What if I told you you could buy luxury-quality beauty and skin products for $10-$15 a pop? And they’re made in the same factory as other high-end brands.
That’s the selling points of Beauty Pie, an online beauty emporium that sells a range of skincare and cosmetic products to customers. The brand emphasizes its access to the same labs as its brand-name counterparts. Founded by serial entrepreneur Marcia Kilgore (behind Soap and Glory, Bliss, and FitFlop) in 2016, Beauty Pie champions transparent pricing, claiming their lack of a middle man and retail markups gives you their lowest possible price.
The concept of “the same factory” isn’t new: Italic and Few Moda operate with the same concept, stocking label-free fashion goods from the same factories and suppliers as high-end designers. Beauty Pie likens itself to “Costco for luxury beauty products.” But Costco feels like the wrong thing to compare it to—you aren’t bulk-buying a private label that’s been manufactured in kin to a brand name. It’s a little more complicated than that: Products aren’t explicitly designed to be dupes (though there are extensive Reddit threads that attempt to decode them) and your paid membership only buys limited access to a range of exclusive products framed through a discounted lens.
While you technically pay a fraction of their estimated typical cost (which they determine as 10 times the cost of the actual product), you also pay a monthly membership fee with a capped spending limit based on the “typical price” of the product. While you may snag a super-luxe Yuzu Ceramide moisturizing mask for $11.96 —compared to their estimated $100— you’ll have hit your $100 cap for the month on a standard $10 plan. Plans can be scaled up to $30 for a $300/monthly limit; or a $79 annual pass gets you access to $1,200 in “typical costs” per year.
Here’s the thing: Beauty Pie’s products are fantastic.
All of the items I tried retail for under $15 and each has replaced a much more expensive product on my shelf for daily use. The Triple Hyaluronic Acid & Lipopeptide Serum is the best hyaluronic acid serum I’ve ever used—I wake up glowy and baby soft and stay that way all day. The Wondercolour Cream Shadow Sticks sent my decades-loved Laura Mercier Caviar Sticks out the door, because for $5.98 a piece, why would I ever use anything else ever again?
Without the membership fees, I would happily pay the extra $10 for the Jeju Daily AM/PM Moisture Superinfusion and be psyched to have a phenomenal $22.35 daily moisturizer. But because of the pricing structure, I’d have to upgrade my monthly subscription fee if I’d like to add on another product.
That said, for those who like to try a new product or two each month: Beauty Pie is good fun at a very good price. The company releases new items regularly, and its offerings include candles, collagen powder, and self-tanners. I suppose you can think of that monthly fee as “treat yourself” tax.
Fast Company’s Recommender section is dedicated to surfacing innovative products, services, and brands that are changing how we live and work. Every item that we write about is independently selected by our editors and, whenever possible, tested and reviewed. Fast Company may receive revenue from some links in our stories; however, all selections are based on our editorial judgment.