The Men’s Beauty Revolution Has Officially Arrived

Photography by Christian Cody

My introduction to men’s makeup happened in the early 2000s with guyliner, the dark, smudgy lids that celebrities like Johnny Depp and Jared Leto sported. But today it’s more than just a standout eye — it’s a movement. The growth of men’s beauty and fashion products has been outpacing that of women’s since 2010, and brands are catching on and cashing in.

Last November, Chanel launched Boy de Chanel in the United States with three essentials: foundation, lip balm and an eyebrow pencil, all created with men in mind. The collection competes with Tom Ford for Men, which includes concealer, bronzing gel, a brow definer and more. 

“It’s not so much a trend but a question of zeitgeist,” says celebrity makeup artist Tyron Machhausen, who counts Rihanna, Naomi Watts and Kerry Washington among his clientele. “The rules of gender representation are becoming increasingly flexible thanks to countless male beauty bloggers and more male representation on all kinds of media platforms.”

One such platform is Very Good Light, an online men’s beauty destination launched in 2016 by David Yi. Its mission? To redefine masculinity by broadening the concept and creating more inclusivity for the empowered man.

“We’re seeing that a one-size-fits-all approach to masculinity isn’t working,” he explains. “Toxic masculinity is now the subject of the moment, and everyone is paying attention to how and why men have been conditioned to be who they are. Broadening the definition of masculinity makes for more inclusivity, love and understanding, all of which help dismantle patriarchy. That’s powerful.”

Traditionally female-focused beauty brands like Milk, NYX and Urban Decay have all expanded their product ranges to be more inclusive. Here in Minneapolis, iconic retailer Martin Patrick 3 recently started selling Formen, touted as the world’s first male cosmetic house.

“We’re not selling lipstick or glitter sparkles,” says Martin Patrick 3 CEO Dana Swindler. “We’re selling confidence.”

So far, the shop’s top sellers have been Formen’s color correcting (CC) cream, dusting powder and concealer. Swindler explains that CC cream is an easy step up from a standard grooming regimen. It provides slight and discreet coverage for acne, scars and other skin imperfections.

As for how to use it? Machhausen’s expert advice: “Keep it easy. Color match in natural daylight. Blend, blend, blend. And remember that less is more. It’s makeup, after all, so experiment with it, have fun and don’t take it too seriously!” 

Read this article as it appears in the magazine.

5 Brands Leading the Men’s Beauty Revolution

In the past few years, we’ve witnessed the beauty industry embracing accessibility, visibility and inclusiveness more than ever before. 2019’s most recognizable trend is the rise of masculine makeup and grooming products. Here are 5 brands at the forefront of the men’s beauty revolution.

Photography provided by Chanel

Boy de Chanel

Late last year, the world’s most recognizable fashion brand announced its official foray into the domain of men’s makeup. The standouts among the full Boy de Chanel lineup are the eyebrow pencil, broad-spectrum SPF 25 foundation and Hydra Beauty serum (a masculine take on Chanel’s iconic Hydra Beauty line). The best part? Boy de Chanel offers online tutorials showing exactly how to use each product.

Photography provided by Formen


Touted as the world’s first male cosmetic house, Formen has quickly established itself as a leader in the evolution of the male beauty regimen. Including concealer palettes, invisible blotting powder, brightening CC cream and more, the product line is specifically designed to hide imperfections while improving skin health. Bonus: The brand is on offer at Minneapolis’s own Martin Patrick 3.

Photography provided by Glossier


Although this rising beauty powerhouse has yet to release products specifically for men, Glossier is helping spearhead the gender-neutral movement. The 3-in-1 skincare set — including the brand’s now famous Milky Jelly Cleanser, Balm Dotcom (flavor selection upon ordering) and Priming Moisturizer — promises the dewy, hydrated skin that dreams are made of.

Photography provided by Hims


With an unmatched aesthetic, seasoned men’s wellness brand Hims recently expanded its product range with a few must-have beauty products: the Everyday Moisturizer, Morning Glow Vitamin C Serum and Goodnight Wrinkle Cream. Each crafted for a different moment of the day, these formulas are affordable, high-quality options for any man who’s building his skincare routine from the ground up.

Photography provided by Tom Ford

Tom Ford for Men

The modern-day patron saint of sexy skin, Tom Ford has created a range of luxury beauty products ready to sculpt a man’s everyday face. The collection consists of a Brow Definer, Skin-Revitalizing Concentrate and Anti-Fatigue Eye Treatment. Using top-notch ingredients, Tom Ford for Men has handsomely redefined the status quo of male hygiene.

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