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7 Seriously Good Beauty Products You'll Wish You Knew About Sooner

Tried, tested, and loved by our editors.

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For the past few months, I've been bandwagoning HARD on the beauty industry's trend of "dewy, fresh-faced" makeup. The problem I've found, however, is that it seems like I need upwards of four products at once just to make it look like I have on no makeup...which simultaneously makes me feel like I have on a ton of makeup. The other problem is that most highlighters I've tried make me feel like I'm smearing Bath & Body Works chunky body glitter onto my face. That was fun in middle school, but I want to feel like a Fancy Lady now.

Glossier's newest product — a highlighter stick called Haloscope (I'm wearing the shade called Quartz above) — became an instant favorite the minute I tried it. It's a stick, so I don't need a brush or a sponge or any other tool to use it. All I have to do is swipe it on and then blend it using my fingers. It's made with coconut oil, sweet almond oil, and vitamin E in the middle of the stick to moisturize your skin for a natural glow. Plus, the stick is hypoallergenic and fragrance-free, so I don't wind up breaking out the way I do with other makeup. As for feeling fancy AF, the outer edge of the stick is made with real rose quartz. It's like jewelry for your face.

I know $22 isn't cheap, but here's my reasoning: It's part of my everyday face routine. Paying $22 for a bold lip color you only wear on special occasions can feel like a huge splurge, but spending $22 on a quality, long-lasting product that's something you'll use every day is a solid investment. —Augusta Falletta, deputy style editor

Get it here for $22.

2. MiniPRO by Conair Tourmaline Ceramic Hair Dryer, $14.99

Alice Kim

Last year I grew my hair out. It got so long I thought it'd be a good idea to put it up into a man bun, until I saw photos of myself at a friend's wedding. Then I decided I probably shouldn't have a man bun. I went to the barber and after he asked me three times if I was sure, he cut it all off. "So what're you looking for?" he said. I said, "I don't know, surprise me." I've never been very particular about my hair. Did I have blonde tips in the ’90s? You betcha. How about that crispy-gelled boy-band look with the spiky front from the early aughts? Hell yeah. But since then it's sorta just been, well, hair. Shave it into a mohawk, grow it out, throw a hat over it. I'd try any style as long as I didn't have to waste time on it. The shit always seemed to grow back.

But let me tell you: When my barber finished my haircut, my hair looked amazing. It had lift. It had style. The dude even decided to take a photo, which is how you know a stylist is pleased with their work (same goes for tattoo artists), and needless to say that has never, ever happened to me after a haircut. So I left the shop feeling good. I left the shop feeling good-looking. I was, how do you say...feeling my look.

But then came the next day. I put product in my hair and combed it like my barber showed me, but the situation was now...different. I looked like Eddie Furlong in Terminator 2, which would have been awesome if I were 14 and it was 1991, but I was 33 in 2016 and it just wasn't cutting it. What happened to my glorious hair from the day before? Where had I gone wrong? What did my barber do differently?

I didn't figure it out until a week later. I was traveling, staying in a hotel, and had some time to kill. After I'd showered and was about to begin my now routine, futile attempt to make my hair look not-terrible, I noticed the hairdryer in the hotel bathroom.

OH.

It felt like a million clues and memories had hit me all at once, Keyser Söze–style. Or, fine, maybe just one memory — but it was a vital one. My barber had used a hairdryer while styling my hair. Could it be? Was this the Rosetta stone to rad hair looks I'd been missing?

I had my doubts. I always figured they were for drying wet hair, and that was it. Hair. Dryer. That was what they were called. But I decided to give it a shot and switched the hairdryer on. As I combed my hair exactly as my barber had instructed, I awkwardly aimed the hairdryer at my scalp. All of a sudden, my hair was getting lift. Life! The haircut I had when I first left the barbershop began to materialize. It was like my hair was forming into the statue of David right atop my head and I was Michelangelo. Or, more like the hair dryer was Michelangelo and I was just some gawking bystander, but still!

The first thing I did when I got home was run out to my local Walgreens and buy this lil' baby. The Conair Mini Pro Tourmaline Ceramic Styler. She's lightweight, folds up for easy packing (yes, I do now take my hairdryer with me whenever I travel), and gets the job done. Sure, I don't style my hair every day. Most days it's easier to toss on a hat and get out the door. But on those days when I need an extra pick-me-up? Or I've got an event that I'm nervous about? Well, me and my CMPTCS make sure I've got a look that has me feeling great. —Isaac Fitzgerald, Books Editor

Get it here for $14.99.

3. Albolene Makeup Remover, $13.34

I'm lazy about most things, but the one thing in my life I force myself to do every night is take off my makeup. I don't wear a ton — it's mostly just mascara, brow powder, concealer, and blush — but it's the most important thing I can do for my skin besides wear sunscreen. I've tried just about every kind of remover, but each has its own issue. Wipes don't get the tough spots of mascara. Liquid remover makes my sensitive eyes burn. Facial cleanser is good for most of the face, but it leaves behind residue from my eye makeup. But Albolene? Makeup practically goes running off of my face.

