I thought it would be fun to take a glance backward and share with you my take on the best skincare and makeup products I tried in 2021 that I think can work especially well for those of us with mature skin. Some of these products I hadn’t tested previously.
For a great cleanser that is gentle, yet effective – and is especially great for removing eye makeup – Bioderma’s micellar water cleanser is really wonderful.
After removing that first layer of makeup or dirt with Bioderma, I love using Tatcha’s The Rice Wash Skin Softening Cleanser. This past year I’ve tried at least six other cleansers, but I keep returning to this one. And when I need to exfoliate my face twice a week, I turn to my Tatcha Rice Polish Foaming Enzyme Powder. You only need to use a little to produce a gently foaming exfoliating product, so this one jar will last a very long time.
Most of us need a retinol cream to help with those fine lines, but finding one that’s effective – yet not too harsh on the skin – can be challenging. I found my holy grail retinol product this past year when I tried Hollywood esthetician Shani Darden’s Retinol Reform.
My skin is very sensitive and I often have a variety of reactions to skin products – ranging from redness and patchiness to headaches. But I’ve experienced no negative issues with this product. What I have noticed is a positive softening of those fine lines around my eyes, lips and forehead. This is definitely a keeper.
No neck cream can take care of what only plastic surgery can change, but a good neck cream will effectively soften the look of fine lines on our neck. And that’s exactly what this Let’s Neck product – from a newer brand called Womaness – does.
And after years of dipping into jars of neck creams with my fingers, I have to confess I also really love the ingenious applicator that’s been designed for this product. To apply the product, it’s only necessary to twist the top, squeeze from the tube and apply. When done, just twist the top back around. No messy hands, no contaminating the product with your fingers… it’s wonderful!
If you’re like me, you’ve probably tried any number of eye creams. Yes, most of them do provide needed moisture to the under eye area, but can we honestly say they’ve made a big difference? Most of us will be shaking our head no.
But a few weeks ago I tried Colorescience’s Total Eye Firm and Repair Eye Cream for the first time, expecting the same kind of results. But when I looked in the mirror after applying it, I exclaimed, “Oh my gosh.” My husband actually peeked back in the bathroom to make sure everything was O.K.
So what happened? I can only describe my inner under eye area as crinkly. But almost immediately after applying this cream, those crinkles almost totally disappeared. I truly wasn’t expecting that type of result. Needless to say, I’m continuing to use this product. It’s definitely pricey, but only a very small amount is needed, so this will last quite some time.
For those of us with hooded eyes, Lids by Design by Contours RX is a great product. These little adhesive strips are miracle workers for giving us back our eyelid area. There’s a bit of a learning curve when first applying these strips, but what an amazing difference they make.
Cinema Secrets’ Brush Cleansing soap is an all-natural vegan soap made with coconut oil which helps remove makeup, prevents bacteria and helps extend the life of our brushes. But what I love most is the little rubber scrub pad which comes housed in the top lid of the soap.
If you like to fill in some individual brow hairs when you do your brows, this brow pen from NYX is hands down the best product I’ve found. It has the best color range and most importantly, has a thin, flexible tip which is perfect for drawing in individual brow hairs.
Catrice’s True Skin Hydrating Foundation is great for those of us who like a more skin-like natural look to our foundation that doesn’t settle into fine lines. For a slightly more radiant look, I combined it with some of Charlotte Tilbury’s Flawless Filter which gives me the more radiant finish I prefer.
Another plus is that Catrice is a German brand and all their products adhere to the high quality standards set forth by the EU Cosmetics Regulation which restricts over 1,500 ingredients from being used in beauty products. And Catrice has banned an additional 60+ ingredients that they deem unacceptable.
The “Passion in Paris” eyeshadow palette by Bh Cosmetics, as well as their “Summer in St. Tropez” palette deserve an honorable mention. The color story, the formula, the price – everything is right about these eyeshadow palettes.
The Tarte Quicksticks are aptly named because they make our makeup application routine quicker due to the design of this product. Each Quickstick has a cream eyeshadow stick on one end and an eye liner on the other end. And Tarte products are especially good for those of us with sensitive eyes.
Benefit’s Porefessional Hydrating Primer is a product I just recently discovered. It’s applied before foundation. For anyone who has an issue with larger pores, this product does a great job of blurring and reducing their appearance.
At Sephora’s November sale I purchased a cream contour stick from Fenty called Match Stix Matte Contour Skinstick. It’s lightweight, glides on easily and comes in seven different shades for warm, neutral or cool undertones. I love the fact that there are light to dark shades available in three different skin undertones.
Two products made it into the list. The first is Natasha Denona’s all neutral Biba Palette. It includes light, medium and dark colors in warm, neutral and cool colors so you have everything you need at your fingertips except a very light matte color. There are twelve mattes and three, making this a stunning, versatile palette.
I also love the exceptional quality of Sydney Grace eyeshadows. So last spring I purchased the three palettes that were part of a collaboration that Sydney Grace did with Christine Mielke who’s the founder of the beauty review site called Temptalia.
Good quality matte eyeshadows like the ones from Bh Cosmetics, Natasha Denona and Sydney Grace practically blend themselves and make powder eyeshadow application so much easier. And, they also make powder eyeshadow application more fun since they are pretty foolproof.
Now for my crème de la crème favorite products of 2021.
You may be surprised that the first product is a concealer and it’s from Clinique. It’s their Even Better All Over Concealer Plus Eraser. What’s fabulous about this concealer is that it’s lightweight, but it’s also full coverage. So, if you have age spots or any other major discoloration on your face like I do, this concealer will most likely cover it.
Next comes a small cream highlighter/bronzer quad from RMS Beauty which is a clean beauty brand. What sets these highlighters and the bronzer apart is the sheer ease of application. They glide on so easily and are extremely easy to blend in so they’re not only beautiful, but also quick and easy to apply.
The Lush Life and Cabana Club eyeshadow palettes from Colourpop are really amazing. The packaging, the color story and the quality of these palettes is phenomenal. The variety of colors makes them extremely versatile but there are also enough mattes to make them wearable.
Now just for the fun of it, I also wanted to share with you my top two clothing finds of this past year. One is a poncho in several different shades of blue, and the other one is a second topper. I would never have thought that combining green and purple could work, but it’s quickly become one of my favorite combinations!
Well, that brings the 2021 skincare, makeup and clothing favorites rundown to a close.
You can join Elise’s newsletter by dropping her a note at Boomerandbeyondbeauty@gmail.com.
What are some of your top favorite skincare and makeup products from this past year? Have you tried any of my finds? If so, please share your thoughts on them.