One of the best perks of being a beauty editor is getting to swim through an endless sea of products, swatching them, testing them, dubbing ourselves glorified guinea pigs, and raving about them to all of you beautiful people. But despite our rapidly growing supply of new beauty products, there are still those few that we never stray from. We're talking "sign us up for auto-ship" status. As such, we can say with certainty that the following items are some of the best products we've ever used—they really work a million times over. To see our favorite products we're always buying more of, keep on scrolling!
It took me a long time to find a sunscreen I like—one that doesn't make my skin look incredibly oily or make me break out. Then I found Radical Skincare's Skin Perfecting Screen and I've never looked back. I actually want to wear it. Sometimes, I even use it in the evening as a makeup primer because it just gives my skin a soft, luminous matte finish. And like all Radical products, it's packed with anti-aging ingredients and gentle enough for even the most sensitive skin. My only qualm? I wish it came in a larger size—I go through this bottle at lightning speed.
I'm trying to think if there's a product in Charlotte Tilbury's line that I don't like... There isn't. But if I had to pick just one that I couldn't live without, it would be this foundation. The coverage is light to medium and you don't need a lot to get beautiful coverage. It's "skin-perfecting" in that it illuminates skin with a radiant finish. Typically, I'm a matte foundation girl. "Radiant" and "light-diffusing" products usually end up making me look greasy and/or shimmery. But not this one. And it doesn't feel like foundation (more of a tinted moisturizer, if you ask me). It's super light and hydrating, and easy to apply (I just use two squirts on my finger).
I love testing brow products, and I often find new favorites. But I always, always come back to this pencil. I don't know what it is (probably the high-quality hard lead that lets you feather in brows naturally and build up the color as you wish), but there's nothing better than these pencils. They're waterproof and won't fade out by the end of the day. (Seriously—you can wear it for days, and I have.) I buy them in bulk—usually three at a time (one for my makeup bag, one for my handbag, and one for the car). Plus, the facts that there is a spoolie on the end and the cap is a one-turn sharpener don't hurt either.
My hair is thick and slightly rough, with super-dry ends and a scalp that gets oily easily—"soft" and "manageable" have never been words I've used in reference to my mane. Build-up is something I struggle with often, especially because I usually only use natural, sulfate-free shampoos (which are gentle on my hair, but don't necessarily leave it feeling squeaky-clean). Enter: Christophe Robin's Sea Salt Scrub, which Deven introduced me to years ago. It has saved my hair. Anytime my hair feels (and looks) greasy and dull, I give it a good scrubbing. Instead of drying out my ends like other clarifying shampoos, it magically makes them appear softer—all while leaving my scalp feeling super-clean. Plus I like the texture—it's unique, and I don't think there's anything like it on the market!
Yes, this serum/face oil is pricey, but if I'm going to splurge on anything in my beauty routine, it will be my skincare. I gave up on face oils long ago, but this made me love them again. Though it feels like a face oil going on, it's called a serum because of all the active botanical ingredients—22, to be exact. Anytime my skin is looking dull or tired, I know that all I need to do is apply the serum at night, and I'll wake up with glowing, hydrated, happy skin. It never breaks out my oily complexion, and since I only use it in times of need, the bottle has managed to last a long time. I could rave about this for days.
Some women collect shoes; I collect tinted moisturizers. Pixi's H20 Skin Tint is one of my absolute favorites, partly because of the price tag, and partly because it's just so damn good. Oh, and it lasts forever. It provides just the right amount of light coverage, and it never leaves my skin looking like an oil-slick later in the day (no easy feat). I would wish for a lifetime supply of this if I could—but I don't even need to, because it's so wallet-friendly.
These glycolic wipes are my not-so-secret solution for having good skin. As in, I recommend them to every single person who asks about my beauty routine (and even some who don’t). Here’s the thing: They really, really work. All you do is cleanse, swipe one across your face/neck/chest, and moisturize. Then simply go to sleep. They genuinely make you wake up prettier every time.
