Every step of the process explained.
For Coveteur’s first-ever Beauty All-Stars, our judges (more on them below) selected five brands transforming the beauty industry through effective products, innovative ideas, and sustainable practices. Wondering how we chose our winners? Ahead, find out everything you need to know about the judging process, category selections, and more.
How many brands did you start with before you narrowed down the list?
Sumiko Wilson, Coveteur’s beauty fellow, and Ama Kwarteng, Coveteur’s beauty editor, began with a master list of hundreds of brands that landed on our WFH desks this past year. After that, we used the below tenets to narrow down the list to 37 brands:
Efficacy: Does the product live up to its claims? Is it worth the money?
Commitment to Sustainability: Is the brand making a conscious and transparent effort to reduce its carbon footprint and reduce or eliminate packaging waste?
Innovation: Does this product already exist? If so, is the brand adding something new to the conversation?
Brand Ethos: What does the brand stand for? Is it authentic in its messaging?
How did the judging process work?
Wilson and Kwarteng divided up products from the brands on our longlist amongst ourselves and three guest judges: Carly Cardellino, Raisa Flowers, and Nyakio Grieco. We each tested those products for three to four weeks then each judge picked their favorite products, narrowing down our list to eight.
Who are the judges?
Carly Cardellino, Beauty Expert, Writer, & Content Creator
With 17 years of experience, Carly Cardellino is one of the most highly-respected experts in the beauty industry. Carly has worked at Health, Shape, Cosmopolitan, and Cosmopolitan.com, formerly acting as Beauty Director for the latter two. With her wealth of beauty knowledge, she’ll only recommend what’s worth your time and money.
Raisa Flowers, Celebrity Makeup Artist
Raisa Flowers is a creative director and visual artist that uses makeup as the centering piece that defines her art form. Whether behind the scenes as a makeup artist or in front of the lens as a talent and entertainer, Flowers never ceases to convey her distinct point of view. As a talent, entertainer, and model, she tirelessly works to challenge and deconstruct body image and gender stereotypes.
Nyakio Grieco, Co-Founder of Thirteen Lune
Nyakio Grieco is a beauty entrepreneur with two successful businesses: her eponymous skincare brand Nyakio, inspired by the beauty rituals of her Kenyan roots, and the e-commerce beauty destination, Thirteen Lune. As an inclusive beauty platform, Thirteen Lune is designed as a space where one can find brands created by Black and brown founders that resonate with people of all colors.
Anisha Gupta and Jamie McCroskery, Co-Founders of Bluebird Climate
Anisha Gupta and Jamie McCroskery are the co-founders of Bluebird Climate, a software platform that helps consumer brands reduce carbon emissions in their products and tell authentic sustainability stories. Their backgrounds are in supply chain sustainability and technology, and they're surrounded by a team of people who have previously worked at companies like Patagonia, Unilever, and Google.
Ama Kwarteng, Coveteur Beauty Editor
Ama Kwarteng is the beauty editor at Coveteur and a contributing fiction editor for Story Magazine. Previously, she was the associate beauty editor at Cosmopolitan.
Sumiko Wilson, Coveteur Beauty Fellow
Sumiko Wilson is the beauty fellow at Coveteur. As a reporter, much of her work has revolved around music, TV, beauty, and style.
What role did Bluebird Climate play in the judging process?
Once we had our eight semi-finalists, Wilson and Kwarteng asked the brands to fill out a questionnaire from Beauty All-Stars’ sustainability partner, Bluebird Climate, to measure their carbon emissions. At this stage in the process, three brands decided not to submit the form and dropped out of consideration. To make the final list, the brand’s top-rated product had to fall in the “below average” category for either their carbon emissions or waste production to ensure they were meeting our sustainability standards. (You can read more about the results from Bluebird in the interviews with our five winners, which can be found here.)
What are the winning categories this year?
The categories for this year’s Beauty All-Stars are as follows: "Packaging Innovator," "Worth the Hype," "Scent Standout," "Head-to-Toe Hero," and "Industry Disruptor." They’ll be the same next year.