I am the type of person that always goes back to the same product over and over again, and don’t use enough new products on a daily basis to justify doing a monthly, or even quarterly favourites. Hence, I thought that doing a mid-year favourites post for the first half of the year would be more appropriate. I discovered a lot of new products these first six months of 2016, a lot of which I liked, but not all of them I found myself going back to over and over again. In this post, I wanted to focus mostly on new products I discovered in the first half of the year that I reach for constantly, instead of older favourites which have become holy grail status for me. I also didn’t want to include anything TOO recent (purchases from May or June) because I wanted to give myself more time to try them out – if I love any of them, they will end up in my July-December 2016 Favourites!
Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye Cream
Stashy was kind enough to send me a tube of this from her giveaway she had back in January, and I’ve really, really enjoyed it since! I’ve been meaning to try this for a really long time, but keep going back to the eye cream that I normally use, so I’m really glad Stashy gave me the opportunity to finally use it. I always approach new eye creams with trepidation, because a lot of them either cause milia or aren’t moisturizing enough and make my eye area very dry. This one did neither and performs beautifully. I’ve been using it as my daytime eye cream because the texture is light and my eye makeup doesn’t move around on top of it. It also has a lovely faint scent of essential oils, which is a big bonus!
Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector
I bought this during the VIB sale on a whim, after hearing about it from Stashy (again). I’ve always been a bit self-conscious about my dark circles (although I recently had a makeup trial done for my wedding, and the MUA told me my dark circles are only moderate and that she’s seen much worse – don’t know if she was just saying that to be nice, but it made me feel GREAT! :P). I feel that concealer doesn’t completely cover the darkness under my eyes, but this product not only corrects the colour before I apply my concealer, but it also completely brightens up the area. The only downside is that I have mentioned having issues with my mascara smudging whenever I use this corrector, likely because it is so emollient. However, I love the effect of this corrector so much that I’m willing to try out different mascaras until I find one that will work well with this. You can find my review of this product here.
Urban Decay Naked Foundation Weightless Ultra Definition Makeup
I’ve gone a few years without using foundation now, in which I used BB creams sporadically during this time. I found using foundations to be too troublesome as it was difficult to find a colour match, as well as hard to find a formula that worked well with my dry skin. I’ve been wanting to go back to using foundations in the last year, but never really took the plunge to try anything out. Earlier in the year, I was introduced to the Urban Decay foundation by a coworker who’s not even into makeup. She highly recommended it, so after doing a bit of research and comparing it with other brands, I purchased it during the VIB sale. I purchased shade 3.25, which is a perfect match for my skin tone (although I got tanned on vacation in May and need something darker now :P). The foundation really does feel quite weightless, and doesn’t accentuate any dry patches, which has always been my biggest problem when wearing foundation.
Shiseido Glow Enhancing Primer
Since I bought the UD foundation, I started using this in conjunction with the Shiseido Pore Perfecting Primer (which I have finished). This is only a sample I had lying around my house that I never had any use for before, but I immediately fell in love with it. This is a very moisturizing primer that smooths over my dry patches and is perfect for my dry skin. Even though it’s called ‘glow enhancing’, there is no shimmer in the product – the formula just makes your skin look much more dewy once your foundation is applied. I’ve noticed that when I wear the Pore Perfecting Primer or no primer underneath my foundation, my foundation doesn’t apply quite as smoothly, and it doesn’t sit on my skin as well as when I use the Glow Enhancing Primer. Since I don’t have oily skin, I can’t be sure, but I feel like those with oily skin may need to stay away from this. Once I finish with all of my samples of this, I’m definitely going to buy the regular size.
Becca Highlighter in Opal
I bought this back in January, and this is become one of my favourite highlighters of all time. It just gives the most beautiful, intense glow, although one has to be a bit cautious of applying too much, because the highlight is so strong. The formula is buttery and smooth, and does not leave visible glitter on your cheeks, only a sheen. Admittedly, I don’t use this (or any highlighter) on a daily basis, but this is my go-to on weekends when we have plans, and especially for any special events. I always feel so glam when I use this, lol!
MAC Pro Longwear Eye Shadow in Sweet Satisfaction
This is another product sent by Stashy for her giveaway. This has been one of my biggest go-to shades in 2016 so far, even though I’ve barely made a dent in it because it’s so massive! I cannot tell you often I reach for this, especially for a soft makeup look for work as it’s a medium sandy shade that’s quite similar to my skin tone and gives my lids a beautiful sheen. I thought it would be a dupe for my beloved Echo Beach from the original UD Vice Palette, which is another go-to work shade for me, but it’s a bit darker and more flattering on me, and the texture is also smoother and more pigmented. Being the dolt that I am, I forgot to do swatches of this shadow and the next one I’m going to talk about! 😦
MAC Eye Shadow in Satin Taupe
It’s honestly been almost a decade since I purchased a MAC eye shadow. Much like a lot of people, they were the first high-end brand I bought with my own money back when I was around 16 years old, but my use of their products tapered off when Sephora opened in Calgary when I was 18. Receiving Sweet Satisfaction from Stashy fueled me to start using MAC shadows again, and this was my first purchase that came out of that decision. I love me some taupes, and this taupe is so unique from any other ones I own. It’s a warm-medium taupe, whereas a lot of the taupes I own lean cooler. I’m obsessed with this shade right now, and constantly want to reach for it, to the point where I have to force myself use other shadows! I’ve been feeling quite lazy in my makeup routine lately and have been using this for a one-shadow look, which is something that I never do – I always use a lid shade and a crease shade. I haven’t quite decided yet, but I’m contemplating using this for my engagement shoot makeup!
That’s it for my mid-year favourites! Only a handful of products, but I really wanted to keep it to a minimum and only talk about products that blow the rest out of the water. What have been your favourites so far?