I don’t round up favorite products on a regular basis except for at the end of the year, so this is my chance to put some of my reviews in perspective and talk about the stuff that really stood out to me. I’m highlighting some skincare and some makeup that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed and span a wide range of price points. And I have to get this up and out there before I start talking about all of the newstuff I’ve bought for myself this winter and will be trying in 2018, so let’s go!
We’ll start with some makeup, which I think is the most fun. The Milk Makeup Sunshine Skin Tint SPF 30 ($42) isn’t something I’ve heard a lot of people talk about, but it kind of encapsulates what I look for in a foundation. It’s luminous and healthy, smooths the appearance of skin texture, has some sun protection, and even has some lasting power on me, getting me through a full day at work. I like the rollerball action, personally. Coverage is on the light side. Cruelty-free.
For some higher coverage, I’m very impressed by the BH Cosmetics Studio Pro Total Coverage Concealer ($5.99). It’s a cream in a squeeze tube, and when I use it quite sparingly around my face it gives some really good coverage while still maintaining a beautiful, natural finish on the skin. I use shade 102. Cruelty-free.
It’s been just nearly a year since I’ve talked about this on the blog, but one of my top makeup loves is this multipurpose color palette from LH Cosmetics called the Infinity Palette ($45). I love the consistency of the powders and the colors are really useful. I bring this with me on trips a lot. Cruelty-free.
The Guerlain Terracotta Bronzing Powder ($53) was a fancy birthday present that I bought for myself over the summer (June, I think), and it’s basically my favorite thing. I don’t often pay luxury prices like that but I’ve basically been using it every day for months and months and I’m absolutely thrilled with the purchase. I bought it in shade number 1.
And on the complete opposite end of the price spectrum, I started using and loving ColourPop’s very affordable powder eyeshadows for the first time this year and have made several further orders of them, between the individual pans as well as a couple of palettes. ColourPop absolutely changed my perception of buying higher priced eyeshadows this year. Cruelty-free.
As a final makeup pick, I wanted to mention the Corvus Cosmetics loose highlighting powders ($10). I’ve reviewed three shades in March and three newer limited edition shades much more recently, and I wear these a ton. They’re on the subtle side so they’re very appropriate for my office day job, but come in a lot of beautiful shades, including both conventional skin-like colors as well as more unusual ones like blue and green. Cruelty-free.
Moving on to skincare, here’s a cleanser I’ve talked about very recently in a post about keeping skin hydrated over the winter. The Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs and Moringa ($33) is an effective cleanser that’s perfect for dry skin and, for me, worth a splurge (particularly during the Sephora VIB sale).
I’ve tried a lot of treatments from The Ordinary, the affordable range created by parent brand Deciem, this year and a few favorites of mine that I wanted to highlight were the Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F, a vitamin C treatment in an oil ($17.80); “Buffet”, an antiaging peptide serum ($14.80); and Granactive Retinoid 2% in Squalane, a gentle retinoid in a hydrating base ($9.60). I’ve made a number of orders from Deciem this year, but The Ordinary also recently became available at Sephora (online only) and all three of these products are among the abbreviated selection carried there [correction: the retinoid that Sephora carries is the emulsion rather than the squalane solution]. So, I will probably continue to order from Deciem from time to time to get a broader range of products, but I can fill in the gaps at Sephora, which is really convenient. Cruelty-free.
Another treatment I was loyal to is the Kiehl’s Blue Herbal Spot Treatment with Salicylic Acid ($18), which is just a simple gel that helps gently exfoliate breakouts, which I tend to experience hormonally. I don’t go through the tube super quickly, so I think I only needed to buy this twice this year in order to keep it on hand.
Speaking of Kiehl’s, I wanted to say more broadly that they make phenomenal moisturizers that I’ve bought over and over, whether it’s their Ultra-Facial Cream ($27.50), Super Multi-Corrective Cream ($62), the Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado ($29), or this Creme D’Elegance Repairateur ($29), which I began using this year as the colder weather set in and I couldn’t find a rich enough moisturizer for my skin. It looks and feels like soft butter and is a really great option for those struggling with really tight, uncomfortable dryness, while still offering a refined texture that sinks into skin elegantly.
And as one last pick, here’s a really wonderful lip balm that I also reached for this winter. The Bite Beauty Agave Lip Balm ($18) is one I decided to try even though the Agave Lip Mask gets a lot more press, because it’s better to bring on the go since it doesn’t require the use of a finger to apply it. It leaves a really solid (but not heavy) hydrating, protective layer on the skin. It also manages to leave the lips looking beautiful, as well – but not glossy wet. Cruelty-free.
Thank you so much for reading Beauty Loon over the past year. I hope 2017 treated you well, and that you have an even better 2018. I’d love to hear if you’ve tried any of these favorites of mine, or what products stood out to you this year!