Canadians are at no loss for homegrown beauty products, but you’d be surprised at how many of our own we overlook. So to help give the Canadian beauty industry that extra push, we’ve featured five of our favourite Canadian beauty brands that offer more than just great product. Go Canada.
1. MAC Cosmetics
With spokespeople like Lady Gaga, Beth Ditto and Nicki Minaj, you may forget that MAC was conceived in Toronto before becoming an international force. A favourite of makeup artists and celebrities, MAC has since been scooped up by Estee Lauder and made itself a household name. However, with capable artists willing to help at store level, you can have the behind-the-scenes experience without ever having to brave the industry itself.
Founded by Heather Reier in Toronto, Cake’s become a national presence thanks their fun, sweet products that almost completely all natural. 100 percent paraben-free, Cake covers everything from fragrances to bath and body lotions, and have earned accolades for its dry shampoo, which we’ve also sang the praises of.
3. Cover FX
Created at Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto, Cover FX is a unique brand in that they offer 30 shades of foundation to match nearly every skin tone. Free of parabens, gluten, fragrance, mineral oil and talc, each product is tested by dermatologists and ensures longevity thanks to anti-oxidant rich formulas. The perfect anecdote to redness and blemishes, Cover FX is packed with vitamins and emollients to keep skin healthy and looing its best.
Not only have Cargo earned recognition for unique environmentally friendly packaging (literally “ in 2006, they won Brand Packaging Magazine’s Brand Innovator of the Year Award and the Packaging Association of Canada National Packaging Environmental Recognition Award in 2007), they’ve launched products like Reverse Lip Liner and the Foundation Pouch, which allows you to squeeze out every last inch of product. Since, the awards have stacked up, and Cargo has become a major player in the beauty industry “ particularly in Hollywood. Not bad for what was once a small company based out of Toronto.
5. Elizabeth Grant
Now based out of North York, founder Elizabeth Grant used her WWII-damaged skin to inspire change in the cosmetic industry. Since the company’s inception in 1958, Elizabeth Grant now offers cosmetics, skin care and even bath products, proving that even when the odds are stacked against someone (read: a female businesswoman in the 1950s), it’s possible to make a difference.