And here we are at the end of 2013 and another year of blogging. This blog has steadily grown in its second year and I truly appreciate every single one of you who visits, reads and comments. Your support and the connections I've made with all the lovely people whose blogs I've had the pleasure of following throughout the year continually inspire and motivate me to not only keep this thing afloat, but carve out an evolving space where we can be brought together by a subject that is both our common weakness and happy place.
Here are 17 products that I count among the best of 2013:
If I'm after a little something on the cheeks, but nothing major, Sugarbomb is what I reach for. It reminds me of a toned down, less intense in colour NARS Luster, with a beautiful golden pearl that negates the need for a separate highlighter.
Stila Convertible Colour in Gerbera
Checks all the boxes and exceeded all expectations. What I love most about it, apart from being one of few pinks that isn't a flop on me, is the dewy, healthy-looking radiance it imparts when blended into the skin.
Clarins Eye Quartet Mineral Palette in Odyssey
Aside from the impeccable packaging and the inclusion of three classic neutrals, it's really the stunning gold leaf shade that is my everything. It is to the eyes what OPI GoldenEye is to the nails.
Real Techniques Buffing Brush
I want to sing it all the love songs. I can't live, if living is without you. No one else comes close. I can't imagine applying foundation without this brush. Well, I can, but why would I want to.
NARS Blush in Luster
This slightly bronzy tangerine with gold shimmer is simply purdy, goes with almost anything, and unlike most pink blushes that look attractive in the pan but not so much on my face, it works with my skin tone. It's almost like a bronzer, blush and highlighter in one, making it an ideal choice to sweep over the cheeks for an illuminating, sunkissed flush.
NARS Bronzing Powder in Laguna
There's a reason why this is a cult product. Somehow other bronzers just don't compare. Since I bought it in a blush/bronzer duo with Angelika, I've used almost nothing else when it comes to warming up the face for the illusion of a more summery glow (and incidental, mostly futile attempts at 'contouring').
Essence Eye Soufflé in Pas des Copper
Time to start penning those letters to Essence, imploring them to re-release this inexplicably limited edition gem. An innovative, spongy, creamy, glide-on texture does all the work for you and the shimmery champagne/coppery shade is near perfect. Also impressive is that almost two years in, this shows no sign of drying out or hardening.
Revlon Matte Lipstick in Strawberry Suede
I never thought I'd pick a red lipstick given my weakness for pinks and peach/corals (not to mention that major borderline vampy berry lip phase in winter), but this was something of a revelation to me. Each time I wear it, the vibrant, retro-ish, orangey-red just makes me happy. Isn't that what lipstick is all about?
Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze
The love affair continues. Ultra metallic, pigmented and long-lasting with an eminently wearable shade to boot, this versatile cream shadow continues to be my go-to choice on countless mornings when nothing else comes close to offering up competition.
KIKO Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadow in 06
Though only purchased in September, this cream eyeshadow stick has quickly risen to the top of my most reached-for eyeshadows. For an effortless, quick and flattering one-product look, it stands almost singular in my collection.
Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Black
Despite a somewhat shaky start, this is my favourite eyeliner of 2013. The fine tip, though prone to slight fraying, delivers a precise, thin line, and with practice, the occasionally daunting task of eyeliner is sorted in about 10 seconds. Contrary to reports that this runs out quickly, mine lasted several months with near daily use.
NARS And God Created the Woman Eyeshadow Palette
I couldn't have orchestrated a better first foray into NARS eyeshadows than this gorgeous neutral palette. No other product this year incited manic, unrelenting pangs of desire in me that I simply could not ignore.
Klorane Gentle Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk
Given my laziness and overarching disinterest when it comes to anything to do with hair, this is nothing short of a lifesaver. A can't-be-without-it miracle product that instantly revives greasy, weighed down, lifeless locks, making them appear soft, volumised, and practically newly washed. The best in its field that I've tried.
Caudalie Divine Oil
Used alone or mixed in with moisturiser, this luxurious multipurpose dry oil (with grape, sunflower, hibiscus, sesame and argan oils, as well as grape seed and tomato extract) helps improve the skin's texture and condition. I often supplement my regular night cream with a spritz of Divine Oil to ensure the extra goodness works its magic overnight.
Clarins Multi-Active Night Youth Recovery Cream for Normal to Dry Skin
My most favoured night cream. Comforts and hydrates the skin with a soothing, refreshing and non-cloying scent and combines nicely with a few drops of your chosen face oil for added moisture and nourishment.
Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturiser in Nude
HG. I can't say that about many foundations, if any. Works into properly moisturised skin effortlessly and provides the most natural, subtly illuminating, undetectable canvas.
Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Anti-Chip Top Coat
A manicure essential. Avoids those pesky morning-after bed sheet marks for those bored-at-home, late night paint jobs. No shrinkage around the edges and goes on absolutely clear. Makes every nail polish look richly glossy and smooth.