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    9 Life-Changing Beauty Products You Need To Try ASAP

    Tried, tested, and loved by BuzzFeed editors!

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    1. Essie Fall 2017 Collection in "Girly Grunge" is basically me (a self-proclaimed "girly-ish" gal) embodied in a nail polish: It's a soft metallic lavender with juuust enough shimmer and sparkle to give it that oomph without being ~too much~.

    Sarah Han / BuzzFeed

    I've used Essie on and off but I've never been committed to any particular nail polish brand — because the fact of the matter is that I'm terrible at painting my nails, so does it really even matter? But call me an Essie lover now because this Girly Grunge shade from its fall 2017 collection speaks deeply to my soul. My friends kept saying the shade was ~so me~. Not just because I'm obsessed with all things lavender and purple, but it seems very natural, like yeah, "That's Sarah's color." You know how people have a signature scent? This is my signature polish. It has the perfect amount of metallic shimmer that's not too obnoxious or distracting from the main lavender.

    Disclaimer: My nails in the photo were painted at a nail salon BUT I recently purchased the nail polish bottle and I will be painting them myself in the future. I just wanted to present them in the best possible condition! (P.S. The friendly man who painted my nails said the polish looked like dragon scales! They really do, and I'm so into that description!!)

    I bought another shade from the collection — "Dressed to the Nineties," a multidimensional navy with a mix of greenish and purpleish shimmer — and tried applying it on myself. Spoiler alert: The applicator is super easy to use and the color itself goes on smoothly with zero bumps or clumps. I just couldn't get the color depth to show very clearly on my phone, but just TRUST ME, it's gorgeous and slightly galactic — a party on your fingers! —Sarah Han

    Get them from Amazon for $9 each (available in seven shades total) or Walmart for $6.05 (originally $9).

    2. Soap & Glory Thick & Fast Mascara doesn't clump or give you dreaded panda eyes and stays flawless until you take it off at the end of the day — what more could you want?

    AnaMaria Glavan / BuzzFeed

    Praise all that is holy in this world because I have finally found the perfect everyday mascara! Want to know what it is? Are you ready for it? Drumroll please. Everyone, please welcome the Soap & Glory Thick & Fast HD Mascara!

    Now, I love this mascara for several reasons. It thickens and lengthens my lashes without looking clumpy, and one coat does a pretty great job on its own — but it’s also buildable, and my lashes look even bigger with an extra coat or two. But what I really, really, really love most about this mascara is that it doesn’t give me panda eyes. (Usually, I get these dark circles under my eyes that are a result of me rubbing my eyes, and therefore, my mascara). But with this mascara, I never have any fallout under my eyelids...ever. BUT! While it stays on all day without fail, it’s still super easy to remove at the end of the night, and I don’t have to scrub my eyeballs to get the last bit of product off.

    I am so happy I tried this and I feel like I’m never going to stop using it. Seriously, this is the best everyday mascara I’ve ever tried. And I have tried my fair share of mascaras (Better Than Sex, Bad Gal, Maybelline Falsies, etc). —AnaMaria Glavan

    Get it from Target for $11.99.

    3. Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleansing Cloths are, as they say, very gentle and won't irritate sensitive skin, but they're no less effective at removing a full face of makeup — and they do double duty as quick shower/armpit refreshers in a pinch!

    Sarah MacMillan / BuzzFeed

    My BFF knows I have sensitive skin and sent me these Cetaphil Cleansing Cloths in a care package. I hesitated to use them because I assumed they were like any other makeup-removing wipes, which I don't like because they're typically overfragranced and leave a slimy film on your skin that's impossible to wash off. But when I ran out of my regular makeup remover and tried these, I was shocked at the zero-slime, fresh, and clean feeling!

    They're soft (other wipes can be scratchy), unscented, and by far the best face-cleaning wipes I've ever used. They're also not specifically for makeup — if you need to freshen your 'pits or bits and don't have time for a full shower, these will totally do the trick. —Sarah MacMillan

    Get a pack of 25 from Amazon for $5.53 (Prime Pantry), three packs of 25 for $14.44 (regular Prime), or from Walmart for $5.97+.

    4. Shu Uemura Laque Supreme Lip Lacquers send your matte-loving heart into a tizzy because their glassy-finished, light-as-air, and actually moisturizing formula might just win over your go-to mattes some days.

    Maitland Quitmeyer / BuzzFeed

    If you're a regular BuzzFeed beauty review reader, you've seen probably seen my face, weirdly pouting, trying to show a colorful lipstick several times before — and until now they've all had something in common: They're matte. I've always been an old-fashioned-desert-dry matte lipstick kind of girl, but you guys, I tried Shu Uemura's Laque Supreme Lip Lacquers, and my tune has CHANGED. I'm living my best Erika Jayne life in this lip color.

