+For a long time, my impression of SuperGoop’s Glowscreen was that it was perfect for mornings I was working out — it gave me the tiniest bit of coverage and glow, but also carried SPF, which felt perfect given that I do not otherwise put on makeup before exercising, with the exception of mascara. (I literally never go anywhere without mascara.) Anyway, on non-exercise-mornings, I’d instead apply tinted moisturizer from Laura Mercier or Chantecaille (love both, with a slight preference for Chantecaille, but it is so expensive and not *that* much better than LM so I rarely buy it unless on sale). Both of those products offer more coverage and have more staying power than the SuperGoop. But when I ran out of my tube of Chantecaille, I just switched to using Glowscreen every day and instead would supplement with my beloved Westman Atelier foundation stick (which I normally reserve for big evenings out / date nights / meetings) on my t-zone and any area that was irritated or breaking out. I shared this insight before, but a makeup artist taught me that you do not need to apply foundation entirely over your face. You can just apply it where you need it and then blend really well elsewhere. (I use and swear by this Artis brush; it’s tailor-made for blending Westman Atelier in particular.) The makeup artist’s point was that if the foundation is a good quality and matches tones well, it should look just like your skin, so why would you need it everywhere? So that’s what I started doing on a daily basis and I loved the effect. It made my skin look so natural but I had coverage where I needed it. When I finally ran out of my tube of Glowscreen, I immediately reordered it, and I feel like the math kind of works out in my favor, as Glowscreen is much less expensive than Laura Mercier and Chantecaille, and you end up using very little of Westman Atelier to supplement. Anyway, just a random and windy note to consider if you, like me, don’t wear a full face of foundation every day and are playing around with the tinted products instead.
+My mom gave me a bunch of these caviar sticks recently and they really are fantastic for buildable color, and LM always does such great colors to begin with. I swear they are fool-proof. You just slick it on and smudge with a finger or brush and it looks fantastic. I have been wearing these when I do my 5 p.m. glow up just before going down to dinner hour. I haven’t worn makeup like this in a long time and it just feels fun (but not over the top) to do up the eyes. For awhile in my early 30s, I played around with bold lips but I hated the way it made me self conscious about smears or lipstick on my teeth. I’m now firmly pro-bold-eyes and would much rather do up the eyes with mascara and shadow and leave the lips natural looking. (I still absolutely love Bobbi Brown’s Extra Lip Tint in the Bare Pink color for everyday — it affords the tiniest hint of rosiness — and Chantecaille’s Lip Chic in Bourbon Rose when I need a tiny bit more color that still reads totally natural and can be applied sans mirror, a strange but urgent requirement for me as sometimes I just want to slick it on without being too fussy. I love those two products so much, I have re-ordered them both multiple times, which says a lot because, like, when was the last time you actually killed a tube of lipstick?!)
+On the drugstore beauty front: another lip color that goes on natural with a tiny bit of oomph (for me, more of an afternoon/evening lipstick for that reason) is Maybelline’s Pink Me Up 245. I can’t find it anywhere anymore except on eBay (?!) so if anyone finds a source, please let me know! Otherwise, I’m inclined to try their 244 color, a pink that looks light it might be just a shade down from my 245. For $5, worth a shot?
+If you are looking for a good drugstore foundation, check out L’Oreal’s Infallible Pro Glow. I bought this after Courtney Grow mentioned that a makeup artist had sworn by it (and she’d posted a picture wearing it and looked incredible!). Now, full disclosure, this does not hold a candle to my beloved Westman Atelier. But! When I’d used my SuperGoop down to the last squeeze and was waiting for my new tube to arrive (it got stuck in transit during the snowstorm!), I reached for the L’Oreal to see if I could blend it with moisturizer to sort of create my own “tinted moisturizer” and I was pretty pleased with the results. It does not cover/coat blemishes very well (I found it left those areas looking cakey) but it does even out clear skin beautifully without looking like you’re wearing anything. I was pretty impressed and decided to hang onto it for similar occasions in the future, which is saying a lot since I generally try to pare down my cosmetics so that I have only one or maybe two items in each product category (this is excepting, of course, things like blush and eye shadow, where you want multiple colors). Owing to space constraints, living in NYC drilled into me a “one-in, one-out” mentality I’m loathe to abandon. I truly try to use things until they are completely done and then move onto a new brand, or give it away if I decide it’s not for me. I am finding this harder to maintain with more space but I do think it’s a good rule of thumb in general. It also forces me to think critically about what I like and do not like about products, which is always edifying.
