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The Best of 2016

לפוסט בעברית לחצו כאן

Hi Hi Hi!

I cannot believe that it’s 2017. 2017!!! How did 2016 go by so quickly? I say this every year, but this year just flew by. Insane.

Personally 2016 was not a bad year for me. Nothing out of the ordinary occurred. I’m in a good place with my job, in a happy and stable relationship, we moved to an apartment we love, I have amazing family and friends, I traveled abroad, and hey! I opened a blog!

I opened this blog mostly as a hobby, I have so much makeup and so much love for makeup I decided it would be a crime not to share this obsession with the world. I published on average two posts per month, usually one in Hebrew and one in English. When I first opened the blog I told myself I would publish posts at least once in two weeks but obviously I suck at scheduling and that rarely happened. I think I’ve said this before, but I salute bloggers who have full time jobs and are able to maintain their blog. I do try to remind myself that this blog is just for fun and that I shouldn’t be hard on myself, but I do want to try and be better and have a set schedule as to when I upload posts.

A few of my new year’s resolutions:
1. I actually really like my day to day job – and I want to push myself forward to the best of my ability.
2. I want to stay fit! I’ve always had trouble at working out and going to the gym. I want to maintain a healthy lifestyle, and that includes regular visits to the gym.
3. Read more books. I used to be known as book worm, and at some point in my life I neglected my reading and it sucks. I really enjoy a good book and would love to get back into it.
4. I want to invest my money in a better way, meaning buying less makeup. I have a ton of makeup, and as much as I try to “shop my stash” there’s a limit to how much makeup a girl can use. I’m not saying I’ll stop buying makeup completely, but I want to put my money towards more life experiences (such as traveling and doing stuff with my loved ones).
5. Lastly, I want to spend more time on my blog. I still can’t promise I’ll have a set schedule, but I sure will try!

Btw, you may have noticed that the blog has a brand new look to it! I decided – new year, new look. I liked the old design but I wanted a more clean, mature and fresh look. I’d love to hear what you think about it!

I think that’s all of my rambling for today, lets get into the post – my favorite product of 2016!

♥♥♥

So yeah, I know I’m a little late to the party, but it’s better late than never. right?? I was actually pretty done with the post about two weeks ago, but I wasn’t completely content with it so I decided to delay publishing it until I was completely satisfied. More rambling..sorry!
I’ll just say that the products I will be mentioning weren’t necessarily released in 2016 but were discovered by me this year and I used them more than any other product. I’ll also say that products that work for me might not work for you, these are my personal preferences. Lastly, I will be mentioning only makeup products – meaning that makeup tools (brushes and sponges), hair products and skin care products will not be mentioned.
Seriously, now I’m done.

Face Products

Face Primer

Without a doubt, my favorite face primer is Stila One Step Correct. I just started my third bottle and I am in love with it (a sentence you may hear several times throughout this post, since it is a favorites one). The primer comes in a clear plastic container and it contains a swirl of three different colors: green, pink and lavender, while each color has a different use. When you pump out the product it all blends together and comes out as one serum. As I’ve mentioned, each color has a different purpose – the lavender shade is meant to reduce puffiness, the green shade is meant to reduce redness and the pink shade is meant to brighten dark circles and sun spots. Although this primer doesn’t completely smooth the skin (as pore filling primers do), I love it since it feels as if my skin is being nourished and hydrated and it definitely helps my foundation stay on nicer and longer.

In second place: NYX Angel Veil primer is a great drugstore option.

Foundation

My favorite foundation is one I cannot stop raving about – the Make Up For Ever Ultra HD foundation. There are not enough words for me to describe what I feel towards this product. It has a lightweight consistency, it’s liquidy but not too runny. It gives a beautiful medium natural coverage (just the way I like it) and if you really want to you can build it up to a full coverage. I have dry skin, and it feels so good on it. It sets by itself so there’s no need for setting powder, it lasts forever and looks as if you just applied it even when the day ends. I can’t rave about it enough. It’s just perfect and I highly recommend it.

In second place: By the same brand, the Ultra HD Stick Foundation (on which I actually wrote an entire post about), The Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum is incredible, Etude House‘s Precious Minerals BB Cream.

