Sunday Riley just happens to be one of those captivating brands that has a substantial legion of devoted fans inclusive of celebrities and Sephora VIBs, who worship this smart, high-performance skin-care line as if it’s the only one on earth. In 2009, Sunday Riley, a young girl from Houston compounded a handful of very interesting skincare formulas. Armed with just a few prototypes including a unique nameless formula that today is considered a holy grail product (none other than Good Genes Lactic acid treatment).

Riley herself recounts why she created the brand in 2009 and she says that, “There was a real hole in what I call green technology ” and that, “People were very frustrated with skin care”. Fast forward to 2020 green technology has become a global formulation approach. So what exactly is this green tech?. It’s essentially a compounding process that entails balancing science-based active ingredients with botanicals. Riley’s personal vision stems from a deep love of formulation and is founded in the belief that if you want to keep your skin radiant and young then you need active ingredients to do that. Apart from including such active ingredients in her line she took it a level-up by adding some age-old botanicals that have proven to provide exemplary results.

Despite a short stint in 2018 when Sunday Riley was accused of seeding its own comments on social media, this brand has operated unscathe and is no doubt a cult favorite and can be found in skincare sections of the top department stores of the world. Talk to any skin care advisor and one will invariably hear one or two of Sunday Riley’s products come up in their top recommendations.

“I’m not into aspirational luxury,” she says. “I think a lot of luxury skin-care brands are very glossy and all about buying into the brand. We’re the opposite of that. We’re selling something that works.”

We have listed and curated 4 of our favorite Sunday Riley’ products that can be found on the vanities of serious skincare fanatics, celebrities and are truly high performing products.


If you are obsessed with preserving your eyes, Sunday Riley’s Auto Correct Eye cream can easily become your favorite discovery. A cult favorite, this hydrating eye cream is especially formulated for brightening up the half-moon area under your eyes. Auto correct is effective in reducing the appearance of dark circles with an added advantage of providing instant depuffing of the under-eye area (especially when stored in the fridge). The cream has a light-diffusing glow and its slight pearlescent, golden tone that provides a very blurring effect for dark circles. This incredible formula is a moisturizing cocktail of cocoa and shea butters, watermelon rind extract and sodium PCA, all of which add hydration to the skin. Auto correct gives you very real results without causing an uncomfortable tightening sensation around the eyes that other depuffer creams might create.



The absolute buzziest and best-loved product, Good Genes Lactic acid is a multitasking formula that contains everything your skin needs to gain brightness and true radiance. Countless reviews show that Good Genes Lactic Acid Treatment has changed the skintones and confidence of many troubled skins. When Good Genes launched in 2009, there were very few acids in the U.S. market. Skin-care junkies who actively knew about acids were about the only ones in the know. The product blew up everywhere at once when the average consumer started seeing instant and relatable results. Sunday Riley’s Good Genes treatment is a very reliable skin treatment. The efficacy of this complicated product, and the fact that for the most part it delivers truly radiant complexion, doesn’t irritate skin, and quietens the most angriest of acne is why it is such an all time best seller. It does have a rank smell of sour milk that someone squeezed a lemon into but that is due to the concentration of lactic acid in it. This tingly treatment works so well at creating fresher, smoother skin overnight, that I would say it’s easy to overlook the scent. You can use this alone or as part of a two-step treatment with Luna Night Sleeping Oil and see even more magical results.


Retinol can be an intimidating ingredient and incorrect use of the product can also have a counter effect on your skin. The vitamin A derivative Retinoids can be as good at making your skin red and raw as they can be in boosting collagen. Sunday Riley’s Luna Sleeping Night Oil is a potent treatment that’s a rich, inky blue and gets its color from an anti-inflammatory ingredient called blue tansy oil. The contemporary packaging and the mysterious blue bottle is intriguing and perhaps a little intimidating too. But the Luna oil is a superfunctional formulation which has fine line-fading properties, as well as packed with retinol to smooth skin and boost collagen. Don’t panic if you see your skin turning a bright blue color because as soon as you start to massage it into your skin, it immediately changes to a clear color. What’s special about this bright-blue solution, in addition to the fact that it smells uncannily like beef jerky, is that it seeks to bust the myth that retinoids are always drying. In the case of Luna it works to reduce redness, calm irritation, and leave skin soothed and not even a little bit blue.


If you have had trouble with acne and other pore clogging issues Sunday Riley U.F.O Clarifying Facial oil is your healthy green elixir. It’s a fast-acting, quick-drying, medicated oil that clears acne and blackhead-causing buildup and debris from congested pores for smoother, blemish-free skin without leaving a greasy residue behind. This fast-absorbing dry oil redefines salicylic acid the way Luna does retinoid. Luna oil balances a typically drying ingredient in a stable formula that keeps skin smooth and hydrated as opposed to being parched and flaky. It smells like sticking your head in a spice cabinet, but for acne sufferers in pursuit of minimized breakouts and a newfound glow, it’s worth a shot.

The prices are definitely high as you might think for Sunday Riley products, but this doesn’t stop fans from hoarding bottles whenever it’s available. If there is a brand you want to really make “Skin First!” with then start here!

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