After Part 1 of my year in reflection (read it here), have you labelled your 2016 yet? There’s still a few hours left. In my case, a month. I only measure my goals from birthday-to-birthday, the 1st of January is dead to me.
Just kidding 🙂
As promised, here are my hiccups and pickups of 2016 – Beauty:
Best beauty buy:
The first thing that comes to mind is my Sigma E35. I rediscovered the joy in wearing a single eye shadow to work and blending it out quickly that it doesn’t look so mono-tone. Whether I use this brush on its own or use it with something like MAC’s Brulé to blend out that edge, it does the job better than anything else I’ve used. It’s very big and fluffy. So not really perfect for fine-tuning, but absolutely perfect for the 2-minute-fun-and-run routine. Note: I use a shader brush or something like MAC217 to actually get the colour on my lid. The E35 is just for blending. It’s brilliant.
Worst beauty buy:
This goes to the Eucerin Original Crème I bought right before winter time. The only difference between my pot of Eucerin body crème and cement, is the colour. It is the least spreadable / of spreadable consistency cream that I have ever used, ever. You cannot (in one shot) take enough cream in your hands to spread over your lower leg, never mind your whole body. Even after bathing in bath oil and then applying body oil, my skin is still not slippery enough for this lotion to apply smoothly. I have to admit that if you do wish to spend half an hour to get this rubbed all over your body, you are deliciously moisturised for days on end afterwards. Still not worth the effort though, I can get the same results with lots of something elses. I do think it will work miracles on a baby’s bum though. Random thought, I know. Also, in all honesty, it does say 5/5 for “rich” on the tub so I could say that I was warned.
Best beauty tip of the year:
I discovered so many fantastic new things, how do I choose? The first thing that comes to mind is a tip I’ve accidentally come across on Youtube. If you’re a Lush fan, you’ll be no stranger to their bubble bars. Just damn expensive, paying the odd R80 for a single bubble bath hey? Yeah yeah, I know, break the bubble bar up in pieces and you can use it more than once. I’ve tried that on its own, but the amount of actual bubbles I got out of it was also a lot less. That is, until I discovered this video by accident while searching for a review of some or other Lush product (Note, it’s a terrible video, but it works! Skip to 2:18 for what I’m talking about) :
So you use an old silk stocking and tie it up on or over your tap so that the water will flow directly over it, with your small piece of bubble bar inside the stocking. You don’t crumble your bubble bar under running water, you put it inside the stocking for the water to flow over it and WAM BAM THANK YOU MAM!! You have more bubbles in your bath than you can handle. Even using half a bubble bar is too much, depending on its size of course (I’ve used half a Sunnyside bar in this way and it was too much bubbles, next time I’ll divide it in three or even four pieces.)
Worst beauty tip of the year:
Even at my young age, I have very crepey under eyes. The day that the Lord had made me, He decided that I shall smile the whole day. Yes, I smile a lot. So yes, I have lots and lots and lots of eye wrinkles 🙂 I struggle to get my under eye concealer perfect. I mean, really struggle. I’ve bought endless concealers and have tried endless tricks; right to the point of choosing not to wear brightening under eye concealer at all, because not wearing any actually looks better.
So my worst beauty tip of the year doesn’t go to one particular tip, but rather to the idea of a perfect silky, perfect under eye area. To me, it’s unattainable, and I’ve tried a lot of tricks and wasted a lot of money on new concealers (and setting powders). The concealers I bought this year: Catrice Liquid Camouflage (Excellent), Catrice Re-Touch Light-Reflecting Concealer (Very good), Benefit Erase Paste (excellent for everywhere except under my eyes), Bourjois Healthy Mix concealer (Okay-ish. Not bad but not great), Clarins Instant Concealer (My absolute favourite, I have it in shade 01 for brightening and shade 02 for all over concealer, it’s brilliant), Elizabeth Arden Correcting and Highlighting Perfector (it’s terrible, I regretted the purchase without trying it in store first. Absolutely no coverage, it only highlights flaws. This will be great on younger / and or flawless skin).
