One of the best things about the beauty industry is that it is forever progressing. With new colours, formulas, finishes and innovations, I’ve found that my hero products are constantly evolving and getting better and better with time. I really wanted to share my current crop of top-shelf products that I’m absolutely loving at the moment and which I know for a fact I will reach for on a daily basis throughout 2021.
Since I’ve spoken about my go-to trio for foundation, concealer and setting powder products a lot, I’m not going to include them in this article, purely so I don’t sound like a stuck record player and regurgitating the same information to you guys again and again…which would be very boring! If you’re new to my blog and haven’t read about my favourite base products, you can do so here: My Natural, Full-Coverage Foundation Routine.
Without further ado, let’s get into my top 10 creme de la creme makeup products for this year!
PATRICK TA MAJOR GLOW SOFTENING LIP MASQUE – £20
While a lip mask obviously isn’t makeup, taking care of your lips is an integral part of any beauty routine. I for one have always struggled with chronically dry lips that quickly become chapped and sore – but that has all changed. The Patrick Ta Softening Lip Masque has transformed my lips to an extent that I didn’t think I’d ever experience. I purchased the product as an experiment – I was intrigued to see whether a pricy treatment would actually be any better than a standard balm, such as that from Nivea – but I had no expectations. And I was not disappointed. Unlike classic balms, the Softening Lip Masque gives your lips deep hydration, smoothness and softness, which happily lasts long after the treatment has faded off your lips during the day. And while I’m sure you’ll want to reapply the Masque many times, you won’t feel like you have to.
With a beautiful scent of chocolate and mint, it does give your lips a slight cooling effect upon application. Personally, I normally don’t like a minty sensation, but it’s minimal and the effects make is so worthwhile. What’s more – you hardly have to use any product to get stunning effects. I normally apply this between three or four times a day, and I can safely say it’s probably my best beauty purchase ever. Now that’s a statement!
NARS AFTERGLOW LIP BALMS – £23 EACH
While the Patrick Ta Softening Lip Masque comes in a beautiful little tub, during COVID times it’s important we have an option for instant hydration that’s easy to carry around and apply to our lips while we’re on the go.
For me, the NARS Afterglow Lip Balms have been a revelation, and I get complimented every time I wear any of the shades. Even though they are a tinted balm, they can be worn sheerly or easily built up for an intense colour payoff. With a gorgeous range of everyday colours – with my favourite being ‘Fast Lane,’ a stunning pinky mauve – they also have deeper options too, including a stunning red called ‘Turbo’, which I know for a fact will be making an appearance if I’m able to go out at all during this year. If you’d prefer a clear shade, they have that too (‘Clear Cut’).
Each shade is effortless to apply and looks natural yet juicy on the lips. They’re a handbag staple that everybody needs to know about.
HOURGLASS CAUTION EXTREME LASH MASCARA – £29
Despite it’s name – this isn’t an extreme mascara. In fact, while it defines, lengthens and separates with stunning ease, it’s beautifully natural. It’s not too lightweight though, but rather just falls perfectly in the middle of the spectrum. It’s a brilliant everyday mascara that just works without effort.
If you’ve got particularly straight lashes, you’ll probably want to use a lash curler with this mascara.
HUDA BEAUTY MERCURY RETROGRADE EYESHADOW PALETTE – £58
I am a natural makeup girl through and through, but I also love to incorporate colour into my everyday looks. For me, the Huda Beauty Mercury Retrograde Palette is my go-to for adding a hint of something special. Even though there are some beautiful and ethereal colours, I never feel like I’m straying too far away from my favourite neutral tones, which makes this palette so easy to use. With lilac, orange, rose, silver, gold and the most incredible blue-silver-purple shimmer that I’ve ever seen, the options are endless.
CHARLOTTE TILBURY AIRBRUSH BRONZER (‘FAIR’) – £39
I’ve spoken about this bronzer quite a bit in my recent blogposts, but I love it so much that I need you guys to know about it too. The Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Bronzer is perfect if you love natural makeup, if you struggle with texture, or if you want to ensure your foundation and concealer coverage isn’t disturbed in the slightest while applying your bronzer. As the powder is pressed so firmly into its pan, you get little to no fallout, making it beautifully neat and tidy for application. The extent of the pressing also means that, while you can build the colour up, this is a sheer bronzer – and trust me when I say, it’ll be difficult to go overboard. It’ll forever be a staple in my collection.
For years, I’ve gone without bronzer purely because the industry didn’t cater for fair skin. Everything was either too orange, too red, too pink, too grey or too yellow. However, Charlotte has hit the jackpot with her fair shade.
NATASHA DENONA BRONZE PALETTE – £60
As I mentioned before, I naturally gravitate towards neutral tones. Warm eyeshadows tend to be my go-to – I think they make me look the most awake and lively, and since I have blue-green eyes, the orange and reddish undertones really allows them to stand out. When Natasha Denona came out with her Bronze Palette, I instantly fell in love with the concept and colour scheme. Whatever bronzy tone you want, this palette will have it, making it perfect and versatile for all different occasions and for all the different months of the year. Both the matte and metallic formulas are creamy, pigmented, smooth and easy to blend.
