I was going to post my January favorites when I realized that some of you were more interested in reading my 2014 favorites first, so I’ll post that later. I did not want to set a specific number of products to list so I could freely mention all my absolute favorites, but I feared that it was going to get a bit too lengthy, so here are my 20 most used products of 2014.
1. Elizabeth Dehn for One Love Organics Vitamin B Cleansing Oil. Seasoned Genuine Glow readers already know how much I love this, but if you are a newby, here are a few reasons why I have purchased this cleansing oil/makeup remover 10+ times: it breaks down all makeup efficiently (better than any other cleanser that I have tried), it is water-soluble, so it doesn’t leave any pore-clogging residue on the skin; it contains fruit enzymes that exfoliate the skin gently; it’s delicate on the eyes, (I have sensitive eyes, so that is very important to me); it hasn’t given my finicky skin any trouble; and finally it has a wonderful pineapple scent. You can read more here.
2. YULI Halcyon Cleanser. With the Halcyon cleanser it wasn’t love at first use, but toward the end of the year it eventually became my morning cleanser of choice (evening as well, when I do not wear makeup). This cleanser is gentle, oil-free, soap-free, detergent-free, alcohol-free, and water soluble. When I want a deep cleanse I just mix it with YULI Pure Mask, (this is a recent experiment that I have no wrote about yet) and voila’, skin decongests immediately. Not sure if I have mentioned it before, but I began to really like this cleanser when I started to apply it on dry skin instead of damp skin. Read more here.
3. YULI Cocoon Face Elixir. The Cocoon Face Elixir is another one that I have talked about quite a bit. This mist calms my skin like nothing else. It contains the anti-inflammatory, tag team of Calendula and Chamomile, soothing MSM, and healing/hydrating Aloe Vera. You can read my review here.
4. MUN Rose Hydrating Toner*. A very hydrating and refreshing toner that leaves my skin feeling soft. I don’t have dry/dehydrated skin, but this toner makes my skin feel like it just drank a gallon of rose water and has the most delicate, beautiful rose scent. Read more about it here.
5. Kahina Night Cream* and Kahina Argan Oil. I know that this is cheating, but I had to squeeze both in here. The night-time cream (which can be used in the daytime, too) has a lovely, light texture and is a great, non-greasy moisturizer. Read more here. The Argan oil is a simple face oil that works great for combination skin. Read details here.
6. Dr. Alkaitis Organic Soothing Gel. I use it both on the face and the body. On the face it makes an extra light, soothing moisturizer for Summer with blemish-fighting ingredients. For the body it doubles as the perfect, soothing post-shaving lotion. It has sort of a cooling effect on irritated skin that feels amazing and lasts. Read more about it here.
7. Pai Echium and Argan Gentle Eye Cream It is very light, it absorbs well and moisturizes the eye area without leaving it greasy and without irritating my eyes. It’s also great under makeup. Read more here.
8. Kjaer Weis Cream Foundation. A cream foundation with light-to-medium coverage that has a semi-matte finish. It applies beautifully with a beautyblender and looks like my skin but better. Unfortunately, while I have found a great match for Summer in the shade Illusion, I have given up on wearing the lighter shade Paper Thin when my skin is paler, as it looks a bit pink against my more yellow undertone. Other than color-matching issues, I loved using this foundation in 2014.
9. Gressa Minimalist Corrective Serum Foundation. I only tried this serum foundation toward the end of 2014, but it was one of my favorite finds. I like the coverage (light to medium) and the finish of it, powdery but luminous, not to mention how quickly I can apply it with fingers without much blending. It also has skincare benefits, and I have never experienced blemishes from it, even when I wore it every day for a couple of weeks. That’s a little unusual for my skin. A great find. Read more here.
10. Kjaer Weis Eyeshadow in Charmed I don’t have an individual review for this eyeshadow up yet, but this is what I wear on my eyes 99.9% of the time. In the pan, Charmed looks like an eyeshadow that will not get much use (it’s a matte, caramel beige color), but it is the perfect color to contour my eyes, define the crease, and warm up my eye look. The texture is soft and blendable. Possibly my favorite eyeshadow ever. You can see it swatched here.
