9 local beauty brands tailor-made for the Filipino look

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Snoe Beauty is one of the gateways to local beauty brands. Its lipstick range has beautiful colors that aren’t your typical tita shades. Photo from SNOE BEAUTY/INSTAGRAM

Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — With renewed public interest in makeup and cosmetics in the Philippines, it’s as good a time as any to put the spotlight on local beauty brands. Aside from the fact that it helps support local entrepreneurs, choosing to buy Pinoy may be more sustainable for the country’s resources, especially if the products are developed, manufactured, and packaged locally. No more shipping delays, customs problems, or exorbitant markups from your suki Instagram reseller. Another benefit is that certain products like base makeup and color cosmetics may also be more tailored to our complexion and the country’s (often humid) environment.

Below are some local beauty haunts you may want to check out.

Céleteque's products are designed to address specific skin issues including hydration, acne solutions, and anti-aging. Their dermocosmetics line combines both makeup and skin care. Photo from CÉLETEQUE


If your skin’s a little more problematic, try Céleteque: “Science behind beautiful skin.” Although a good number of its products are mostly geared toward science-driven skin care, Céleteque also offers a handful of basic products that “combines makeup and skin care in one.”

In a short amount of time, Happy Skin has gained a lot of celebrity fans, due to its reliable formulas and new releases that are always on-trend. Photo from KELLY MISA/INSTAGRAM

                                                                Happy Skin

Happy Skin, one of beauty’s newcomers, is probably the one that’s most like traditional foreign cosmetics brands, in that it releases new collections of color cosmetics pretty regularly, and is mostly in tune with the global beauty beat, with lip crayons, contour and highlight sticks, and even micellar water. Its products come packaged nicely, too — perfect for gifting.

Ellana Minerals tackles two big beauty problems of Filipinos and other Southeast Asians: shade matching and a formula that can withstand humidity. Photo from ELLANA MINERALS

                                                             Ellana Minerals

Ellana Minerals, established in 2008 and touted as the “No. 1 Mineral Cosmetic Brand in the Philippines,” does base makeup well. Although it offers other color cosmetics such as eyeshadow and blush, and even tools, it’s in the foundation where it truly shines. Available in a wide array of skin shades and tones, in both loose and pressed forms, the foundation has a formula that is also developed to withstand the Philippine heat.

Established by social entrepreneurs, Human Nature's products directly address its many advocacies through locally sourced ingredients and direct employment. Photo from HUMAN NATURE/INSTAGRAM

                                                              Human Nature

If you’re just looking for the basics and prefer not to splurge while you’re at it, give Human Nature a try. It has a very small collection of cosmetics (though it’s also developed several bath products for you and your dog), so it’s a pretty easy terrain to navigate. Its tinted lip balms are tried and tested — a cheaper and more sustainable alternative to the well-loved Burt’s Bees. Human Nature is also a socially motivated company: The products directly aid its pro-Philippines, pro-poor, and pro-environment advocacies.

The items by Radioactive Mushrooms in the Forest are natural, cruelty-free, and made in small batches. Photo from RADIOACTIVE MUSHROOMS IN THE FOREST

                                               Radioactive Mushrooms in the Forest

A one-woman venture, Radioactive Mushrooms in the Forest primarily plays with scents — perfume oils, natural oil sprays, and candles — but has expanded to fuss-free cheek and lip tints, with some luminizers in the works. The brand is all-natural, using oils and natural dyes, with items carefully made in small batches.

From lipstick, contour kits, face oils, to hair serums, Snoe Beauty has all the bases covered. Photo from SNOEBEAUTYINC/INSTAGRAM

                                                                 Snoe Beauty

Snoe Beauty is an old reliable — one of the gateways to local beauty brands. Its lipstick range has beautiful colors that aren’t your typical tita shades, but it also has blush and contour kits, color correcting foundation, hair products, beauty tools, and a wide variety of facial oils and serums, if you find yourself more interested in skin care.

Whether you want to build a professional makeup kit for cheap or want to go wild on Halloween, Suesh is one of your best bets. Photo from SUESH/INSTAGRAM


Suesh has been a beauty junkie favorite for quite a while now, but it’s more of a one-stop shop. Its products may be overwhelming for the casual makeup wearer — all the colors! numbered names! — but they’re still worth checking out if you need the basics or if you have your heart set on a bold lime green eyeshadow but can’t seem to justify a splurge. Other fan favorites are its makeup tools and concealer pots — perfect for an aspiring makeup artist or someone who loves wild makeup looks.

As one of the safest skincare brands, VMV Hypoallergenics has many fans all over the world. One of their sunscreens, the VMV Armada Sport 70, is a fan favorite. Photo from VMVHYPOALLERGENICS/INSTAGRAM

                                                      VMV Hypoallergenics

VMV Hypoallergenics takes its commitment to the safety of its products (on humans and on animals) very seriously. Also selling products in international markets, VMV Hypoallergenics has found fans in people with sensitive skin. It has a comprehensive website, singling out specific issues in an effort to find the right product for you — for the great outdoors or the office — your baby, or other special people in your life.

Made in the U.S., but developed locally, CarmenClaire's cosmetics are talc- and paraben-free. Photo from CARMENCLAIRE/FACEBOOK


Claiming to make cosmetics for the “non-girly girl,” CarmenClaire aims to simplify the process of application, coming out with quick and easy-to-use makeup that’s supposed to make you look and feel better, without requiring an 18-minute YouTube tutorial.