There is no denying the influence that TikTok has had on our lives, and particularly on the lens through which we consume our beauty content. While Instagram has often been the place to document a perfectly curated shelf of skincare and scroll through beautiful imagery of beauty packaging, TikTok is the refreshing antidote where real-life reviews dominate our For You pages. Reviewers are honest (even a little bit brutally honest), and there is an unfiltered approach to content creation that feels authentic and allows viewers to see how a product might perform in real life and if it’s really worth buying. And when it’s good, it goes completely viral.
Being a beauty editor for a living, I can say that my algorithm shows me a lot of beauty content. Whether it’s affordable dupes for an expensive foundation, the best Zara perfumes or seeing the Dyson AirWrap in action to create viral TikTok hairstyles, it now even influences my work as a journalist, where I’ll often report on the viral TikTok beauty brands and products that are trending right now.
TikTok is great for showcasing new product launches. However, it has also brought cult classics back into the spotlight, which have long been trusted by dermatologists, makeup artists, and hairstylists.
With so many opinions on TikTok, though, it can be difficult to choose a beauty product that might be right for you, or it might leave you questioning if the product you’re seeing everywhere might just be overhyped. So I’ve gathered the TikTok-viral beauty brands that I think are worth buying as someone who lives and breathes beauty as part of my job.
You’ve no doubt scrolled upon a TikTok video of the Dyson AirWrap at some point, and I’m here to tell you that I really love this hairstyling device. It doesn’t go past me that this is an investment purchase, and while there are affordable hair stylers out there, if you have the money to splurge, I really think it’s worth it. The range of attachments means you can create smooth and sleek styles, bouncy blowouts and loose curls too.
This hair dryer is so easy to use and is so much lighter than other hair dryers that I’ve tested.
These straighteners are just as great at creating cool waves as well as straight styles.
Season after season, I spot this moisturizer backstage at London Fashion Week—it’s in almost every makeup artist’s kit and for good reason. It’s lightweight, gentle (ideal for models who are subjected to a number of different makeup looks within a day) and primes the skin beautifully for makeup. It’s recently taken off on TikTok as the go-to moisturizer for priming the skin before foundation, and it has reminded me just how great this moisturizer is. Plus, a tube of this will last you for ages, making it an affordable moisturizer too. It has a lightweight, almost milky texture that melts into the skin without being greasy or heavy and helps your makeup to last for longer too.
For an extra dose of hydration, layer this nourishing serum underneath for plump and bouncy skin.
Extend the hydrating effects to your body with this jumbo-sized body lotion.
CeraVe’s TikTok hype is so well-deserved in my opinion. Not only are the formulas really effective for all skin types, but also they’re both affordable and come recommended time and again by dermatologists. If you’re looking for budget-friendly skincare in particular, then I’d highly recommend you try CeraVe’s range of skincare. The Hydrating Cleanser is one of the brand’s best sellers and is ideal for dry or sensitive skin types thanks to its gentle formula. It’s great for removing makeup while hydrating at the same time thanks to ceramides (which form the building blocks in your skin) and hyaluronic acid, which quenches the skin with moisture. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, then I’d recommend the below cleanser for you.
This gel cleanser is brilliant for skin types that are prone to excess oil or blemishes. It contains niacinamide and salicylic acid, which work in tandem to clear and prevent breakouts. However, it is still very gentle if you’re prone to sensitivity. It has a gel-to-foam consistency that leaves skin feeling clean and not stripped.
If you experience keratosis pilaris (which is also referred to as chicken skin) on your body, then this cleanser is great for exfoliating away those bumps that can often appear on the backs of the arms.
Hair bond-builders have had a huge moment recently, and K18 has taken off on TikTok as one of the best, and I have to agree. It works by repairing the polypeptide chains in the hair from the inside out to repair and strengthen the hair. You apply it to wet hair after shampooing (but you’ll want to skip conditioner to make sure it works), and after four minutes, it gets to work and you can go about styling your hair as normal. Over the past couple of years, I’ve had bleach applied through my lengths, and this has really helped to repair and restore my hair health, probably to a greater level than before I colored my hair, actually. It leaves hair bouncy, shiny and much more manageable when I use it. It is on the expensive side, but you can also buy smaller trial sizes before investing in a full size to see the results for yourself first.
K18 has since launched two shampoos, and this Peptide Prep helps to remove build-up, which can weigh hair down and make it look lackluster. It’s an ideal hair detox before following up with the K18 mask.
You might not have thought too much about pH levels since school science lessons, but it can actually play an important role in how our hair behaves. This shampoo helps to bring hair into a pH of about 4.5 to 5.5, which is the ideal environment for shiny and healthy hair.
I have to be honest, as a beauty editor, I’m slightly jaded by the sheer number of celebrity beauty brands launching what seems like every week, but I have a soft spot for Rare Beauty. Selena Gomez’s makeup line has really caused a stir on TikTok, and it’s these Soft Pinch blushers that have taken everyone by storm. These cream blushes are so highly pigmented, blendable, and come in so many flattering shades for all skin tones. It’s also reasonably priced for such a high-performing product, so it’s no surprise that it’s a top-selling blush for the brand.
This is one of my favorite Rare Beauty products, and it might even be one of my favorite liquid eyeliners ever. It glides on without drying up midway through application and leaves the inkiest cat-eye liner that doesn’t budge all day.
