This post was originally published on March 2, 2023. It has been edited on February 7, 2024.
I’m Natalie Setareh, a makeup artist and beauty course dedicated to teaching you how to wear makeup. If you’re new here, welcome!
In case you didn’t know, I’m originally from the U.S. but moved to Germany in 2016. As such, I’ve become deeply familiar with German beauty and skincare brands, especially because it’s not always easy to find some of my U.S.A.-made products.
Lots of friends and family members who’ve come to visit over the years have fallen in love with German beauty brands. Generally speaking, German brands are known for their quality, innovation, and commitment to natural ingredients. The best news is that you can get great affordable drugstore (apotheke) options as well as high-end luxury ones.
In this blog post, I’m going to share some of my favorite German makeup and skincare brands and in some cases, my favorite products from those brands. I do use affiliate links in some cases, so please be advised.
Germans are extremely conscious of ingredients and are always looking for as many ‘natural’ ingredients as possible. I’ve found shelf lives of products to be shorter, especially for skincare products as a result. I’ve also noticed that Germans don’t like to spend as much money on makeup as they do on skincare. When it comes to makeup, they prefer affordable prices.
It has a lightweight, creamy texture and a high-pigment color payoff.
Essence is a drugstore brand that’s known for its affordable prices and high-quality products. They’re a great option for those who are on a budget. They use natural, gentle ingredients and their products are great for those with sensitive skin.
Their mascaras, hand down! They are a staple in my pro kit and pro kits around the world!
Catrice is a German beauty brand that’s known for their groundbreaking & fashion-forward products. Their commitment to using top-tier ingredients and reliable formulas ensure that their customers’ needs are always met.
p2 – This German makeup company is all about going the natural route with their products. Even though we all know how I feel about the word ‘natural’. (google greenwashing).
Their formulas rely on safe and effective ingredients for healthy, beautiful and sensitive skin. Even though they have a small catalog at the time this post is published, it looks like they focus a lot of their energy into nail & brows product.
I haven’t tried anything from their line so I can give any product recommendations — but be my guest. If you have experience with this brand, let me know! I’d love to hear from you.
IsaDora is actually a Swedish makeup brand that is owned by Artdeco (see above). IsaDora is dedicated to using only the best ingredients at a great, entry-level price point. Their products are known for being super reliable and they have great customer satisfaction.
A great makeup product with skincare benefits.
Alverde is a German makeup brand that is owned by the popular drugstore, dm-drogerie markt. They are also committed to using natural and organic ingredients in their formulas, and their products are ideal for those with sensitive skin. Bonus: they are also really well known for avoiding animal testing, which is something that I know is important to many people.
I love their shampoos, conditioners, and body washes, like the one pictured above… the Alverde Shampoo Repair Avocado and Shea Butter.
Balea also by dm-drogerie markt, is another German makeup brand. If you travel to Germany and forget your shampoo or body wash, there’s a big chance you may grab a Balea product to fill your need while on vacation in Germany. They offer quality products at an affordable price.
In addition to a solid hand-cream, they have some great skincare products too.
Augen = eyes in German, and these eye pads are great for those mornings you need a little extra help
Trend it up is a newer German makeup brand that is again, owned by dm-drogerie markt. When my daughter wants to make eyeshadow art or nail art, I grab whatever trend it up has on display.
Astor is a German makeup brand known for their decorative cosmetics, such as lipstick and nail polish. I don’t have any personal experience with their brand, but if you do, don’t be a stranger. Let me know your favorite product!
ZOEVA is a brand that started as a makeup brush line and has since expanded to include a range of different products. While I haven’t tried their makeup products, I still reach for and recommend their brushes. One of my favorite makeup artist content creators uses them in her videos, which is how I discovered the brand.
Not sure what makeup brushes you need or want to learn more about makeup brushes, check out this post here!
There are several German indie makeup brands that are gaining popularity in the beauty industry.
Here are some of them:
Now, I want to jump into German skincare. I love skincare, and I am always talking about how important your skincare routine is for your overall look. Makeup looks SO much better on skin that has been cared for and prepped for the makeup application. Anyway, I could go on and on about that but let’s dive into the list of popular German skincare brands from the last year:
One of the most well-known German brands, Nivea has been a staple in many people’s skincare routines for decades. Maybe it’s even a part of your routine! Their commitment to high-quality ingredients and innovative formulas has made them a trusted brand around the world. Their products, such as the classic Nivea Creme (one of the oldest beauty creams in Germany), are known for their ability to protect and nourish the skin, even against harsh environmental influences. Some of their products, such as their body lotions and creams, contain mineral oil as an ingredient.
This Nivea Creme is one of my favorite, low-cost face creams. I de-pot a small amount into a small tin that I always keep within hands reach. It’s also considered a Le Mer dupe — I can’t say for sure, but I do love this cream.
