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I love trying out new beauty products, and, as a result, I rarely buy the same thing twice, always impulse-buying the next new thing or the products with the prettiest packaging. These featured products are the exceptions. Lately I feel like I’ve hit the jackpot and found a lot of products that are perfect for me- they work better than anything else I’ve tried, look prettier, and fit into my routine without requiring a lot of extra time or effort. These products have worked so well that I’ve bought them again and again (or plan to buy again). Finding a bunch of products that I love has really helped me maintain some consistency with my beauty routine, especially my skincare regimen. Gone are the days where I’ll go to bed without washing off all of my makeup or moisturizing. Despite this dry winter weather, I have seen a significant difference in the condition of my skin since using these products. I’m so happy to have finally found a routine that works for me, and I plan to stick with these products long-term.
Nude Skincare ProGenius Treatment Oil: This product oil-based, so it gives my skin a perfect dewy glow. It provides quite a bit of moisture, although I’ve been supplementing it with the Boscia lotions because my skin is so insanely dry during the winter. I use this product once a day, usually at night, as I think it’s a little heavy to wear underneath my foundation. However, I think during summer I’ll probably wear this without any foundation on days when I want to look glowy without having to wear a full face of makeup. This product also claims to reduce breakouts, and I’ve definitely seen a significant improvement in the parts of my skin that tend to be more congested. Disclaimer: this product is pretty pricey. Right now I’m using a deluxe sample that came with my latest Sephora order, but a tiny bit of the product goes a long way and I think it’s worth the investment. I definitely plan to purchase another bottle once this one runs out.
Boscia Oil-Free Daily Hydration: I’ve long been a fan of Boscia products, but it wasn’t until recently that I started using these moisturizers consistently enough to see results. The Daily Hydration isn’t nearly as hydrating as the Nightly Hydration, but I think it’s perfect for daytime. I don’t really want a super rich cream underneath my other makeup, so this has been perfect for me.
Boscia Oil-Free Nightly Hydration: This moisturizer is the only one that has been able to save my winter skin. I’ve tried at least 6 other moisturizers this season (some drugstore, some from Sephora), and all of them left my skin looking flaky and dry within about 5 minutes of application, which, in turn, caused my foundation to look cakey. After just one use of this Nightly Hydration, my skin looked and felt smooth and supple again. At night after I wash my face, I pat on a tiny bit of the Nude ProGenius Treatment Oil while my skin is still damp. I let it dry for 5-10 minutes, then apply the Boscia Nightly Hydration to areas where my skin needs the extra moisture. I’ve finally learned my lesson that drugstore moisturizers just don’t compare to the higher-end brands. You definitely get what you pay for.
BareMinerals Original Foundation in Medium Beige: I’ve blogged about this so many times, as I’ve been using it since I was in college. It’s still my absolute favorite. It goes on a little bit sheer but builds really nicely for days when I need heavier coverage.
Tarte EmphasEYES Shadow/Liner in Bronze: This clay eyeliner is the holy grail of eyeliners, especially if you are incapable of applying a clean, straight line with liquid liner like I am. It has a buttery, creamy texture that glides on smoothly, and the color is very rich and pigmented. I can’t say enough good things about it. If you’re looking to try out a creamy eyeliner that you apply with a brush but are hesitant to spend so much before you know how you like it, I recommend trying E.L.F.’s Studio Cream Eyeliner. It comes in a little plastic pot with a mini brush and is only $3. I like the E.L.F version, too, but it tends to dry out really quickly in the container, and it pales in comparison to the Tarte version.
Nars Blush in Orgasm: This was the first Nars product I ever purchased, convinced I needed to try it after reading about it in virtually every beauty magazine available. I was immediately hooked. I love the sleek black packaging, and the quality of their products is really great.The color of this blush is so pretty- it’s kind of a peachy pink with specks of gold glitter in it, but not so much glitter that it’s super shimmery. It’s just a really nice, natural-looking color that imparts the perfect glow.
