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    Mar. 25, 2020

    29 Holy Grail Skincare Products That BuzzFeed Writers Actually Swear By

    Time to get the best skin of your life.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. A bottle of The Ordinary Caffeine Solution that's basically like a cuppa Joe for your under-eye area. It'll make those dark circles and puffiness disappear in mere moments, so nobody will be able to tell you pulled an all-nighter.

    Jamé Jackson / BuzzFeed

    "It’s a somewhat thick, gel-like consistency that I just dab under both of my eyes and within minutes, the puffiness is gone. Sometimes, I’ll even put the product under my eyes and just let it sit for a few minutes before rubbing it in, and on some occasions, I’ve even put it on my forehead, or my cheeks, or anywhere else I just need an instant lift. Within minutes, the caffeine particles in the solution have de-puffed my skin, and my eyes look amazing and ready for me to go in with the rest of my skin care and makeup. In my opinion, the best part really is the fact that a little goes a long way — I can change how much I use based upon how severe my puffiness is. And I love the product so much, I’ll use it morning and night before heading out the door for a night out with the girls (or even just staying in and sleeping, IRL). Added bonus: If you have sensitive skin like me, this product won’t give you any problems." —Jamé Jackson

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $6.70.

    2. A bottle of Graydon Blue Majik Face Foam that'll leave your skin feeling fresh and clean without stripping it of natural oils. Plus it puffs up like a cloud when you pump it out, which is pretty cool.

    Alice Prendergast / Via BuzzFeed

    "I use this stuff every morning and night, and oh boy, do I ever love it. It's really gentle and doesn't leave my skin feeling totally parched. The best part? The texture. It pumps out in fluffly cleanser clouds and turns into a silky cream, unlike any cleanser I've ever owned before. It's a little pricier than what you'd find at the drugstore, but one bottle has lasted me months, so I think it's worth it." —Alice Prendergast

    Get it on The Detox Market for $33.

    3. A tub of Fresh Vitamin Nectar Moisture Glow face cream that'll make you shine bright like a diamond, thanks to ingredients like citrus fruit extracts and revitalizing minerals. Prepare to become the envy of all your friends, 'cause your skin is about to be hella radiant.

    Angela Krasnick / BuzzFeed

    "I have combination skin, but when the weather gets windier, I notice my skin get drier — flaking around my chin and nose by midday. So after hearing a lot of people rave abut the Fresh Vitamin Nectar Moisture Glow Face Cream, I decided to try it — and within one day my face was feeling baby-soft and looking hydrated and flake-free. It also smells really good! I originally used it in the mornings and at night, but thanks to this product's effectiveness, my skin has been so moisturized that I only need to apply it in the AM now. A little goes a long way, so it'll last me a very long time." —Angela Krasnick

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $55.

    4. A pack of Burt's Bees facial cleansing wipes that'll get rid of dirt and oil in a few swipes, and leave you smelling like a grapefruit angel.

    Francine Hendrickson / BuzzFeed

    "I. Love. The. Smell. Of. Grapefruit. So I use these amazing smelling, all-natural wipes! Because who has time to actually wash your face four times a day? Not me. I usually use two of these a day, one at work when I am feeling ~oily~ and one right when I get home from work when I am feeling ~grimey~." —Francine Hendrickson

    Get a 30-pack of wipes on Shoppers Drugmart for $10.99.

    5. A tub of Sol de Janeiro's iconic Brazilian Bum Bum Cream that will make you forget every other lotion in your collection, thanks to its tropical scent and subtle sparkle.

    Rachel Ellison / BuzzFeed

    "You may be wondering what it is about this particular lotion that makes me feel like my best self. It’s true it is glittery, and not in that roll-on body-glitter look reminiscent of the early aughts. This stuff looks C-L-A-S-S-Y. Once sufficiently slathered, my arms and legs shimmer, ever so delicately, in the sunlight. It’s subtle and perfect and there’s no other way to describe it. It smells like a vanilla bean and a coconut reproduced and then evolved to complement my unique body chemistry. It’s an understated version of a tropical paradise, and the rumors are true: It lasts all day." —Rachel Ellison

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $59.

    6. A pouch of Sephora Collection Green Clay Mask that'll be your saviour if you suffer from reddness. It calms irritated skin while being refreshing AF, and doesn't come with a huge price tag, either.

    Elizabeth Lilly / BuzzFeed

    "Nearly 15 years after Accutane dramatically improved my acne woes, I still have lots of skin issues. But that’s life! Redness, sensitivity, and oiliness tend to be my three biggest problems. So when an impromptu trip to Sephora by my office left me walking by the Sephora Collection masks display, this little green clay mask whose packaging says it 'purifies and minimizes' pores hollered at me.