+I wrote about this a lot in my last honest beauty review installment, but I am still so loving this dpHue leave-in therapy. I go back and forth on the actual rinse — I know many of you concoct your own apple cider vinegar rinses for a fraction of the price, and I also still am not sure if I’m doing it properly. Sometimes I feel I put too much and other times too little. However, the therapy?! I am OBSESSED. I have become evangelical about it. It changes the texture of my hair. It’s an all-in-one treatment — heat/UV protectant, sealant, pH balancer, moisturizer, shine-enhancer — but it really gives me the absolute smoothest blowout. I think there are a lot of great products in this category, though. I have used in the past (and loved) DryBar’s Prep Rally, Davines All-in-1-Milk (<<cannot get over how much I love the scent of this one), and Bumble and Bumble’s Invisible Oil Primer. All three are excellent. I’d put dpHue in that category but at the very top. It’s funny how some product categories have lots of worthy contenders and others — not so much. Why is it so hard to get a good eye cream? There are so many brands but I haven’t found one I’m electric about. (Also, there is no such thing as a great dry shampoo? Right? They all make me feel dirtier?) My beauty M.O. for the last few years has been trying to find the absolute best in each category. Sometimes I end up alternating between best and close-to-best depending on price/availability/importance to my overall routine, but I still have yet to find an eye cream that sends me. I’m wondering whether that’s because we’ve invented this imaginary idol where an eye cream can actually erase wrinkles and get rid of dark undereye circles but that’s impossible. Maybe I’m expecting too much! (Release the eye cream from impossibly high expectations, Jen!) Anyway, will continue searching and reporting back.
+Speaking of, I have received so many DMs asking what I think of this purported (!) Dyson hair dryer dupe. I have not yet had time to fully evaluate as every single time I wash my hair, I end up using the Revlon 1-Step because it is so throughly engrained in my routine at the moment and it’s how I like to wear my hair right now, with a sort of bend at the end I can’t usually get with a dryer myself. (If you are new here — HI! — and I am a total evangelist for the Revlon 1-Step. The secret is to air dry hair until it’s almost dry, like 7/8ths of the way there, and then finish with this and you get the best, smoothest blow out!). What this says to me is that I don’t really need a new hair dryer, honestly, but I will test it thoroughly and share thoughts!
+Have I talked to you about eyelash extensions? I get them exactly once a year and for the month or so they last, I feel like the world’s most beautiful human. Ha! I’m joking, of course, but they are truly fantastic. You have to find a really reputable spot and go with the most natural option they offer but then wow, wow, wow. You barely need to put on makeup. You look awake! You look “done!” It is effortless! They are such a great boost if you need it for any reason, especially in the dead of winter, when I always feel washed out, tired, pale. I only permit myself to get them once a year because they do destroy your lashes. I once talked to the owner of a beauty salon on the subject, and we both waxed poetic about them, and then she said: “But, yes, they will destroy your eyelashes. How can they not? They are literally supporting weight they shouldn’t.” For that reason, I strategically pick a month when I want to look fabulous. Last year, I had them for my birthday month and they did not disappoint. Just mentioning here randomly because I was beginning to think about when I might indulge this year…
+If I were on a desert island and could only have three cosmetics products, they would be Armani’s mascara, Westman Atelier’s Blush Stick (which I also wear on my lips), and Cle de Peau’s concealer. Total forever hero beauty products. I keep cheating on Armani and trying other mascaras because it’s my absolute favorite beauty product category. As mentioned before, it’s a must-have product for me. I could live without any other beauty product but I must have mascara and I love trying new ones. I keep coming back to Armani, though. It is glossy, thick, dark, lengthening — I love a dramatic lash.
+If on said desert island, I could also have three skincare products, they would be Tata Harper’s cleanser, Clarins’ Double Serum, and Elta MD’s facial sunscreen. All three are strong 10s. This was harder for me to pick because I am in a committed relationship with Vitamin C, and I absolutely love Biossance’s formula. However, I think I would still put Clarins a notch above in terms of importance to my overall routine. I also struggled with the cleanser — I have been using Tata every night for years now and cannot leave it without breaking out, but in the mornings, I love this oil-based cleanser. I read somewhere you don’t need to clean your face with a scrub in the morning because it’s not like you’ve been anywhere, collecting dirt/smog/impurities while sleeping! So I use this gentle face oil cleanser and it makes me feel like I’ve been at the spa at 6:49 a.m. I know so many of you have fallen hard for it, too. It is excellent. But I still think Tata is what keeps my skin in check.
Curious to hear your hero products! Always love these responses. See if you can limit yourself to three in cosmetics category and three in skincare category!
P.P.S. European pharmacy favorites.