    Let's talk about the formula: It's a mega-pigmented gloss that's surprisingly quick and easy to apply (especially when you compare it to matte liquid lipsticks). The gloss is pleasantly thin and runny, so you never feel like you're globbing it on. When I first started to apply it, I was afraid it was going to be sticky AF ALL DAY like the glosses I used to wear in middle school. But this bb dries down to a beautiful glass-like finish, which doesn't come off when you eat, make your lips stick together when you talk, or do any other annoying thing that most other glosses do. And the applicator! Omg, this angled doe foot wand applies the formula so easily; I had my gloss on and I was out the door in 45 seconds. Your favorite matte liquid lippie wishes it could.

    All day at work, I kept forgetting I was wearing this, thinking I had a thick coat of lip balm on — THAT'S how moisturized and light-as-air my lips felt. Not at all like they were coated in a super shiny lacquer! When I caught my eye in the bathroom mirror I was like, "Wait, what?" — in the best way possible. The color I have on in the gif is RD05, and it turns your lips into gorgeous lil' candy apples, but I've also tried three other colors, and they're all really pigmented and great. Do I still love matte lipstick? Yes, it is my one true love, and my name should probably be changed to Matte-land. But this is a super fun trend to try, and honestly, this Shu Uemura formula is a much-needed break from drying lipsticks — *without* giving up the bold lip look entirely. And another bonus? "Lip Gloss" gets stuck in my head every time I wear it. —Maitland Quitmeyer

    Get it from Shu Uemura for $18 (originally $30, available in 11 shades).

    5. E.L.F. Mad for Matte Eyeshadow Palette in Nude Mood has gained a cult following as a dupe for the (rightfully hyped) Urban Decay Naked Palette at one-fifth the price — sure, it has two fewer shades but the similarities are otherwise pretty spot-on and ~smokin'~., Sarah MacMillan / BuzzFeed

    A while back, a friend of mine got me the Naked Eyeshadow Palette from Urban Decay, and it was great. Fast forward to a few months ago when I was down to the dusty corners of my favorite colors — I wasn't looking forward to forking over $55 for another one.

    So, poking around at the local drugstore, I found the E.L.F. or E.L.F. Nude Matte Eyeshadow Palette — almost the exact same thing — but for 10 bucks! I figured it was worth trying, because if it was crappy eyeshadow, at least I gave it a shot. But it works great and has all the shades I need in one place, not to mention the packaging is more streamlined, so it takes up less space in my makeup bag. And because it was so affordable, I also sprung for an E.L.F. contouring palette, some new brushes, and a pack of Twinkies. Ha! —Sarah MacMillan

    Get it from E.L.F. or Jet for $10 (also available in Summer Breeze).

    6. Benefit Dream Screen protects your beautiful face from the sun's hating rays with SPF 45. It sinks right in, leaving behind a silky but invisible finish (read: no white cast on darker skin tones!!!!).

    Ignacia Fulcher / BuzzFeed

    So a few weeks ago I went to a dermatologist, and as a New Year's resolution, I got a personalized skin care regimen to help my hyperpigmentation and whatever else my face has got going on. One of my doctor's recommendations (that I should've been doing before, but I' was adding sunscreen to my routine in the morning and at night.

    Like a good person, I picked up my prescriptions and grabbed a general brand sunscreen because there isn't a real difference on darker skin, right? Yeah, I was so fucking wrong, which isn't surprising. After applying the general sunscreen I looked like Casper the Ashy Ghost; it was a hot mess!

    After that whole drama I did some research and happened upon Benefit's Dream Screen! When I rubbed it into my skin there was a major difference in how it spread onto my face. The SPF was so even and lovely and my skin felt like a fucking baby's bottom. Even though it appears "greasy," it's oil-free, so it's just the cream doing its thing as a moisturizer and sunblock! And the best fucking part?! It helps prevent more hyperpigmentation, which is LIT! So, if you're looking for a lightweight SPF that is friendly to darker skin tones, look no further! —Ignacia Fulcher

    Get it from Benefit for $32.

    7. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer lets even the most devoted foundation lover go free once in a while and instantly smooths over red bumps with just a few pats of the finger.

    Sarah Han / BuzzFeed

    I'm not really sure why I didn't use concealer before. No wonder I'd layer on the foundation and sometimes still be unhappy about bumps and spots still showing through. However, not all concealers are created equal and fix this problem, especially when my adult acne flares up. I bought and tried cult fave Tarte Tape Shape, but the coverage was just OK. So I turned to another cult fave, NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer, and errbody, it's SUCH a game changer!!

    Like, just look at these before and after photos! I willingly posted a makeup-free selfie on the internet to demonstrate. *cringes* The only other makeup I'm wearing are brow powder and lip stain — absolutely nothing else on my face. No filters either, obviously. This magical, thick concoction leaves a beautiful natural finish that hits the lights really nicely and lays out a smooth base for any (optional) foundation or BB cream you might want to dab on top. Yeah, I said optional. Before this concealer, there was no way in hell you'd catch me without foundation on (with very few exceptions — I'm all about loving the skin you're in, but foundation lends me peace of mind and confidence). Anyways, somehow, some way, NARS came out with a product that helps me prep my face and be out the door with just one product — nothing short of a miracle!

