Beauty Essentials

Some of my can't-live-without skin care and make-up products.

Some of my can't-live-without skin care and make-up products.

Confession: I’m beauty product obsessed. Walking into my bathroom, you’d think you’d stepped inside a sorority house, as I have enough lotions, hair products, skin care, and make-up for an entire army of well-groomed ladies. I just love trying new things and am a bit OCD when it comes to clear skin. The good news is, my over-indulgence in all things beauty is your gain, as I have tried and tested many products and am here to share all the best!

To start are my skincare stars. Since puberty I think I’ve been on the hunt for that perfect face-wash that helps banish blemishes without drying out my sensitive skin. The search is over- Kate Somerville’s Detox Daily Cleanser is the absolute best for clear skin, everyday. I swear by it- plus the bottle lasts a good while! After cleansing I always follow up with a moisturizer, especially in the winter. For years now I have been using Aveeno’s Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer (I even got Amanda hooked), which can be found at most drugstores. It’s so lightweight, ultra-gentle, and doesn’t leave any greasy residue, just pure moisture loveliness! To prevent and quickly eradicate breakouts I really like Clinique’s Acne Solutions Clinical Clearing Gel and Kate Somerville’s Anti Bac Clearing Lotion (Amanda just introduced me to this.)

For make-up, I look for things that are lightweight, natural looking, and long-lasting. I like starting with a primer, which helps control oil and allows foundation to go on smoother and stay on longer. My recent favorite, especially for my combination skin, is Dr. Brandt’s Pores No More primer. It’s pricy but a little goes a long way with this one. Smashbox also makes really good primers for all different skin types and Benefit’s Porefessional is another favorite. After priming it’s on to Dr. Jart’s BB Dis-A-Pore- an amazing medium coverage BB cream (with a ‘universal color’ that somehow works on many skin tones.) Come winter I normally switch back to my favorite foundation, Make Up Forever’s HD Foundation, but I love this BB Cream so much that I’m still using it now! To finish off my everyday look I like to use Make Up Forever’s HD Blush (color 220 is a great everyday tone.) It’s a super blend-able, build-able, creamy blush that is perfect for dry winter skin. I apply it with my fingers and then blend it with an angled blush brush- you really can’t screw it up. Finally, and in my opinion most importantly, comes the mascara. I love amping up my lashes to the max and I have tried just about every drugstore and department store brand. For drugstore brands, Maybelline makes really great mascara’s – The Colossal Volum’ Express- being a personal favorite. However my top, splurge-worthy pick is Benefit’s They’re Real! Mascara. The brush is the best I’ve found, allowing for both maximum volume and separation, and the formula lasts all day and doesn’t flake. If you love your eyelashes then you need to try this mascara! 

What are your beauty essentials? I'm really looking forward to trying out some products inspired by Pantone's 2015 color of the year- Marsala- a beautiful wine red color!

-c.