A Brand Made For Minimalists: The Kosas Beauty Brand Review

Summer is coming up, and with the weather changing, so do our preferences as makeup wearers.
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Typically what I have seen is that people like to spend money on skin tints and light coverage foundations that will be light enough for the weather and there but not there so people don't see that you have a lot on. 

Now especially, I know I myself have started to wear light makeup because I know I'll have to go out and wear a mask and I don't have the energy to apply all this makeup only for things to stick to my mask or slide off my face. 

If you agree with that sentiment, I would recommend trying out the Kosas beauty brand. 

On their website, Kosas is described as having clean, comfy makeup. They also say that they use "super nourishing ingredients that bring real skincare benefits: hydrating, soothing, brightening, plumping, and more".

Sheena Yaitanes, the creator of Kosas, launched the clean beauty brand in 2016. Yaitanes was inspired to launch her company because she could never find the products that she wanted for her preferences, like lipstick that felt good and foundation that lasted the whole day. 

Kosas has some interesting products, including a "tinted face oil skin foundation", liquid eyeshadows that are called "10-second eyeshadows" and more.

I haven't tried all their products, but I still wanted to do a comprehensive review of all the products available to purchase. 

Kosas Face Products 

1. Tinted Face Oil Foundation       

This tinted face oil foundation is meant to be a light coverage foundation plumped up with delicious skincare ingredients, more specifically: Avocado oil for moisture, meadowfoam oil to give a plumping look to the skin, red raspberry for reparative benefits, jojoba oil for a soothing feeling, camellia seed oil for nourishment and finally rosehip seed oil for brightness. 

Kosas Tinted Face Oil Foundation 

Kosas refers to this product as: "A clean, light-coverage skin tint and nourishing skin elixir with a velvety finish that still looks like your skin — just way more even, healthy and balanced."

The tinted face oil foundation retails at $42 and comes in 16 shades. The shade I have is No. 7, which is described as Tan with Neutral undertones. The shades range from light shades with a cool neutral undertone individually, light+ with warm and neutral undertones, one light-medium shade with a golden undertone, medium with golden and olive tones, one medium+ shade with an olive undertone, two tan shades with neutral and warm undertones, a tan+ shade with golden undertones, four deep shades with two neutral shades, one cool and one red undertone and one dark deep shade with a warm undertone. 

The application is quite simple and no-nonsense. The foundation bottle is supposed to be shaken well before use, and the foundation is very liquidy, and it's meant to be applied with your fingers. The brand recommends that you use four drops for your whole face, and recommends their revealer concealer and the Sun Show bronzer with it. 

In my personal experience, I bought the tined foundation oil because I am currently on medications for acne and my skin has gotten a lot better than it used to be, so I wanted to invest in something of a lighter coverage to cover my scars, but still be easy and of lighter coverage.

When I first tried the foundation out my skin was very dry and I had attempted to moisturize beforehand, but clearly not enough because I felt the foundation sitting heavy on my skin. It felt very much like oil, and I could not layer it because the more I did that, the darker it became. 

However, the second time I tried it, I was able to apply moisturizer twice with some time between each attempt, and it very much made the application of the foundation smooth. I've also attempted to use a beauty blender with this foundation but it does not work as well as when I apply it with my fingers.

I've also found that I am able to build the foundation up better when I put a drop or two on my fingers and pat it over the specific areas that need extra coverage rather than trying to put a second layer on my whole face.

I have oily skin and I feel like that's partially why this foundation works for me, but I would say if you have dry skin you may want to skip on this because the way it sat on my skin when it was dry was not flattering at all. 

As for the comments from other consumers, on the Kosas website, a lot of people said they loved the finish or were surprised that it turned out to be medium coverage. This foundation is also referred to as the "sweatpants of foundation" and the comments are really in line with that name because people have commented on how easy it is to apply.

Of the critical reviews, most people said they hated how it accentuated their pores, or that it just didn't apply well and some people said it was just too oily and greasy for their skin. 

