Mirror, mirror on the wall. When it comes to beauty and skincare products, I felt like I’ve tried them all.
Makeup and me have never really gotten along. Call me a late bloomer. Chapstick was my sole beauty item as I progressed through grade school. High school wasn’t much different. I’d try a light pink lipgloss or maybe a peach blush. I’d only spend a few bucks at my neighborhood grocery store and left it at that. Of course, my female counterparts were busy exploring the infinite possibilities of looking pretty, painting on the hues in every color of the rainbow.
As for me, I just didn’t care that much.
By college I was slowly beginning to pay attention to such things, and found myself focusing more energy (and spending more dollars) on effective skincare as opposed to expensive cosmetics. It was probably a choice of convenience, the more I think about it. It was easier to keep my skin clear and clean than it was to pick the perfect color of blush or lipstick. (That type of decision is exhausting.)
At 33, I’m still practicing my beauty regimen in much the same manner. I wear little makeup these days – cream blush, lipgloss, neutral eye shadow, and, at times, mascara. But my skincare products are my pride and joy. That’s where I’ll spend the extra dollars and energy. Do that, and not much else is needed.
I wanted to share my Army of Skincare with my loyal female readers, many of whom have asked such questions. Most of what I use can be found at Ulta, Sephora, both online and in their stories, or QVC.
hands of hope by philosophy – I have tried countless hand lotions to keep my sometimes-dry skin moisturized. For me, it’s not about the scent as much as the end-result. Literally nothing else I have used has kept my hands moisturized and protected without a greasy feeling.
Perfect Formula Pink Gel Coat – This is more about my nails. I’m obsessed with always keeping my fingernails looking freshly polished, and this gel coat works wonders. Two coats alone have improved the strength and health of my nails, and, when used as a base coat, maintains my at-home manicure for about a week.
Cheek Stain by tarte – For years I’ve tried and failed at powder blush. By noon, the pink swipes I applied that morning have completely disappeared. I never wear foundation, which probably explains my problems with powder. But this Cheek Stain has changed all that. It’s a light cream that goes on easy and keeps my cheeks the perfect shade of peach all day long.
WEN Texture Balm – Yes, it’s the same WEN you’ve seen on informercials. And yes, it’s a bit pricey. But I’m here to declare that my hair has never looked better. After using the WEN Cleansing Conditioner, I use a small dab of this sweet-smelling balm to keep my curls and frizz cool, calm, and collected.
Carmex – What can be said? It’s something like $2.99 for three tubes. It lasts forever and works better than more expensive lip balms.
Maracuja Oil by tarte – Acne has been my biggest skin foe. Since trying the Maracuja Oil a few months ago, I’ve noticed a dramatic difference in my skin’s texture and tone. The acne has cleared up, and shine and oil seems considerably lessened. At night before bed, I wash my face, pat it try, and apply a thin layer of the oil. My skin soaks it up, and by morning I look dewey and pretty.
Great Lash Mascara by Maybelline – I don’t often wear mascara, but I always keep a tube at home should I want to glam up before going out. My lashes are forever hidden behind my eyeglasses, so a more expensive brand just isn’t necessary for me. Great Lash is fool proof AND easy to remove before bed (or the next morning).
amazing grace by philosophy – Are you seeing a trend here? I find a beauty line and typically stick to it. Nothing keeps me smelling better than the amazing grace fragrance by philosophy, although I have several other philosophy scents in my arsenal. Pat and JT on Q98.5 always say I “smell like a mountain.” Here’s why.
Baked Marble Eye Shadow by Laura Geller – A smoky eye is something I’ve lusted after, but have been too lazy to pursue. Laura Geller’s combination shadows can mimic that look with just one product. The neutral browns and purples are in my pallet, but one day I’ll try a smoky gray and dark black. Just you wait.
Select Cover-Up by MAC – Do I love this line because it shares its name with my favorite computer platform? Perhaps. But I love it even more for its quality. When blemishes arrive, I send them packing with just a dab of this creamy concealer. A little goes a long way, which means this tiny tube will last for months.
Gentle Face Cleanser by Cetaphil – One of my low-cost workhorses, this face wash is affordable and effective. I’ve tried more expensive varieties by other brands, but nothing works on my face as well as Cetaphil. Plus, when I’m running low, a new bottle is as close as the nearest Target.
Clarisonic Mia – This tool is by far the most expensive in my beauty kit, but it’s something I can’t imagine living without. The Mia is the smallest cleaner in the Clarisonic line, but it works wonders. I use it every morning and sometimes at night. Since using the Mia, I’ve found that my moisturizer and blush apply even easier on my skin.
Showstoppers Dazzling Lipgloss Trio by tarte – Pretty colors, a hint of glitter, and not much stickiness makes the tarte family of lipglosses forever my favorite. And when bought in bunches such as this set, I’m able to keep one in my bag and one at home. More often than not, though, all three tubes are with me everywhere I go.
WEN Cleansing Conditioner – Yep, it’s my second WEN product in the line-up. And it’s by far THE BEST “shampoo” I have ever used on my hair. Those at WEN will tell you it’s anything but shampoo, but it works just as well … if not better than anything else I have tried. My curly locks need extra TLC during Nebraska’s humid summers, and this product, when used with the WEN Texture Balm, does the trick.
But enough about me for now. What are you go-to beauty products? Any tips or tricks you’d like to share as part of your beauty regimen? I’d love to hear what you’re using and how you’re using it.