My 2011 Favorites

2011 is coming to a close, so I might as well give a rundown of my favorite products that I've tested and used over and over again. I'd have to note that most of the products I will be mentioning here do not have a full review (probably because most of these are cult products, or even discontinued) but I'll be providing a link to the products I reviewed before. Here goes:

Favorite foundation: Chanel Teint Innocence. I road-tested a handful of foundations and I don't have a review for this because I only decided to try this later this year and I simply fell in love with it. My shade, 20 Clair, is a perfect match for my skintone; and I use this everyday.  It does not oxidize, and the finish is super natural looking, like I have no makeup on. It gives my skin a healthy soft glow, and the finish gets even better throughout the day, because the formula combines with my skin's natural oils without looking like a greasy mess. It also lasts all day (8-9 hours on me) so I cannot ask for more. What I also love about this is that it does not break me out, not even once (some foundations break me out for the first few uses as my skin adjusts to the formula) and the scent smells clean, like fresh laundry. I would probably have a problem with the packaging when my foundation runs out but I only need a small amount so I guess the bottle with go a long way. This is medium-coverage on me and it works great for my good skin days and  bad skin days. I love it so much! Too bad it's discontinued but it's still available here so I hope to get a back up bottle soon.

Favorite tool to apply foundation: The Shu Uemura Natural 18 Goat Brush. I've had this for quite some time and although I'm still building up on my foundation brush collection and trying out other brushes, I always come back to this one, simply because it can make any kind of foundation, no matter how light or sheer the texture, become medium to full coverage. The soft and dense goat hairs have uncut tips so they glide on the face perfectly to distribute the perfect amount of foundation. And because it's so soft, blending is a breeze. It also also does not absorb the foundation----- I only need a small amount and it still covers all my imperfections. I also love it because it applies and blends the foundation quickly-- a real time saver.  

 I don't use this on cream-based or other heavy foundations because of its high coverage effect---those products are best applied using the Beauty Blender. Runner up: the Mac 109 brush. As I've said, I'm still trying out other foundation brushes, and I look forward to reviewing them all at once.

Favorite blush: Benefit Dandelion. I haven't hit pan yet, but I've been using this every single day, for that perfect pink glow. I reviewed this already and it's still my HG pink blush, which doubles as a highlighter.  A runner up for this is Chanel Narcisse, which I also have, but that's already discontinued and this one is readily available, so it still tops my list. 

Favorite lip products: Chanel Rouge Allure Laque in Dragon and One Naturales Shea Butter Lip Balm.  It seems to me that I have a thing for Chanel's discontinued items! It's all my fault because I only decided to try them now. Well, better late than never because their products are amazing, and I'm looking forward to more back ups and also, their new replacements! Back to the topic, Dragon is an amazing shade, every girl should try it! (It can look a bit overwhelming on the tube so be sure to test it out, as it can look dark on pigmented lips). A little dab on the lips gets me noticed! It is that good. Runner Up: Guerlain Rouge Automatique for a light yet long-wearing formula! and I love the scent... I only tried one shade though (Coq d'Or, a warm sheer red with gold flecks), but I would be more than willing to try other colors from the range. And as for One Naturales lip balm, it is my constant lip saver, especially on this chilly weather, my dry and cracked lips healed nicely. 

Favorite Eye Brightener: Garnier Light BB Eye Roll On:  It's cheap, and it does the job. Hides my dark undereye circles nicely and stays put. A great budget-friendly option!

Favorite Sunblock: SunPlay SPF 47 Powdery White Sunblock Lotion because it is non-greasy and it also serves as my primer/makeup base. It also has a whitening effect. This is my favorite Sun Play product that I like to layer with Teint Innocence for a fresh, soft matte finish. I squeezed out every last drop of this sunblock!

Favorite Hair Product: Klorane Dry Shampoo. I've struggled with greasy scalp for years and so I have to wash my hair everyday or I would break out from the oils in my scalp. This solved my problem because I use this in-between hair washes and it cleans and gives my hair volume in one step. It's also great when I have to run out the door and I need a one-step product that can clean my hair. Now I don't have to deal with a greasy scalp anymore. It also has organic ingredients. It's not available here though and I have to order it on Sephora via House of Flair.

Favorite everyday scent: Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis. Safe and appropriate even for office, it is a light and fresh scent that wakes me up in the morning. A combination of lemon, bergamot, lily of the valley, sweet mock orange and musky wood, it's my everyday scent when I just want to smell good and I don't want to smell like powdered detergent or any kind of generic cologne.  It's actually a unisex scent so it's great for sharing. It's not a daring fragrance, but I wouldn't want to seduce anybody in the workplace with my usual choice of perfumes (Fracas or Santal Blanc). This is a safe choice and still quite unique. Runner up: Prada Infusion d' Iris (feminine and powdery iris, great for a date after work), or a very, very small dab of Lumiere Noire (the drydown is clean, with a subtle hint of musks and roses, and smells discreetly rich). 

I'm looking forward to the great year ahead and more reviews so thank you for reading! Happy New Year!


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