I'm not much of a beauty junkie, but when I find out about products that actually do what they say, I'm all over them. In the past two years, especially, I was introduced to a number of products, with six in particular that stand out. It's funny actually. More than half of the products I actually got for free, or as gifts.
1. Sugar Lip Treatment $22.50- I remember getting a set of these from Sephora as a "birthday gift". I didn't care much for them at the time, and was much more excited about getting something for free. I later learned to appreciate them, and what they could actually do. This lip balm is hands down one of the best I've ever tried. A bit pricey, yes. But you really get what you pay for. It's thick, moisturizing, and lasting.
2. Boscia Black Mask $34.00- I was introduced to this product by my BFF, R, when we lived together in college. She swore by it, and up until now, I was much too frugal to invest in it. The only thing that got me to give in, and splurge was the fact that I was in Hawaii, where the sales tax was under 5%. It's like a pore strip, but for your whole face.
3. Insta-Dri Anti Chip Top Coat $5.99- My friend K purchased this almost a year ago and couldn't stop raving about it. It dries your nails in under a minute, even if your polish is layered on super thick. I used this top coat in the manicure you see above. My nails went without a single chip for an entire week! I finally got a bottle of my own this past Christmas from E, and will definitely be going back for more once I run out.
4. Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in 'Beso' $22.00 - I got this as a gift from my friend K. She got it for free after spending a certain amount of money at Ulta, and didn't end up liking it. I can honestly say that this is the best lip stain I have ever tried. I layer it on over my Sephora 'The Red' matte lipstick, blot it a few times, add a layer of lip balm, and it lasts for hours. I went out to lunch with R, and still had most of it on after eating a prosciutto, arugula, and red pepper aoli sandwich!
5. Beauty Blender Cleanser Solid $15.95- My friend N got me one of these for Christmas. I was skeptical at first, because after all, how different could it be from regular soap? Little did I know, it was -very- different. I used it to clean one of my brushes, and it was literally squeaky clean. You know that squeaky feeling your skin gets after you use a really great soap? Yeah, that's the result I got after washing my concealer brush. To top things off, my skin also started to clear up.
6. Batiste Dry Shampoo $7.99- My friends K1 and K2 were the first people to introduce me to dry shampoo. At first, I didn't like the idea of not washing my hair every day, but after learning the importance of preserving the natural oils on your head, I started to force myself into skipping washes a habit. The reviews I read online mentioned Batiste to be the most effective, yet affordable brand. After getting my first bottle at Ulta, I never looked back on my old ways.