Setting Powder

This powder was a surprise for me this year, since it is so cheap. It is the NYC Smooth Skin Loose Face Powder. This powder is so finely milled it is barely noticeable on the skin. I use it all over my face but my favorite way to use this is to set my under eye concealer since it doesn’t accentuate wrinkles and fine lines. It makes the skin look flawless and does not cake up. For the price you pay (and even if it weren’t cheap!) this is a great powder.

In second place: The Maybelline Fit Me powder, Laura Mercier Tranclucent powder (I’ve had this one for a short time, but it’s slowly becoming my favorite).

Bronzing and Contouring

I never understood the hype surrounding the Kat Von D Shade + Light Contour Palette, that is until I got it of course. All I have to say is WOW. It has 6 powders – 3 for contouring and Bronzing and 3 for highlighting, and all 6 are incredible, they are like butter! Smooth to the touch, easy to blend and just sit on the face flawlessly. It’s quick and easy to work with them. These contour shades look great on my pale skin – I usually use the left shade to contour and the middle shade to bronze. I rarely use the right shade since it is too dark for me but I can make it work if I use it light-handedly. I also use the highlighting shades in this palette but for me the stars are definitely the contour powders.

In second place: The Lorac Pro Contour palette, Hoola by Benefit.

Blush

You might already know this, but I am deeply obsessed with Kathleen Lights, everything she touches in my eyes is gold. Ever since I can remember, she’s been raving about the Nars blush in the shade Madly. At some point I was convinced and decided to get it and honestly? It’s the best blush ever. It is a pink mauvey shade (antique pink?) and it has a real subtle shimmer to it which is barely noticeable on the cheeks. It’s so delicate and neutral that it goes with any look and I believe it will suit any skin tone. Unlike other blushes I own it lasts forever and looks great even after 10 hours of wear!

In second place: Essence blushes, Too Faced Love Flush blushes.

Highlighter

In the past few months I’ve added quite a few new highlighters to my collection and even though there are some I really love it’s hard to define them as my favorites of 2016. So for now I’m sticking with the highlighters that have been with me throughout most of the year – the gorgeous Ofra Cosmetics highlighters that were released in collab with DupeThat. Both highlighters (One is an icy pink, the other is a warm golden peach) give the perfect glow to the skin that doesn’t look overly glittery or powdery. You can build up the highlighter in a way that it is either really delicate or so glowy that it can be seen from outer space.

In second place: The Sleek Solstice Highlighter palette is slowly becoming a favorite, Becca highlighters are incredible!

Eye Products

Concealer

So technically concealer is considered a face product, but I mostly use it to hide my under eye circles, so I consider it to be an eye product.
Honestly, my favorite concealer is the Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer, however I only repurchased it during my latest visit to the US and I barely used it throughout the year so I can’t consider it as my favorite of 2016. The concealer I did make a lot of use out of (and still do) is the Maybelline Fit Me concealer. It is actually a dupe for the Nars concealer (only its consistency is a bit thinner than the Nars one) – it covers everything that need to be covered and brightens all that needs to be brightened. It blends in easily in the skin and looks great and natural. It is one of the best concealers out there (even better than some high end ones!).

In second place: The Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer of course, It Cosmetics – Bye Bye Undereye.

Eye Shadow Primer

Just like my chosen concealer, I found a go to eye shadow primer that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. I’m talking about the Essence I ♥ Stage primer of course, which I actually wrote about in a previous post. The primer comes in a single shade and from what I know it doesn’t work well with oily lids, but for my eyes it’s perfect. A little product goes a long way on the lid, it sets quickly and evenly and the eye shadows that I apply over top it do not budge. I cannot explain how much I love this primer. Just get it yourselves and you’ll understand.

In second place: Too Faced – Shadow Insurance.