    Laziness in the past year has made me stick with mostly sheet masks, which are better at making my skin feel smooth and moisturized than calming the visible effects of irritation. The pouch says it has four uses in it but, TBH, I think it’s closer to five or six for me. The green concoction goes on smoothly and has a teeny bit of grit that lightly scrubs your face when you remove it. I can tell my complexion looks less red afterward and it definitely has that AHHHH effect. If Sephora sold this in a Criscolike tub I’d buy that shit ASAP." —Elizabeth Lilly

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $4.

    7. A bottle of hydrating Mario Badescu facial mist to give your morning routine a luxurious lil' upgrade. It'll save your skin from dryness and pack it with nourishing herbs and oils, making you feel fresh, fine, and fierce in just a few spritzes.

    Sarah Han / BuzzFeed, Emma McAnaw / BuzzFeed

    "It's cool and refreshing, aka the perfect wake-up call for my drooping eyes and fading brain cells. It also makes my skin look the slightest bit more dewy, and, very importantly, doesn't irritate my skin. But in all honesty, why would it? It has soothing ingredients like aloe vera, bladderwrack (yep, that's a thing), gardenia, rose, and thyme. It almost sounds like one of those hyper-healthy smoothies I never drink. The nozzle distributes the product really evenly and finely, which, as silly as it is to point out, is not the case for all spray bottles! I use this to give my skin some pep literally any time of the day, and sometimes even to set my makeup if I'm just wearing concealer. It's always mist o'clock somewhere! 💨" —Sarah Han

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $11. Also available in a larger size.

    8. A tub of Clarins Hydra-Essentiel Silky Cream that'll smooth over any dry patches and make your skin feel silky soft. It's not oily or sticky, so you can power through with your makeup routine almost immediately after applying it.

    Jennifer Tonti / BuzzFeed

    "After a while of my skin feeling dry and irritated, I decided to switch up my moisturizers. I walked into Sephora with a Beauty Insider card and a dream and I walked out with the BEST MOISTURIZER I’VE EVER USED: Clarins Hydra-Essentiel Silky Cream, which is formulated specifically for normal to dry skin. It lathers on so soft and I can feel it instantly quenching my skin’s thirst. It doesn’t leave my face feeling oily or sticky in the morning, which was the biggest issue with my previous moisturizer. And as an added bonus, I love the pretty blue jar the product comes in!" —Jennifer Tonti

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $48.

    9. If you're feeling fancy, a Foreo Luna Mini 2 that'll scrub your entire face clean with T-Sonic pulses. It's gentle enough for sensitive skin and will get rid of makeup residue, dead skin cells, and just about anything else.

    Maitland Quitmeyer / Via BuzzFeed

    "Here's how it works: apply cleanser directly to your face, wet the LUNA, and move it around your face in circular motions. Throughout the 60-second process, the light on the bottom will flash and the whole thing will buzz, telling you to move the LUNA to another part of your face — from one cheek/side of your chin to the other, then your nose, and then your forehead. It removes up to 99.5% of dirt and oil — and leaves your face free of ANY makeup residue. I wear a full face every day, and I am consistently amazed by the results of this tool." —Maitland Quitmeyer

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $159. Available in six colours.

    10. A bottle of rose-infused Thayers toner that'll help cleanse your skin without totally drying it out. It helps banish acne and blackheads, and doesn't irritate sensitive skin like most toners.

    AnaMaria Glavan / Via BuzzFeed

    "I have combination skin that's prone to redness (especially around my cheeks and nose, with the latter being really annoying), plus the occasional pimple. After two weeks of regularly using this toner in my evening routine, I barely need concealer to cover the Crayola redness under my nostrils. PLUS! It's super effective as spot treatment. This stuff attacks your pimples with the same vendetta that Buffy used to destroy vampires: It works that well." —AnaMaria Glavan

    Get it on Urban Outfitters Canada for $14.

    11. A bottle of Sunday Riley's U.F.O. Ultra Clarifying Face Oil, which is packed with salicylic acid, tea tree oil, and black cumin seed oil that'll banish pimples and make your pores healthier than ever. Basically, its effects are out of this world.

    Jennifer Tonti / Via BuzzFeed

    "This is absolutely a ride-or-die for me. Yes, it's pricey, but trust me — it's worth the investment. It lasts a very long time as you really only need one to two drops a day when you're having a breakout. You might be skeptical about using an oil to treat acne, but let me assure you, it works — it's formulated with 1.5% salicylic acid, which helps to prevent breakouts and treat any pimple party currently happening on your face. For the best results, I use this after I cleanse my face and before I moisturize. That way the product has time to really soak into my pores and get things done. Every time I've used this oil I've actually seen a visible clarifying effect on my skin!" —Jennifer Tonti

    Get it from Sephora Canada for $52. Also available in a larger size.

