There are few things as frustrating as finding a beauty product that works well for your skin or hair — or that "holy grail" cosmetic that perfectly matches your coloring and skin tone — only to discover the next time you go to buy your new favorite product, it’s been discontinued.
When a product is popular, sells well and wins beauty editor awards, it doesn’t seem to make sense that a company would stop manufacturing it. Beauty companies rely on getting more coverage than their competitors in magazines and online, so they need to be constantly introducing new products to create a buzz and attract new customers.
"The truth is," wrote Renee Jacques in Allure Magazine, "once a [product] isn’t in the store or online anymore, [90 percent of women] just move on." Making and launching new products helps beauty companies stay on top of fashion and pop culture trends. Sometimes, the issue is an ingredient that can no longer be used for legal reasons. It's banned or must be below a certain percentage, so products have to be reformulated or replaced.
Discontinued items may still be available for sale on sites such as Overstock.com or Discontinuedbeauty.com, allowing for limited hoarding. The website MakeUpAlley.com, where consumers share beauty advice, helps people find replacement products. For the truly inconsolable, Giella Makeup or Three Custom Color Specialists can create customized color-matched lipsticks, foundation or nail polish to match any shade.
And, remember, gone for now doesn’t have to mean gone for good. Consumers can use social media channels (Twitter is popular) to demand favorites be brought back. Beauty companies are listening and bringing back popular products due to customer pressure, often with new formulations to embrace more plant-based ethics or a wider range of color choices for a more diversified market.
Here are beauty products that were loved, iconic, discontinued, mourned by many and, in some cases, reintroduced.