Mascara

No matter how many times I try other ones, I always go back to my holy grail mascara – the Clinique Lash Doubling Mascara.
I really don’t get how people don’t talk about this one more. When I was much younger my mom always used to (and still does to this day) buy Clinique products, and with one of her purchases she received a sample size of this mascara. I took it, used it, fell in love and the rest is history. It does everything you want a mascara to do – thickens, lengthens and separates your lashes. It makes you look as if your lashes are fake. Even on days when I don’t put makeup, if I just put this mascara my face looks so glam! This mascara keeps my lashes curled throughout the day and best of all, it’s not messy! It doesn’t crumble and doesn’t leave a mess under the eyes like some other mascaras do. It’s just perfect in every single way.

In second place: Maybelline – The Colossal – Volum’ Express, Tarte Cosmetics – Lights, Camera, Lashes.

Liquid Eyeliner

I don’t tend to use too much liquid eyeliner (mostly because I kinda suck at it) but when I do decide to spend half an hour of my life on doing my eyeliner (yep, that’s how long it takes me) I usually go for the incredible Schwing eyeliner by TheBalm. Ignore the fact that the packaging is super adorable (as all the companies product packaging is), what’s important is that the eyeliner itself is perfect. The brush is extremely easy to work with and easy to create a perfect wing with. The product itself dries down relatively quickly which means there’s almost no chance of it transferring to the lid, it’s extremely long wearing, and my favorite fact – it’s a matte black!  I’m a fan.

In second place: The NYC Liquid Eyeliner.

Gel Eyeliner

I love using pot gel liners because they are a triple threat: you can create a classic wing with them, use them in your waterline (which is my favorite way to use them) and even use them as cream shadows/as a base for powder shadows. In the passing year ColourPop (a brand you’re gonna hear a lot about in this post) came out with a whole line of gel liners that come in a variety of different colors. If you’re looking for standard shades, metallic shades or a pop of color – ColourPop has got your back. These liners are easy to use, they are very creamy but dry relatively quickly and are long wearing. Also – they only cost $6!

Some of my favorite shades: DTLA, Exit, Best O, Stomper.

In second place: The Il Makiage gel liner is pretty bomb (it’s an Israeli company).

Pencil Liners

If there’s something I enjoy finding is a good affordable pencil liner, and it’s even better when you find two different amazing brands! I couldn’t decide which company I prefer, both companies have a gel pencil liner that is easy to apply and doesn’t tug at the eye, they are long lasting and don’t budge once they set. In both companies these are twist up pencils (not the kind you sharpen) that don’t cost much. These two companies are ColourPop that released the same shades both for their pot gel liners and the pencil gel liners, and Essence (I wrote about their gel liners in a separate post). Look no further if you’re looking for a good affordable pencil liner!

In second place: L.A Girl – Glide Pencil, Holika Holika – Jewel Light, BH Cosmetics – Party Girl.

ColourPop Creme Gel Liners
Essence Waterproof Gel Liners

Eyebrows

I honestly don’t have much to elaborate on my favorite brow products. If you’ve read my post on eyebrow pencils you probably know that using these pencils are my favorite way of filling my brows. I sometimes enjoy using a brow pomade or a powder but I somehow always go back to using thin brow pencils. My favorites are the Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz and the NYX Micro Brow Pencil. Both are easy to use and fill in the brows perfectly and the only difference between them is that the NYX pencil is half the price.

NYX Micro Brow Pencil, Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz

Another brow product I really enjoy is the Essence brow gel. It looks like a clear mascara and it’s job is to hold the brows in place so they don’t go wild. I use this gel almost on a daily basis (after I fill in my brows with a pencil) and by the end of the day it feels like my brows are being held together with super glue. Thanks to this baby my brows look great and are held together until I wipe off my makeup.

In second place: The BH Cosmetics skinny brow pencil, the Anastasia brow gel (which is actually my fave, but the Essence one is the one I used most this year).

Eye Shadows

I know, eye shadows are obviously considered eye products, but since I have so many that I love I’ve decided to put them in a category of their own. Hey, my blog – my rules!

Single Eye shadows

This one is a no brainer – the ColourPop Super Shock Shadows have been the most used single shadows in my collection. The texture of these is so unique, the shade range is insane and they look so stunning on the eyes. I really have nothing bad to say about them. Yes, some of the shades can stain the lids, some dry out faster than others (usually the matte shades) but for the most part these are just amazing. I have so many eye shadows in my collection, and somehow I always find myself coming back to these gems. I love these so much (and in general, I love the whole brand) I even dedicated my first ever blog post to these beauties (and my ColourPop collection has pretty much doubled in size since then). I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend these. You can’t go wrong.

