It used to be that bespoke beauty was reserved just for the rich and famous and in-the-know beauty insiders, but that’s no longer the case. Today, more than a handful of brands offer some sort of customization program—some even offer a full range of personalized products.
The Brand: SkinShift
The Philosophy: To create personalized skin care using your own DNA and genetic tendencies
How It Works: SkinShift works with your DNA (an at-home cheek swab collects a lab sample to be analyzed) to hone in on your skin’s strengths and weaknesses. The doctor-devised line scrutinizes 15 genetic markers in the five areas of skin health (collagen formation, sun defense, glycation and antioxidant protection and inflammation control) to determine what your skin needs to make it look its best and fine-tune how it will age by infusing it with organic ingredients, antioxidants, peptides, vitamins, brightening agents and retinoic acid, which are added to serums and oral supplements.
What It Costs: $299, skinshift.com
The Brand: The Blend By Fred Segal
The Philosophy: Endless bespoke fragrances that you can custom-craft yourself
How It Works: The legendary Santa Monica, CA, Fred Segal boutique has been formulating hand-blended, made-to-order scents for the last 30 years, so it was only fitting that the retailer would release an at-home kit (it comes with a foam-lined carrying case for on-the-go blending and a clear display stand, too). Comprising pure perfume oils, which last longer on your skin than alcohol-based scents, the set allows you to become your own “nose” and brings the experience of personalized perfume to your home. Replete with 10 easy-to-mix recipes that show you step-by-step how to layer the notes—including the right way to “swirl” the rollerball on your skin—each base note, think florals and greens, spice and musk, and citrus, epicure and ocean, can be worn solo or mixed together for endless possibilities.
What It Costs: $150, theblendfragrance.com
The Brand: Prescriptives
The Philosophy: Personalized makeup that precisely matches your skin tone
How It Works: Available only online, Custom Blend allows you to get an exact and precise shade of makeup for your skin. “Custom Blend is great for anyone who wants perfectly matched foundation adapted to their needs,” says Erica Bishop, Prescriptives Beauty Genius. You’ll have to upload a picture and participate in a live 20-minute video chat with one of the brand’s Px Beauty Geniuses—you’ll be asked about your skin and the coverage and finish you like. Oil-controlling, anti-pigment, moisturizing and lifting ingredients can be added in, too. One to two days later you’ll receive an email containing the “recipe,” which must be registered on the website to order the product and get your hand-measured and mixed foundation and/or powder.
What It Costs: $55 for the powder; $75 for the foundation, prescriptives.com
The Brand: Sophistry Skin Care
The Philosophy: Skin care created from scratch that targets every skin concern you have
How It Works: With an emphasis on delaying the signs of aging, chemist Sopiea Mitchell of sopHistry Skin Care felt there was a void in the market for fully customizable beauty products. “Most custom products use a universal base, but I didn’t want to do that,” she says. Instead, she makes each item from scratch. “I do a 15- to 20-minute consultation and based on the condition of your skin, your current skin-care regimen and your degree of sun exposure, I decide which raw materials and delivery system will be best. What I mix for someone with acne differs from what I’ll make for someone who’s dealing with cancer.” Mitchell also crafts lighter formulations in the summer and heavier creams in the winter, and often incorporates a blend of sodium hyaluronate or vitamin C into every product. “The key is to find the right concentration for the client.”
What It Costs: Starting at $45, sophistryskincare.com
The Brand: Concoction
The Philosophy: Takes the art of cocktail mixology to hair care for customized shampoo
How It Works: The premise behind Concoction is to build a shampoo based on your hair type and color. Each “concoction” uses a standard base, which is full of essential oils, vitamins, peptides and one of four scents. Next, two of the eight SuperSerum shots (selected based on your hair type and needs) are added. “The ‘shots’ are a concentrated blend of ingredients, vitamins and actives to amp up your color, give moisture and boost volume, or lend a straightening or curling benefit,” says Alex Epstein, founder of Concoction. “The products optimize the health of your hair by delivering a prescriptive level of care and an optimal combination of vitamins, minerals and other active ingredients.” No matter what you design from the more than 256 combinations that can be made, the paraben- and silicone-free shampoo always contains an ionic system to reduce static and frizz.
What It Costs: $22, concoction.co.uk
The Brand: Krigler Fragrances
The Philosophy: With a history in the fragrance industry that dates back to the 1900s and ties to Old Hollywood—Marlene Dietrich, Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn were all clients—what sets this perfumery apart is that each fragrance put into production is a custom blended scent. That, and the Haute Perfumery’s price point of $65,000.
How It Works: Fifth generation perfumer and president of operations Ben Krigler starts off by gauging your experiences and memories of fragrance. “We want to know what smells you remember, especially from your childhood, and what you are drawn to,” he says. An array of notes and ingredients sourced from around the world are sampled, allowing Krigler to get a feel for what the client is looking for. “This gives insight to the personality and desire of the inpidual and their preferred scents.” After the notes are narrowed down, a scent is presented (a few weeks later) and production begins, which results in three bottles of the personalized fragrance. The entire process takes three to six months and upward of five meetings depending on the complexity of the scents and the notes used. “The experience is about creating something that no one else in the world will have, something that caters truly just to your needs, wants and desires.”
What It Costs: $65,000, krigler.com
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