It's gonna get sappy up in here.
I try to keep my Friday nights work-free, but once in a blue moon, there will be a beauty event that I can't say no to. Sable can say no, but then I drag her with me anyway.
The most recent case: just this past Friday when Teen Vogue threw a party celebrating the launch of Neutrogena's new Light Therapy Acne Mask. Everyone was given one upon arrival, and things got weird real fast because it's kind of creepy to see a room full of people in smooth white masks with light emanating from behind. (But they also got handsome real fast because is there anyone more face-blessed than Teen Vogue's Phillip Picardi?)
But here's the thing: I was so beauty-jazzed after the party that I went home and started arranging a makeshift photo studio next to my microwave so I could start putting together this week's Best Beauty Sh!t — on a Friday night! Damn you, Neutrogena!
Actually, thank you, Neutrogena, because one of your cleansers made the list. See what else did:
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IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Illumination Full Coverage Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer
I'm not exaggerating when I say that this is the most impressive product I've encountered all month. Although it's made as an under-eye concealer, I met brand spokesperson Desiree when she was wearing it as foundation. Not only did it completely cover her acne scars, it did so without looking heavy. In fact, she looked friggin' radiant. Blew my mind.
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IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Makeup 3-in-1 Makeup Melting Cleansing Balm
I also watched Desiree remove her concealer-foundation dealio with ridiculous ease using this cleansing balm, which made it the second most impressive product I've encountered all month. It just wipes makeup away with, like, no effort, and no residue. You don't even have to rinse it off — just pat your face and let your skin absorb the good stuff like hyaluronic acid, collagen, peptides, and ceramides.
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111SKIN Cryo Energising Body Serum
I have no plans to hop in one of those cryotherapy tanks any time soon, but sure, I'll try a serum that says it mimics the effects. It promises to "sculpt, tone, tighten and re-texturise skin" (it's a British brand, hence the lack of Z's), and although it's pricey at $150, that will get you only two cryotherapy sessions.
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Beekman 1802 Ultra Conditioning Grapefruit Sheer Tinted Lip Balm
I'm a sucker for red-toned tinted lip balms, especially if they smell like grapefruit, so I know this will become an instant favorite of mine. I'm just not used to using beauty products by brands that also make hand-forged axes.
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Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Daily Cleanser
If you love/don't mind a light fragrance in your skincare products but avoid it because you have sensitive skin, this cleanser was pretty much made for you. Neutrogena nailed down a hypoallergenic fragrance that's "free of known skin allergens and irritating essential oils."
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Fango Essenziali Energize Mud Mask for Face + Body
I've never done a full-body mud mask, mostly because I'm afraid I'll lie there in the tub, stand up to rinse off under the shower head, and slip in some horrible fashion that leads to my boyfriend finding my dead body, contorted and naked but for the layer of slick clay on my skin. But I might just take a chance with this caffeine- and charcoal-infused formula.
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BY TERRY Rouge-Expert Click Stick
I don't care if you already have lipstick colors that are basically the same as the 25 matte-yet-moisturizing shades in this collection; you do not have a lipstick shaped like a slanted teardrop, and you really do have to try it to see how much more control it gives you when applying straight from the bullet.
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This is what the Click Stick looks like pre-click, hiding all turtle-like. Cute, right? I'm especially excited about the shades Baby Brick (a brick rose), Fire Engine (red-orange), Be Mine (muted red), and Palace Wine (a deep wine red).
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Glytone Enhance Brightening Complex
I've always respected Glytone for being no-frills and yes-effective-ingredients. Hell, a good chunk of their products are only available through doctors because of the levels of certain acids. But their readily purchasable products are proven effective, too — like this one, which exfoliates and brightens all over with glycolic acid, and focuses on discoloration with azelaic acid.
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goop by Juice Beauty Exfoliating Instant Facial
If you prefer your exfoliating acids with a side of Gwyneth-approved organic essences, this could be the twice-weekly treatment for you. In addition to glycolic, malic, tartaric and salicylic acids, this three-minute mask also contains a bunch of plant juices, oils, and extracts, including one called Poet’s Daffodil. How whimsical.
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Wet n Wild Mega Cushion Highlight Illuminator
I hate to tell you that you have to wait until 2017 to buy this adorable highlighter cushion compact, but... you do. There are actually a ton of great new Wet n Wild products launching in 2017, but I think I'm most psyched about this one because a) super-cute packaging, b) easy application (it comes with a little black spongy pad to dab on the cushion highlighter) and c) trendy iridescence without going full-blown "my face is a bubble floating in the sunshine."
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Here it is on the the back of my hand, which still looks very much like a hand and not cellophane.
This hits Walgreens in January and will cost you about 6 wee bucks.
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Ursa Major Golden Hour Recovery Cream
Normally, I get a little cranky when a brand sends a mini sample, because I'm a spoiled beauty-editor brat. But I can't be mad at Ursa Major — this cream is so good, I'll probably just buy the full-size in a month or two because this will be my cold-weather skin hero. Like, it's decided. With its sea buckthorn, calendula, black currant and sunflower, it's super-soothing and moisturizing and even firming.
Anything strike your fancy? Instantly make your wish list? What do you want to know more about? Do you do work stuff on Friday nights, too, or am I just the coolest person in the world?