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4 Brands by Indian Founders You Should Support Now and Always
Credit: Courtesy/InStyle

Today, we're seeing more and more Indian cultural influence in the beauty space. The only problem is, historically, there's been a lack of actual Indian founders at the helm of brands.

Thankfully, things are starting to shift, and a steady flow of South Asian businesspeople have entered the market, with products that are both efficacious and tell the authentic story of their shared heritage.

From a makeup artist focused on filling a void in the market, to sisters imparting beauty wisdom passed down through their family for generations, these founders are inspiring us with their innovative products — and we definitely want you to know all about them, too.

Natasha Moor

As a makeup artist who has worked throughout Asia and the Middle East, over the years, Natasha Moor constantly found that many of her clients couldn't find makeup shades to suit their skin tone — so she decided to do something about it.

Moor launched her namesake cosmetics line in 2018, and it can now be found in Sephora stores around Asia, as well as on Amazon and Macys.com. A true global citizen, Moor grew up in Hong Kong, went to college in London, currently lives in Dubai, and will be moving to Los Angeles at the beginning of 2022. But wherever she goes, Moor hears from women with skin of color that they have finally found a lipstick that compliments their shade, thanks to her line.

Our favorite product from the line:

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Conceal & Conquer Kit

$58; macys.com

Moor adheres to the makeup philosophy that no one needs to hide their entire face with foundation, so this kit includes a color corrector for dark circles and two concealers (liquid and cream), so you can conceal redness, blemishes, and imperfections without completely covering your skin. And since a makeup artist knows that functionality is just as important as performance, the corrector and cream concealer both look like lipsticks, because is anything as portable and easy as a lipstick tube?  

Shaz & Kiks

Sisters Shaz Rajashekar and Kiku Chaudhuri grew up in India watching their grandmothers and aunts create beauty products with natural ingredients from their kitchens and gardens. These Ayurvedic beauty rituals helped shape who the sisters became as women, and their mindset around beauty practices.

In 2020, the pair launched their own haircare collection to modernize and share those familial beauty formulas, passed down through the generations, with the Western world.

The result is a collection of plant-based products that focus on the entire ecosystem of hair. Made from natural, raw ingredients grown on small Indian farms, the products also happen to look and smell entirely unique from other hair products on the market.

Our favorite product from the line:

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Back to Your Roots Scalp-Hair Prewash

$38; credobeauty.com

Made with oil-balancing, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory ingredients like amla, turmeric, rice bran and orange, this 80% plant-based prewash is available in two formulas: one for fine to medium hair, and one for curly textures. To use, apply to dry hair prior to washing to help balance the scalp, nourish the hair follicles, and create a protective seal on your hair to prevent damage, dryness, and frizz.

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Kulfi

A veteran beauty industry exec, Priyanka Ganjoo grew tired of never seeing South Asians represented in the space, so she created Kulfi to fill the gap.

The brand launched at the beginning of 2021 with a collection of eyeliners made with aloe vera and vitamin E, making the formulas super creamy for an easy, glide-on application, while still offering exceptional color payoff.

Giving back is at the center of the brand, and since mental health conversations are often suppressed in South Asian cultures, Ganjoo is committed to partnering mental health organizations as the brand continues to grow.

Our favorite product from the line:

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Underlined Kajal Eyeliner in Tiger Queen

$20; kulfibeauty.com

A stunning terracotta color, this shade lends itself to gorgeous fall-inspired eye looks. It also happens to layer beautifully with the other colors in the collection — an intentional design to encourage creativity and self-expression when applying makeup.   

Prakti Beauty

It's no surprise if Prakti Beauty founder Pritika Swarup's face looks familiar. The internationally-acclaimed model has appeared in campaigns for countless brands way before moving into skincare. But the launch couldn't have come at a better time.

Swarup recently graduated from Columbia University with a degree in finance, and is now pursuing her MBA at Columbia Business School. With more than enough qualifications under her belt, Swarup launched a luxury skincare line committed to creating quality products through ethical sourcing and manufacturing practices, with recyclable packaging.

Our favorite product from the line:

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Prakti PritiPolish Instant Glow Exfoliator

$42; praktibeauty.com

When a brand launches with just one product, you know it's designed to impress, and PritiPolish doesn't disappoint. Made with Ayurvedic ingredients like rice powder, pomegranate extract, arnica extract, and vetiver root oil, the face scrub leaves your skin fresh and soft. The scrub starts out as a white powder that you scoop out with the accompanying copper spoon (designed to measure the exact amount you need for one scrub). Next, you mix in water and watch as the powder turns into a gorgeous lilac paste. You can customize your exfoliation level by simply using more or less water.