Lip liners are usually not my thing, but this has really changed the game for me. These glide on to the lips and genuinely make a difference to the longevity of my lipstick.
You might have seen the viral TikTok video in which celebrity hairstylist Chris Appleton (aka, the hairstylist of Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez) uses this on one of his models. In the video, he treats the hair with this product, which is designed to create a waterproof shield on the hair. He then drops water onto the hair with a pipette, and it quite literally repels and rolls off the hair. It’s a testament to how well this product works, particularly if your hair is affected by humidity or rain. You simply spritz onto damp hair and activate with heat to create a waterproof veil on the hair. It also leaves hair so shiny and silky, and it’s hands down one of my favorite hairstyling products that I’ve tried.
The best-selling formula also comes in a version for curly hair, which delivers glossy and defined curls.
For weightless volume and giving roots extra oomph, this hair mousse is a game changer.
Paula’s Choice is one of the best skincare brands out there. Founder Paula Begoun is one of the most straight-talking beauty experts in the industry, and her no-BS approach to skincare is not only refreshing but also makes her brand trustworthy. The hero product that you’ll likely have seen all over TikTok is the 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant. This exfoliating toner has salicylic acid, which powers through clogged pores to help clear blackheads, breakouts, and prevents them from forming in the first place. I’ve been using this for a couple of years, and it’s now a non-negotiable in my skincare routine. My skin is quite sensitive yet oily, and I find my skin can tolerate this well every other day. I use it after cleansing my skin and before applying my serums and moisturizers, and it leaves my skin feeling cleansed but not stripped. Everyone’s skin is different, though, so if you’re new to new using any kinds of exfoliating acids, I’d begin with slowly incorporating this into your routine to see how often your skin can tolerate it before using it every day.
Some vitamin C serums can set you back three figures, but this serum is reasonably priced and has all the efficacy of premium brands.
If you’re looking for a good retinol formula, then this is a great option to address fine lines, skin texture, and pigmentation.
Skin slugging has taken off on TikTok, where people are finishing off their skincare routines by applying a thick layer of Eucerin’s Aquaphor onto their skin. Reviewers claim that this helps to lock in your skincare products, such as serums, to help your skin retain moisture. Eucerin’s Aquaphor is the product of choice for this, and at under $20, it’s worth trying if you have dry skin. (I wouldn’t recommend it if you are acne-prone or have oily skin.) However, it also has loads of uses, be it lip balm, protecting dry or cracked skin, or soothing chaffing and blisters. Everyone should have a tube of this handy in their bathroom cabinet.
When I had an eczema flare around my mouth recently, this was one of the only lip balms that worked to soothe the skin around my lips. I’m now never more than two meters away from one.
This SPF has incredible reviews and is the ideal SPF if your skin is oily.
This is arguably TikTok’s most famous mascara (with over 760 million views and counting) and beauty editors love it too. In fact, beauty journalists will often tell you that you really don’t need to spend a lot of money for a good mascara, as drugstore ones are often the best mascaras out there. Maybelline has also created brilliant mascaras, but the Sky High one is particularly special. This formula extends lashes to great lengths, and the flexible wand grabs onto every lash for a fanned-out effect. It lengthens, it curls, it doesn’t smudge, and it’s under $15. It also gives subtle volume and is buildable, so you can get a dramatic false-lash look too. I think everyone should have this in their makeup bag.
This is another of Maybelline’s top mascaras. It’s like a lash-lift in a bottle and gives lashes a fluttery curl with day-long hold.
If you want a brightening, non-creasing under-eye concealer for less than $12, then it doesn’t get better than this.
Dr.Jart+ has 165 million views on TikTok, and this is undeniably one of its most-loved products. Cicapair is a color-correcting treatment, which has a light green hue to it but melts into the skin to counteract redness and deliver similar effects as a tinted moisturizer. That being said, it works less well on darker skin tones, as it can leave a white cast on the skin, so it’s better suited to lighter skin tones. It contains tiger grass (also know as cica), which helps to neutralize and calm redness and rosacea too. It’s great to wear day to day if you don’t want the heaviness of foundation but still want a little bit of coverage.
If you prefer a lightweight coverage, then the drops deliver similar results.
This moisturizing blend of ceramides is so nourishing for dry or compromised skin.
With over 273 million views on TikTok, Dior’s Lip Glow Oil is one of the social platform’s most coveted products. The packaging is undeniably beautiful, but reviewers love the dewy glow and subtle tint of color that these bring to the lips. They are also hydrating and not sticky at all, which make them a great elevated alternative to your everyday lip balm. They also make great presents for those friends who you just don’t know what to buy for.
I put this lipstick to the test on TikTok, which claims to be transfer proof for 16 hours without transferring.
I’m also seeing this glittering lip plumper all over TikTok right now, and this gold hue is to die for.
When I sat down to dinner with two of my beauty-obsessed friends, we came to an agreement that if we could only use one skincare brand for the rest of our lives, we’d happily settle on Caudalie. The brand has so many good products across its range, and the results speak for themselves. This mask alone has 3.3 million views on TikTok alone and is one of the best clay masks in the game. It helps to mop up excess oil and draw out clogged pores without being harsh on the skin. It’s great for weekly maintenance to help keep the skin clear and balances oily skin.
This is genuinely one of the best brightening serums that I’ve ever tried, and it leaves the skin so even and luminous. I’m obsessed.
I love this serum for gentle exfoliate and unclog pores.
This post originally appeared on Who What Wear UK.