Sitting at home and “window-shopping” various beauty e-tailers open in as many tabs as your browser will allow? Here’s what you should be adding to your cart. You know how I know? I tried all of them (because it’s my job), and loved each one of these and am here to tell you they’re worth your hard-earned money. You can thank me later.
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Joon Saffron Hair Elixir, $41
This hair oil is bougie AF and I love it. Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice and I feel hella pampered when I use this saffron-infused oil in my hair. It’s fairly light and the amount you need to use depends on how much hair you have. I have thick hair, so I use about half the dropper. I warm it in my palms before working it into the lengths of my freshly-washed hair while concentrating on the ends. I then smooth any residue from my palms onto the roots to prevent my hair from looking too flat. The oil not only acts as a heat protectant (I blow-dry my hair each time I wash it), but also nourishes and moisturises with pistachio seed oil, adds shine thanks to rose oil and strengthens hair because of the inclusion of saffron flower. Every time I use it, I feel my hair is softer and smoother. It just feels healthier.
Maybelline Superstay Ink Crayon, $16.90
Like all crayon lipsticks, this one is super convenient. I can apply it in the bus or taxi and be sure that I’m getting a precise outline. It’s pigmented and matte, but not drying, and doesn’t feel heavy on the lips. It’s also fairly long-lasting if you don’t eat a greasy meal. Plus, it comes with a sharpener at the other end to keep the tip intact and honestly I appreciate this because I am always losing my makeup sharpeners.
Shiseido Makeup Synchro Skin Glow Cushion Compact, $75 for refill and case
I like how this makes my skin look—fresh and radiant. And it definitely lives up to its promise of staying all day. I think it’s great for oily or combination skin types, but if you have dry skin like me, just layer it over a hydrating primer. I use it by itself or only on the T-zone over some of my other foundations to bring light to the centre of my face because it has a glow-enhancing powder that diffuses light and blurs imperfections. It’s also got antioxidants and skin-smoothing benefits.
Sigi Skin Dream Capsule, $82
I love a good face mask and this one is up there with the best of them. You can use it alone or over your toner and serum and it does its job while you sleep. I slathered a generous layer of the silky air whipped cream all over my face and woke up with my skin feeling more hydrated (and it stayed that way the next day too). I also found it smoother and brighter thanks to the 100 per cent plant derived bakuchiol. The few pores that seem to show through were more refined. The Dream Capsule also has antioxidant rich purslane to reduce damage from external stressors, plant-derived squalane and niacinamide that help strengthen the skincare barrier, which in the long run translates into fewer breakouts and less sensitised skin. And I’m here for that.
Gucci Beauty Mascara L’Obscur, $56
The short, firm bristles of the brush allow you to grab every eyelash, including the tiny ones at the inner corners of the eye. Each swipe of the oval-shaped brush coats the lashes with a intense black formula that curls, lengthens and defines lashes. The great part about it is you can create subtle definition or apply it using the tip of the brush to create a bolder, more punk look. What I really like about it is that it won’t smudge, flake or smear… and I know this because my eyes can get watery and I didn’t look like a panda with this mascara. If you’re wearing this mascara and you tear up, just dab your eyes with a tissue, and no one will know if you cried while watching that K-drama or because your sunscreen migrated to your eyes. Again.
NARS Afterglow Eyeshadow Palette, $90
Don’t be put off by the metallic fuchsia shade (it’s called Deep Cut btw), the palette has a lot of goregeous neutral shades in matte, satin and shimmer that you can use on an everyday basis. I was actually drawn to the palette because of the bright pink shade! I love the soft buttery textures that go on so smoothly. As with most NARS eyeshadows, the shades are pigmented, easy to blend and just downright gorgeous. There is no kickback from the shadows, nor is there any fallout when you’re wearing it.