Some of my favorite shades: It’s hard to choose, but if I must…Amaze, Koosh, Wattles, Weenie, Elixir, Bae.

In second place: MakeupGeek eyeshadows (that you’ll actually read more about in a little bit), Urban Decay single shadows.

Stick Eye Shadows

I don’t tend to use too many cream eye shadows (unless you consider the ColourPop ones as a cream formula) so I don’t have too may to talk about, but when I do choose to use cream shadows I love using them in form of a stick. I usually use either the Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color or the Kiko Long Lasting Stick Eye Shadow and I cannot decide which brand I prefer. The formula between the two is pretty much the same. They both apply and blend easily, set perfectly and don’t budge until they are removed. They are great by themselves but are also great as a base for powder shadows. Since they are pretty identical, I would recommend trying the Kiko version since it is also the cheaper option.

In second place: MUFE Aqua stick shadows.

 

Kiko Long Lasting Stick Sadow
Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color

Eye Shadow Palettes

If there is something that I have a hard time choosing a favorite of it’s an eye shadow palette. I love eye shadows in general and have a “slight” obsession with palettes in particular. I always find myself buying more and more of them so obviously it’s hard to constantly use the same palette when there is so much choice. However, in the past year I found myself using these palettes more than others:

MakeupGeek X MannyMUA

This palette really surprised me. Not that I thought for a second that MakeupGeek shadows would disappoint but I didn’t expect to love this palette as much as I do. When I first got it I actually wrote an entire post dedicated to it and ever since my love for it has just grown (and my love for Manny MUA on the other hand continues to be none existent. Sorry Manny). On the one hand this palette contains mostly neutral shades but on the other hand it has a few pops of color that can upgrade your entire look. It’s perfect for travel, and the quality of the shadows is just amazing.

BH Cosmetics – Shaaanxo Palette

Shannon is one of the first YouTubers I ever came across, she’s a sweet New Zealand chic with an adorable accent and a crazy amount of lipsticks (and makeup in general, but her lipstick collection is insane).
About a year ago she collaborated with BH Cosmetics and created her very own eye and lip palette. It’s quite a unique palette since it’s dual sided. One side contains 9 lip shades (which I honestly don’t use enough – they actually look and feel beautiful, but it’s not as comfortable to use as a traditional lipstick) and the other side contains 9 beautiful eye shadows that I can’t stop using. The quality, blendability and staying power of these is great and like the makeup geek palette has mostly neutral shades with one or two pops of color. My personal fave is the top right shade that can be used for a day or night look.

The lip side of the palette

Lorac Pro Palette

A list of my favorite palettes would not be complete if I didn’t include at least one Lorac palette. This is my favorite brand for eye shadows (if you follow me on Instagram you may already know this) and is the only brand from which I actually collect each palette because I need them all. And yes, I own all the Pro palettes. I’m listing the original Pro Palette since it has a warm spot in my heart – it’s the first high end palette I ever purchased! But I might as well post all the pro palettes because the quality is the same in all of them. The shadows are so soft (which causes a bit of fallout, but who cares), pigmented, blend easily, last forever, feel amazing, look amazing. I would marry them if I could. Just incredible. Go Lorac!

In second place: I don’t have these eye shadows long enough to call them favorites, but my Anastasia palettes are becoming fast loves of mine (I own both the Mario and Modern Renaissance palettes).

Lip Products

Lip Liners

ColourPop are at it again (and not for the last time) because their lip pencils are incredible. They are soft and apply easily, extremely pigmented, look and feel great on the lips. You can obviously use them as a base for other lipsticks but they are wonderful on their own as well.

Sorry that they look dirty, the white packaging stains!

I also really enjoy the Rimmel Exaggerate lip liners and just like the ColourPop lip liners these are extremely soft and smooth and pigmented and look great and feel great and so on. The only disadvantage in these is that the product itself is very thin, so if you twist out too much it’ll break. But other than that avoidable issue I think these are really great.

