Friday, December 27, 2013

Top 13 Makeup Products from 2013

 This post contains both products purchased by me
and products sent for consideration

My Top 13 Makeup Products from 2013
As always, choosing my favorites proved challenging.  Like every year, I tested tons of new products in 2013 and found so many great products that I truly love. These products are all items that were new to my stash this year so you won't see any repeats from last year's post. 

These 13 items left some sort of a lasting impression on me, and are items that are true favorites.  If you are interested in purchasing any of the items seen in this post, I'll publish a follow up post with where to shop including prices like I did last year. 

Without further delay, here are my top 13 makeup products from 2013 (in no particular order):

#1 Too Faced The Secret to No Makeup Makeup Fresh & Flawless Face Palette - This handy little palette includes a Bronzing Veil, Creme Blush, Powder Blush, Concealer, Luminizer, and Brightener for under the eyes. Why it made the list: This is literally a full face in one handy palette. Too Faced even included a mirror and guide with how to use the products inside.  The "no makeup makeup look" is really having a moment right now, and this palette truly contains everything you need to achieve the look effortlessly. 

I especially love the concealer, luminzer and brightener, and often use them even when I'm not using the rest of the palette, because I find it really convenient to have all three products together in one palette. 

#2 Becca Resurfacing Primer- This is a smoothing primer that really helps fill in fine lines and wrinkles to create a smooth base under foundation. Why it made the list: I find this primer really extends the wear time of my foundation, more than most.  It is also formulated for all skin types, which means I don't need to switch up to a different primer as the seasons change.  It is pricey, but I truly see a difference in this primer compared to others I've tried. Plus the squeeze tube makes this easy to use professionally, as I can easily squeeze out as much as I need onto a palette for easy application. 

#3 Embryolisse BB Cream - Last year Too Faced Tinted Beauty Balm made the list. While I still love and use that one, this one from Embryolisse has really become a favorite this year.  It comes in one universal shade and contains an SPF of 20. This BB Cream is formulated to work on all skin types. Why it made the list: This product is truly a multitasker for me. On days where I am in a rush, I can use it as my skincare, sunscreen and makeup in one. It contains light reflecting mineral pearls that help create a soft glowing finish on the skin. It just looks so natural on my skin, and I find it works all year round no matter what the season is. 

#4 RMS Beauty "Un" Cover-Up #11 - This concealer has become a true staple in my daily beauty routine. I tend to apply it with a synthetic brush. However there have also been days where I mixed a little bit in with my moisturizing sunscreen to create my own natural looking tinted moisturizer. Why it made the list: This product is just so lightweight, it literally feels like you aren't wearing anything at all. I also find it super moisturizing, which I particularly love during the winter months when my skin is extra dry. A little goes a long way, so this jar will last me for quite a while.  I can use this both under the eyes and to conceal blemishes, making this natural looking concealer a must-have in my book.

#5 Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder - I have mentioned this powder in previous posts because it is truly a unique and special product. Totally splurge-worthy, this high end powder comes in several shades to help you find your perfect light.  While I love all of the shades offered, my two favorite from the line are Diffused Light and Luminous Light. Why it made the list: These setting powders really enhance the way your skin looks. Plus they photograph really well, making them a great choice for weddings or special events. Diffused Light is a soft pale yellow that helps minimize redness in the skin.  Luminous Light is a champagne pearl that I especially love for evening looks. 

#6 Illamasqua Powder Blusher in Naked Rose - I am a big fan of the Illamasqua blushes in general, but Naked Rose is my perfect Winter blush. Why it made the list: This soft neutral pink is highly pigmented and finely milled.  The pan is a nice large size, making it easy to dip any brush into. I find this shade works well on most skin tones, and leaves the most beautiful natural flush on mine. Last year, I chose Tarte Exposed as my favorite blush, and while that one still gets a ton of love from me, this one has gotten a lot more use in my Winter makeup routine. 

#7 The Balm Frat Boy Blush - This was my go-to blush for spring and summer. The packaging is just adorable, and the blush has a smooth creamy texture and awesome pigmentation.  Why it made the list: This talc-free formula is so finely milled, the texture and color are just perfect.  On my skin color, this leaves the most natural looking flush ever.  It's a matte finish, which I strongly prefer in my blushes. A lot of people do want some shimmer, but I prefer matte, and will add a highlighter on top if I want a more luminous look. 

