-Cleanser, Toner, Moisturizer: Clinique Acne Solutions Kit (the blue bottle) and Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion. My skin is both acne prone and sensitive, so I gravitate toward products that are free of a lot of chemicals. While I have two jars of Creme de la Mer in my bathroom drawer, I have to use it sparingly.
What I'd like to try: SKII - just to see what all the fuss is about. Sometimes these super-expensive celebrity endorsed products are no better than the leading drug-store brands, but I'll admit I am a sucker for trying them!
creamy, silky formula goes on smooth and blends easily, leaving you with a natural-looking, flawless finish with a broad-spectrum, chemical-free SPF 30 that offers ideal protection from the sun’s harmful UVA/UVB rays. I love this stuff. In the winter, I use the Mediumshade, and in the summer I switch to Medium-Tan. It is a very light formula as far as texture goes and it creates a natural finish while covering minor discolorations. I cannot say enough good things about this product.
What I'd like to try: Armani Luminous Silk Foundation. Because I am an avid Allure and InStyle reader, I see Armani foundations top of lists for great foundations. I've read that it is in a lot of celebrities' makeup bags. The good news is that it appears to be sold at Sephora now, so I will definitely be trying it on in the store before I decide to make a $62.00 splurge. Another good resource for deciding whether or not to make a beauty indulgence is YouTube. You can always check back with me for an honest review of a product, but there are a ton of beauty bloggers who chronicle their reviews on YouTube. This was handy when purchasing the Naked palettes.
Bronzer: Bare Essentials Warmth plus Bobbi Brown's Shimmer Brick. I've tried a lot of bronzers, including Benefit's Hula Bronzer and Guerlain and I strongly prefer these two products together. I use the Bare Essentials Warmth with a big brush and put in my cheek bones and then forehead, nose and chin. It can add a lot of color, so a little goes a long way. Plus, that way, you can build color if you prefer. Bobbi Brown's Shimmer Brick helps me to add a bit of, well, shimmer to the mix. There are no other bronzers I am dying to try because I think I am in love with this combination. BUT, if you guys have a bronzer that you think is a contender, I would love to put it on my list of "must-try" products before the wedding. I am a product junkie to begin with, so I think I will enjoy this game a bit too much.
Blush: Nars Blush or Multiple. Let's face it, the names of the color shades this brand puts out are downright awkward. I apologize in advance if this review sounds quasi-pornographic. The oh-so-coveted Orgasm shade is all it is cracked up to be. It flatters every skin tone and I know I can go to it all year, but I have discovered a new color that I love - Taos described as "desert rose with shimmer".
What I'd like to try: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush. Hourglass is another one of those brands that can tout descriptors like "eco-friendly" and "chemical-free". That being said, I have been told to be careful with too much shimmer when it comes to events that will be photographed because it can end up looking too shiny or weird in pictures. So, I'll bet I end up gravitating toward something with a creamy or matte finish so as to avoid any unnecessary shine. Does anyone have any blushes they love? I think this is one of the categories where I am most flexible.
Mascara: They're Real! by Benefit. When I tell you that I have tried every mascara, I am hardly exaggerating. Mascara is my thing. Eyelashes are the one feature I always try to accentuate because it makes a night & day difference for me. This mascara, mostly because of its brush design, creates the fullest and longest lashes of all the brands I've tried - including Diorshow. When I use Dior, I create the biggest mess on my eyelids you have ever seen. Trust me when I say you want to try this stuff! Below is obviously a fun, filtered image but it kind of shows off the mascara's abilities.
Stay tuned next for lips, eyeshadows, linters, concealers and fragrance!
*All images courtesy of Sephora. Check out their website to purchase any and all!