The Best Makeup Brands In The World

Because it’s time to stock up your makeup kit with the bestsellers from these brands

Reviewed by Simone de Vlaming, Beauty Expert Simone de Vlaming Simone de VlamingBeauty Expert facebook_icontwitter_iconlinkedin_iconyoutube_icon
Written by , MA (Mass Communication & Media Studies) Esha Saxena MA (Mass Communication & Media Studies) Experience: 3 years
Edited by , MA (English) Subhrojyoti Mukherjee MA (English) Experience: 4 years
Fact-checked by , MA (Mass Communication & Journalism) Joyce Joyson MA (Mass Communication & Journalism)

Makeup plays a crucial role in transforming your appearance. Therefore, makeup enthusiasts find it a big deal to find the authentic brand that transforms their look without affecting the skin. International makeup brands provide you with a huge range of cosmetics that provide a flawless finish. Makeup helps you express yourself through your style. It is a great art form. However, unfortunately, it is underappreciated. Whether you want to hide blemishes, make your skin appear even, make your eyes appear bigger, or highlight your high points, all you need is a product from a good brand. This article provides you with some best international cosmetic brands that are worth exploring. Scroll down!

15 Best International Cosmetic Brands

  1. M.A.C
  2. NARS Cosmetics
  3. Benefit Cosmetics
  4. Bobbi Brown
  5. Tarte
  6. NYX Cosmetics
  7. Smashbox
  8. Clinique
  9. Estee Lauder
  10. Urban Decay
  11. Neutrogena
  12. Anastasia Beverly Hills
  13. Maybelline
  14. Bare Minerals
  15. Sephora
  16. e.l.f. Cosmetics
  17. Mario Badescu

1. M.A.C

Image: Credit: M.A.C

If you happen to be a makeup junkie, you probably own at least a drawer full of M.A.C products. Did you know that this world-famous makeup brand was started in a kitchen back in 1984? Frank Angelo, a beauty salon owner, and Frank Toskan, a photographer, were frustrated by how bad most makeup looked in photos. Thus began their journey! Today, the brand is sold in 106 countries. It also sells more lipstick than any other non-drugstore makeup brand. We owe it to M.A.C for cult-favorite lipstick shades like ‘Velvet Teddy’, ‘Ruby Woo’ and ‘Russian Red.’

Mia, a beauty vlogger, shares her experience of using just M.A.C products to do her whole face makeup. She says, “I think I am pleasantly surprised, I think the face looks very good. I think that it highlights the face (i).” She continues, “The must-have is the blush. I like the way it looks, maybe that is why M.A.C has lasted so long and is seen as a very good brand.”

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M.A.C.’s first big breaks occurred when the American singer Madonna wore its lipstick for a photo shoot in the late ‘80s. That’s when people started noticing the brand.

2. NARS Cosmetics

International makeup brand NARS Cosmetics
Image: Credit: NARS Cosmetics

French cosmetics and skin care company NARS was founded in 1994 by Francois Nars, a makeup artist and photographer. With a humble line of 12 lipsticks, it was launched at Barney’s New York. Today, NARS has a reputation of its own and is one of the most popular cosmetics brands in the world. Even if you are new to makeup, you’ve heard the buzz around Orgasm, which is the best selling NARS blush shade. Francois Nars believes that makeup is only good when it’s an accessory to help you be yourself. We couldn’t agree more!

3. Benefit Cosmetics

Image: Credit: Benefit Cosmetics

This cult beauty brand stands out with its incredibly attractive and high-quality products. It was started in 1976 by twin sisters Jean and Jane Ford – when they flipped a coin to decide what business to start together. Amazing! Thanks to the result of the coin flip, Benefit Cosmetics was born (initially called ‘The Face Place’). We wouldn’t have our beloved Porefessional Primer or the Benetint if it weren’t for these sisters. The company is also famous for its brow bars that are manned by brow shaping experts you can blindly rely on for all your brow needs.

The graph shows the leading beauty brands on Instagram as of March 2022, ranked by the number of followers. Kylie Cosmetics has the highest number of followers on the platform, with over 25 million followers. The graph highlights the significant role of social media in the beauty industry, as it provides a platform for companies to showcase their products and build a community of loyal followers.

Leading Beauty Brands Ranked By Number Of Instagram Followers

Source: Leading beauty brands ranked by number of Instagram followers as of March 2022

4. Bobbi Brown

Image: Credit: Bobbi Brown

Bobbi Brown is a global prestige beauty brand that strives to empower women to embrace and enhance their individual beauty. It was founded in 1991 by makeup artist-turned-entrepreneur Bobbi Brown. It has been named the number one makeup artist brand started by a woman. Its Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner is the brand’s most prized product. It is also the first gel eyeliner to hit the market!

