Beauty: New York Pride – Up-and-Coming Made-in-New-York Skincare Brands that Make Us Proud

Caru Skincare -- The Making of

It has been a tough season in New York, lots of sub-zero temperature weather on top of the never-ending snow days… it’s really not the most pleasant time in New York, but it sure doesn’t stop us from loving New York. It is a city not just known for the iconic Empire State Building, Statue of Liberty or the Metropolitan Museum, but it is also known as the home of the high-end fashion scenes, talented street artists from the hood, and of course, the giant size food and booze from around the world that keeping all the New Yorkers happy. New York is filled with beauties in all shapes and forms, and as much as most of the leading beauty companies have their main offices here, it is not exactly a city that’s known for beauty and skincare productions.

With the recent small-batch handcraft “Maker’s Movement”, there are actually quite some great local beauty brands that are creating authentic and truly “Made in New York” skincare products. Most of these brands are still fairly new and small in scale – some can be found in the neighborhood boutique stores and some are only available online – but they sure have some quality products with big presence and great stories behind them. I like big designer brands, but I love local brands even more – without all the corporate structures involved in the creating process, they tend to have more originality and uniqueness in every aspect. Unlike the mass-produced products, they give you a sense of the personality of the people who actually created the products. Being a proud New Yorker, here are some of my favorite New York based skincare brands:

1). Caru Skincare

Caru Skincare

Representing Queens, Caru skincare is a small skincare producer based in New York that is focuses to sustainable ingredients and earth-smart packaging, including stone-based labels and soap wrappers you can plant. (Yes, you didn’t read that wrong – if you are have space to plant some wild flowers in the apartment, you can follow the instructions online to plant with the seeded wrappers). All the ingredients used by Caru are pure botanical and never artificial, and – when possible – are organic and purchased directly from farmers. Small batches made by hand and individually inspected for quality, that’s what I mean by truly local production!!

Caru’s product range includes facial care, bath and body products, and soaps. One of my favorites is the Activated charcoal + Dead Sea Salt Organic Face Soap. The activated charcoal detoxifies by helping to draw out any impurities; Dead sea salt nourishes with all the beneficial minerals for the skin, and the tea tree essential oil and neem oil help kill bacteria and microbes, it’s most suitable for oil skin, but can be used on every skin type. The scent is earthy and slightly musky, with its rustic black appearance, the soap is very dude-friendly for men who take good care of their skin, too!

2). Mullein & Sparrow


I first learned about Mullein & Sparrow because of its beautiful apothecary-styled packaging, it was love at the first sight. Then I’m glad to find out that the brand is not just about the look, what’s inside the packaging holds up, too. Founded in 2012 by herbalist and holistic esthetician Anit Hora, Mullein & Sparrow is a Brooklyn based brand using organic essential oils from small family owned farms. The products are 100 percent vegan using plant-based ingredients with the hope of keeping alive a time-honored tradition of simple remedies that have worked for centuries. Try the Mini Body Oil Duo Gift Set to get the taste of the brand. It features the Lemongrass-Mint Body Oil and French Lavender Body Oil that are both hydrating and antioxidant rich. The formula provides a soothing effect for the skin and is suitable for all skin types.

3). Om Aroma & Co

Om Aroma

Motivated by a passion for organic living, Angela Jia Kim- the CEO and Founder of Om Aroma & Co, started her chemical and preservative-free organic skincare brand with the purest ingredients in her Manhattan kitchen. It all started with one organic cream that she created for herself, and now the brand has a full line of skincare products all free of parabens, formaldehyde, mineral oil and synthetic fragrances. All the Om Aroma & Co’s organic products are locally produced in the beautiful Catskills of New York, and are available online and in the sister company Savor Spa, a boutique spa in New York City’s West Village. Try the Truffle Age-Defying Organic Face Cream, it brighten and lighten the skin, and it smells delicious, too!

4). Lurk


Unlike most alcohol-based perfumes, this Manhattan fragrance company creates scents using essential oils carried in a domestically sourced, organic jojoba base. The multi talented perfumer Anne Sanford started the perfume oil brand in Soho New York and crafts every single blend of the fragrances without synthetics or preservatives to provide the purist products you can get. Try AS 01 for hints of spicy cedarwood layered with sweet rose, it’s sensational and suitable for any occasion, and it’s gender-neutral, too. All these luxury infusions feature minimal packaging and are transported in small muslin bags –Just focus on smelling good, no need to worry about your carbon footprint!

Who would’ve thought New York has so many great skincare brands? All these brands create products that are authentic, approachable, high in quality, and eco-conscious so we can enjoy it without any guilt– you can’t get more “New York” than that! Oh well…Maybe it’s my New York pride… or maybe these Made in New York brands are just really awesome!