    12. A Garnier pomegranate face mask that'll prevent moisture loss throughout the day and give you some seriously baby soft skin. Welcome to hydration station, friend.

    Kaysey Davis / Via BuzzFeed

    "I have oily/combination skin, so my cheeks and chin tend to be drier than the T-zone. With this pomegranate face mask I can just sit back and relax while my skin soaks up all the liquid goodness. Even after I remove the mask, there is so much product left on my skin and in the package that I use it the excess serum on my neck. I can immediately see brighter, smoother, and more hydrated skin after just 15 minutes on my face. I use them a couple times a week before I go to bed, so I wake up with my skin at its best." —Kaysey Davis

    Get it on Shoppers Drugmart for $3.49.

    13. A tub of First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream that'll see you through eczema flare ups, Sahara-dry skin, and everything in between. It's pretty darn thick, but sinks into your skin quickly and won't leave you feeling greasy.

    Gyan Yankovich / BuzzFeed

    "I'd been traveling and in one flight moved from a freezing climate to a very humid New York City. My skin freaked the hell out, and none of my usual faves could get it back under control, so I decided to try something new. Every promise this cream's tub makes is true because within a fortnight my face was almost back to normal. This cream is now my go-to whenever my skin becomes irritated by a change in weather or new product." —Gyan Yankovich

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $18+. Available in four sizes.

    14. A tube of Origin's charcoal mask that'll suck the gunk right out of your pores and leave your face feeling fresh. It can even be used as a spot treatment, if you're not in the mood for a whole mask.

    Maitland Quitmeyer

    "In addition to the daily routine, I use Origin's active charcoal mask about once a week, which clears out my pores, rids my skin of pollutants from the air, removes excess oil, and squashes any burgeoning pimples in their tracks. It keeps my skin SO clear without drying it out or irritating it. PLUS you can use it as a spot treatment for acne." —Maitland Quitmeyer

    Get it on Sephora for $33. Also available in travel size.

    15. A bottle of Milky Jelly Cleanser that's amazing at removing makeup and is made with the same cleansing agents that are in contact solution, so you know it's super gentle.

    Ayseha Mittal / BuzzFeed

    "The Milky Jelly Cleanser is my holy grail face wash. I have dry and quite sensitive skin, so finding a cleanser that actually gets rid of makeup, yet isn’t super harsh, is a challenge. Milky Jelly (almost) nails it when it comes to a cleanser: it’s gentle, very mildly scented, and easy-to-use. Afterwards my skin feels noticeably softer. The texture is unlike most other cleansers on the market: it had a soft, thick glue-type texture and it doesn’t foam at all. It feels good and comfortable on my skin, and the bottle pump ensures that too much of the product doesn't come out at once." —Ayesha Mittal

    Get it on Glossier for $22.

    16. A jar of Neutrogena Hydro Boost Face Moisturizer that's formulated for extra-dry skin and will give your face the moisture it's desperately wanted and needed all winter. It's super light, so it won't make your face feel congested like heavier creams.

    Kayla Suazo / BuzzFeed

    "I typically get dry patches of skin on my forehead and nose year-round, but if I am diligent about applying this gel-cream, they go away rather quickly. It also makes my face look bright and glow-y, and I feel radiant on the days when I'm secretly dead-exhausted. And because I tend to deal with dry skin throughout the entire year — even in the summer — I plan to keep this in my regimen. Another thing I love about it is how a little goes a loooong way. It's a lightweight gel, so a small dollop can cover my entire face and I don't feel like I just caked on a heavy lotion. I truly can't recommend this product enough. It's time to finally say g'bye to dry, flaky skin." —Kayla Suazo

    Get it on Shoppers Drugmart for $18.49.

    17. A bottle of cult-favourite Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum that'll firm up your skin and make you look glowier than J-Lo. It dissolves dead skin cells while it packs your face with hydration, leaving you with, well, the best skin of your life.

    Jessie Gaynor / BuzzFeed

    "I can confidently say that I like how my skin looks better since I started using this stuff. I feel my skin tighten as I put it on — but it's pleasant, not painful. I have gotten more skin-related compliments since I started using it, and I have noticed that my face is significantly glowier, and less blotchy and dry. So, is it worth it? Well, if you're the kind of person looking to shell out a chunk of change on skin care, I think the Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum is an excellent all-purpose option." —Jessie Gaynor

    Get it from Sephora Canada for $105.