This matte, nude eyeshadow brightens my lids and keeps concealer from creasing. It’s the easiest way to appear more awake and put-together.
I’m a lipstick girl, so I’ve tried a ridiculous amount red lipsticks in my lifetime. This one is perfection, my desert island must-have. It’s matte but not drying and adds just the right amount of brightness. And Rosie Huntington-Whiteley uses it, so…
This lightweight oil is a savior for dry hair. I apply it on my ends to keep them from frizzing and sometimes even as a pre-shampoo treatment mask. Plus it smells like pure nirvana.
The best face-washing strategy I can give any fellow lazy girls is to surround yourself with delicious, luxurious-feeling products so that it feels like less of a chore. Case in point: I'm obsessed with this thick, hydrating balm, which gently removes the most stubborn makeup without a drop of water or any elbow grease. Most nights, I don't even follow it with any other skincare since it's a makeup remover and hydrator in one nifty, all-natural formula. Plus, I'm usually averse to fruity scents, but this balm's tropical notes are luscious and not at all cloying.
I consider myself a bit of a highlighter aficionado, but of all the products and different kinds of formulations I've tried, nothing comes close to my beloved illuminating stick from Ilia and its buttery application. It deposits the perfect amount of natural-looking, glowy pigment that just melts into my cheekbones for a seamless finish. Plus, the ingredients are clean and green, and I swear, it actually improves my skin (in addition to faking a lit-from-within luminescence). My cheeks always feel so smooth and hydrated after I remove my makeup at night. It's easily the one makeup item I always finish—almost alarmingly quickly.
Since I'm, again, one of the lazier beauty editors you'll likely encounter, usually I stick with sheet masks for their convenience and mess-free application. But I'll exclusively roll my sleeves up for this dirt-like powder (which transforms into a cinnamon-scented, muddy foam upon contact with water), because it's that good. It's all in the name, really: No matter what ails my complexion, whether it's a blackhead attack or winter-induced rawness, this magical stuff fixes it all in a matter of minutes (and it's handcrafted from ingredients I can actually recognize). The best part: I actually haven't needed to restock in over a year, because it lasts a very long time. (But when the time comes, you can count on it.)
I store Glossier Balm Dotcom in my car, in my purse, and in my bathroom, yet I can never seem to find one that's not empty. I use it on my lips and cuticles, and I just recently started applying it over RMS Living Luminizer ($38) on my cheek bones because it plays with light in this really unique way and smells good.
No joke. It feels like I've run out almost every week. It's eco-certified, so I feel good about supporting the brand and don't get freaked out spraying their product around my head where I could breathe it in.
I'm a freak about tossing out mascaras after three months—sometimes even sooner. I'm out of this mascara, which I received as a gift in December. It's my new mascara obsession. It adds a similar length that I love so much from Blinc mascara and has the black intensity of Chanel mascara. I also like the way it looks when smudged just slightly under the eyes throughout the day.
What this does for skin after a night out is pure magic. It's changed my life.
I'm constantly running out of these masks because there's only one per package, but when I have a special occasion coming up or my skin just needs an overhaul, these sheet masks are a lifesaver. I especially love the pearl mask because it truly does brighten my complexion like no other.
This mascara is the (moderately priced) queen of mascaras. It's buildable, so you can brush on a few coats (like I often do) without lashes looking clumpy or spidery. It brings my short lashes to new lengths and doesn't flake—a huge deal-breaker for me. I also love that it has a padded handle on the wand (it's the little things).
I do this thing when I spray aerosol hairspray where I hold my breath until I'm blue in the face, then swiftly walk out of the room and gasp for air. Because I care about the environment (and my lungs), I'd rather stick to pump spray. This particular spray holds my curls all day long, even into the next day. I LOVE it.
What's that ONE product you're always running out of? Please tell us below!