When it comes to a seamless makeup application, quality tools are just as important as any product in your arsenal, and no one understands this better than Artis. The luxury beauty brand is responsible for some of the most beloved makeup brushes on the market, and you've likely spotted their oval-shaped tools on the vanities of celebrities, makeup artists, and influencers alike.
Now, Artis is expanding their range beyond plush brushes with the launch of its first-ever cosmetics offering. Starting today, you can shop the brand's new Monograph Portfolios, a trio of limited-edition makeup kits housed in chic display boxes. "Makeup brushes are only half of the makeup experience," Matthew Waitesmith, the Co-Founder of Artis Brushes, tells Byrdie. "Adding cosmetic products to the Artis family was always inevitable to complete the circle. It is definitely time."
Ahead, we spoke with the co-founder and certified makeup professional to learn more about the thoughtfully formulated Monograph Collection. Keep reading for all the details on the new launch, and read our editors' honest reviews.
With four decades of cosmetic experience under his belt, Waitesmith decided it was time to share his makeup knowledge and expertise with the world. "Although some people may know me as the inventor of Artis Brushes, my first expertise was really cosmetics," he tells us. "Through my experience, I've learned that most people want to look as naturally beautiful as possible."
After three years of thorough formulation and planning, Waitesmith and his team finally landed on a range of products that live up to the Artis name and standard. "Without my experience with cosmetics, I never would have known how to create the perfect makeup brushes for applying and the perfect makeup and cosmetics formulas," he shares. "So, this Monograph Collections project is really a way of circling back and returning to the roots of my career."
The new collection includes three exceptionally formulated and curated limited-edition portfolios of cream lipsticks, eyeshadows, and powder blushes. "These products are the 'sneak preview' of the kind of makeup and cosmetic products Artis will be launching in 2022," Waitesmith promises.
Artis created the Monograph Pressed Powder Eyeshadow Quads ($149) after paying close attention to iris coloration and how it can be enhanced through color theory. The eyeshadows effortlessly glide onto lids and can be used as traditional shadow, liner, or even as brow powder to emphasize and define.
The pressed powder kit contains eight compacts that include light, medium, and dark shades in a variety of colors to sculpt and shape the eyes. "In order to sculpt properly, one needs to have colors that include a deliberate 'value' range, meaning the lightness or darkness of the color," Waitesmith explains. "This is why I choose to offer light, medium, and dark color options in each eyeshadow compact."
When creating the line, the team conducted extensive research to discover which colors the human body can naturally produce, which inspired the Monograph Pressed Powder Blush Duos ($149). "Theoretically, that would provide the most believable colors that most people would perceive as natural," Waitesmith describes.
The pressed powder blush kit comes with eight different duos that each feature two blush shades, which can be layered or used independently. Among the various matte and shimmer finishes, you'll find traditional blush hues (rosy pinks and corals) as well as a selection of browns and greens for a more maximalist look.
The final kit in the new collection is composed of a line of high-quality, creamy lipsticks. According to Waitesmith, skin undertones were the main inspiration for the Monograph Lipsticks ($149). "I believe that paying close attention to color undertones is one of the keys ensuring that it is wearable for the majority of people," says the artist.
The long-wear lipsticks, available in 16 universally flattering colors, have a creamy, satin finish and are designed for experimentation. You can layer the different shades—which range from bright reds to nudes to unexpected yellows—for a custom, one-of-a-kind look.
Madeline Hirsch, Senior News Editor
Naturally, I did plenty of experimenting while testing out this collection. Except for my skin tint and mascara, I’m wearing a full face of Monograph by Artis, and it shows. The formula quality speaks for itself (I think it’s pretty clear how much fun I had layering), and their versatility is unmatched. Full disclosure: these palettes are definitely geared towards the pros—they are not one-and-done products. But, if makeup is your creative outlet (hey, me too), they’ll help unleash your inner artist. Above all, the shadows were true standouts. In a world of single shade liquids and sparkly palettes, these quads are built to play, sculpt, and shade.
Emerald Elitou, News Writer
I was both excited and intrigued when I learned that Artis was expanding into luxury cosmetics. My expectations for this collection were sky-high, and why shouldn't they be? This was the brand that switched up my application, forever. From the chic black cases to the clean white boxes, the experience felt lavish before I even started. After prepping and priming my skin, I applied my eyeshadow, my usual starting point for any makeup moment. While the colors were fabulous in the compact, the eyeshadows weren’t quite as vibrant as I initially expected. However, I worked my makeup magic to create a playful autumn gaze.
When it came to the blush, I was pleased to see that the colors were just as rich on my skin as they were in the compact, and they created a gorgeous rosy hue. Finally, I chose the Roar lipstick to finish off my look. It features a magnetic tube—which I love—and I was genuinely impressed with the satiny soft application. Eager to test out the diversity of the lipstick hues, I even tried it on my sister, who has a warm undertone, and it looked stunning on her as well. The fact that it's a universally flattering color has me sold!
Karli Bendlin, Senior Editor
During a time when new makeup lines are coming out at a breakneck speed, I appreciate the artistry behind a thoughtful launch even more. And from the moment I opened the new Monograph collection, it was clear to me that every element of the line was carefully curated, from the unexpected shade range to the sleek packaging.
The products themselves are just as high-quality as the brushes the brand is known for—the lipsticks apply like a dream, and the blushes are beyond pigmented. The eyeshadows, though, are by far my favorite. After swiping on each shade from one of the quads, I was blown away by how much it enhanced my eye color—my eyes were noticeably brighter both in person and on camera. The price tag is steep, but I do think the formulas are worth it, especially since you get a slew of shades in each to experiment with. I highly recommend.