What convinces you to try out a new brand?

When I see readers mention it routinely as part of products they’re loving, using, favorite products, etc. and if the brand has a (mostly) clean/drama-free background or else has a good period of “good” behavior (some growing pains are to be expected for indie brands).

— Christine


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Erica Avatar

Do I need it?
How do I get it?
How much is it?
Does there stuff interest me enough to give them a try?

I have tried hyped up stuff and have been disappointed. Indie often gets over hyped and in many experiences, I have been let down just as much with them as with mainstream brands. While I think it’s great to support small business, I don’t think it means they deliver better quality all of the time. A lot of times they just have cutesy packaging and a quirky name but that doesn’t quarantee quality even if a favored influencer just loves that brand lol.
Just saying, the more makeup I have, the more critical I am and I’m less likely to accept you into the mix and you have to offer something quite unique and have very good reviews consistently for awhile before I try you!

Cameron Avatar

I think you summed up exactly how I feel about it. A lot of new indie brands popping up lately seem to be private label brands. I’m only okay with that if they are open about it. Paying extra for basically packaging is pretty shady to me.

Mariella Avatar

As with most things, it’s seeing it here and reading your assessment, Christine. In addition (this may now be a thing of the past) being able to swatch or see the item “in store”, maybe being able to get a sample (or try it on me) is sort of key but, as I say, the days of that sort of thing may be well in the past. And I’m really tempted by the Clionnadh (or however it’s spelled) shadows and may well break down at some point to order a few.

Mariella Avatar

It may significantly curtail my makeup buying, which isn’t a bad thing at all (just a sad thing but the reality is that I so don’t need more makeup and I’m fine with re-ordering items to replenish those I’ve used up. But I’ll sure be spending a lot less money.

Karen Avatar

This made me wonder that I haven’t seen Morphe reviewed for a long time on your blog (not a problem in my books, just a curiosity). I can’t find a post about why.
While I personally am not a fan of their marketing techniques and some of their practices, I wonder what made you stop reviewing?

LeToya Avatar

For me, research is key! I want to know about how well a product works, IF it will show up on my complexion, and I also like to make sure that I am buying from a reputable brand with nice morals and ethics. While all companies may have their share of issues, I don’t like to support the more problematic brands.
I also TRY to wait until the hype dies down to see if I still want it, but some items I just know from the pictures that I have to have it. Most recent example, the ND Bronze Glow eyeshadow palette. It is totally my color story and in my price range so I am going for it!

Ana Maria Avatar

Waiting the hype to die down is a good approach. Sometimes new products or brands get raving reviews just because they are new… and we all have the bias of the new things, make-up, skincare, clothing, food, etc. It’s nice to have new stuff, but I still end up liking my old sweaters more. ?

Kitty Avatar

I look at reviews, including here. Whether there is a sample provided or smaller size so I can test for color or skin reaction, or reasonable return policy if there isn’t. I need full disclosure of all ingredients. Free or low-cost shipping.

Kira Avatar

I get interested in clean brands that are widely raved about and have sleek packaging. I tried out some other brands because I saw them featured here and they performed well. I try out new beauty brands if my skin-guru friends (who are also east asian and have skin texture that looks similar to mine) tell me a certain product was a game-changer.

Cheryl Avatar

Alot of my decisions come from your page and reviews. I have tried a lot I didn’t care for in mainstream department store brands like Bobbi brown or urban decay and end up liking only one of their products. I love Sydney Grace eyeshadows thanks to you. I have bought makeup from indie brands from Etsy and haven’t been impressed. They seem to only cater to young girls with all their super shiny eyeshadow. Only buy from a few brands now .

If I read it over and over again how wonderful it is from here I might consider trying it!

Rachel R. Avatar

When multiple sources I trust report no issues with getting their orders, and that quality was good.

Seeing good swatches from sources I trust. I don’t rely on brand swatches if I can help it.

I’m not seeing any current/recent drama with the brand research doesn’t show any big concern with owner behavior.

Of course, they have to have products I’m interested in, and prices within my range.

Nancy T Avatar

When my initial first impressions via swatches, reviews give me a “BAM right in the kisser” kind of moment! They seriously have to bowl me over with excellent quality, ease of application, and uniqueness in a sea of the usual fare. Recently, I’ve been wowed by JD Glow, Clionadh (sp?) and Sydney Grace because of the aforementioned boxes checked for each.

Ana Maria Avatar

I usually wait for reviews on long term usage (1-2 months), especially for skincare. I don’t care about first impressions or hype on a new brand. If multiple people with similar tastes mention it often as favorite, I might want to give a try. Also, the availability with retailers I regularly purchase from convinces me (it’s easier to add one product to a Sephora or Amazon cart); I would rarely make an order if the brand is only available through their own website (take the trouble to make an account, order multiple items to avoid shipping fees). Although having the possibility to order at a small fee a sample pack to test out products might convince me more.

Pearl Avatar

1) Temptalia exposure and reviews
2) Reader hype or recommendations

For indie brands, my preference is those that supplement my mainstream collection. I will always be loyal to MAC but for me, I can’t find saturation and pigmentation with MAC like I do with Sydney Grace. I have thought about trying others – the latest being Clionadh – but prismatic affects and triochromes and all that are just not my go-to anymore. Sometimes it’s a relief to have aged myself out of a certain product or trend because it’s less for me to worry about or that I “have” to buy.

Some of my favorite brands that I have come to follow with fervor, thanks to Temptalia, are Pat McGrath Labs, Natasha Denona and Sydney Grace.

Susan K Avatar

If they offer something I’m into atm that appeals and a few review checks say quality is there and swatches look good I’ll give them a chance. I’m more prone to doing so if I’ve heard of them here & there and they’ve been around longer than a minute. But recently I did buy a palette that I wasnt even in market for from a brand I heard/ knew nothing about because I fell so hard when a youtuber showed it in an upcoming indie release vid. I knew I’d be getting it no matter what lol It hasnt arrived yet so we shall see

Maggie Avatar

I’ll buy if:
1) the brand itself has items that WOW me in some way (including that it suits me and my preferences)
2) the effects of such items can’t be re-created with my current collection and
3) multiple trusted sources continually buy such items from the brand and
4) there is a decent return policy. If I can’t return the item, I’ll wait out the hype first. If it’s an item at an amazing price point that beats out its competitors in my collection, then I might get one just to try out first once I’m nearly out of the similar products I currently use. The latter has been the case for Colourpop, The Ordinary and Timeless Skincare.

Genevieve Avatar

A set of colours/shades that I would wear, plus an excellent review from you Christine. Being able to see the product instore helps too. But I am resigned, living here in Aus, that there are a lot of excellent products that I will never be able to swatch myself, so I rely on you Christine.
It helps if it is easily accessible and affordable too.

Kate Avatar

I’d say good reviews, especially if people with the similar complexion or skin type loved it. Availability is also important. I don’t mind if the brand only available on their own website, but I won’t pay high shipping fees or use a forwarding service just to try something hyped.

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