My mother has been using Albolene since the beginning of time (read: at least the last 35 years or so) to remove her makeup at night. It's kind of the love child between Pond's Cold Cream and Vaseline. All you do is scoop some of this clear goop onto your fingers, rub the goop onto your eyes or wherever you're wearing makeup, and wipe it off with a tissue. It literally erases your makeup and then moisturizes the crap out of your skin. And if my mom's lack of wrinkles at the age of 61 means anything, this stuff works.

Bonus: It even works on waterproof mascara. Extra bonus: This tub lasts FOREVER. (OK, at least three months. Which may as well be forever.) —Augusta Falletta, Deputy Style Editor

Get it here for $13.34.

4. Urban Decay De-Slick Makeup Setting Spray, $30

Nora Whelan

I started wearing more makeup this year as a result of sitting next to Augusta and all the fascinating tubes and bottles she gets on a regular basis. I tend to think of myself as kind of a greasy meatball on even my best days, but between the increased application of stuff to my face and summer approaching, I've been dreading the exceptionally slimy months ahead.

After reading up on various setting sprays (which are supposed to keep your makeup matte and in place), I decided to try Urban Decay's De-Slick. The first day I wore it, I was running around Manhattan in mid-’80s weather sourcing pieces for a photo shoot (which, if you can't tell by my hair in the above pictures, was a very sweaty time in my life). But all the way from the morning until the end of the day, my makeup DID. NOT. BUDGE.

It's $30 for 4 ounces, which certainly isn't cheap. Since it only requires two to four spritzes at a time, though, I feel like it will last me several months — or get me through the summer with minimal sliminess, at least. —Nora Whelan, Style Writer

Get it here for $30.

I am allergic to the sun. No, really. The last time I went to the beach I got a second-degree burn from the sun that landed me in the hospital. I begrudgingly avoid that vitamin D as much as possible to save myself from weird skin issues. Which means that on a regular basis, I'm hunting down sunscreens that I can comfortably wear 24/7. And while I've found REALLY quality sunscreens for my face (Kiehl's Dermatologist Solutions Super Fluid UV Mineral Defense Broad Spectrum SPF 50 for $38) and body (Supergoop Everyday SPF 50 With Cellular Response Technology for $48), I have to use sunscreen so often that I needed to find a more affordable option.

This water gel from Neutrogena is really, really lightweight and smooths onto my skin like a clear gel. It smells nothing like a typical sunscreen, it dries in two seconds, and it feels like I'm wearing nothing on my face. Plus, it has hyaluronic acid, which is a fancy term for "this is REALLY moisturizing for your skin." I can suck it up and wear gross-ish but cheap sunscreen on my body, but the product I put on my face needs to be comfortable and this is just that. —Augusta Falletta, Deputy Style Editor

Get it here for $16.17.

It's pretty rare that I can find a high-quality grooming product that actually delivers on its promises. I was skeptical when I received the Scotch Porter Beard Collection, but it lives up to its promises. I have coarse, thick, curly hair and the entire collection has helped my beard to feel ridiculously soft and moisturized. It's also been a lot easier to comb through and manage. I deep-clean my beard once a week with the beard wash, condition twice a week, use the beard balm daily, and every other day use the serum to top things off. The directions are pretty detailed and really easy to follow. I'm excited to keep using this and hope to continue to see great results.

This system is designed to work with all hair types, but I've found particular success with my type of hair (which is rare, because in the past I haven't been able to find many products that work for the type of hair I have).

The entire collection is $69, which is steep, but the individual products — the beard serum, beard balm, beard wash, and beard conditioner — are $20 each. I know that guys typically don't splurge on ​˜beauty products˜​ but this one is definitely worth it! —Kevin Smith, Men's Editor

Get the entire set here for $69.99.

I've tried A LOT of matte lipsticks (yes, even Kylie Jenner's, u freaks) but usually my lips usually resemble a tiny, shriveled butthole by the end of the day because, hi, matte shit is drying AF. One night, my sister insisted I try The Balm's Meet Matt(e) Hughes Lip Color, and damn dudes, I cannot say enough good things about it. It's super pigmented so you need only one swipe to get the color on, and it legit DOES NOT MOVE. After a bajillion drinks (don't judge) this stuff did not transfer, and I love how it feels super lightweight on my lips. Personally, I'm into the shade "Committed" because it looks like a natural nude color with my skin tone, but they have 12 different shades to chose from if that's not your thing. The minty-vanilla smell is also a plus, and if you STILL don't believe me, just look at these insane Amazon reviews on how much people love it. Also, it's paraben- and cruelty-free. Yaaass. —Chrissy Mahlmeister, Lifestyle Editor

Get it here for $17.

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