The one question I find people have with this palette, is to do with the blue-y, purple-y metallic shade on the top row. How does it work with the other shades? Isn’t that a random inclusion? I thought so too, until I swatched it, and this is when I realised it’s a rich chocolate brown with a fine amount of this blue-purple shimmer. Generally speaking, deeper shades are harder to blend, and so by adding some shimmer into the formula, you’re adding some oil, and this makes the shade much easier to blend. In terms of the choice of the shimmer’s colour – personally, I think it adds something special, and the more you blend it out and treat it like a matte, the more the shimmer with disperse and fade away anyway.
PATRICK TA MONOCHROME MOMENT SILKY LIP CRÈMES – £21 EACH
As soon as I tried the Patrick Ta Silky Lip Crèmes, they instantly became a solid favourite in my collection, with their versatility shining bright. Depending on how you apply any of these gorgeous nudes, you can achieve one of two finishes: if you apply more of the product, you’ll achieve a beautiful creamy texture – alternatively, if you apply less and tap the product across your lips with your finger, you’ll get a stunning and natural demi-matte finish instead.
My favourite colour (at the moment!) is ‘She’s Unapologetic’, a light neutral nude with a subtle pink undertone which works beautifully with a whole range of different liners, lipsticks and glosses. But, seriously, all the colours are phenomenal.
They’re pigmented, smooth, comfortable and long-wearing, and each colour is an amazing everyday shade – so much so, that it’s difficult to choose just one to buy! Besides ‘She’s Unapologetic’, the colour previews online aren’t really true to real life – however, if you click here, it’ll direct you to a swatch video on Patrick Ta Beauty’s Instagram, where you’ll be able to see the colours perfectly! If you’d prefer to see a still photo instead, then click here (from top to bottom: She’s Secure, She’s Independent, She’s Unapologetic, She’s Confident).
NARS SMUDGE PROOF EYESHADOW BASE – £21
Without a primer, my eyeshadow will nearly always smudge and crease and look like a hot mess by the end of the day. I love eyeshadow, and often put a lot of effort into application, and so the last thing I want is for it to look worse for wear within a number of hours. While an eyeshadow primer has been a fundamental part of my routine since I was a teenager, the NARS Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base has been a new find, thanks to a regular recommendation made by YouTuber Allie Glines. It gives a silky smooth base and allows your eyeshadow to stay in place and remain crease-free for the entire day. It’s a must-have.
FENTY BEAUTY GLOSS BOMB CREAMS – £17 EACH
I love glossy lips, and like with every product, I’m constantly hunting to find the best formulas out there. When Fenty Beauty announced they were releasing a cream version of their iconic Gloss Bombs, I was immediately intrigued, but I wasn’t particularly enamoured by any of the shades. That was until watching yet another YouTube video by Allie Glines (can you tell I love her?!) where she tried all the colours on.
I’ve really grown to love pinky mauves where the purple tone is fairly profound, and ‘Mauve Wives’ fits into that category perfectly, but if you’d like it to look more pinky, you can wear a pink-toned liner underneath, such as ‘Pillow Talk’ by Charlotte Tilbury. ‘Fenty Glow’ is a perfect everyday shade which compliments warm toned eyeshadows and blushes beautifully, and Fruit Snackz is a stunning cherry red. I haven’t tried ‘Honey Waffles’ or ‘Cookie Jar’, purely because I don’t think they’ll suit my skin tone, but they’ll be amazing on deeper complexions.
Most glosses are fairly thick, fairly gloopy, and, therefore, difficult to apply, and so I was so surprised but absolutely over the moon when I tried on one of these glosses for the first time and realised how lightweight and fine they are, giving a gorgeous wash of colour. They literally take seconds to apply and don’t exacerbate texture on your lips at all. They have a phenomenal, no-fuss formula, and I need Rihanna to extend the shade range now (please!).
PATRICK TA MONOCHROME MOMENT VELVET BLUSHES – £28 each
Last, but certainly not least, one product I know I’ll be reaching for constantly this year is my collection of Velvet Blushes by Patrick Ta. Not only do each of these blushes correspond with a Silky Lip Crème (mentioned above), but also a Precision Lip Crayon too. I’m going to do a Patrick Ta brand review at some point in the near future once I feel like I’ve had a proper, thorough try of a variety of his products, and in that blogpost I’ll detail how all the products correspond and work with one another.
In respect to the Velvet Blushes, I adore the formula. It’s super smooth, sheer, and looks effortless and natural on the skin. My current favourite shade is ‘She’s Seductive’, a stunning nude mauve, which is brilliant for the winter months – but, let’s face it, I’ll be rocking it through summer too no doubt. Each shade is distinct and beautiful, and I can’t wait to wear them all more.
And that’s it for my Top 10 Hero Products For 2021! What products will you be using non-stop this year? Let me know in the comment section below.
Love, T xx