#8 Becca Eye Tint - This is a smooth sheer base that works great solo or under powder eyeshadow. It's water-resistant which makes this a must have for me in the spring and summer. Why it made the list: I just love the texture of this, it is light and easily blended. The color is sheer, but you can build the color to your desired intensity if you want to wear it solo. My only complaint is I wish the tube was bigger because I use these a lot. Try Baroque which is a lovely mushroom beige color that works well with most neutral eyeshadow looks.  I also love Paracus which is a brown-grey color. The formula is completely crease resistant, so these can be used as an eyeshadow primer as well. 

#9 NYX Nude Matte Shadow - These eyeshadows have become a staple in my kit. They are affordable, pigmented, and come in a large variety of neutral shades. Why it made the list: Well pigmented matte eyeshadow like this is so versatile because it can be used as eyeliner, brow powder, contour color, or as a mid tone depending on the shade you select. I find the formula to be smooth and layered over a primer it really does last all day. You can't beat the quality of these matte shadows for the price.  I do have a couple of matte palettes from NYX, but really appreciate these singles as good quality matte eyeshadow can be difficult to find, especially in this large of a color selection.  If you have mature eyes, you will really appreciate these shadows.

Pictured above: NYX Underneathe It All (brown), Covet (olive green)

#10 Too Faced Exotic Color Intense Eye Shadow in Firefly - I like the formula of these eyeshadow singles from Too Faced in general, but this specific color is just gorgeous! Why it made the list: This color is a light antique gold with the most beautiful shimmer. I have these in a few shades, but Firefly just leaves the most lovely feminine sparkle on the eyelid. Of all the eyeshadows I've used over the past year, this color is my absolute favorite. Plus, this particular shade is vegan friendly. 

#11 IT Cosmetics Tightline Full Lash Length Black Primer With Peptide Enhancing Serum - IT Cosmetics sent me a tube of this earlier this year as part of a kit to review. While I loved all of the products in the kit, this lash primer is one of the most innovative makeup products I came across all year. It's a lash primer with a super thin wand that when pressed gently against the upper lash line, literally tightlines your eye! Why it made the list: This product does exactly what it promises. It tightlines the eye, and the thin brush coats every single lash adding serious length. Because of the brush size, this also works great as a bottom lash mascara. I typically wear this under my favorite mascara, but if you are in a rush, this will work well by itself too.  While I did receive this as a sample from IT Cosmetics, I am now on my third tube. I love the stuff so much that I repurchased it because I simply can't imagine my makeup routine without it. 
#12 Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara - This is the best mascara of 2013. The hourglass brush helps add both length and volume to lashes to an impressive degree. This also makes your lashes super black. Why it made the list: We all know how hard a good mascara is to find. Some that lengthen well, don't provide volume. This is the one mascara I've used that gets every lash, volumizes, lengthens and separates easily. If you like a dramatic lash look, this mascara is a must-have. When I first tried to purchase this, it was sold out everywhere, and I see why. I am very picky with mascaras and find that I often don't like some that others love. This one seems to be loved by everyone I know who has tried it, and with good reason. Too Faced really did a great job in the formulation of this product, and their hard work really shows.  Plus, the formula is paraben free.

#13 IT Cosmetics Heavenly Luxe Wand Ball Brush - This super luxurious tapered brush is great for so many uses. It works well for powder, blush, bronzer, and luminizer. The rubberized handle provides a comfortable grip, and the bristles are among the softest in my entire brush collection. I was fortunate enough to have IT Cosmetics send me this brush for review, and it has become a staple in my personal makeup routine ever since. Why it made the list: As you guys know, I am a makeup brush junkie. Brushes are my favorite thing of all beauty items, and this one is my favorite of the year. It's the softest brush I have, and this shape is difficult to find in good quality synthetic brushes. I use this brush pretty much everyday, and it looks just as new as the day I got it. Well constructed, and easy to use, this is my favorite brush, of all the brushes I own.

I hope you enjoyed this look at my top 13 makeup products of 2013! Make sure you are subscribed so you don't miss my next post which will have all the websites and prices where you can buy these for your collection. Thank you all for your support this year. I've really enjoyed reading all of your comments, and look forward to sharing more reviews, tutorials and tips with everyone in 2014!
Please share your favorites of the year in the comments below!
*This post contains some products that were sent for consideration. This in no way alters my review. I do not get paid to write reviews. All opinions are my own.


  1. Ohh I just got a The Balm palette for xmas, I want to buy more of them especially the blushes. They are so pretty and smooth.

    1. I'm big fan of The Balm. Their blushes and eyeshadows are really great. Excellent texture and pigmentation. Keep a look out for when they are on Haute Look, you can usually get a great deal :)


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