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It feels like New Years Eve 2021 was just yesterday, and yet here we are (almost) at the end of another year.
While it wasn’t as tumultuous as 2020, this year was filled with highs and lows that definitely took us for a ride. One major positive? We were able to use the best products on the market to curb any serious skin meltdowns, all while getting to create a full face for an actual outing.
In November, we loved using a mix of skincare, makeup, body care, and even candles to help prep us for the cooler temperatures ahead.
And, of course, since we can’t keep a secret when it comes to standout beauty products, we wanted to share all of our top picks with you.
Otherland Alpine Crystal Candle
I love filling my apartment with candles, especially during the holiday season when a whiff can transform my home into a winter wonderland of sorts. This one does just that. With notes of pine, cinnamon, juniper, cedar, and more, it fills the air with the scent of wintertime coziness. Plus, the packaging is so pretty that I love having it on display. — Pia Velasco, Central Desk Senior Beauty Editor
Scott Barnes Maxxx Out Mascara
With so many mascaras out there, I’m often rotating between three different formulas at any given time. Then, I tried Scott Barnes Maxx Out Mascara. I quickly found myself reaching for this tube every day that called for a bit of mascara because it offers extreme volume that isn’t clumpy, thanks to a blend of oils that keep lashes separated. But would you really expect anything less than stellar from a product by the makeup artist who created J.Lo’s signature bronzed glowy makeup look? — Erin Lukas, Beauty Editor
Maybe it’s the new-and-improved blade or a figment of my imagination, but I haven’t had to shave as often since I started using Flamingo’s razor. I get a close shave every time that lasts about two days before I start to get stubble. More so, I haven’t nicked my skin while shaving around my knees or ankles. — Erin
Trinny London BFF Rebalance Tinted Serum
As someone who doesn’t love full-coverage foundations, I’m always on the hunt for a good tinted serum or moisturizer that evens out my complexion, but doesn’t feel heavy on the skin. This serum checks off all of the boxes for me — it’s lightweight, comfortable on the skin, offers buildable coverage, and has skincare benefits. The formula is made with niacinamide to even out the skin tone and avocado extract to soothe the skin. The finish is soft and matte, which I also love because helps cover up the large pores on my nose. I find myself reaching for this formula on a daily basis. — Genesis Rivas, Central Desk SEO Beauty Content Writer
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Gucci Éclat de Beauté Effet Lumière
This face gloss gives me that lit-from-within glow that I had only thought was possible if you sold your soul to the devil. I dab a little (read, a tinyyyy bit) onto my cheekbones and blend it into the rest of my skin. The result is long-lasting high-shine that’s so noticeable even my coworkers can clock it on Zoom, but it’s insanely natural-looking IRL, too. — Pia
First Aid Beauty KP Smoothing Body Lotion
My KP really acts up in the winter thanks to increased dry air and central heating, so I really step up my moisturizing game to keep it healthy and supple. Three times a week, I use the this AHA body lotion over the bumpy areas of my skin to keep the roughness to a minimum. I like that this formula was created for super sensitive skin — it makes me feel confident that my skin won’t get irritated and reactive. — Pia
Ami Colé Lash-Amplifying Mascara
I’m always a little skeptical of mascaras that claim to do the most — since many actually don’t. But bruh, Ami Colé was not playing around. I went into testing with no real expectations, but this product immediately made it into my makeup bag after round one. With only a few swipes, I was left with super long, voluminous lashes — no clumping or flaking was happening. And because the bristles aren’t super long, I was able to apply the product (and cover each of my lashes from root to tip) without a bunch of mascara being left behind on my eyelids. Another plus? The shea butter and jojoba oil-rich formula does double duty. Not only will it make your eyes pop, but it also works to keep lashes soft and conditioned. — Kayla Greaves, Senior Beauty Editor
Onå Firming Serum
I’m going to start this off by saying that if you were debating as to whether or not you wanted to buy this serum — go ahead and buy it. I’ve been testing the formula for about three months and have noticed a significant difference in the texture of my skin. I’m not gonna act like I was dealing with crazy sagging, deep wrinkles, or anything like that, but the blend of peptides and antioxidants have helped to soften my skin, reduce the appearance of fine lines, and added suppleness and bounce. For best results, I apply the serum morning and night. — Kayla
Soleil Toujours Set + Protect Micro Mist
If you’re anything like me, applying SPF is a chore. Greasy and thick, it doesn’t sit well under my makeup, and it kind of just clings to any flaky skin I get from the frigid New York City winter temperatures — yuck. So unless I was using foundation with SPF included, I pretty much just wasn’t wearing any during the winter (I know, I’m bad). That is, until I came across Soleil Toujours, a magical sunscreen applied with a spray bottle that makes life so easy and protects my sensitive skin from harmful UV rays without the heavy feel. Spritz the Soleil after applying makeup or on clean, bare skin for all-day coverage. An added bonus? It’s also a makeup setting spray made with over 70% organic ingredients. — Tess Petak, SEO Writer
r.e.m. beauty midnight shadows eyeshadow palette in Babydoll
Before the launch of Ariana Grande’s makeup line r.e.m. beauty, I gave up on buying eyeshadow palettes. Why might you ask? I typically only use one to two colors of said palette in my everyday makeup look and then those colors run out, prompting me to buy a whole new one even though half of the product is untouched. So basically a colossal waste of money (news flash: eye palettes aren’t cheap). Enter the r.e.m. beauty’s midnight shadows palette in Babydoll. This product from the pop star’s brand new beauty company is the only palette I’ll ever need again. Six shades perfectly layer, mix, and blend together to create the perfect eye for any occasion. The best news? It’s so affordable ringing in at just $24. In the couple weeks since Ari’s line hit the market, I’ve used every color in the palette more than I’ve used shadows I’ve owned for years. — Tess