    18. A tub of Fresh's lightweight Rose Face Mask that's made with actual flower petals and combats dry skin like none other. It's also infused with cucumber extract and aloe vera gel, so it'll instantly cool and calm irritated skin.

    Emmy Favilla / BuzzFeed

    "I wage a daily war against my skin, wherein my face tries its damnedest to be as dry as possible and I try my damnedest to not let it win. My typical weapons of choice are intense moisturizers and oils, but I recently added the incredible Fresh Rose Face Mask into my arsenal after claiming it as a sample with my last Sephora purchase — and let me tell you, I think I can finally spot the end of the battle on the horizon. I dabble in the face-mask world, but have never used one with such noticeable and immediate effects, namely: visibly hydrated skin; an even, smooth texture; and tightened pores on my otherwise strawberry-resembling nose." —Emmy Favilla

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $80. Available in travel size.

    19. A bottle of balancing Ole Henrickson toner that'll leave you feeling fresh faced without stripping your skin or leaving it feeling tight.

    Alice Prendergast / Via BuzzFeed

    "I used to have a real love/hate relationship with toners, but when I stumbled upon this gem, a moved fully into the 'love' camp. It does exactly what it claims to do: control oil. Even around my time of the month (which is when it tends to be at its worst), my skin stays pretty balanced. Other pluses? It doesn't have that alcohol-y smell like a lot of toners do and feels a little more moisturizing. My skin also doesn't have that uncomfortable tight feeling after I use it either, which is great."—Alice Prendergast

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $38.

    20. A tub of Josie Maran Whipped Argan Oil Face Butter that's equal parts lightweight and luxurious. It's made from the brand's famous 100% Pure Argan Oil and is packed with other moisturizing ingredients, like watermelon seed oil, cucumber extract, and aloe nectar.

    Treye Green / BuzzFeed

    "This face butter has a lightweight, creamy texture that leaves my skin feeling hydrated but not weighed down. I typically layer it under my argan oil as one of the last steps in my morning skincare routine; it gives me a nice moisture boost without making my face feeling oily. I also appreciate that it doesn't have a strong scent (I use the unscented version), which often turns me off when it comes to face products. I would recommend the face butter for anyone looking for a lightweight moisturizer or some extra hydration to pair with their daily moisturizer. Just make sure to get the full-size jar. Because you'll likely love it that much!" —Treye Green

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $55.

    21. A bottle of Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser that has a cult following for a reason. It turned my skin from problematic to manageable as a teen, and works the same wonders on my adult skin.

    @cetaphilcanada / Via instagram.com

    "Ask a person with sensitive skin what their holy grail product is and there's a 99% chance they'll say Cetaphil — and for good reason, because this shit is magic. If you're not familiar with this cleanser, it's soap-free and as gentle as can be. I always double cleanse when using Cetaphil — it takes two washes to properly remove my makeup THEN wash my face — but I can't recommend it highly enough. It's been in my life for 10 years already and I don't expect it to ever leave my skincare routine." —Gyan Yankovich

    Get it on Shoppers Drugmart for $18.49.

    22. A tub of Glow Recipe Watermelon Sleeping Mask that'll work some serious magic on your skin while you snooze. It's packed with hyaluronic acid, so it's basically like a tall drink of water for your skin.

    Farrah Penn

    "Ugh. OK, I'm sort of mad I fell in love with this product because it is a bit pricey. I loved using it during the summer when I wanted to wake up with refreshed, hydrated skin without slapping on a really, really thick cream. It's full of hyaluronic acid that helps keep your skin moisturized all night, and my skin literally feels SO SOFT when I wash my face the next morning. I also have sensitive skin and this didn't cause any irritation, which is a huge win in my book." —Farrah Penn

    Get it from Sephora Canada for $59. Also available in a travel size.

    23. A tube of Dr. Jart+ Ceramidin Cream that will unfuss even the fussiest skin and make it all plump and cute, like you're actually full of youthful zest and vigour.

    Jessie Gaynor / Via BuzzFeed

    "I have seen a significant difference in my skin since I started using this cream two months ago. When I bought it, I was in the midst of a cold, and I had the very fetching nostril dryness that accompanies excessive nose-blowing. After two days of twice-daily application, all trace of dryness had vanished. This stuff also claims to 'alleviate signs of sensitivity,' which, as a skin sensie, I can corroborate. I haven't seen a trace of the garden of little red patches that used to bloom all over my face when I lotioned up." —Jessie Gaynor

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $63. Also available in a larger size.

    24. This 100% natural Klei mask that's the radiance boost your dull skin deserves. It's gentler than most clay masks, meaning you can probably use it even if you have really sensitive skin.

