Best Beauty Products of 2015: Makeup
With Urban Decay finally landing on our shores, Sephora making its way to Melbourne (while another store popped up in Sydney) and the launch of sephora.com.au, 2015 was a pretty great year in beauty, particularly for us Australians. There were a few forays into brands I had never tried before and though my spending was slightly more restrained, I still have a pretty good roundup of beauty bits that were new to me throughout 2015. Everyone here does their yearly favourites posts differently, but I limit mine to new products, otherwise this post would be very long and repetitive! Across base, cheeks, eyes and lips, here is the best of makeup 2015 had to offer.
There were three bases new to me this year and I adored every one of them. The Diorskin Nude BB Creme had been on my wishlist for a fair while and the first time I've ever tried a BB cream, this Dior offering gives the most radiant and dewy finish to the complexion. It's not one for those after a more full coverage finish and the shade range leaves a lot to be desired, but for a luxurious, lightweight base, it's definitely worth looking into. 2015 was the year I finally bit the bullet and bought Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation. At an eye-watering $92, it's a hell of a lot of money to drop on a foundation, but I managed to get quite a bit off with my Myer One birthday voucher and staff discount card. I don't know if any makeup product is worth that much money, but gosh, it's beautiful. The skin looks smooth, perfected and positively glowing; I can't stop staring at my skin when I wear this and I'd happily live off packets of mi goreng for a week to repurchase this! The last base product I tried this year was the Laura Mercier Silk Crème Moisturising Photo Edition Foundation*. While there are many deeply disappointed by the new formulation, I'm all for it, and in both consistency and finish, I definitely think Laura Mercier stepped up their game here. You can read my full review of the foundation here.
As a blush addict, it's quite the accomplishment that I only bought one this year! The Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blushes were without a doubt the most talked about blush of 2015 and just as beautiful in the pan as they are on the cheeks, it provides the complexion with the most stunning and luminous soft-focus flush of colour. I have the shade Mood Exposure, described as a "soft plum", which pairs perfectly with almost every lip colour.
Having only owned NARS Laguna Bronzer up until this year, I'd never really cared for bronzer in the past. That all changed in 2015, however, when I bought two - the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow and Too Faced Soul Mates Blushing Bronzer in Ross and Rachel. I don't think there was a single person who didn't talk about Charlotte Tilbury this year and her bronzer/highlighter duo was definitely one of the standouts. I'm not going to lie when I say I bought the Too Faced Blushing Bronzer mostly for the name, but I ended up loving this product so much more than I initially thought I would. It adds warmth and dimension to the skin without looking too orange or muddy, and if you weren't hysterical during the Friends finale when Ross and Rachel finally get back together, you're wrong.
My lovely friend, Jennifer, gifted me Benefit Watt's Up! not too long ago and I just love the champagne sheen this cream-to-powder highlighter gives the skin. Blending in easily and not overly sparkly, it's a great one to go for if you're seeking a more natural glow.
There were so many beautiful eyeshadow palettes released this year, but with two 15 pan MAC palettes as well as two Urban Decay Naked Palettes, I tend to be quite strict with myself. I mean, there's only so many neutral eyeshadows a girl needs! The standout eye colour product for me this year was MAC's Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Quite Natural, a "dirty chocolate brown" shade, perfect for creating a smokey, grunge look. You can see me wearing it here.
I feel like I'm the last person here to try Anastasia Brow Wiz! With a fine tip, it's perfect for creating individual brow hairs and filling in those sparse areas. For fresh, natural-looking eyebrows, I now understand the hype surrounding this cult eyebrow product.
I was super excited to finally try the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper when my Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner in Intense Black had run out. My first foray into Kat Von D, I only purchased this fairly recently, but I already prefer it over the Stila counterpart. The applicator on the Tattoo Liner is more like a brush, as opposed to a felt tip, which makes applying winged eyeliner - when it already gives me enough grief as it is - much easier. When my Stila Liquid Liner was on its last legs, the applicator started fraying, making it nearly impossible to use. The finish and colour intensity is almost the same (I'd say the Stila eyeliner is ever so slightly blacker), as is the longevity. Another negative about the Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner is that it's a little more difficult to remove and although I absolutely loved this eye liner at the time, that's now been surpassed by the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner.
2015 was the year of the nude lip. From lipsticks to lip pencils, I have a fair few to talk about here! At the end of last year, I discovered MAC's Lipstick in Mehr and it came into my possession early this year. It's definitely more pink than nude on my skin tone and I think it's such a fun colour without going too over the top. Faux and Whirl were two others I loved this year, the latter which I was so grateful to receive from Jennifer for my birthday. It's the perfect dark nude that's neither too pink or brown. MAC's Lip Pencil in Soar was another sought-after product this year and to me, it's the perfect mid-tone pink shade. I can't imagine a complexion this wouldn't suit. I've raved on and on over MAC's Lipstick in Ruby Woo being my favourite red ever and this year, MAC released a lip pencil to go along with the cult classic lipstick. Naturally, I was immediately all over it and I'm not sure why it hadn't been done sooner!
Charlotte Tilbury was a brand I had been dying to try for months and in 2015, I finally treated myself to her Lip Cheat in Pillow Talk, K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipstick in Penelope Pink, Luxury Palette in The Rock Chick (it sadly didn't make the cut!) and the aforementioned Filmstar Bronze & Glow. Both her Lip Cheats and K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipsticks are some of the most creamiest, non-drying and highly pigmented lip products I've ever used and I'm looking forward to trying her Matte Revolution Lipsticks next. I bought my second NARS Audacious Lipstick this year (after Leslie), this time in the shade Anna. Rich in colour with a satin-like finish, their ultra-satisfying magnetic closure makes them all the more luxurious. All the rage, I decided to give the NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils a go. I have the shade, Cruella, which I'd call my second favourite red after Ruby Woo. There was the Laura Mercier Crème Smooth Lip Colour in Milky Way, which I really enjoyed this year too. Super nourishing, they aren't the most pigmented, but it's a nice change from matte formulas I tend to go for and makes for a quick, fuss-free application.
In lip care, I decided to try a new lip exfoliator, the MECCA Cosmetica Kissable Lips Smoothing Lip Exfoliant. With finer sugar granules and housed in a more convenient tube as opposed to glass jar, I much prefer this over the Lush Lip Scrubs. The Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask (I forgot to photograph it and lighting just wasn't working with me when I tried to retake it!) was my saviour during the dry winter months and the Clarins Instant Light Lip Balm Perfector in Rosewood, a beautiful nude shade, became my new favourite lip product to lazily slap on before leaving the house. To me, they're much better than the Instant Light Natural Lip Perfectors.
What were your favourite makeup products of 2015?