5. Tarte

Image: Credit: Tarte

What makes Tarte cosmetics unique is the way it combines glamorous makeup and ingredients that are good for you. It was started back in 2000 with this very dream, and today, it is one of the best cruelty-free and hypoallergenici  XThe property of a substance or material that is not or less likely to trigger an allergic reaction. makeup brands out there. The company’s founder Maureen Kelly believes in using makeup that is a treat for your skin, and she discovered many of her hero ingredients (like Maracuja Oil and Amazonian Clay) during her eco-vacations.

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Tarte Cosmetics does not use parabens, mineral oil, synthetic fragrances, or gluten in its products.

6. NYX Cosmetics

International makeup brand NYX Cosmetics
Image: Credit: NYX Cosmetics

NYX is one of the most adored drugstore brands in the world and kind of a staple for us makeup lovers. Whether you are a professional makeup artist or a newbie, you’ve used a thing or two from this brand, and yes, it rocked. Tonki Ko launched this company in 1999 with a goal to create high-quality products at affordable prices. And it was a huge success. She did a fantastic job of growing her company, but she eventually sold it to L’Oreal for a whopping $500 million! Its products are now sold in over 70 countries today.

7. Smashbox

Image: Credit: Smashbox

Smashbox Cosmetics was launched in 1996 by L.A-based brothers Dean and Davis Factor. The formula for its major success was a simple one – the 21st century heirs of a cosmetic industry legend (Max Factor) walking hand-in-hand with hot, minimalistic packaging and celebrity appeal. After being worn by celebs like Drew Barrymore and Madonna, this brand achieved cult status, especially with women who take their “smokey eye” seriously. Even Hollywood stars swear by this brand’s long-lasting makeup products!

8. Clinique

Image: Credit: Clinique

Clinique is one of the most trusted skin care and cosmetics brands in the world. It was the first company to recognize the differing skin care needs of men and women. It then provided them with a practical, approachable line of high-quality skin care. With an elite team of chemists and dermatologists, all of Clinique’s products are backed by science. You can also get a free skin consultation at any Clinique store.

However, Clinique isn’t a cruelty-free brand and when required by law, they will participate in animal testing.

9. Estee Lauder

Image: Credit: Estee Lauder

Founded in 1946, Estee Lauder was started with just four skin care products and a big vision. Lauder did not want her customers to buy a lot of products as she firmly believed that the ideal beauty routine only required a few essential products. As the brand grew with its luxury makeup line and fragrances, it changed the face of the beauty industry. Today, Estée Lauder is a whole empire, owning 25 major beauty brands and reaching over 150 countries.

10. Urban Decay

Image: Credit: Urban Decay

Urban Decay started off in an interesting manner. Its creators were sick of the abundance of pink makeup products on the market. They wanted to create makeup in edgy and crazy colors that they couldn’t find in the other brands. It started with a dozen nail polishes and ten lipsticks. Fast forward 20 years, Urban Decay is one of the most loved makeup brands by beauty bloggers, makeup artists, and makeup enthusiasts. Besides their famous Naked palette, their Eyeshadow Primer Potion is one of their most prized products.

Urban Decay is a cruelty-free brand and besides that, they offer vegan options as well.

11. Neutrogena

Image: Credit: Neutrogena

We’ve all used Neutrogena products at some point and continue doing so due to how reliable they are. The number one dermatologist-recommended skin care brand offers some of the world’s most loved skin care and beauty products. Founded in 1930, this brand was started by Emanuel Stolaroff, and thus began its success story. It was acquired by Johnson & Johnson in 1994 for $924 million.

12. Anastasia Beverly Hills

Image: Credit: Anastasia Beverly Hills

Anastasia Beverly Hills was originally launched as a brow product brand back in 1998 by Anastasia Soare. She was a former aesthetician who strongly believed that your brows could change the entire look of your face – and she was right! Her first client was Cindy Crawford before celebs like Kim K started raving about her products. After its expansion, this brand sells a wide range of makeup ranging from liquid lipsticks to highlighter palettes. It also has the most popular Instagram page in the beauty industry.

13. Maybelline

Image: Credit: Maybelline

Everyone’s favorite drugstore brand Maybelline was founded way back in 1915. Thomas Lyle Williams, a chemist, observed his sister Maybel using Vaseline, coal, and ash for her eyebrows and he was amused. He went on to create the first mascara ever, the Maybelline Cake Mascara. That’s how the brand got its name – ‘Maybel’ plus ‘Vaseline’ equals Maybelline! Today, this company is the most reputed makeup brand that’s sold everywhere in the world.

