I don’t wear a ton of makeup. And when I do wear makeup, I need it to make me look better. Which means it cannot highlight my under-eye wrinkles, settle into my pores, smudge all over the place, or otherwise highlight imperfections. My makeup game is not about distracting you with purple glitter eyeshadow; it’s about making you card me at the liquor store. So while this list doesn’t include any gorgeous eyeshadow palettes or unicorn-inspired highlighters, it does feature products that make me look younger, don’t melt off, and otherwise make me feel good about myself.
So let’s get to it!
Too Faced Peaches and Cream “Peach Perfect” Foundation
When Too Faced released their Peaches and Cream collection, I did not run to the store for it. Quite the contrary. To my skeptical mind, this seemed like another gimmicky release aimed at a much younger audience. I do not need my foundation to smell like dessert, thank-you-very-much. But one day I ended up at Sephora and curiosity got the best of me. And I am so glad it did. Because the Too Faced Peach Perfect Foundation is absolutely the shit. Unlike Rihanna’s otherwise lovely Fenty foundation, the long-wearing, matte Peach Perfect applies very easily: it doesn’t dry too fast and it blends beautifully. The scent, I grudgingly admit, is great–not strong, and makes me feel, well, happy.
My only problem with it is that it’s very matte. Very matte, and I prefer my skin to have a satin finish. My T-zone is pretty oily, though, so I’d rather err on the side of too matte than too dewy. I like to mix this foundation with a drop of liquid highlighter or luminizer, and I end up with a perfect “my skin but better” finish. I can’t say enough good things about it. And it lasts all day.
Too Faced Peach Mist Mattifying Setting Spray
If I was pleasantly surprised by the foundation, the setting spray double impressed me. Not because it’s better than the foundation, but because my expectations were even lower. Setting sprays are always kind of meh on me. But this one is different: it really does set the foundation, and together my makeup lasts all day. I look amazing until I wash this stuff off. Plus? You just can’t beat the smell.
BUT. You do have to shake the hell out of it. Here’s a tip: shake it until you can’t hear the liquids inside anymore. They will emulsify in such a way that the bottle sounds empty. When that happens, you’ve shaken it enough. Go crazy and enjoy.
Lancome Absolue Radiant Smoothing Powder
Before I found this product, I often skipped powder altogether. On a typical day, I mix foundation with lotion for a tinted moisturizer look and I never felt the need to set it. But once I started using the Glossier concealer, which is a bit wet looking, I realized I needed something to dampen the shine of my skin without extinguishing my flame. The Absolue Smoothing powder isn’t really a setting powder, but it kind of gives an airbrushed look to the skin. It’s a soft finish powder that just sort of…blends things together. I love it.
Glossier Stretch Concealer
I’m as surprised as anyone to have not one but two Glossier products on my list. The Glossier Stretch Concealer is my everyday go-to. Even if I don’t wear a stitch of makeup otherwise, I’ll throw on this concealer under my eyes. It is not a full coverage concealer, but it does a really good job of making me look awake without creasing harshly, giving flashback, or looking like it’s sitting in top of my skin. (Important when you wear concealer without foundation as I frequently do.) It really does seem to move with my skin, which keeps it from creasing, cracking, or feeling stiff. (I can’t stand it when my concealer makes my skin feel immobilized.) It doesn’t have much of a range colorwise, which is too bad, but this stuff really, really hits the spot for me.
Glossier Cloud Paint Blush
I have always preferred the look of glowing, dewy skin to matte skin. That’s just my preference. So liquid cheek products are wonderful because they offer that glow-from-within look I so cherish. The Glossier Cloud Paints are lightweight liquid blushes that you apply with your fingers for a natural flushed look. The tubes are small BUT a little goes a LONG way! I can wear these blushes over foundation or on bare skin and they work great either way. Plus, I can wear them alone or layer with a powder blush on top. I love the versatility and the effortless, no-makeup look they can afford. Just a really great product for my casual, everyday makeup preference.
INT Eyshadow in Goddess Gold
The INT Eyeshadow in the color Goddess Gold is $4. And it’s the most bomb highlighter ever. I don’t wear it as a shadow; I wear it as a highlighter and with my skin tone it just cannot be beat. It looks good with just about any warm palette I pair it with, and it’s $4. What.
NARS Blush in Taj Mahal
I feel like this color is probably going to be discontinued, and I’m sorry for that because I know it feels like betrayal. But it had to go on this list, because I think it’s amazing. It’s a gorgeous orange that glows against my skin tone. I saw it for the first time on my trip to Seoul and I kicked myself for not buying it then, because once I got back to the States I couldn’t find it anywhere. I finally got one on Ebay, but I have no idea what will happen once I hit pan on this. Let’s hope orange catches on or Nars brings this color back. It’s so gorgeous.
Honorable Mentions: Maybelline Fit Me Foundation and Setting Powder
If I hadn’t found the Too Faced foundation, the Fit ME! foundation would have won product of the year. Not only is it a drugstore product so it’s affordable as hell, it’s also one of the best foundations I’ve ever used. And it is actually is the best setting powder I’ve ever used. (I hated the Laura Mercier. Sorrynotsorry.) The Fit ME! comes in two finishes: dewy and matte. The dewy finish is kind of a disaster if your skin isn’t dry AF. But the matte finish is gorgeous–more of a satin finish, really. It’s beautiful to work with, comes in a wide range of shades, sets beautifully and lasts a full work day. I highly recommend the Fit Me foundation and setting powder to everyone–I believe in them that much.
That’s it for makeup favorites of 2017! What did you love from the past year that you’ll be rocking well into 2018?