The best I can do is dab a bit of jojoba / baobab oil under my eyes once my concealer starts to crease, which is always. It revives the concealer and brightens the area again. But it’s still something I have to do; I haven’t come across the perfect product together with the perfect technique in order to obtain the flawless.
Best make-up product bought:
Most definitely the Clarins 3 Dot Liner. I’m a liquid liner dummy and have been struggling with them since forever. I have hooded eyes so a wing is not something I’m keen on because you just can’t see it. But I do like a very thin, bold black line on my upper lid sometimes, and this is more than perfect. You can do thicker lines too, you just hold the tip with a bit of an angle and not straight up on your eyelid. It’s the perfect liquid-ish liner for dummies as you can “dot” your line and then connect it, or you can draw a solid line from the beginning. Pure heaven, I LOVE it.
Worst make-up product bought:
Nothing, I don’t buy crap. Haha, just kidding 😉 but I do have to think about this one, though, as nothing comes to mind immediately.
After a look through my stash, I’ve decided to pin this title on the two Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow Sticks I’ve bought. Their colours are unmatched in my collection, they are beyond beautiful. I have Dusty Mauve and Greige. However, they don’t last a second on me, maybe two seconds with proper ten-minute prime and prep. To get this to last at least 4 hours on my eyes, I have to:
1) Prep with Smashbox 24H shadow primer
2) Prep even further with either Smashbox lid primer or MAC paint pot in Painterly
3) set 1 and 2 with translucent powder
4) apply product and wait to dry (it does blend beautifully, no problems here)
5) apply another layer and wait to dry
6) set product with translucent powder. And this step, ladies and ladies, takes away the product’s beautiful sheen / colour brilliance and makes it quite dull. The translucent powder at the end definitely makes a difference, without it the product just creases on my eyelids into nothingness within 4 hours. I have to say that I do have very oily eyelids, yes, but none of my other odd 100 shadows have this problem when only prepped with Smashbox primer. Boo for Bobbi. I was really disappointed in this, especially for the heft price tag of R460 each (#coughcoughcough)
Best skincare product bought:
I really have to share this one because I can’t choose. Earlier this year I bought Elizabeth Arden’s ceramide capsules and I am hooked for life. When my skin is over-oily, they fix it. When my skin is tight and dry, they fix it. When my skin is red and sensitive, they fix it. I love this serum. I use it every second or third night as it is still costly for me for everyday use, but my aim is to use this twice a day when I can.
My other firm favourite of 2016 has been Africology serums. I’ve used / am using Aloe Ferox, Skin Hydrating Oil and Vitamin Skin Boost Serum. I’m in love with all of them and am keen to try all the others too. Next up will be their Anti-Oxidant serum, I can’t wait.
A more-than-honourable mention goes to my Filorga eye cream. I think I’ll eat less in order to keep on repurchasing. I’ve had more than numerous eye creams which were redundant in my routine; i.e. I don’t notice any difference after I stopped using it. This one is not redundant. It’s not great for dark circles, but plumps up and moisturises like no other. However small the effect, I do notice when I stop using this (tried and tested, thank you). I use it twice a day, which makes more than double the difference from just using it at night. Forever you will be mine, my love.
Worst skincare product bought:
I’m sad to say this because I love the brand. My worst skincare product for 2016 is the Juliette Armand Extra Moisturising 24h Cream. It applied terribly sticky to my face and didn’t do much for hydration. In fact, I don’t think it did anything. For the price I paid I didn’t want to waste it so I did end up finishing it eventually. I think it was about R660 back in Feb this year, which is not cheap. For such a price tag I wasn’t expecting the best but definitely not a sticky mess on my face. I was really disappointed because I’m a huge fan of their face masks and serums; the ones I’ve tried have all been exceptionally good. I also really like their DNA Repair 24H Cream.
What was your ups and downs in 2016? Did you have any specific beauty products that stood out for you, or one that only caused you grieve?
Be safe and see you in 2017. Much love, ciao!