14. Bare Minerals

Image: Credit: Bare Minerals

The brainchild of Bare Escentuals, Bare Minerals was launched in 1995 with a goal to create natural makeup that was less likely to irritate the skin. Its original products came in loose mineral powder form sans dangerous parabens and chemical fillers. The brand was acquired by Shiseido in 2010 and now has a massive range of beauty products – all of which are good for you. All products are clean (don’t include any harsh chemicals), cruelty-free, and vegan.

15. Sephora

Image: Credit: Sephora

Sephora has stepped up its private label range of makeup and skin care products with its ‘Sephora Collection.’ Whether you are looking for makeup, tools, and brushes or face masks – you’ll find it all within this collection. The best part is that the quality is incredible, and the prices are affordable. The brand was launched in 1995 and included bath and body products. Today, it has massively expanded and is one of the most popular beauty brands in the world.

16. e.l.f. Cosmetics

Image: Credits: e.l.f Cosmetics

e.l.f. Cosmetics, short for Eyes, Lips, and Face, is an American international brand headquartered in Oakland, California. This brand bases its identity on providing affordable luxury and delivering high-quality products available at drugstore prices. Scott Vincent Borba and Joseph Shamah launched it in 2004, and now it is considered the go-to brand for many makeup enthusiasts. The company takes pride in being cruelty-free, with all its products not being tested on animals.

17. Mario Badescu

Image: Credits: Mario Badescu

With roots in Romania, Mario Badescu initially began as a small salon in New York City in 1967. Today, it is a globally renowned brand famous for its wide and effective variety of skin care products, with solutions for every skin type and concern. Named after its founder, the brand offers gentle and simple skincare routines using botanical and compound ingredients. Despite its fame, the brand maintains its accessibility, selling its products at reasonable price points.

Infographic: Top 7 Makeup Brands Around The World

While every beauty and makeup fanatic guarantees to stock up on different brands, for a rookie, it can be tough to decide which brand to start with and invest in. So, here’s where we step in to help you overcome that dilemma and confidently enter the makeup world.

Check out the infographic below and bookmark these 7 makeup brands that deserve a space in your vanity box.

top 7 makeup brands around the world (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

This was the round-up for the top international makeup brands. Whether you go for high-end or drugstore brands, ensure that you pick quality products with the right formulation. Some other well-known makeup brands in the world are that you can trust are Chanel, Dior, Lancôme, YSL Beauty, Guerlain, Tom Ford Beauty, Charlotte Tilbury, Revlon, Covergirl Rimmel, ColourPop, Huda Beauty, Fenty Beauty, and Natasha Denona. Your skin requires care and attention, and only quality products can give you a flawless look without causing skin damage. So ensure that the products you apply are not harsh on your skin.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Milani a luxury brand?

While the brand’s products certainly feel luxurious, Milani is an affordable drugstore brand.

Is Lakme a luxury brand?

Lakme is an Indian luxury brand globally known for their high-quality skin and makeup products.

Which makeup brand is best and affordable?

Many drugstore makeup brands like L’Oreal Paris, Maybelline, and e.l.f Cosmetics are affordable, and popular for their high-quality and versatile products.

What is high-end makeup?

As opposed to drugstore brands, high-end makeup brands cater to very specific makeup requirements. They are also formulated using only premium-quality ingredients which make the product last long without transferring or fading away. High-end makeup brands also put a lot of thought into the packaging, promotion, and endorsement of their products.

How have international makeup brands revolutionized the beauty industry?

Global makeup brands these days are investing in research and development of products that are environment-friendly, sustainable, and cater to an all-inclusive audience. They are also employing technology that helps their audience seek virtual guidance to understand what their specific needs could be and how their products can help them in the most suitable ways.

How do international makeup brands cater to diverse skin tones and textures?

International makeup brands are introducing a wide range of shades and formulas in products to ensure they can cater to a diverse audience. They are also involving models with different skin tones and textures to demonstrate how their products can help them.

How can consumers make informed choices when purchasing products from international makeup brands?

Besides impressive marketing and start-studded endorsement, one thing that informs consumer decisions on purchasing products from international makeup brands is the response of verified purchasers. Honest reviews and ratings from people, preferably before and after photos, can give consumers a better idea about what they might expect from a particular brand.

Key Takeaways

  • Makeup is a creative way to express oneself with confidence.
  • International brands such as Tarte, e.l.f. Cosmetics, and Bare Minerals are considered some of the best cruelty-free options.
  • Neutrogena is seen as the best dermatologist-recommended brand for skincare and beauty products.
international makeup brands

Image: Dall·E/StyleCraze Design Team

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