11. Alima Pure Sombra Contour Powder I would have never expected to use a loose powder so much, but I truly love this one. It’s a contour powder/bronzer that looks natural on the skin, is not orange at all, and gives my skin a sparkle-free, golden glow (it’s completely matte). Created by a natural beauty and true artist Kristen Arnett whom I admire.
12. Ilia Beauty Lipsticks Funnel Of Love, In My Room, Perfect Day. It’s no secret that I love my Ilia Beauty Lipstick and I might soon complete my collection. This year my favorites were Funnel Of Love (a peachy-nude), In My Room for a wearable warm pink, and Perfect Day for a warm red lip that is perfect for daytime and evening as well.
13. Jane Iredale Lip Pencils. I have these in almost every color. The texture is great, not too creamy, not too waxy. The color range is also pretty awesome. Spice is the shade I use every day for shape correcting purposes (my upper lip is higher on one side).
14. Meow Meow Tweet Baking Soda-Free Grapefruit Deodorant. I was already pleased with the Meow Meow Tweet Deodorant scented with Lavender, but the one with grapefruit is my favorite and it’s baking-soda free.
15. Osmia Organics Hand Creams. At night I use balms, but during the day I love Osmia’s hand creams because they are great moisturizers without being greasy. They also smell amazing–like everything Osmia. I have a slight preference for the Linden Rose scent.
16. Lina Hanson Global Baby Serum. An unscented body oil that is also free of essentials oils. After my second bottle disappeared I found out that my husband loved it, too. I like to have a gentle, unscented option to moisturize and protect my skin, and my husband actually uses it on his face and hair, too.
17. Rahua Voluminous Shampoo. It’s still the one I go back to errrry time. It keeps my hair clean for days, it gives it some volume (more body than actual volume at the roots), and leaves it soft, manageable; but never weighed down.
18. One Love Organics Healthy Locks Dry Shampoo Powder. When I need to wash my hair but I don’t have time to actually wash it I use this dry shampoo powder. It refreshes my scalp, makes it smell lovely and gives a little volume boost at the roots.
19. Priti NYC Speedy Dry Top Coat. I have tried a fair amount of tops coats among the 5-free brands, and it is safe to say that Priti NYC is the one that dries the quickest, makes the nail polish last the longest, gives the most shiny finish and smells the least offensive to me. This is the only nail polish I ever finished and I will definitely continue to repurchase it.
20. Kure Bazaar Capuccino. Perfect nude color, great amount of shine, dries quickly, and stays on for a while (especially with the Priti Top Coat). The only nude I have been wearing for the past few months.
A few note-worthy highlights
eHow Style Blog. In 2014 I had the pleasure to contribute to the eHow Style Blog. Not only was I given the opportunity to reach out to such a large number of readers with my posts, but I was given freedom to write about topics that I am truly passionate about and mention products that I genuinely like. I am very grateful for this experience and I look forward to contributing in 2015 and hopefully bringing more topics of interest and tutorials. You can check out all of my posts (currently exclusive to eHow) here.
A Night for Green Beauty. After I missed the 2013 event in NYC due to a last minute emergency I made sure not to miss the 2014 event in LA and I am so glad I made it there. I got to meet some of my favorite brand founders and some of my favorite Internet friends/bloggers and time really flew by. I am looking forward to attending the next event in Chicago (and try the deep dish pizza that my husband won’t stop talking about.)
My Visit to the Detox Market. I was able to stop by The Detox Market during my trip to LA and I had the best time chatting with the lovely folks that run the shop. If you live nearby make sure to pay them a visit, otherwise you can checkout their selection of products online here.
Thank you for taking time to read my blog during last year, I am very grateful for your love and support. I hope to be able to blog more in 2015 and write more helpful content. Please leave me a comment below if you have any questions about the products I mentioned.