In second placeThe Essence lip liners are wow!

Lipsticks

Except for eye shadows, lipstick are the second item I love hoarding. Whoever sees my lip collection thinks I’m insane. Lets just say I have a different lipstick for every day of the year…so it’s natural that with this amount of lipsticks it’ll be hard for me to choose a favorite. Still, I was able to narrow it down to two of my favorite brands that I used the most throughout the year: the ColourPop Lippie Stix and the Nars Audacious Lipsticks.

ColourPop – Lippie Stix

The ColourPop Lippie Stix come in a wide range of lip colors. Looking for a specific shade? ColourPop probably has it. Looking for a specific finish? They have everything – matte, matte X, cream, satin and glossy. All these finishes are great and look and feel great on the lips, apply easily and last really well (specifically the matte ones). I just realize that my descriptions are so repetitive, but you’ll have to forgive me cause they’re true! Oh oh, here’s a new one – these lippies smell incredible! They have this sweet-caramel-sugary scent to them and I love it! I could just sniff them all day long. Anyway, I love these.

Some of my favorite shades: Aquarius, Tootsi, Brink, Lumiere, Westie, Grind, Creature.

Nars – Audacious Lipsticks

The Nars Audacious Lipsticks are some of the best ones I have ever tried. I cannot explain exactly what it is about them but they just feel so great on the lips. One swipe of these is enough for a beautiful opaque application. They feel moisturizing and don’t dry out your lips and even though they don’t dry to a complete matte finish (they have more of a satin feel to them) they are very long lasting. Because of the satin finish, once applied the lips have a bit of a shine which I love. The only downside to these is of course the price – one of these babies is priced at $32, but honestly I think it’s worth it.

Some of my favorite shades: Dominique, Anna.

In second place: Any NYX lipsticks, BH Cosmetics Color Lock lipsticks.

Liquid Lipsticks

I had a hard time choosing in this category as well so I narrowed it down to the 3 brands I used the most. I’m referring here also to liquid lipsticks that don’t necessarily dry down to a complete matte finish.

ColourPop – Ultra Satin lips

For the last time – I promise! – ColourPop. While I really enjoy their Ultra Matte Lipsticks, the Ultra Satin Lipsticks are the ones that stole my heart. When you just look at them they look exactly like the matte liquid lipsticks however they feel completely different. They are smooth and opaque and do not dry down completely which means they feel extremely comfortable and don’t dry your lips. They do transfer, but are still long wearing and leave a stain. These are like matte liquids without the dryness. Highly recommended!

Some of my favorite shades: Echo Park, Frick ‘N Frack.

Too Faced – Melted Lipstick

Another product that is a liquid lipstick that doesn’t dry down matte is the Melted lipsticks by Too Faced. Not to be confused with lasts year release (the Melted Mattes), this is the OG Too Faced liquid lipstick. They come in a tube and when you press it the product comes out of the sponge applicator which is at the tip of the tube (for a more in depth review, I wrote a post about these last Valentines day). The product does not dry out you lips and does not dry down completely. Actually, it’s pretty close in formula to the Ultra Satin Lipsticks I mentioned above.

Some of my favorite shades: Melted Chihuahua, Melted Violet.

Ofra Cosmetics – Long Lasting Liquid Lipstick

Even though I do enjoy liquid lipstick that dry down completely, those that usually have a more liquidy formula, I much prefer ones that have a moussey formula – like the Ofra Cosmetics formula. What I love about these is that even though they take a bit longer to dry down they feel incredible and not drying. I have a bunch of these liquids and it just shows how much I love them. With these as well, one swipe is usually enough for a beautiful opaque application, they are long lasting, look great and are just incredible. If you like moussey formulas Ofra is the way to go.

Some of my favorite shades: Miami Fever, Mocha, Mina, Girl Abroad.

In second place: Liquid lipsticks by Dose of Colors, Kat Von D.

♥♥♥

And that’s it! These are my choices for 2016. What do you think of my picks? What do you recommend I try in 2017? I’d love for you to tell me in the comments.

Don’t forget to follow my makeup madness on Instagram and Facebook!

Sorry for the long post, see you next time!

Maya ♥

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