While we can appreciate a solid beauty steal, finding a hidden gem is a special sort of art form. You know what we鈥檙e talking about 鈥 the type of find that uses high-quality ingredients or offers a mysterious formula that somehow outperforms every single mass-produced product you鈥檝e ever tried. Like the crazy viral rainbow highlighter or uber popular Korean beauty brands, many handmade or indie beauty brands have a devoted cult following. We鈥檝e rounded up 13 of our favorite lesser-known independent makers 鈥 and our go-to products from each 鈥 to keep you in the know on the underground beauty scene.

cult beauty brands

1. Glossier: Boy Brow ($16) may be Glossier鈥檚 newest breakout star, but you鈥檝e probably heard of their Milky Jelly Cleanser ($18) or Balm Dotcom ($12) too. Luck for us, they continue to release hit after beauty hit, including Generation G matte lipsticks ($18) and Stretch Concealer ($18). What makes this brand so great is that they started as a blog, and then let their community have a say in their products. Basically, load up fast, because these beauty essentials were made for you, by women like you.

cult beauty brands

2. & Other Stories: It鈥檚 been a long time coming, but & Other Stories is finally available in the US. While their fashion pieces are definitely noteworthy, we鈥檙e currently obsessing over their beauty line 鈥 especially their well-loved Twinkle Pearl Radiance Cream ($28).

cult beauty

3. LUSH: Best known for their bath bombs and dry shampoo, this vegan shop also has incredible makeup products. Check out their fan-favorite liquid eyeliner Independent ($20) and let us know if you ever go back to department store liners again.

cult beauty brands

4. W3LL People: Founded by a makeup artist, a dermatologist and a hippie entrepreneur, W3ll People is the free spirit鈥檚 beauty brand of choice. The company鈥檚 goal is to create super high-quality cosmetics using all-natural formulas free of the potentially harmful artificial chemicals found in most conventional makeup. If you鈥檙e overwhelmed by their options, we recommend starting with their Bio Brightener Stick ($29). Even if you鈥檙e not a highlighter person, a quick Google search will turn up four- and five-star reviews that will convince you otherwise.

cult beauty brands

5. ColourPop: If you鈥檝e heard this name before, that might be thanks to Ms. Kylie Jenner. It鈥檚 rumored she worked with ColourPop to create Kylie Cosmetics by using their formula and rebranding the bottles. Regardless, if you鈥檙e a major LipKit lover but haven鈥檛 been able to snag a gloss, give one of ColourPop鈥檚 Ultra Matte Lipsticks ($6) a try. We鈥檙e loving this very Kylie-esque Limbo shade.

cult faves

6. Pixi: Started by makeup artist Petra Strand, Pixi is now about 10 years old, but you may have only heard of the brand recently because it originated in the UK and moved stateside a few years ago. Now, it鈥檚 popping up everywhere from Target to Walgreens. If you鈥檙e a Pixi newbie, their H2O Skin Tint ($34) is what all the #bvloggers are swearing by, and it鈥檚 oh-so-perfect for summer.

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7. Sigma: This rising star is coming for your vanity. Founded in 2009, it鈥檚 become a BFD relatively quickly. It was largely based online until 2012, when it opened up its first and only brick and mortar space in Minnesota. There鈥檚 a good reason for Sigma鈥檚 increasing popularity, though 鈥 just take a swipe of the Lip Switch ($14) and you鈥檒l see what we mean.

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8. Drunk Elephant: If your skin is sensitive or you just hate putting harsh chemicals on it (who doesn鈥檛, really?), Drunk Elephant was made with you in mind. The one ingredient you鈥檒l find in all the products is Virgin Marula oil, which has a high content of fatty acids and antioxidants, plus it鈥檚 made in the US and is fragrance-free. We鈥檙e especially obsessing over their T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum ($90), which provides a solid base for makeup application.

cult beauty brands

9. Vinter鈥檚 Daughter: Speaking of setting a healthy base for your makeup application, Vinter鈥檚 Daughter is definitely one to watch. Considered the ultimate face oil, the Active Botanical Serum ($185) contains 22 different botanicals and essential oils sourced from 鈥渢he most conscious and quality focused growers around the world.鈥 It鈥檚 also free of parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances, PEGs and SLSs. Not sure about you, but just talking about this serum makes our skin thirsty.

cult faves

10. Stik鈥檚 Cosmetics: With gorgeous colors, a solid formula and mostly five-star reviews, it鈥檚 a wonder the whole world isn鈥檛 talking about this cult favorite. Because the best things always come in threes, we recommend trying the Front and Center Lipstik Set ($38). Consider the crayon-like case an added, nostalgia-fueled bonus.

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11. Stowaway Cosmetics: Sick of beauty products that take up too much space or fall apart after being jostled inside your summer bag for all of four seconds? So were the founders of Stowaway, which is why they created this minimalist beauty line designed to go with you anywhere and everywhere. Our favorite busy-girl staple? Their Cheek & Lip Rouge ($15). Because #multitasking.

cult beauty brands

12. Lanolips: This AU-based and AU-made company has developed your all-purpose, natural beauty must-have. Use this product on your lips, hands or wherever you鈥檙e in need of a little added moisture. While there are currently multiple varieties of Lanolips, we recommend starting with the award-winning OG: Lanolips 101 Ointment ($16).

cult faves

13. Velvet 59: The creator of this brand? Yeah, she鈥檚 22. If that doesn鈥檛 blow your mind and make you think 鈥淥h my gosh, this makeup company is totally going to get me and my life!鈥 then you haven鈥檛 seen Velvet 59鈥檚 incredible Exotic Lotus Palette ($39). It鈥檚 basically all the colors you鈥檇 need for every summer look imaginable.

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