow some You Tubers and just the other day heard a beautiful woman telling the story of how a teenager (I think it was) telling her she could not use blue eyeliner as she was too old. Just stupid.
Someone mentioned the GWP’s I am fair, and 90% of the GWP’s that contain foundation have a sample that’s way too dark for me. I think the GWP’s could be personalized, at least when it comes to just foundations.
And of course ALL products, skincare and makeup should be cruelty free.

Toni Avatar

Oh jeez where do I start! I agree with you Christine and everyone else here.I would also like to see companies using real women and not models all the time. Stop the “lash enhancements was used” on advertising mascara.I mean what’s the point in that! Just use mascara and nothing else! Also, some products need to made smaller.I recently discovered UD primer potion had started to cause a reaction on my eyelids as I forgot I had it over a year. Trouble is, it has so much product in the tube that you would never use it all in 6mnths unless you are a makeup artist so I had to bin it. Would like the full range of a brand if they are sold in the UK and not just a few bits like Nyx cosmetics for one. I could go on and on!

emily Avatar

To me the biggest problem is undeniably testing cosmetics on animals when there is such a wide range of alternatives. And it is all done in the name of vanity. I do not want to achieve an idea of “beauty” pushed at me by corporations at the expense at the millions and millions of animals trapped in cages and cowering in fear. Nobody should be trapped and killed for me to achieve a standard of beauty that is all an endless game that nobody ever wins. That being said, we can still have all these cosmetics without testing on animals! 🙂 There are all these alternatives to testing on animals: (http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/cosmetic_testing/facts/alternatives_animal_tests.html)
EpiSkin™, EpiDerm™ and SkinEthic—each composed of artificial human skin—can save thousands of rabbits each year from painful skin corrosion and irritation tests.
The Bovine Corneal Opacity and Permeability Test and Isolated Chicken Eye Test use eyes from animals slaughtered for the meat industry instead of live rabbits to detect chemicals and products that are severely irritating to the eyes.
The 3T3 Neutral Red Uptake Phototoxicity Test can replace the use of mice and other animals in the testing of medicines and other products for their potential to cause sunlight induced “photo-toxicity.”
The Reduced Local Lymph Node Assay for skin allergy testing makes it possible to reduce animal use by up to 75 percent compared with traditional guinea pig and mouse tests.
When testing to determine chemical concentrations that are deadly to fish and other aquatic life, use of the Fish Threshold Method can reduce the numbers of fish used by at least 70 percent compared with standard test methods.

Beauty comes from a compassionate heart. once you are made aware of the evil of testing cosmetics on animals you cannot truly believe any product that caused the pain and bloodshed of another sentient being is actually making you more beautiful. kindness and compassion is beautiful. for me, i am not going to go and throw out anything i already own that i realize has been tested on animals, but i am going to take 5 minutes to google whether a brand tests on animals before purchasing. and i think its good not to be too picky. for instance tarte has a line of vegan products. even though all the products are not vegan i would not boycott buying products from the company because as a consumer i am voting and showing that there is a market for this product. anyways if anyone read all this thank you 🙂

Katie L Avatar

I would like to see some diversity. I know eye shadows can only be made in so many colors, but I feel as though lots of products are repeats of colors.

Second, I HATE limited edition products. I know it boosts sales when customers know they won’t ever be able to get the product again, however, there are some products I would LOVE to own that I never will be able to.

Third, Holiday Sets. I love them and hate them at the same time. I see lots of repackaging, and limited edition products. But I can’t stop my self from buying them. LOL.

Anne Avatar

Obviously there is a huge diversity (read: hella racist) problem in the beauty industry, whether it’s in shades available, marketing, etc. There’s also a issue of body image (thin, young, able-bodied, quintessentially feminine,almost always white women tend to be the only ones featured). I also think the animal-testing aspect is completely ridiculous as it has been scientifically disproved for decades and, aside from being really unethical, wastes money.

Jennifer Avatar

I would like to see more diversity in foundation colors. Maybe a way to customize your foundation to match your skin tone and texture. I would like to see brand diversify their eyeshadow palettes, not using the same shades in every palette or keeping the shade and changing the name. Please create a foundation that will last on a severely oily skinned person like myself!

