Best of 2016: Beauty Favorites

Since I'm not one for blogger bullshit I'll just say it - there was an obscene amount of makeup released by brands in 2016. As much as I love newness it almost felt like too much. Things coming and going so fast, only to be brought back, re-hyped and then tossed aside when the next big thing hit. At this point it feels like prestige is outpacing mass in terms of products per launch/per year.

Am I mad about it?

Not really.

I had a lot of great makeup discoveries in 2016, but I also discovered just how much some of my tried-and-trues still mean to me. There are some repeats in here from my 2015 favorites! That's when you know its love.

I've touched on a few standout favorites here but if you'd like to see everything I loved in 2016, watch the video below.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Master Palette by Mario

Everyone seems to have chosen the Modern Renaissance Palette as their favorite but the Master Palette (shown above) wins every time for me - the top notch formula, well-curated color selection and convenient packaging give me everything I want in an eyeshadow palette. It can be tricky to do a cool-toned look with Modern Renaissance, but not with this. I have a sneaking suspicion it will be back next year.

Lucas Pawpaw Ointment

This is better than all other lip balm formulas. I don't care what you use. I don't care how expensive it was. I've tried them all, and this beats it. Most balms eventually hydrate. Meaning leave on at night and wake up to smooth(er) lips. This instantly hydrates. Meaning you feel zero dryness immediately upon application. Apparently it's petroleum based but its "pharmaceutical grade"? So, better? Maybe?

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes

This formula is superb. We're talking insanely blendable texture that diffuses perfectly upon application (regardless of brush quality you have), stellar pigmentation that's not over the top, a luminous sheen that adds glow without shimmer and a great lasting power to boot. Enough said.

Tarte Park Amazonian Clay Matte Bronzer

I have incredibly sensitive skin and most bronzers contain Ethylhexyl Palmitate (or other palm derivatives) that cause clogs within a few hours. This is one of the best matte, neutral-toned bronzers (shown above) I've found that doesn't contain any of my irritants so it's a big win. Nice silky, blendable formula to boot.

Kylie Cosmetics Lip Liners

There's nothing life-changing about this formula (it's nicely smooth & pigmented with a great dry-down but only decent longevity) but - the colors! The color selection offered in this range (I'm talking the classic colors she first came out with) is perfectCandy K is my perfect not-too-brown pinky-brown nude (the hardest to find), Posie K is the best deep rosy mauve and Koko K is the most flattering nude-pink. I love these and will repurchase (especially for $14!). 

Make Up For Ever Step 1 Smoothing Primer

This has been my primer of choice all year. It's a bit thicker but insanely softening and will blur even the largest of pores. Trust me, because I have them. This doesn't emphasize dry patches and, while not oil-controlling, MUFE does offer a mattifying primer (in addition to a wide range of others). A great launch, and two very enthusiastic thumbs up.

Hakuhodo Brushes (J110 & J5522

Next year I'll be investing in more Hakus - I've been burned by sub-par Wayne Goss brushes and these are just the best. My J110 is perfect for blush or bronzer and diffuses any shade or formula like a dream. My J5522 is my hardest-working eyeshadow blending brush by far. The soft, tapered tip has shorter hairs around the edge (the longest are in the center) so it can perfectly deposit color in the crease while simultaneously blending. *swoons*

Thanks for reading!

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