April’s beauty product favourites contain a good mix of items I’ve been using for a while now, and items I’ve recently bought and fallen in love with. Don’t you just get so happy when new items are totally worth the cash expenditure? What’s better is that all of these items are extremely affordable, save for one (kind of), so they’re effective without breaking even the tightest of bank budgets. The following products are a mix of things I’ve purchased in the US, Canada, and Australia, but as far as I know they’re available in all of those countries, or online if you’re in Australia, which is awesome because that means you guys can pick them up without much effort. How much does it suck when you hear of something awesome and it’s not available in your country? I hate that!
Formula 10.0.6 Keep Your Cool Breakout Calming Mask - I’ve mentioned before how much I love face masks, but I really miss the affordability of them since I’ve moved to Oz. There’s rarely a product at the drug store that costs below $10, and masks tend to sit in the $30+ price range. I came across the Formula 10.0.6 Breakout Calming Mask and picked it up along with the 10.0.6 Mud Mask, but the Breakout Calming Mask has been an absolute standout for me. If you read here at all regularly you’ll know that I struggle with redness and acne scarring/hyperpigmentation, so the ‘soothing’ claims really sucked me in with this one. This mask is more of a leave-on treatment that you allow to soak in for 5 minutes, then wipe off, but when I saw how well it worked to calm my skin, I began using it every night instead of moisturizer, putting it on thicker on my problem areas and letting it soak in before bed. I’ve used this every night for 3 weeks and it makes a world of a difference. I’m never letting this stuff run out without buying more, and I can’t recommend it enough for anybody with any sort of skin inflammation!
E.L.F. Studio Eyebrow Kit - I bought this brow powder/gel duo on a last-minute shopping spree in Washington right before I moved overseas. Elf products are insanely affordable in the US (I think this brow gel was about $3!), and still super reasonable online. Considering I’ve been using this since September and not even come close to hitting the pan, it’s an obvious hit for value-for-money. But aside from that, it blends in perfectly with my dark brows and stays put all day. It doesn’t look fake and drawn on like pencils can, and it’s pigmented enough to look natural while still giving my wacky eyebrows (that I should not have plucked to tiny lines in high school as they’re permanently patchy now!) some definition and more fullness. I love the E.L.F. eyebrow kit, and will definitely be buying more when I go to the US in December.
Tony & Guy Cleanse Dry Shampoo - I was using Batiste Dry Shampoo for ages (I stocked up and bought three cans in London), because it’s pretty cheap and works really well. I still love it, but what the Tony & Guy Dry Shampoo beats it at is that it doubles as a texturizer if you spray it on the ends of your hair. For someone with fine hair, I like a little bit of grittiness to hold my styles better, or just to give it a bit more of a piece-y look. And in terms of oil-absorption, it does just as good of a job giving your second- (and third… come on you’ve done it too) day hair new life. I’ll still use my Batiste, because I love that they have a dark hair formula, but when I’m wearing my hair down and it seems a bit floppy, I don’t know if the Tony & Guy Dry Shampoo can be beat.
Revlon Photo Ready Concealer - This stuff was sent to me as a Christmas gift from my mum and dad this year, and I when I opened it I thought I’d probably never use it. I have a bunch of high-end concealers that I bought to cover my dark-ish undereye area that I am pretty happy with (Bobbi Brown’s Concealer Kit and Lancome’s Effacernes). I decided to be adventurous one day and bust out the Revlon Photo Ready, and was immediately blown away. This concealer has amazing coverage, and can tackle not only my undereyes with ease, but some of the other angry-looking breakouts I get on the rest of my face. Especially when travelling on the weekends, this stuff is my holy grail, because it’s everything all in one tube, unlike the Bobbi Brown corrector/concealer that I still love, but is multiple products and requires a brush to apply. For the lazy girl that I sometimes am, this concealer is a jack of all trades, so if you can find a close colour match for you I highly recommend it.
Clarisonic Mia Acne Cleansing Brush Head - I know everyone and their mother raves about their Clarisonic Mia, so I won’t do that here (just know that I wholeheartedly agree). But I’d been feeling like it was a little ‘meh’ for my skin lately, and although I’d considered switching brush head types before, I was discouraged by all of the online reviews as well as a Sephora Sales Associate who insisted it would be the worst idea ever to use anything but the sensitive brush head. I’ve already mentioned before that my skin is pretty resilient, so I took the plunge and ordered an acne cleansing brush head from ebay (again, prices in Aus are unbearable), and it was the best thing I could’ve done for my problem skin. The acne brush head is so great at exfoliating without being too harsh, and really lathers up my cleanser to get the most out of each wash. I’m currently using it morning and night and my skin feels unbelievably amazing every time I do. If you’re using a clarisonic and feeling like you’re not getting the results that other people are singing about, try changing the brush head. I’ve also got a deep pore cleansing brush head that I’ll try next, so I’ll keep you posted on that one.
I’m feeling pretty happy with my makeup and skincare routines as of late, because so many of the products I’m using are really doing their job well. I’m not usually one to stick to routines much but how can you jump around when everything just seems to be working for you? If you’ve tried any of the above products and had less than amazing results, please share, because I’d love to know how universal they are or if they’re just suited to my combination/acne-prone skin. And if you’ve got any of your own faves, let me know (even if they’re not available in Australia), because I’m going to be placing an online order soon for a few wish list items. Does anybody have a good recommendation for a eye cream to help with dark undereye circles? I’ve been researching for ages but haven’t settled on any standouts yet!
P.S. I created a Facebook page for cupcakes+coffee breaks! If that’s your preferred method of following, you can check it out and Like me here. If you’ve got a blog, let me know and I can connect with you via FB. Happy Weekend guys :)