2. The Sun Glow Bronzer

The Kosas website describes the Sun Glow Bronzer as such: "This is a clean, moisturizing baked bronzer made with Shea Butter to give you that glow your skin gets in really pretty sunset light. Like a Golden Hour filter, you can wear." It comes in three shades: light, medium, and deep. The bronzers also have meadowfoam oil to moisturize and plump. 

The Sun Glow Bronzer

Personally, I haven't tried the bronzer because I prefer to buy contour powders rather than bronzers, but I do have to say that it looks gorgeous on the models wearing it in the pictures, both on the Kosas website and on Sephora.com. This product retails for $34. 

On Kosas.com there are only two very bad reviews about this product of 249 reviews in total. On Sephora.com a lot of the complaints are about the shimmery finish of the bronzers, and the smell, which one person described as moldy. But the good reviews talk about the bronzer giving them a healthy glow, being beautiful in general. 

3. Revealer Concealer

The revealer concealer comes in 28 shades, and is described as "A medium-coverage, super creamy concealer, eye cream, and spot treatment in one that visibly brightens and helps reveal better-looking skin." It's meant to be a medium coverage concealer with a radiant finish.

Revealer Concealer

In addition, in the What Else You Need To Know section on the Sephora page for the concealer, the following information is added: "This concealer is delivered in a skincare base packed with hyaluronic acid, peptides, and caffeine that hydrate, visibly plump, and give a smooth, radiant finish.

It covers and reduces the appearance of dark circles, but still fully looks like your skin, and is clean, comfy, and clinically tested. This product is non-irritating, allergy tested, clinically tested, noncomedogenic, and dermatologically tested."

Personally, I love this concealer. Despite COVID-19 restrictions, I was able to get shade matched for the concealer in store, and as soon as I tried it I knew it was going to be a staple product. It's creamy and you typically don't really need to add a huge amount under your eyes.

I would say that for dry skin this is a dream product, but it works for oily skin too. I've tried blending it out with both a beauty blender and my finger and it works well with both methods. Although I initially hesitated to buy it because of the $28 price point, I would say that if you are interested in investing in a concealer you should try this one. It is worth the money. 

On Sephora.com and on the website, the good and bad comments are similar. The good comments say the product works really well and is a new holy grail. But the bad comments say that the product is not worth it, has a really bad chemical smell, and feels oily on the skin. 

4. Cloud Setting Powder

This setting powder is described as: "Unreal pressed powder for real-life dream skin. A super-soft, sheer setting + smoothing powder baked with skincare actives that sweep away shine (not glow). Feels like nothing, looks like everything." It comes in ten shades and is sheer and buildable. 

Cloud Setting Powder

Retailing at $34, it has bamboo stem extract to reduce shine, passionfruit leaf extract for a smoothing effect, and Chinese peony to minimize the look of pores.

I was very happy with this product, and my experience was great. It lay softly and effortlessly on my skin and didn't take away my natural shine, but at the same time set my face. I love the baked formula and the packaging and the product itself looks gorgeous. 

If I had to point out any cons, I would say the kickback is a minor issue. I noticed that after about a week or so of using it, there are tiny holes in the product, probably because of all the powder being lost through the amount of kickback from every use combined.

If this is a concern for you, you may want to consider another product, but I don't mind this at all. Another thing to point out is the price. My previous setting powder was about $25 so it wasn't cheap either, but I don't think the product can justify the price point.

Also, even though the product applies well, I don't like that if I scratch at my chin or my cheek area the foundation comes right off. So the powder doesn't really set my face, it just gives it a healthy glow. 

The reviews on Kosas.com and Sephora are similar. Just like with the previous products, some customers consider the powder to be a holy grail, and some people say the powder is dry and isn't impressive at all.

It seems that when it comes to clean beauty, as interesting and hyped u[ as the products may be, people still find some way to point out the big misses for them, and it's worth it to keep in mind that you may feel that way as a consumer. 

Kosas Eye products

5. 10-Second Eyeshadow

The 10-second eyeshadow comes in 8 shades, ranging from neutral champagne to a pretty teal blue. Each eyeshadow costs $28. Just like with all the other Kosas products the eyeshadow is packed with skincare ingredients: galactoarabinan for a smoothing effect and to help lock color in place, jojoba Oil to soothe the eyes, orange flower water to brighten, tone, and help formula dry down more completely. 

