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The Best and Worst of Beauty 2015 | What I Loved and Loathed This Year

Another year gone, another year of beauty hits and misses.

If you’re like me and spend an unreasonable amount of time dedicated to makeup and beauty, then you will understand how it’s possible to have such an overflow of products by the time the new year arrives.

But in a weird turn of events, the hits and even the misses come in handy for us beauty bloggers by helping to ebb away the inevitable writers block we all face at some point.

Because I have a disturbing amount of makeup hoarded in my drawers, I decided to make the 2015 Beauty list a bit easier by choosing my favorite and least favorite products in each category. So get ready. You’re about to see the good, the bad, and the very ugly.

PRIMER

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Love: This year my favorite primer by far has to go to the Nivea Men’s Post Shave Balm. I’m sure most of you think it’s gimmicky, and so did I, but oh dear lord does it make my face stay put. I’ve never used a primer that actually makes my makeup last noticeably longer. And it’s only 5 bucks, so why not give it a shot?

Loathe: Tell me. When will I learn? For some absurd reason I always think that using pore filling, mattifying primers will somehow miraculously work on my desert dry skin. And without fail I am always proven wrong. And the case is no different when concerning this NYX Pore Filler Primer. When applying this product, I can immediately notice the product bunching/balling up, and grabbing onto my dry patches. Maybe this would work if you had oily skin but for us flakey folk- it’s a no go.

FOUNDATION

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Love: Classics are classics for a reason, right? In 2015 I rediscovered the oh so wonderful Revlon Colorstay Foundation. The best thing about this product is that it is full coverage AND comes in separate formulas for dry and oily skin! If you are looking for a full coverage foundation then this is the one to try.

Loathe: I don’t think I have ever been so disappointed in a foundation than I have been in the Rimmel Stay Matte. This is an extremely cakey and heavy on the skin and will flake off within minutes of application. Never EVER will I buy this again.

CONCEALER

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Love: I think that I can safely say that the NYX HD Concealer was my favorite find of 2015. This is a full coverage concealer that beautifully smooths and brightens anything it touches! The lightest shade is perfect for my pale skin (which is hard to find) and I cannot get enough!

Loathe: So I didn’t have a concealer that I absolutely hated this year, but I will say that I wasn’t an enormous fan of the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer. And I tried hard guys. Really hard. While it is very creamy with a dewy finish, it just didn’t live up to the hype. I didn’t find it to be as full of a coverage as I wanted, but the main issue I had was the color range. The lightest shade in the collection was too dark to do any real highlighting, and in looking at the rest of collection there is clearly a lapse when it comes to skin tones that this product will work for.

POWDER

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Love: Rimmel Stay Matte Powder is a classic when it comes to the beauty world. It is by no means cakey or heavy on the skin, yet it perfectly sets and mattifies any overly dewy look. At only 5 dollars, you really can’t go wrong.

Loathe: HOWEVER, you can definitely go wrong with the NYC Smooth Skin Powder. This is a chalky and dry powder that simply sits on top of your dry patches and textured areas of your face and unlike it’s name suggests, it does absolutely ZERO smoothing. #FAIL.

CONTOUR

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Love: This was a recent find, but oh boy was it good. I’ve heard so much about the Kevyn Aucoin Medium Sculpting Powder and all of its glory and I am incredibly pleased/pained to confirm that this tiny $45 powder is worth every single penny. A perfect ashy brown, this powder perfectly mimics the natural undertones of a wide array of skin tones. If you’re gonna splurge, consider this.

Loathe: 2015 has been the year of the contour for me. But it has also been the year of looking orange and muddy due to trying out products such as the NYX Wonder Stick. The undertone in this product is way WAY too warm toned and fails to give a naturally chiseled look. Not only does it lack in color, but it lacks in blendability as well. This dries incredibly fast and if you don’t buff it completely into your skin right away you’ll be left looking like you just returned from a trek in the woods. Covered in mud.

BLUSH

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Love: For years I’ve heard people rave and rave about the illustrious Luminoso by Milani, and don’t get me wrong- it’s gorgeous! But Luminoso has been completely eclipsed in my eyes by it’s slightly pinker sister Rose D’Oro. This has become my everyday blush and never ever fails me. The color is incredibly versatile and would work on essentially every skin tone. If you aren’t sure about luminoso, I highly recommend checking this bad boy out.

Loathe: Never. Ever. Have I used something so chalky and un-pigmented in my entire life. The Maybelline Fit Me blushes take some serious digging to receive any semblance of pigmentation on the cheeks. And one you manage to get a little hint of powder on your brush, it falls right off. This blush is seriously useless. Fo’ real.

HIGHLIGHT

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Love: I’m not going to harp on this too much, simply because it’s the highlight of all highlights and everybody knows it. Mary Lou Manizer by the Balm is a stunning champagne that will give you anything from a glow from within to a glow in the dark highlight. For anybody just getting into makeup, this is what I would suggest to be your first highlight. You really can’t go wrong.

Loathe: This year I tested out a few new things from Bare Minerals, including the Secret Radiance Powder. This is a loose highlight that has champagne/copper tones to it, and it literally couldn’t look worse on me. Because this product was loose, it was incredibly difficult to work with and find a good way to apply it. It went on glittery and chunky and left a giant gold streak down the sides of my face. A major bust.

EYE PALETTE

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Love: The Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette (which I did a review on here) has got to be the most versatile, yet consistent palette I own. The color range is impeccable and offers the opportunity to create simple everyday looks, as well as dramatic and vibrant looks as well. If you’re any less than a hoarder than me, I would recommend this as being the single palette you need in your life.

Loathe: This one absolutely kills me. The Bobbi Brown Twilight Pink Palette consists of 10 stunningly soft eyeshadows, as well as 4 gorgeous neutral lips. I mean do you see that palette??? If only the quality was as top notch as it’s looks. While certain shades in this palette are alright (such as canary and opal) the majority lack any significant pigmentation and don’t really show up on the lid. Overall, this just takes more effort than it’s worth.

That’s it for my 2015 Love’s and Loathe’s guys! I hope you all had a fantastic 2015, and I hope you have an even better 2016.

Don’t forget, remember to smile 🙂

-Love, Lieve

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