You might’ve spotted this brand in those high-brow department stores or on the makeup artist work tables for celebrity red carpet events. So now you know that La Prairie is a German brand known for their high quality luxurious skincare cosmetic products, especially their skin caviar products!
La Prairie combines advanced technology and high-quality ingredients to create formulas that cater to the specific needs of the skin. Their products are designed to improve the skin’s texture, hydration, and overall appearance, and are a favorite of many beauty enthusiasts around the world.
Pictured Above: La Prairie | Skin Caviar Essence-in-Foundation SPF 25
Famous for their Weleda Skin Food (pictured below), has been a cult favorite for decades. It’s in my personal skincare lineup since 2018. Weleda is a German skincare brand that has been committed to natural and organic cosmetic products since its founding in 1921. Their products are made using sustainable, natural ingredients and are designed to promote overall skin health. Their organic products are formulated with high-quality natural ingredients, such as plant extracts and essential oils, and are free from synthetic preservatives, fragrances, and other harmful chemicals.
Don’t let the strong (natural) scent and the thickness of this cream deter you, THIS is holy grail for me in the evenings, especially in the winter. Affordable and effective! Weleda Skin Food.
Bioderma is a French brand that was founded by a German biologist and has become a popular choice for those looking for gentle, effective skincare products. Their formulas are designed to restore and maintain the skin’s natural balance, while also protecting against environmental influences. Bioderma is a great choice for those looking for natural cosmetics, as their formulas are free from harmful chemicals.
My favorite (and their most popular) product is their Micellar Water. Pictured above.
Dr. Hauschka is a German skincare brand that is known for their holistic approach to skincare and using medicinal plants. Their products are designed to work with the skin’s natural rhythms, and are made using high-quality, organic ingredients. Their formulas are designed to target specific skin concerns, while also promoting overall skin health.
I know that J. Lo used her Rose Day cream for a lonnnnng time before launching her own brand. She may still be using it. Who knows!
Dr. Hauschka was founded in 1967 and has been producing natural and organic skincare products for over 50 years. It has long history compared to the other brands I’ve listed here.
This brand is also so easy to get a hold of if you have questions. They have a customer service hotline, email support, and a chat function on their online store.
Beiersdorf is a German manufacturer of skincare and beauty products. Beiersdorf was recently recognized with “CDP Triple A” rating by the CDP in the areas of climate change, forests and water security. They are actually the parent company of Nivea, Eucerin, Hansaplast, and La Prairie (previously mentioned). Their commitment to research and development has made them a leader in the German beauty sector, and their skin care products are known for their quality and effectiveness.
Sebamed is a German skincare brand that is committed to developing products that are pH-balanced and gentle on the skin. Their formulas are designed to promote overall skin health and are ideal for those with sensitive skin.
I’ve had clients over the years with rosacea swear that sebamed is the only skincare that their skin can tolerate.
Jentschura is a German brand that is best known for their alkaline skincare products. Their formulas are designed to help balance the skin’s pH levels and promote overall skin health.
When you walk into German spas, you’ll see iS Clinical in lots of them.
iS Clinical is a skincare brand that is committed to using high-quality, clinical-grade ingredients to create effective and innovative skincare products. Their formulas are designed to target specific skin concerns, such as acne and aging, and are a favorite of many dermatologists and estheticians.
Their most popular product is their cleansing complex! Pictured above.
Juvena is a Swiss skincare brand owned by the German manufacturer, Beiersdorf (named above) in 1954. Their products are designed to improve the skin’s texture and overall appearance, and are known for their effectiveness and high-quality ingredients.
These brands are known for their commitment to natural and high-quality ingredients, scientific research, and effective formulas. Whether you’re looking for a simple routine or you want to target specific skin concerns, I think you’ll easily find a German skincare brand that will meet your needs.
Here is a list of German beauty products manufacturers that you can find in drugstores:
These drugstore brands offer a wide range of products, from makeup and skincare to personal care and household items, and they are known for their affordable prices and accessibility to the general public.
These German indie makeup brands offer unique and innovative products that cater to a variety of skin types and preferences. They focus on high-quality and natural ingredients, as well as their commitment to sustainability and ethical production practices.
I hope you liked this list of products that I compiled from my current home sweet home! I love trying new products and mixing them in with some of my tried and true favorites from other places.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all of the makeup options that are out there and need a little help narrowing it down, I would love to help! I offer a Personalized 5 – Makeup Shopping service where I will personally select five makeup products that will work for your skin type, preferences and lifestyle. I can do lipstick, blush, bronzer, foundation, setting spray… whatever you need! All you have to do is click “add to cart.” You can learn more about this service by clicking here!
If you’ve tried any of these German brands, I’d love to know what you think of them! Feel free to leave a comment. Or, if you think I missed something on my list, let me know!
Beauty is about perception, not about make-up. I think the beginning of all beauty is knowing and liking oneself. You can't put on make-up, or dress yourself, or do you hair with any sort of fun or joy if you're doing it from a position of correction.