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I have always loved Allure magazine. Being a beauty junkie all of my life, it’s always been the go to for learning about new trends, new products, and especially new technology before it hit store shelves long before the age of the internet and blogs. The Allure Best of Beauty list is something I’ve found trustworthy – never solely focused on paid product placement or promotion. It’s always been items I found worthy of distinction regardless of price and I do feel a bit of comfort when shopping everywhere from CVS to Sephora when I see the little “Allure Best of Beauty” winner sticker.
Best of Beauty celebrated its 20th anniversary this year – crazy that it was first published in 1996 (the year of CLUELESS) – so you know my sentimental ass is going to be saving this issue for keepsake purposes (because I’m a dork like that). Their list includes 270 products in all categories, but I’m narrowing it down to my personal top must haves and must tries.
These are items I personally own and have used daily and/or for years. They’re high performers and what I consider to be must-haves for anyone.
Secret Clinical Strength Invisible Solid Deodorant; $8.99
I prefer the Completely Clean scent. Used more in the spring/summer months, this deodorant will keep you dry and completely fresh. Make sure to scrub well in the shower to remove any residue because it’s powerful and I find you do need to put a little effort in removing it from your skin. I switch to a more mild deodorant in the fall/winter (Dove or a regular Secret variety).
St. Tropez Express Self Tanner; $18-44
I have used St. Tropez self-tanner for years but I love the new formulation! The self-tanner scent is nearly undetectable (for real though), and this formula starts to develop in as little as ONE HOUR (three hours for full, deep color). Perfect for a night out and so you don’t have to sleep overnight wearing it.
Tweezerman Slant Tweezers; $23
I purchased these exact tweezers in 2005. I still have the same pair and they still are my best tweezers for gripping stray hairs. I’ve had them for 11 years… that tells you something, right!?
Beautyblender Original; $20
Every women’s interest magazine under the sun has told you to try this makeup sponge if you hate ‘heavy’ foundation and/or just want your foundation to look airbrushed (who doesn’t). You have to try this one in order to appreciate any dupes (although the Real Techniques orange sponge is a very close second).
Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Brush Duo; $18
Simply the best and most convenient dual-sided brush to apply brow powder – not too thick or thin of a brush. I have two of these so when one is dirty, I have a backup. Commitment.
Sigma F80 Flat Top Brush; $25
For the days the beauty blender isn’t clean, you want full coverage, and/or you can’t access water to dampen your beauty blender (or don’t want to travel with a damp sponge), you need a brush like this. I do use brushes more than the beauty blender simply because I usually have a blemish or five to cover, so these types of brushes are my favorites and the F80 has lasted me at least five years now.
Anastasia Brow Powder Duo; $23
I talked about this powder a few times over the years, but it’s my favorite brow product. It looks the most natural, lasts well and the Ash/Taupe shade is perfect for my hair color. I find it way more natural than a pencil and works well with the ABH clear brow gel or Benefit Gimme Brow for extra definition/setting power.
Glossier Boy Brow; $16
This is my favorite ‘lazy Sunday’ makeup item. Not as strong of a hold as the ABH clear brow gel and not as bold as Benefit Gimme Brow, Glossier’s Boy Brow is a no-makeup makeup product sure to impress beauty junkies of all levels. My one qualm is if you live in a very humid climate, the wax-based formula isn’t completely smudge-proof.
Marc Jacobs Hi Shine Lip Lacquer; $28
The creamiest and shiniest nonsticky lip gloss on the market – hands down. A little goes a long way. I love shade “Pretty Thing.”
These are the items I personally want to try based on reviews and research. Let me know if you’ve tried any of these and what you think about them.
Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro; $38
A luxurious liquid lipstick formula that’s supposed to be comfortable to wear and won’t fade or feather.
Giorgio Armani Lip Maestro(at Walgreens); $13
I read about this formula quite a few times over the year. It’s supposed to be stunning, particularly shades Portofino and La Spezia.
OPI Infinite Shine; $12-13
I love all pastel, subdued shades so this formula and this particular shade (Lavendurable) caught my eye. I have Essie Go Ginza, which seems similar, but one can never have too many neutral, pale, opaque nail polishes, right?
Essie, Topless and Barefoot; $9
Again, see above. How I don’t already have this shade yet blows my mind, too.
Olay Eyes Ultimate Eye Cream; $24.99
I actually have a tiny sample of this from the Allure Best of Beauty magazine itself. I used it last night and it was very nice. Not too heavy. I tend to like very moisturizing eye creams, so I’m not sure if this is going to be very ‘ultimate’ for me. Definitely better for daytime if you need just an extra bit of moisture.
Elizabeth Arden Grand Entrance Mascara; $24
Um… UNDER THE RADAR! I have not seen anyone talk about this ever! So curious.
L’Oreal Infallible The Super Slim Eyeliner Pen; $6.99
Ok… I may be crazy but I feel like the product mentioned in the magazine vs. what is pictured here from the photo I screengrabbed on Allure.com is NOT the same product? I dunno. But a medium brown eyeliner that is good quality from the drugstore sounded up my alley.
GHD Platinum Styler; $249
I’ve come to the point in my life where my beloved 11+-year-old CHI straightener isn’t cutting it anymore. I love its smoothing capabilities, but everyone else’s straightener does a bomb job of also curling their hair and I cannot do it with my CHI. Tons of my friends got this styler from Influenster.com for free to test out and are LOVING it for straightening and curling, so I figured I could scoop this up during a good sale.
Yes to Coconut Hand Cream; $5.99
Little known fact: I am a bedtime hand cream addict. My favorites have to be Neutrogena Swiss formula (unscented) and the Aveda Hand Relief. I’m always trying new ones but none stack up to the all-day moisture of those two. I’m curious to see how this one compares.
What caught your eye from Allure Best of Beauty 2016? If you haven’t checked it out yet, find the full list here.