10-Second Eyeshadow

The reviews on Kosas.com rave about the eyeshadows. People say it's long-lasting and look beautiful on the eyes. They have also said that the eyeshadow is easy to apply, which fits the Kosas description of the "sweatpants of makeup". 

It is worth it to note that the one-star reviews are related to the lack of pigment in the lavender shade called 333 Cool Lavender, and the color of the shade Globe-a subtle champagne-that one customer just described as being "off". 

6. Big Clean Mascara

The Big Clean Mascara retails at $26 for the full size and $13 for the mini size. Kosas describes this product as being "A clean mascara for instantly big, fluffy lashes — powered by haircare actives that help support stronger, healthier lashes." It has castor Oil for nourishment and lush, shiny lashes, provitamin B5 to help revive lashes, and biotinyl tripeptide-1 to support healthier, fuller hair. 

The mascara wand has an ergonomic curve to curl every single lash with mascara, and the bristles are described as being "flexible yet firm". The brush is also a wire brush that is oversized and twisted. 

Big Clean Mascara

I haven't personally tried this mascara because the wand is just not the type of wand I would personally gravitate towards, however so many people have raved about this product.

Most of the comments with five stars talk about how the customer was looking for a clean mascara and the big clean mascara is their new holy grail. One person also said that it's great for sensitive eyes, and a few other people said that the curved wand is great to curl their lashes. 

The reviews with one star talk about the mascara being clumpy, and one person said it gave them raccoon eyes. I would say that it would be a good idea to buy the more affordable mini size of this product before you get the full size.

7. Color and Light Cream and Light  (blush and highlight) Duos

The color and light palettes are what I would say are probably the most unique of all Kosas' products, coming close after the foundation. It retails at $34 and comes in four shades, but the cool thing is that each shade has two versions: a normal version, and a high-intensity version. There are also powder blush versions of these blushes, but they are in different shades. 

Color and Light Cream and Light  (blush and highlight) Duos

I tried the cream version of these blushes in the shade Tropic Equinox a long time ago when I was starting to explore cream products. The reason I really disliked the product was that both the highlighter and blush had an insane amount of shimmer, and with my textured skin, I ended up looking like a mess with the two products on.

I also found that the blush was too tightly packed into the pan, and not as creamy as I expected it to be, so I struggled to use it. My final verdict was that it was not worth the money, and was one hundred percent, not beginner-friendly. 

But aside from that, I found that in the reviews on Kosas.com and Sephora.com simply loved this product. People who have attached pictures to their reviews look very natural and glowy with the product on, and a few people have said this duo has become a staple product. 

Kosas Lip Products

8. Weightless Lipstick

The weightless lipstick comes in eleven shades and is described as being "A game-changing clean lipstick made with active botanical oils and kinds of butter to hydrate and nourish." 

The shades range from neutral pink to bright fuschia and cool-toned purplish red. It has a sleek black component, and the formula contains mango seed butter, shea butter, cocoa seed butter, rosehip seed oil, and jojoba oil. 

Weightless Lipstick

I wish that I was one of those people who wore bullet lipsticks on a daily basis, but I much prefer lip gloss, and so I skipped on this product. But the people who didn't say that the lipstick has a beautiful formula, and the shades are gorgeous.

Unfortunately, people also say the color looks awful on them, and that it doesn't last all day. In the end, it might just be up to personal preference and perhaps when possible you should get to a Sephora near you and swatch them before deciding whether to pick the product up or not.

9. Wet Lip Oil Gloss 

The wet oil lip gloss comes in five shades, one of which is a clear shade called "Jellyfish". They retail at $27, and are described as "A hybrid lip treatment and gloss packed with hydrating active ingredients that visibly plump and protect, all while providing a juicy slick of color." 

