At a time when stores all around the country are closing faster than Robert Downey Jr.’s Dr. Doolittle reboot, Sephora is bucking brick and mortar’s downturn trend.
The beauty store giant is opening a mind-boggling 100 new stores in 2020, so if you’re a guy who thinks the retailer is “just for makeup,” well, it’s time to get reacquainted. Sephora sells men’s skincare, haircare, fragrance, and products in the still-ethereal “wellness” category, too.
And because of their growing consumer clout, they offer plenty of exclusives from brands you can only get when you walk through their doors (or by shopping Sephora online).
I stopped into Sephora in SoHo this weekend to do a bit of recon for this story, but it was so overwhelming and crowded that I basically pulled a Grandpa Simpson GIF and walked right back out.
Good thing I already know about the retailer’s lesser-known, yet robust owned-brand offerings. Like their cleansing wipes, which are a great alternative to actually, you know, washing your face when you’re tired and ready to pass out but don’t want your dirty mug hitting the pillow with the day’s grime still on it.
Got a few stray hairs looking like they’re trying to make a break from your eyebrows? Time to invest in a good set of tweezers, and Tweezerman makes the gold (or is it pink?) standard. Personally, I find the mini slant tweezers provide more control when plucking than the full-size pair.
This cleanser (one of your minimalist skincare steps!) has the “Clean at Sephora” seal, meaning it’ formulated without sulfates parabens, formaldehydes, formaldehyde-releasing agents, phthalates, mineral oil, retinyl palmitate, oxybenzone, coal tar, hydroquinone, triclosan, and triclocarban.
All of the brands bearing Sephora’s “Clean Seal” also have less than one percent of synthetic fragrances. If going au natural (or at least, more natural) with your hair and skincare products matters to you, this is a good label to look for.
Another Sephora exclusive, this face oil is great for all skin types and helps to address blemishes and redness. The tea tree oil also reads very masculine when it comes to grooming products, which may help you get over adding another step to your skincare routine.
A sleeping mask is basically a super rich face cream you wear overnight. It won’t leave your pillowcase greasy, but it will have you saying, “I’m baby” to the mirror when you wake up the next day.
This super-lightweight mousse (a first in the sunscreen space) protects at a broad-spectrum SPF 50 level while the water-resistant formula acts as a daily moisturizer to boot. It absorbs quickly into skin, with shea butter, antioxidant-packed blue sea kale, and just the slightest hint of cucumber scent.
Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Universal Daily Peel, $88 for 30 treatment packs
We’ve talked exfoliators here before, and Dr. Dennis Gross makes the best of the
expensive best. This patented two-step anti-aging AHA/BHA peel pad comes pre-dosed with five acids to visibly reduce dullness, uneven texture, pores, and dark spots.
A great on-the-go set to throw in your dopp kit when traveling, and a great introduction to this currently very hip skincare brand. The 3-piece set includes a serum, moisturizer and retinoid. which is already on its way to cult status with skincare savants everywhere.