Beauty is so much more than just facepaint. It has the ability to uplift, transform and renew. Just ask any woman who buys a lipstick as a pick-me-up or find her whole face changed (for the better) with a simple eyebrow shaping. Check out our picks of the best beauty stores in Singapore. With great service (and some with uniquely Singaporean brands on offer) and a mind-boggling array of choices, step in, be transported and come out with whole bag of goodies.
The brainchild of the Spa Esprit group and its founder Cynthia Chua, expect a tongue-in-cheek approach to beauty, with witty campaigns and quirky décor that differs from store to store. Browhaus offers both temporary and permanent brow and lash treatments, such as brow tinting and threading. The latest Browhaus treatment is the Big Eye look under its Eye Define menu — a permanent eyeliner that will give you much-coveted doe eyes ala K-beauty stars. Our only suggestion: make an appointment. Even for a simple brow threading, walk-in customers are seldom able to get a slot.
Bonus: If the permanent approach is not for you, pick up some of its in-house products like their range of liners, brow pencils and mascaras that will enhance your peepers long after your treatment is over.
#03-18 Wheelock Place, 6732-0070
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday (10am to 9pm)
2. The Beauty Candy Apothecary
Since it first opened in its cosy Cluny Court location, this gorgeous spot has been a go-to for women in the know. The lifestyle emporium has since moved to a more accessible location in Mandarin Gallery, but the cheerful yet luxurious vibe remains. Owner Astrie Sunindar-Ratner, is a Parson's School of Design alumni, which accounts for her great taste. She also knows all the best, cult beauty brands and brings them under one roof. Expect an impeccably curated selection that includes Tata Harper, Prtty Peaushun and local brand Allies of Skin — which you would only be able to purchase online otherwise.
Bonus: Besides beauty products, an edited selection of goods from luxurious pyjamas to fine jewellery from Claire Aristides are part of the The Beauty Candy lifestyle. These make delightfully unexpected (but welcome) additions to your beauty purchases.
#02-27 Mandarin Gallery, 6314-3828
3. Sephora Ion
The original beauty mecca from France made its way into Singapore in 2009 and hasn't looked back since — expanding rapidly through the island and changing the way women shop for beauty. Pick from a wide selection of brands including lust-worthy offerings from hot makeup brands like NYX, Nudestix, Kat Von D Beauty and Urban Decay. Almost anything imaginable, from beauty sponges to Clarisonics to cult hair products are available. The Ion Orchard outlet (which just moved downstairs) is one of the largest in the region and attracts visitors from all over.
Bonus: Pop in for a makeover at the various beauty counters or book yourself in for a life-changing brow wax at the Benefit Brow Bar.
#B2-09 Ion Orchard, 6509-8255
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday (10am to 10pm)
4. Bud Cosmetics
Trends come and go, but organic beauty store Bud Cosmetics has remained steadfast since it first bloomed more than 10 years ago. Providing proponents of natural beauty with access to a staggering array of brands from Badger Balm to Filthy Farmgirl, the store believes in responsibility when it comes to what you put on your face, as well as with regards to the enviromment. At Bud, an organic approach is not a fad, but a lifestyle. Look for Bodhi & Birch's luxurious bath and body products and Tonic eye pillows — they also make great gifts. For those who want to go natural, but just can't give up makeup, there are also brands like Sante, Juice Beauty and 100% Pure that have everything from concealers to eyeliners.
Bonus: The Mandarin Gallery store also offers facials, body treatments and waxing.
#03-32 Mandarin Gallery, 6733-5782
Opening hours: Sunday to Thursday (11am to 830pm)
Friday & Saturday (11am to 9pm)
Escentials is pretty much our dream beauty store in Singapore, and the little red dot's answer to Joyce Beauty or Space NK. Since its days in the Raffles Hotel Shopping Arcade, this premium beauty boutique has been catering to the whims and fancies of the well-heeled and discerning buyer, who hankers after cult makeup and skincare buys and little-known fragrance brands. With names like Le Labo, Maison Francis Kurkdjian and Byredo's mini store-in-store, saying you'll be spoilt for choice is an understatement. We hear the cutting-edge store (which was re-designed late last year) may be branching out into e-commerce sometime this year, which will make getting our hands on these luxe goodies even easier.
Bonus: Besides makeup, skincare and fragrances, here is where you'll find premium candles from Cire Trudon or hip new brands like Damselfly, as well as hard-to-find accessories for the home like candle wick-trimmers and incense holders from brands like Diptyque and Fornasetti. The luxe life indeed.
#03-02/05 Paragon, 6737-2478
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday (10am to 9pm)