Urban Decay Naked3 Palette: I was skeptical when this palette was first released… On the one hand, I wanted it because I tend to suffer from FOMO (fear of missing out), but on the other hand, I just didn’t think it could possibly live up to all the hype. I’ve used the Naked2 Palette, and it was nice..but it wasn’t life changing like everyone described Naked3. After some thought, I finally went to Sephora and tried it out with their tester palette. I was a little worried the pink colors wouldn’t flatter my already very pink skin, but my fears quickly subsided once I tried on a few of the colors. I especially love how it compliments my blue eyes. Verdict: I’m obsessed. This palette was totally worth every bit of the hype.
SensatioNail Gel Nail Polish Kit: This gel nail kit allows me to get the look of a salon-quality manicure without having to leave my house. I have a knack for smudging my freshly painted nails even 12 hours post polish (not kidding), but this kit completely solves that problem. You apply a base coat, cure it, then apply the polish and cure it. After curing, they are totally dry and un-smudgeable. Even better, the polish dries to a beautiful smooth and shiny finish- it looks so much better than when I polish my nails with regular polish, and it lasts 7-8 days before I get any chips. The last time I used it (with Sally Hansen gel polish but using the rest of the SensatioNail kit), my manicure didn’t chip at all until day 13 when I got a teeny tiny chip on the tip of one thumb. Pretty impressive!
Bath & Body Works Nutcracker Nail Clippers: I bought these around Christmas, and I just think they are adorable. Regular nail clippers are so ugly and scary looking, but this one is cute and very easy to find when I’m digging around my makeup cabinet for it. The quality is pretty nice, too. Right now they have them in a bunch of really cute summer designs.
Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in Fiery: This liquid lipstick really lives up to its name- it stays on all day, even through drinking and eating and talking. It has a really matte finish, which I love, but I always make sure to apply a layer of lip balm before applying this lipstick to prevent it from looking too dry. The only downside to this product is that I think it is really difficult to apply without getting it all over my face. That being said, I seem to have this problem with all lipstick, so I’m going to blame that one on user error. I really love the staying power and the matte finish of this lipstick, and I can’t wait to try out more colors.
BareMinerals Marvelous Moxie Lip Gloss in Trailblazer: I’m usually not a lip gloss girl, but these Moxie lip glosses are, as the name says, marvelous. They have a nice minty scent, and, if I’m not mistaken, a slight plumping effect. I have a several mini versions of these, but this color is my favorite. It’s a really nice nude color with a bit of gold shimmer- perfect for adding shine and a hint of color when you don’t want a bold lip but also don’t want to go completely bare.
Benefit They’re Real! Mascara: This mascara is the absolute best I’ve ever tried. It noticeably lengthens, curls and volumizes, all without those pesky clumps.
SunLabs Overnight Self-Tanning Lotion in Medium: After reading about this tanning lotion on Cara’s blog, I ordered a few bottles before our beach vacation last summer. You apply it before bed, then wash it off in the morning. It will instantly give you a little color, but overnight the color really develops into the perfect deep bronze. It’s not too orange like so many other sunless tanners, and the best part….it doesn’t stink like other tanners! I also used it on my face without any breakouts. This has become my go-to tanner, and I can’t wait to start using it again this spring.
Gilette Venus Embrace Sensitive Razor (c/o Influenster): I don’t normally get particularly excited about razors, but this one from Gilette has been a game changer for me. I have very sensitive skin, so shaving my legs during winter when my skin is extra dry and ultra sensitive is like torture. This razor is formulated to be very gentle on skin while still giving a close shave, so it doesn’t irritate my legs like other razors do.
Joico K-Pak Shampoo and Conditioner (purchased at Ulta): Even though I’ve gone back to being (mostly) brunette, my hair is still a complete disaster from my blonde phase this summer. It is a dry, damaged, tangled, unruly mess. A few weeks ago I went into Ulta when they had all of their liter-size hair care on sale, and I saw the Joico K-Pak line, which is meant to repair damaged hair. I went home and read as many reviews as I could find, and the reviews were all glowing. I decided to give it a try, so I went back to Ulta to purchase it. In just one use, my hair felt softer and smoother, I noticed less frizz, and it looked significantly shinier than usual. I’m still dealing with the tangling issue, but each time I use this duo my hair feels a little bit healthier. I’m really optimistic that, with continued use, these products will nurse my hair back to health.