The Year in Beauty: The Best and the Worst of 2013

What a year! As makeup gets high tech and back to basics at the same time, the cosmetic industry seems to be all over the place. High end brands are showing up at Costco and every big box store and discount retailer is selling hair products you KNOW shouldn't be on their shelves. With things so topsy turvy in the beauty world, let's look at the hits and misses of 2013.

One of my most popular posts this year seems to by my review of the Pearl Hair Remover. It burns off your hair and asks you to sand the remaining hair smooth, which seems like a lot of work for not-that-smooth baby butt smooth legs. I don't quite get it, but you guys seem to love reading about it and then complaining it doesn't work. I love you guys.

I didn't think they could get any more popular, but oils are taking over. And they have replaced most of the other products I even use. I love Darshana, Oi and Boscia Tsubaki Oil (face). There is no need to be afraid, even if your hair and skin aren't parched, there is an oil for you.

Want fast results? Try a high powered serum that doesn't accept defeat. This year, I was blown away by Estee Lauder's Advanced Night Repair Treatment and Orlane's Elixer Royal (and not just because of the price tag!). My skin was noticeably more radiant, fine lines were seriously reduced and compliments abound.

2013 was the year of the self-aware curling iron. Or at least they seemed that way at times. From irons without barrels to basic irons with clips, the only thing more popular than serious curls was braiding. For me? I've been sticking with hot rollers more than anything else (and haven't punched myself in the face once, thank you very much!). I'm all about getting as much sleep and having fabulous hair. Hot rollers are the secret.

It was also the year of the palette. From holiday stunners to rumors of the next Naked palette, all of us went nutters for pretty, pre-packaged shadow collections. My favorite were from Smashbox and LORAC. What about yours? Besides Naked 3, I mean.

Highlighting and contouring was one of the scarier/most talked about trends of 2013, thanks to Allure's Blogger of the Year, MaskCara. While her foundation wasn't a perfect match for my skin, finding the right products to highlight and contour can go a long way towards chiseling your face. Just be sure to be subtle, use a matte brown or taupe color to contour and avoid excessive shine in your highlight, or you'll run the risk of looking like a New Jersey Housewife (not the badass eyeshadow part, either). I recently made my own palette during a custom blending session with Giella and it's perfect. I'll share the details on that soon!

Deep bordeaux colors were somehow everywhere this fall, replacing the neon shades that someone kept trying to make happen during the first six months of 2013. I suppose it was quite the color confused year for all of us... I'll blame a resurgence of 80's fashions for the neon and the color emerald for the wackness of the overall color palette this year. Here's to hoping things can be civil next year, at least where my color palettes are concerned. It looks like we will be resetting things to nudes until we can get everything back under control again.

Drugstore products upped their game (have I mentioned CVS is my favorite? The coupons!). L'OREAL offered a really nice dupe for my favorite foundation of the year- Armani Maestro - with their Magic Nude Liquid Powder.  And I'd like to apologize for using that scripty font. It won't happen again.

While microneedling is nothing new, the DermaPen is an interesting option if you want to attack fine lines in a derms office without much down time. But if you want real results, after all of my experiments, the only one I would want to do on a regular basis is IPL.

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Nails.  I've been blogging for almost 5 years and nails are still my Achilles heel. I don't know how nail bloggers keep their nails so fantastic looking, let alone get through the day with all of that crafty stuff glued to their tips. Are you hoping for a smoother 2014 where nails are concerned or will you be happy to continue walking around with seriously textured nails? Personally, I. Just. Can't.

You know what you guys hated more than anything else? I mean hated. I got hate mail, mean comments and in the reader survey I asked you to take; whoa. How can one little cloth garner so much hate? I'm talking about the $33 Italian washcloth - which I still use every, single day, thank you very much. The Assia Micropeeling Cloth is the Porsche of washcloths. You barely need any soap and your face will be more clean than you thought possible. It's still one of my favorites from the year, despite all of the shade you threw my way.

Finally, this year was the year of the blog. Was I the only one who thought that magazine articles all seemed old and so 30-days-ago? Most of them can't keep up with the fervor of bloggers; showing you new product and trends way before it hits the shelves. Most noted lag time? Magazines were all "Vice" while the rest of us were all "Naked 3". And don't get me started on the rule that bloggers must disclose everything, while it's all business as usual for magazines. (Here's a hint: It's all ads and relationships for the mags.)

What are you looking forward to next year? Honestly, I'm in need of a little inspiration. Incredibly luminous foundation? Better primers? Fancy shaped curling irons? Tell me and I'll be on the lookout! For once, I'm getting a little bored, so 2014 better bring it! Oh yeah, Happy New Year!

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  1. You turned me onto Pond's BB Cream, and I am forever grateful. It really helps balance out my rosacea (a fantastic development from early 2013). Oh, and I have been liking The Body Shop's Muslin Cleansing Cloth for cleanser-boosting and non-irritating exfoliation at a much lower price point than your fancy-schmancy washcloth. (
    Happy New Year!

  2. Sounds like a great year for makeup! Let's hope 2014 is even better! Who knows what they will come up with next?

  3. Yeah, that pearl hair remover stuff doesn't work at all! It almost ripped my skin off! 0.0

  4. L'oreal really is a dupe for Armani...That makes it easier to empty the Armani instead of saving it


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