Wet Lip Oil Gloss

The ingredients include hyaluronic acid, peptides, evening primrose oil, avocado oil, konjac root, and finally shea butter. Similar to lipstick, this gloss formula seems to be hit or miss. One person said it's like a mix between lip oil, gloss, and liquid lip balm, while one other person said they used to love it, but when they reordered it they felt the product was too thick. 

10. Lipfuel Lip balm

The lipfuel lip balm is an ultra-hydrating lip balm treatment that retails at $18 and comes in a clear, pink, and warm toasty spice shade. The Kosas website recommends using this product before the weightless lipstick or lip gloss. 

Lipfuel Lip balm

The good reviews were quite predictable for a lip balm, with people simply saying they have dry lips and the product helped get rid of that. The negative reviews typically complained about the smell, and that the product made the customer's lips chapped, or crack on the lips. 

Kosas Eyebrow Products

11. Air Brow Gel

The Kosas Air Brow gel comes in a clear gel and a tinted one and retails for $22 each. There are ten tinted shades, and while the clear brow gel is meant to simply lift the brow hairs and hold them in place, the tinted one is meant to give you fluffy brows while also tinting the brows with active haircare ingredients to boost eyebrow hair growth. 

Air Brow Gel

On Kosas.com there are only seven reviews because this product is quite new to the market. But the reviews are very positive and talk about the product being easy to use, and one person really appreciated the color of the tinted brow gel because she is a redhead and she said it's usually hard to find a brow gel for her eyebrow color.

And of course, it's the same with Sephora.com, with people being very happy with the product and one person said it's a great product because they have scanty eyebrows and the brow gel fills them out.

The negative reviews aren't so bad that they have one-star ratings, but they do say that the product was gloopy and not natural at all. So it seems like this product is essentially a hit and miss. 

Personally, I love this product because while I have thick eyebrows naturally, I did try to shape them once and now they are completely uneven, so it helps 

12. Brow Pop Eyebrow Pencil

The Brow Pop pencil comes in ten shades and retails at $22. Kosas.com describes this product as such: "A dual-action micro triangle pencil that lets you wear your brows however you feel it—both filling in sparse brows and creating precise, hair-like strokes with color that stays put." It has castor oil to help with eyebrow hair growth. 

Brow Pop Eyebrow Pencil

I have not tried this product myself but I did watch a review by a Youtuber named Jamie Page and she didn't like the eyebrow pencil as much as the eyebrow gel.

I also noticed that the eyebrow pencil tip has a really tiny, slanted tip and it can get blunt after a few uses. Personally, I have used this type of eyebrow pencil and I found it annoying that the tip would get blunt because I couldn't properly shape the tail of my brows with a blunt eyebrow pencil. 

The critical reviews on Sephora.com echoed my thoughts and people also just said that the product was hard to apply because they had to press down to get any color from the product.


Final Thoughts on Kosas

I think that something I have struggled with during my journey of discovering what I liked and disliked when it came to makeup is how something can cost a certain amount but still be so likable.

I feel that way about Kosas as well, and I would still recommend this brand, but only if you are willing to spend the money, and if you have very specific things that you want from your makeup, or if you want to try something new depending on the season, this is a simple and beautiful brand to try. 

Often when I am doing a little research into a brand that I want to try out, I go over to YouTube because getting a visual look of what the products look like on the skin is helpful. For that reason, I have left Jamie Page's review of Kosas down below. She also does a wear test with check-ins and her final thoughts and recommendations from the brand.


Frequently Asked Questions about the Kosas beauty brand

1. Is Kosas a clean brand?

Yes, Kosas is a clean brand.

2. Is Kosas a good brand?

Yes, although some products are still hit and miss in my opinion.

3. Is Kosas natural?

Yes, Kosas' products are made out of natural ingredients.

4. Is Kosas ethical?

Yes, Kosas is cruelty-free

5. Does Sephora sell Kosas?

Yes, Sephora sells all Kosas branded products

6. How do you use Kosas' 10-second eyeshadow?

Here's a video from the brand's YouTube channel that explains how to use Kosas' 10-second liquid eyeshadow:

Menaka is a college student living in Boston. She hopes to continue writing after graduation, both creatively and on her blog, May-able.

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