Samantha Avatar

I get so sick of seeing light-skinned blonde women in promo photos for new lines (this coming from a light-skinned blonde woman). Transparency with ingredients is another biggie. And I think many lines could expand their shade ranges on BOTH ends of the spectrum (both very fair and very dark). Many of the “light,” “ivory,” and “fair” shades out there are still too dark/yellow for me.

Lindsay Avatar

I think that I’ll make up brands should be CRUELTY FREE and because YouTube is such a huge platform for reviews and such I think we should all come together and contact our favorite make up brand companies that do test and ask them to stop testing on innocent creatures

doroffee Avatar

-catering to different skin tones and problems in drugstore beauty
-at least a sticker with translation of ingredient lists and what a product is supposed to do when a product is released in another country
-realistic claims
-limited editions being truly limited… and amazing products released in limited editions becoming permanent (especially good face / base make-up or overall good formulas)
– (this is limited to Hungary) When it comes to brands like Maybelline, L’oreal etc. I would like to see all the stuff that is released in the U.S. and the U.K. come to my country, not only the umpteenth mascara and foundation… rarely any lip products arrive at Hungary, the Color Tattoos arrived about 2 years late and in a really limited range, I have seena about 2 of the Color Vivids, also late… no info about the Master Glaze things and L’oreals versions of the YSL lipstains… I had to order a Color Whisper online back in the day, because I was told they were not planning to release them… so I’m not talking about crazy unwearable stuff… (not to even talk about 70% of the high-end brands talked about here or youtube are not sold anywhere in store here… not even NARS)
-the lack of professionalism of salespeople in higher-end stores who are supposed to be beauty advisors too… I mean, not once I came across people in places like that who seemed like a 4-year-old painted lipstick and eyeshadow on them, with shaved and tattooed eyebrows… and they did not have a clue when I asked them about basic things, like if they could recommend me a concealer thick enugh for my dark under-eye circles or a powder highlight…

Krisztina Avatar

Transparency regarding ingredients! I have celiac disease, therefore, I do not want to use any lipstick or lip balm that contains gluten. However, when I ask brands about the allergens in their products I found that most of them are really unprepared (Bobbi Brown, I am looking at you). Or others with really high price point still have allergy-causing ingredients (e.g. Tom Ford lipstick).

Thankfully, there are good examples as well (like Dior or Charlotte Tilbury) but most of them still have a lot to improve…

Ess Avatar

Companies need to expand their foundation ranges to actually incorporate the entire spectrum of skin tones.

They also need to stop naming the darker shades after food, and the lighter shades also need to stop being associated with names like “natural” and “nude.”

impekkable Avatar

Lisa, you’ve mentioned most of the issues I wanted to raise, but I’ll elaborate just the same.
1) Animal testing: it’s not necessary, it’s cruel; to keep an animal in captivity, under horrible conditions, do we really need to do this in today’s time? No, there are artificial/near-skin tissues that mimic human skin and can be used. And, till we can come up with alternatives to animal testing, why don’t we just use the elements that have been discovered to be safe? Companies such as L’oreal, P&G, they are huge, with a lot of funds, and can certainly come up with alternatives.

2) Safer ingredients: in most formulations, one can find carcinogenic ingredients. Lower cost should not be at the cost of people’s health, or the Earth’s health, for that matter. Everything that is used will eventually go into the water and soil systems, we are all interconnected, and let’s not be short-sighted.

3) Smaller-sized products, for less waste and more affordability. I like a variety but I feel bad about wasting, so, I’d love to see bite sized cosmetics that one can use up.

4) Transparency in labelling: full disclosure of ingredients, this is critical as we have the right to know what we are using. There is a misconception about natural ingredients as well, that should also clarified. Just because something is nature-derived, it doesn’t mean it’s okay, once it undergoes processing, it’s no longer in that natural state anyway. Every chemical compound is not a threat. Just because something was made in a lab, doesn’t make it bad for you. I think some light should be thrown on this topic.

5) Sunscreens, pretty much a feature of my life, but it’s hard to reconcile with the current options. Would love to have options that are safe and feel like a regular face moisturizer, not thick, not sensitizing, not like a white or ashy mask, not loaded with alcohol and other reactive ingredients.

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