But as celebrity beauty brand fatigue grows more real by the day, people still wondered if the line was legit. Rare Beauty has certainly got an important mission—to celebrate self-expression and aid in the support of mental health instead of the deconstruction of it. What about the products themselves, though?
Let’s start with the basics: Rare Beauty is a full collection of makeup, including 48 shades of foundation, concealer, blush, highlighter, two different kinds of lipstick, and liquid liner, among other products. There are also brushes, a makeup sponge, and a face mist. The packaging is feminine yet simple and is made to be accessible—both in terms of skill and ability. As fans have pointed out, the rounded applicators are designed to be easy for people with arthritis to use.
To get a real feel for the brand, we asked three Glamour staffers with different skin tones to give everything from the line a test-drive over the last couple of weeks. Read on for our honest Rare Beauty reviews.
Bella Cacciatore, beauty associate
I have to be honest, I wasn’t the most excited about yet another celebrity beauty line. However, the minute I opened my package, I knew I was in for something good. The packaging looks and feels way more luxe in real life than it does in photos, and from first swatch I could tell the formulas were A+. I was mostly right.
I absolutely love the foundation. Shade 170W matched my summer “tan” perfectly. It’s a weightless serum formula that truly feels like nothing on your skin, and while it doesn’t give much coverage right away, it can easily be built up to cover my acne scars without looking caky. I would almost say it’s a dupe for my beloved Pat McGrath foundation, thanks to the luminous airbrushed finish.
The concealer is also great. It’s thicker than expected, so it really covers but still looks radiant. I personally didn’t love it to cover zits, but it’s perfect for dark circles thanks to its slight peach tint. Behind the foundation, the blush is my second favorite product. I love that she started with a liquid blush, and the shade range is stunning. It is super-buildable (you can do a slight flush or go full ’80s), sinks right into your skin, and actually stays on all day. Both the highlighter and brow product I could take or leave, but if you’re considering either, I say they are worth a try.
The one place the collection personally lost me was the lip products. I’m not a fan of liquid lipsticks, so even though the Lip Souffles were way less drying than most I’ve used, I’m just never going to reach for one over my usual bullet. I’m also not a huge fan of the shades I tried, but I think this red probably looks gorgeous across all skin tones. The dewy balms are more like sheeny lipsticks—really, I’d only classify the clear one as a balm. I found the coverage a bit patchy if I haven’t properly exfoliated my lips, but the shades are gorgeous.
Overall, I love the packaging and the vibe, and the giant doe-foot applicators across the brand make application a breeze. The foundation has quickly become my must-have, and I’m super-excited to see what Selena has up her sleeve for the next release.
Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush in Happy
Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Weightless Foundation in 170W
Rare Beauty Lip Souffle Matte Cream Lipstick in Inspire
Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Brightening Concealer in 170W
Rare Beauty Positive Light Liquid Luminizer Highlight in Enlighten
Rare Beauty Brow Harmony Pencil & Gel in Soft Blonde
Khaliha Hawkins, producer
The positive message behind each product and how accessible the line is makes Rare Beauty a welcome addition to my quarantine stash. My favorite product in this launch is the Soft Pinch Liquid Blush in Love. The matte terra-cotta color adds a nice touch of warmth to my face that makes me look sun-kissed, even without bronzer.
In the morning, I’ve already become accustomed to using the With Gratitude Dewy Lip Balm in Honor, which is just a classic clear shade. The texture of it is light and pillowy enough that my lips feel moisturized for hours. I also like that the bullet is small and compact with a flat bottom, so that I can place it anywhere without it rolling away.
Last and certainly not least is the Positive Light Liquid Luminizer Highlight in Transcend. This rose-gold highlighter looks great under and on top of my makeup, which is somewhat rare for highlighter. It also doesn’t rub off on my mask, which is a huge plus.
Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Weightless Foundation in 430W
Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Brightening Concealer in 430W
Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush in Love
Rare Beauty Positive Light Liquid Luminizer Highlight in Transcend
Rare Beauty With Gratitude Dewy Lip Balm in Empathy
Rare Beauty Lip Souffle Matte Cream Lipstick in Courage
Erin Parker, commerce writer
I’ve put on a full face of makeup maybe twice in the past seven months, so for this, I decided to go all in and have fun. I started out by flipping through the booklet of brand imagery and loved the bold hues and that it embraces originality.
I cleansed and moisturized my face and started by applying foundation. I liked that it wasn’t too thick or greasy and that it went on smooth without noticeable creasing. It feels pretty lightweight but buildable–so you can definitely even your skin tone without it feeling caked on (which is ideal for me since I prefer a natural look). The only issue I had is when it says “shake well” on the foundation bottle, it means shake really well—I missed that step and a bunch of liquid came pouring out into my sink. Make sure you shake to blend! The concealer instantly brightened my undereye area and added slight luminosity, so I didn’t end up looking like a ghost—but it did crease after a few minutes.
The blush colors are so fun and different. From a deep burgundy to a bright coral, there are several directions you can go with it, and I chose the latter for fall vibes. The formula is super-pigmented, so a little goes a long way. It might be a tad liquid-y for my taste, but it’s still great in terms of application and texture. I wanted to nod at fun ’80s beauty looks but ended up going way overboard with the blush at first, so I muted it with more concealer and decided to keep it matte instead of adding highlighter. But I did add a pop of the liquid luminizer to my brow bones and Cupid’s bow for more dimension.
The blush is pretty good, but the star of the line for me is the eyeliner for sure. That tip is so thin and easy to use that even a makeup novice can master a bomb cat eye, and when I washed my face, it barely budged. Lastly, I played around with the liquid matte lipsticks and went with the deeper hue for a touch of vamp. Again, super-pigmented, so I went easy and blotted with my finger because I wanted a blurred look—but I have a feeling it would perform great for a true statement matte lip.
Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Weightless Foundation in 310W
Rare Beauty Liquid Touch Brightening Concealer in 310W
Rare Beauty Perfect Strokes Matte Liquid Liner
Rare Beauty Positive Light Liquid Luminizer Highlight in Mesmerize
Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush in Joy
Rare Beauty Lip Souffle Matte Cream Lipstick in Strengthen
Bella Cacciatore is the beauty associate at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @bellacacciatore_.
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