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I did this post last year with the Allure Best of Beauty issue and wanted to do it again because I’m a huge fan of magazines – I still get tons of inspiration from my subscriptions to Allure, Marie Claire, Women’s Health and People Style, but I do feel that many consumers doubt what’s written in magazines (in the same capacity they doubt a blogger’s sponsored content, amirite?). You know if I’m writing sponsored content, it’s because it’s been put through a vigorous Brighter, Darling test beforehand (and that will never ever change). But AS A BLOGGER, I do get a head’s up on what products are being sent out as PR (even to these big magazines), so when I see certain items show up on Best-Of lists, I just can’t help but wonder who really tried it and for how long before it made the cut. Here are MY personal must haves and must nots from the Allure Readers’ Choice 2017 list…
I love Allure magazine. It’s definitely my favorite magazine out there because it’s really the only mainstream beauty-focused publication. It’s been my favorite since my mid teens (and I’m nearly 32 now). Their Best of Beauty annual roundup is one of my favorite issues because I like to see how many products I’ve personally tried and support. Of course, everyone is different and beauty is SO subjective (hence why there are so many products on the market these days), but if you tend to like my product recommendations and/or have oily, sensitive or acne-prone skin, then you’ll probably feel the same as I do.
Blush: NARS Blush, Orgasm | Although this isn’t my personal favorite NARS blush (I like Goulue or Luster), it definitely is a beautiful, nearly universally flattering shade.
Eyeshadow: Urban Decay Naked2 | This palette is great for every day and doesn’t lean too warm or too cool.
Eyeliner: Kat Von D Tattoo Liner, Trooper | This is a nice liquid liner and a solid recommendation, but I’ve been swearing by the Physician’s Formula Eye Booster Serum Liner for years now and think it’s nearly identical for 1/2 the price… however, it’s a good liner 😉
Mascara: Benefit They’re Real | I usually stick to drugstore mascaras (shout out to Maybelline Lash Sensational), but if you haven’t tried They’re Real, pick up a mini at the travel section in ULTA or Sephora. it’s pretty good for bold, thick black lashes.
Concealer: NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer | I did a comparison a LONG time ago on this vs Maybelline and NYX and it’s decent (good pigmentation, nondrying). They now make a mini at Sephora in the check out line if you’re curious but don’t want to splurge on the full size.
Foundation: Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Invisible Cover Foundation | I cannot believe I’m saying this, but I just recently tried this again after at least seven years and it’s good! It certainly does not have the coverage of Estee Lauder Double Wear, but it looks great on my oily skin and also performs well on normal AND dry skins, alike. More medium coverage, natural/satin finish. Great shade selection, as well.
Makeup Brush: Real Techniques | Allure specifically mentions the blush brush (which I have and is great; I use it for powder because it’s a bit too big for blush), but ALL of the Real Techniques brushes are amazing. Also, fairly affordable and durable. Sold at Ulta, Walmart and I think CVS/Walgreens now, too!
Fragrance: Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb | This was my wedding day fragrance. I have nothing else to say. <3
Deep Conditioner: Briogeo Don’t Despair, Repair | I love that this mask is so lightweight yet deeply conditioning. It does not weigh the hair down at all. I even use it as a daily conditioner. Keeps my color treated hair soft and shiny. Also comes in a mini at Sephora.
“Natural Eyeshadow:” BareMinerals Ready Eyeshadow 8.0, Power Neutrals | Any of the BareMinerals pressed shadows are great. They’re intensely pigmented, easy to blend and wear very long on the skin (especially with a primer).
Facial Scrub: St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Scrub | Please stop using this insanely abrasive scrub on your actual faces. It will cause microscopic tears in the skin and break down collagen over time, therefore making you look older sooner than necessary. There are so many more gentle yet effective ways to exfoliate and although this one does give instant satisfaction (I know because I used it ignorantly for years myself), it’s not worth it.
Face Mask: GlamGlow SuperMud Clearing Treatment | I definitely may be in the minority on this one, but the GlamGlow mask in the black tub and white tub are way too strong for my skin. Both broke me out in cystic acne. Buyer beware and/or get a sample first from Sephora before splurging on the full size. I do love their ThirstyMud in the blue tub though. That one is A+.
Self-Tanner: Jergens Natural Glow | I know this product has a cult following, but I always found it to turn me a terrible patchy shade of orange.
“Natural Foundation:” BareMinerals Original Foundation* | I am not a fan of this formula. I found it made my skin more ruddy/red and I did not like the coverage. Years ago, I switched to Laura Mercier Mineral Powder* and it’s almost double the size, plus I have a better shade match. It also looks more natural on my skin.
“Natural Tinted Moisturizer:” BareMinerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydrating Gel Cream* | Another fail for me from BareMinerals. I loved the idea of this, but it immediately broke me out in a reaction all over my face. It seems BareMinerals face products and I do not mix, but I know many people absolutely love this stuff. YMMV.
*Allure promises their “Natural” list is comprised of products that are free of parabens, phthalates, SLS, triclosan, talc, mineral oil, petrolatum, formaldehyde, toluene, and chemical sunscreens. LM Mineral Powder also does not contain these ingredients.
Do you read Allure? What did you think of their Readers’ Choice Awards this year? Any you also recommend as must-haves or must nots? The full article is online here.