    Alice Prendergast / Via BuzzFeed

    "I have tried many a clay mask, and this one by Klei may be my actual favourite. It's gentler than most, and leaves my skin feeling baby soft and radiant after just a few minutes. It's also not a pain to remove. It doesn't flake and washes away completely with one rinse (I've found that others take several rinses). It's not harsh, and is great for when your skin is feeling its most sensitive" —Alice Prendergast

    Get it on Urban Outfitters for $49. Available in three formulas.

    25. A tub of Tatcha The Water Cream that'll calm down existing inflammations, won't let new pimples pop up, and is magic at smoothing out dry patches and reducing T-zone shine. Yes, it's a bit of an investment, but in this case, you really do get what you pay for.

    Yi Yang / BuzzFeed

    "Within a week, my skin was noticeably less irritated. The pimples were still there (because this is not an acne-treating moisturizer), but new ones stopped popping up. The formula is gentle enough that it doesn't make any existing zits inflamed, which tends to happen when I try new products. It's light enough that my T-zone doesn't get too shiny, but also hydrating enough that my cheeks feel properly moisturized. My makeup goes on smoothly too — no more random dry patches. Even though it's pricey and I hate spending a lot on beauty products, I do believe it’s worth it: NOTHING ELSE has achieved the same effect for me. Plus, a little goes a long way with this cream." —Yi Yang

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $89. Also available in a travel size.

    26. A tube of Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask, which depuffs your under eyes and brings back a bit of moisture without going into oily territory. Oh, and it's great for people with sensitive skin!

    James Harness / BuzzFeed

    "I'm so obsessed with this mask because it actually works! There's something about the thick texture that makes me really feel like I'm getting a deeply hydrating and nourishing mask. It smells fresh and is so cooling. I saw and felt immediate hydration along with cooling and reduction in puffiness. Also, this is technically a mask but I use it as a moisturizer! I have very oily skin and even with how oily I am, this didn't make me look shiny! I got compliments on how dewy my skin looked, which is what I'm always going for! If you want something to plump and hydrate your skin (and your eyes, it's under-eye safe), buy this! I have yet to come cross anything else on the market that hydrated and plumps like this does. I feel bouncy, dewy, and clean while wearing it! I love this product!" —James Harness

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $63. Also available in travel size.

    27. A tub of Glamglow Waterburst Hydrated Glow Moisturizer delivers up to three days of moisture without feeling heavy. It's also great for skincare newbies who don't want to pack on layers of serums and oils, because this baby does it all.

    Nina Mohan / BuzzFeed

    "Truthfully, I’ve never been that ~into~ skincare. My 'routine' consists of me washing my face with water, and sometimes I forget to even do that. I just hate the feeling of layers of things on my face! My face has been drier this season than it’s ever been in my life, so I had to find a good moisturizer and this one from GlamGlow does the trick. It’s sooo light, it really feels like my skin just drinks it up. And it makes me feel super glowy! I’ve stopped wearing foundation in my day-to-day makeup routine, and this gives my skin a beautiful aura of dewiness. Plus, you only need to use a tiny bit to feel the full effect. I. AM. OBSESSED." —Nina Mohan

    Get it on Sephora Canada $65.

    28. A tube of Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask, an overnight mask formulated with avocado and apricot kernel oil that's perfect for low-maintenance peeps. You just slather it on at night and wake up feeling moisturized and looking glowy.

    Rhonda Elnaggar / BuzzFeed

    "This is the greatest overnight moisturizing mask. It's perfect for anyone who's low maintenance. At night, after you wash your face, you put it on directly before you go to sleep, and wake up with amazingly soft and glowing skin! Anybody who struggles with dry skin (especially in the winter time) will die for this. Plus, it smells amazing!" —Rhonda Elnaggar

    Get it from Sephora Canada for $33. Also available in travel size.

    29. And finally, a bottle of Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil that's packed with blue tansy and German chamomile to reduce the look of fine lines, pores, uneven texture, and dry spots. It's also blue, da ba dee da ba die.

    Conz Preti / BuzzFeed

    "The product itself is blue, which I kinda love, and turns see-through when you massage it into your skin. It has a strong scent, which according to my husband is like tea. He has been calling me 'tea-face' every night since I started using it. I have definitely seen an improvement in my skin; the lines around my mouth and forehead are less noticeable and my face and neck feel smoother. I love it, I just hate that it's so expensive. 😩" —Conz Preti

    Get it on Sephora Canada for $70. Also available in a larger size.

    You to all your skin problems:

    Warner Bros.

    The reviews in this post have been edited for length and/or clarity.