This story is part of our end-of-year series This Year in Gear rounding up the most notable releases of 2022. For more stories like this, click here.
It's important to put your best face forward. And more brands than ever are eager to help you do so — ones backed by celebrities, others founded on patented scientific formulas. Below, find impressive products from mainstays, new ones from up-and-comers and plenty of choices in the in-between, from fragrances to exfoliating towels.
Aesop Eidesis Eau de Parfum
Aesop's newest scent recalls the rich aroma of an open fire. Notes of amber and allspice contrast dark char and dim bars.
D by Diesel
Diesel's new unisex fragrance combines sustainably sourced ingredients like vanilla bourbon oils and lavender, which play with traditional gender poles. The bottle itself feels like it was crushed by constant use, creating negative space for your fingers when you hold it. Best of all? It can be refilled.
Le Domaine The Cleansing Emulsion
Brad Pitt probably isn't the first person that comes to mind when you think skincare. Sure, he has great skin, but he's famous — and rich. And starting a beauty brand? Seems impossible with his busy schedule. However, he did it, albeit with close friends to help: the Perrin family, the winemakers Pitt partnered with to make his Château Miraval Côtes de Provence Rose. They also use grapes in his line of skincare products, citing their ability to slow aging as the main reason.
Moon Juice G Pack
Moon Juice's first skincare product in four years is a new antioxidant powder you mix into a serum — like Moon Juice's Plump Jelly. It's effective at delivering doses of Vitamin C, Glutathione, and Ferulic Acid, which, when combined, help the skin stay tight and elastic but also improve its defense against environmental toxins.
Loewe Earth Eau de Parfum
It's not often that you find a fragrance infused with the essence of black truffles, but Loewe's Earth Eau de Parfum certainly is. It's potent but not in a "I must eat this" way. There's complexity — pear, violet — and someone probably wouldn't notice your umami aroma unless you pointed it out.
OffCourt Body Wash
OffCourt launched prebiotic body sprays first, an updated take on Axe, if you will. Now, the brand is dropping a trio of body washes in scents designed to match the deodorants. They're just as proactive, with glycolic and lactic acids safely exfoliating the skin and balancing its pH, which lessens the likelihood of body odor.
Soft Services Theraplush
Theraplush is Soft Services' new overnight hand cream. It works while you sleep to repair chapped, cracked, discolored or simply irritated skin. The retinol and colloidal oatmeal mix comes in an airless pump system housed in a stylish ribbed vessel. It's meant to be stored beside your bed, not your bathroom sink.
Read more about Theraplush in our dedicated review.
AIR Eau de Parfum
Although a cologne made from captured carbon emissions sounds too good to be true, it isn't — this cologne by AIR Company, the makers of AIR Vodka and a new carbon-based commercial jet fuel, is made using proprietary machinery — a patented system called the Carbon Conversion Reactor — manned by their chief scientist that transforms captured CO2 and green hydrogen into impurity-free ethanol, methanol and water, in a process that "mimics photosynthesis." From there, they distill the liquid, which separates the three elements. Then, the ethanol and water are mixed with the scented oils, creating AIR Eau de Parfum.
Goshi x FWA Exfoliating Towel
Goshi is the go-to exfoliating towel for so many — it's handy, works super well and stays clean, all without needing to be washed. This one with Friends With Animals is a cute purple color, a departure from its usual dark blue.
Frederic Malle Uncut Gem by Maurice Roucel
What does a famous perfumer smell like? Well, now you can know. Frederic Malle does Editions, which are scents formulated by well-known noses. For this series, Maurice Roucel, who started out as a chemist at Chanel’s Fragrance Laboratory in 1973, recreated his personal scent. Called Uncut Gem — no affiliation to the film, I promise — it is a scent that pops at first but develops deeper notes the longer it sits on your skin.
Goshi Super Vitamin Body Wash
Goshi's popular exfoliating washcloth made it a household name. Now, the brand introduced two body products, a lotion and a body wash. The body wash is packed with protein enzymes to stimulate skin cell renewal, raw algae culture for boosting antioxidant levels and green tea leaf extract for fast hydration.
The Nue Co. Water Therapy
The Nue Co.'s new therapeutic fragrance "uses olfactory technology to replicate the sensory feeling of being in or around water." That means notes of sandalwood and salt, seaweed and rose. Beyond smelling nice, it's also meant to soothe tension and calm your mood.
Hermés H24 Eau de Parfum
Hermés' iconic H24 scent has long been available as an eau de toilette but it's bottled as an eau de Parfum now, too. It's stronger and longer-lasting.
Humanrace Ozone Face Protection Daily Moisturizer
Pharrell's Humanrace line encompasses sneakers and apparel, skincare and now sun protection. The Ozone Face Protection Daily Moisturizer is an SPF 30 with a mineral base and hydrating elements like snow mushroom extract.
Atum Wild Tobacco
Atum is an emerging fragrance brand that's focused on earthly aromatic inspirations. Take Wild Tobacco, for instance, a scent formulated with notes of dark honey, smoke, patchouli, black vanilla and amber. Each one — not just Wild Tobacco — is hand-poured in Austin, Texas, too.
Fulton & Roark Narada Formula 5 Oil
Narada is one of Fulton & Roark's most popular scents. It mixes notes of bermagot, black pepper and ginger. Now, it's available in an all-purpose oil you can use in your hair, scalp and face.
Mami Wata Neo-Animism Fragrance
African surf brand Mami Wata launched its first-ever fragrance, Neo-Animism, this week. It comes in a colorful green bottle with a wood grain cap, and carries notes of African ocean water and green bar soap. The scent was created in collaboration with South African-born Etienne de Swardt, the founder of niche fragrance house Etat Libre D’Orange.
Margin The Active Moisturizer
Margin is a new skincare brand from Canada that just launched its first product, The Active Moisturizer. It's a multi-tool for your face, featuring ingredients like glycerin and hyaluronic acid, glycolic and salicylic acids, niacinamide, vitamin C and bakuchiol.
Cactus Store Solanum Lycopersicum Perfume
LA-based brand (but also a plant shop) Cactus Store recommends you "go to the ball smelling like a gardener." That's easy to do with their new Solanum Lycopersicum Perfume, which has top notes of tomato, basil, grass, side salads and "leafy hummus."