    I use the shade Biscuit for reference (thank you, Asian YouTubers, for shade recs I can rely on! Because shade-pinpointing is still my nightmare). I just use my fingers to blend and pat in so I don't waste a single bit of product. Yes, it's not cheap but it's worth EVERY SINGLE PENNY (and I don't say that lightly). I'm going on my third month and this slim container is still going strong, since you need so little at a time! —Sarah Han

    Get it from Sephora for $30 (22 shades).

    8. Design.Me Power Dry Me shaves 50% off of your blow-dry time by forming a lubricious thin layer around your hair fibers for better airflow and to force excess water to “bead” off — hello, extra snooze cycle or podcast time!

    Elizabeth Lilly / BuzzFeed

    I think often about how much time I’ve spent styling my long, thick, naturally wavy hair. I could’ve written a best-selling YA series with a cheesy supernatural bent, easily. Instead, I’ve invested time in the pursuit of the is-it-natural-or-not long waves that a super-generous friend once deemed “mermaid hair” in front of strangers. I typically spend 10-plus minutes drying my mane, even with this amazing hair dryer I’ve had for years. So when I heard about a blow dry spray that promised to cut down on drying time by forming a thin layer around hair fibers that creates a better air flow and forces water to bead for quicker drying, I thought “sure, whatever” and requested a sample to try. (It also has built-in UV protection, but that wasn't the appeal for me.)

    Basically, you spray the Power Dry Me spray on your hair after you add in any leave-in treatment. Or at least that’s what I’ve been doing for the past month (about six washes). Sometimes my leave-in product is Living Proof Perfect Hair Day 5-in-1, but right now I’m using a combo of Sexy Hair Smooth Encounter Blow Dry Extender Cream and Caviar Anti-Aging Replenishing Moisture Milk. After coating my strands from root to tip with that stuff, I spray a generous amount of the blow-dry spray. It’s super lightweight and doesn’t affect my styling technique or the weight of my hair. And I’m pleased to report that it’s consistently cut my dry time down from 10–11 minutes to 5–6 minutes. The first two times I thought it was a total fluke. But then by the third time I was convinced. Granted, I spend a lot of time poking around on Twitter or listening to podcasts when I get ready in the morning, but this could free up a snooze cycle if you just don’t want to get out of bed. —Elizabeth Lilly

    Get it from Walmart for $13.47, Amazon for $19.50, or Design.Me for $19.50.

    9. Le Prunier Plum Beauty Oil hydrates and soothes skin (it's six times more powerful than marula oil and eight times more powerful than argan oil) so your face feel as luxurious as royalty's — and it can do triple duty as an oil for your hair and nails too!

    Emmy Favilla / BuzzFeed

    My otherwise dryish skin turns into the straight-up Sahara Desert come wintertime, and my nose bears the brunt of the weather's effects on my face. Bonus: Because the pores on my nose also happen to be huge, I inevitably wind up squeezing some of them at night (this is BAD and something you should most definitely *not* do!!). My awful habit not only makes my nose look red and blotchy the next day, but it also tends to dry it out even more. Seriously, sometimes I...even have to use a tweezer to peel off giant pieces of dry skin. :( Gross, sorry.

    Anyhow, as the newest addition to my X-treme winter moisturizing routine, I've incorporated Le Prunier's plum beauty oil — and oh my god, has it proven its worth. For $72, a product better come through, and this has indeed! Its moisturizing effects were noticeable the very morning after I first applied it, and it seemed to soothe and even out my splotchy red nose. Now I use it morning and night all over my face under my everyday SPF moisturizer, and TBH, I've gotta say I look and feel as radiant as ever. It also gets points for multitasking: You can also use it on your hair and nails (which I haven't experimented with yet)! It's a pretty rich oil — but doesn't feel gross and greasy, and works well under makeup — meaning you need just a minimal amount for each application, so I have a feeling that this bottle is about to last me a long-ass time. I also feel great knowing that it's vegan and cruelty-free.

    The oil is made from a blend of plum varietals and is apparently chockfull of antioxidants, omega fatty acids, vitamins A and E (for healing and hydration), and polyphenols. No idea what a polyphenol is, but the ingredients supposedly help protect your skin from damaging free radicals. The product claims to be eight times more powerful than argan oil, and though I have yet to conduct any scientific experiments to back this up, my boyfriend *literally* came right up in my face and said "Wow, your nose looks so smooth and hydrated" about three weeks after I'd been using it regularly (not knowing I had been using a new product), so there's that. If you've been looking for something that will hydrate your thirsty skin while also soothing some ~problem areas~ and nourishing your hair and nails, your search might just end with this plum oil. —Emmy Favilla

    Get it from Neiman Marcus for $72.

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