It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!!! Nope, I’m not talking about Christmas. We’re nearing the end of 2018 and it’s that sweet time of the year when bloggers, vloggers, Instagrammers, and influencers start compiling their lists of products they’ve been dedicated to all year long. If you’re a super nosey product hoarder like me, this is the season you’ve been waiting for.
I decided to get a jumpstart on my list of 2018 favorites, which features a few new releases from this last year, as well as some ride-or-die favorites that have been on the market for a minute or two. If you’re not sure what to get your YouTube-obsessed niece who has been wearing a cut crease since 6th grade for Christmas, or you’re just in the market for a little somethin’ somethin’ for yourself, here’s a good place to gain some inspiration:
You’re going to see a few drugstore heavy hitters on this list, because the budget brands did not mess around in 2018. These brow pencils haven’t completely booted my beloved Anastasia from my kit, but they’ve definitely taken over her spot in my daytime makeup routine. They’re heavily pigmented and super-fine, which allows me to sculpt some bangin’ brows in seconds — without the stress of spending $25 on a new pencil every month.
A product that is worth every single cent down to the last drop — YSL’s All Hours Foundation should be the new standard that high-end brands strive to achieve when creating a foundation. It’s so extremely pigmented that a single drop mixed with your daily SPF can conceal an uneven skin tone for work days, but is also amazing for a date night’s full-face glam. It’s matte while still being breathable, and will not budge once it’s set under powder. Absolutely flawless.
Every time I'm asked to compile one of these lists, I struggle with deciding which one singular Drunk Elephant product is going to make the cut — I love them all so much. Narrowing it down to Protini was a no-brainer this time; this gel cream has lived on my face morning, noon, and night since it launched earlier this year. This blend of active peptides and amino acids has perked up my tired complexion prior to makeup application, and lavished it in deep hydration before bed. It’s safe to say i’ll never be without a jar of it again.
The '90s certainly had a weird moment in 2018, and while I can’t quite get behind mock turtleneck crop tops with overalls and stacked platform sneakers, the resurgence of '90s makeup colors speaks to me on a spiritual level. I had been looking for that perfect orange-ish brown lip à la Geri Halliwell all year. Kylie Cosmetics delivered unto me a warm, terracotta brown that has just enough of a peachy undertone that you don’t look dead like you can with other true-brown lipsticks. After pawning it off on several friends who don’t share my specific coloring, I can attest to its universally flattering effect.
One of the most hyped collaborations of 2017 definitely delivered with this palette designed by one of YouTube’s most notable influencers, Jaclyn Hill. I put this on my 2017 Christmas wishlist and I have used it pretty much every day since. Jaclyn’s perfect shades of warm neutrals have carried my daytime uniform makeup into a little smokier look for nights out. She even helped me nail my Halloween makeup with a shade of electric blue I never imagined I’d use — which is proof that Jaclyn truly knows best.
It might seem a little dramatic to call this product the holy grail of liquid eyeliner, but as someone who has been drawing on black eye flicks since freshman year of college, I'm pretty confident in my opinions on the matter. Never again will I be dropping $20-40 on a liquid eyeliner when NYX has brought me an insanely dark, pigmented formula that doesn’t flake or fade throughout the day for under $10.
I have to be honest, I really wanted to hate this product. The idea of Instagram influencers getting into the skincare game made my stomach turn inside out, and the last thing the skincare market needs is another gimmick. I was shocked when I first tried the Jet Lag Mask, and more shocked that I kept reaching for it night after night. Summer Fridays obviously took the time and energy to create the perfect recovery mask for travel-worn skin. As someone who lives on airplanes for my job, I can vouch that its value extends well past the manipulated environment inside a plane.
Like butter, indeed! This drugstore bronzer works better than just about any of its high-end counterparts I've tried in the past. It blends easily, and can be used to create anything from the most subtle glow to an all-out contour — the creamy smooth formula is really remarkable. Physicians Formula struck gold with this collection of bronzers and has extended the line to include blushes and highlighters, which I can’t wait to try.
I included this particular powder on my list of products I always recommend to my friends, and I’m happy to say that Tilbury is here to stay for the long haul. This powder is easily my favorite I’ve ever used. It's so finely milled that it sets your foundation perfectly, while also having enough pigment for touch ups throughout the day — I keep one in my kit and one in my purse at all times. Charlotte Tilbury makes some damn good makeup all around, but this one alone deserves its own spot in the Makeup Hall of Fame forever (also, why is that not a thing?).
Your perfume is super important — it's your lasting signature and calling card in other people’s memory of you. I’d grown a little bored with my previous perfume after almost three years of daily wear and wanted something new. After extensive trial and error I finally landed on Tom Ford’s Oud Wood. If I could encourage you to spend more time, research, and a little more money on one beauty product in 2019, make it your perfume. Linger over the luxurious more often, you deserve it.