I’ve always loved make up – you can blame this on the fact that I’ve always been a girly-girl. I may have played soccer since I was five years old, but what I don’t brag about is the fact I was (almost always) the kid picking flowers and socializing instead of actually chasing the ball. Throughout my elementary school years I followed the following beauty/fashion guidelines:
- Always say yes to ruffles and lace
- There’s no such thing as too much sparkle
- Floral print and dresses are the best weapons in a wardrobe
- It doesn’t matter if you wear no other make up, always wear blush and lip gloss (shout out to the real MVP: Lip Smackers!)
I was the epitome of a girly-girl and this fact has carried over into my high school, college and young adult life. I would blow all of my part-time job money on new clothes and make up, not even batting an eye at just how much I was spending on these material items.
I’d like to think I’ve matured in how I spend my money (especially since the introduction of student loan payments and moving to America!). While I still have a strong love and non-negotiable attachment to certain luxury items, I’m less loose with my wallet when I buy beauty products. I no longer spontatneously purchase items I may or may not use, but rather research and watch YouTube reviews before making any large purchases. I want to ensure my beauty arsenal is loaded with quality, beautiful products (and this doesn’t always mean sticking to high-end brands).
The following products are my tried-and-true beauty favourites for winter. In fact, the following products are my daily go-to, currently:
- Anastasia Beverly Hills Beauty Express (in blonde) – while this is a brow and eye kit, I tend to use the product on my eyebrows, filling them in. This product is quite buttery for an eyebrow product, making it easy to apply and long-lasting. I also pair it with the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz sometimes!
- NARS All Day Luminous foundation (in Ceylan) – this is a cult favourite for good reason. With medium coverage and a slightly oily formula, this foundation melts onto your face. If you’re like me and don’t prefer full coverage, this foundation simply enhances your skin, making it a bit more glowy and covering any acne scarring/imperfections you don’t love.
- NYX HD concealer – I first bought this because I heard it was a dupe for the NARS radiant creamy concealer and it couldn’t be more true. A loyal RCC purchaser, I decided to give this cheaper option a try and couldn’t be happier I did. It provides great coverage for those less-than-lovable spots that pop up every so often.
- Bobbi Brown blush (in nectar) – I am obsessed with blush (as I mentioned above) so you can imagine how excited I was to hunt down the blush I’d wear for my wedding. When our wedding ended up happening a lot sooner than we thought, I resorted to this staple blush and discovered I really loved it… so much so that I wore it again for our wedding reception in the fall. Nectar is a timeless shade you can really wear in any season. It also layers beautifully with the Laura Mercier Face Illuminator.
- Laura Mercier Face Illuminator – see above. It’s a gorgeous highlighter that makes you feel – and look – sparkly from the inside out.
- LORAC Pro eyeshadow palette – While I don’t wear eyeshadow every day, this LORAC Pro palette has become my dress up bestie. I also love the balance of matte and shimmer shades and the buttery, pigmented shades are perfect for all eye colours, giving you room to keep your look as neutral or dramatic as you like.
- Lancôme Hypnôse Drama mascara – Another of my beauty obsessions is mascara. This may have something to do with my admiration of Marilyn Monroe (and her endless eyelashes) or because my sister told me I look really tired – or dead even – when I don’t wear mascara. This Lancôme option gives you all the volume you could dream of without applying fake lashes.
- NARS Audacious lipstick (in Cruella) – I’m a fan of 101 Dalmatians because I absolutely love Cruella De Vil and her striking red lip. Deep down I believe that the name of this lippy is what truly drew me in. The formula is pigmented and smooth – not the least bit drying. I’m such a fan, I also purchased this lipstick in Anita (for a more neutral look). *
- Kat Von D Everlasting lipstick (in Outlaw) – I am a firm believer that there is a red lipstick for everyone, and this is why I’ve listed these two as beauty collection favourites. While NARS Cruella is a deeper, merlot red, this KVD shade is bright, matte and sassy. A blue-red, the colour suits my skin tone (and I think any skin tone, really) and makes my teeth look whiter than they are. Sold!
* Full disclosure: I don’t wear red lipstick every day. In fact, most days if I’m wearing lipstick, I typically opt for something a bit more neutral (I’m looking at you, NARS’ Anita).
If we learned anything from New York Fashion Week, it’s that the classic cool girl look is back. This means natural/glowy looks with toned-down eyeshadow (with the exception of Gigi Hadid – the ultimate cool girl – in Anna Sui) and statement, moody lips. I won’t be retiring my red lipsticks (although Cruella is pretty on-trend) or leaving my LORAC Pro palette in the drawer, but these beauty trends have me dreaming of adding the following products to my collection:
- Fresh Sugar Tinted lip balm
- Tarte Tarteist mascara
- Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick in Bronze
- Charlotte Tilbury Rock ‘n Kohl eyeliner
- e.l.f. Instant Lift Brow Pencil