New Additions 2017
Every year there are items I discover that become permanent additions to my lifestyle. I wasn't sure where to put any of this, so I decided to make a new annual post called New Additions, where not only can I share my new favorites with you guys, but you can also share yours with me (and each other!) in the comments!
The following products changed my life for the better this year and I would buy them again in a heartbeat. Note that none of these brands or items are sponsored; I just really love everything on this list and want to spread the love. Read on for the products that have #upgraded my beauty, style, and day-to-day...
MAC Prep+Prime Fix+ ($25): It's possible I'm late to the makeup setting spray party, but at least I showed up. Jasmine put me onto this (and just LOOK at her skin) and I love how it really locks my "face" in place while providing moisture. It makes your makeup look as natural as humanly possible (not too cake-y or powdery) and just leaves your face dewy. This particular setting spray comes out in as fine and even a mist as I've found, not leaving big drops on your face that you have to pat out. You can apparently use it before applying makeup as well, but for me, I spritz in on my face as a second-to-last step, finishing with a tap of powder on my T-zone after the spray dries.
Lashes for Days
Rodan + Fields Enhancements Lash Boost ($150): Okay, so I confess I cringed when the person who told me about this product then followed up with, "I sell it!" Nothing against R+F consultants, I just hate not knowing I'm being given a sales pitch until it's too late. However, this was a legit good buy for me.
Full disclosure, I've used Latisse for 5 or so years. With Latisse, my lashes were much longer and unquestionably stronger than with no lash serum whatsoever, but it is PRICEY and the fact that you need to get it from a doctor can be annoying. The acquaintance I purchased this from has lashes so long and lovely I actually (actually!) thought they were extensions. She told me she used this serum and, being the beauty junkie detective I am, my Rodan + Fields cherry was promptly popped.
At this point, I've given Lash Boost a good 3 months, am still on my first tube (I use it about 3-4 nights a week), and can attest it works as well if not marginally better than Latisse. (A pretty big deal for a non-RX product.) My lashes are at least as long as they ever got with Latisse, and they have the same resilience to them that I noticed with Latisse as well. The one catch for me has been that my longest lashes tend to get a bit spider-y and sort of point in whatever direction they'd like, not dissimilar to the last few lingerers with eyelash extensions. It's not a big deal as I just curl them all together, but it's worth noting. Finally, Lash Boost isn't cheap, but it's still cheaper than Latisse, and because this stuff works and lasts a while, I personally think it's worth the dough and have re-ordered.
My Little Pony Ties
Invisibobble Hair Tie ($8): This is another party I know I'm late to. I have been a staunch regular black hair elastic and hair claw girl for YEARS. My curiosity finally got the best of me and I picked these up as an impulse add-on buy. I don't know why I waited so long! They give me as voluminous a ponytail as my hair will allow (as seen here), they don’t give me any ponytail headaches (the worst!), and as they promise, they really don't leave ugly kinks in your hair. I also have the nano size for half top-knots (as seen here) and love the two sizes equally.
Best in Brush
Sheila Stotts Removal Brush (plastic $31, wood $42): I first discovered this brush while over at a friend-of-a-friend's house. This friend-of-a-friend is a legit celeb (meaning not famous for being on reality TV!) and so you can imagine how keenly I noted and asked about her skincare/makeup/hair product collection and regimen. (When I saw P50 on her bathroom counter I knew I was in good hands.) Basically, if A-listers are using something, I want to know what it is.
This brush is one of those items. We were heading out and I needed to brush my hair. She handed me this brush and it was love at first stroke. I knew I had to have it, so my online research began. It turns out that, like the P50, this is a cult status fave among celebs and beauty experts and that Sheila Stotts herself is something of a celebrity extension guru. This brush annihilates knots, but with the bristles being somewhat flexible at the base and widely spread apart, it's on the gentler side. This brush was apparently designed for extensions so its gentleness is crucial. The metal bristles give the BEST scalp massage, and the lack of little balls on the ends of the bristles keep from unnecessarily catching hair. I love this brush. It's a bit pricier than your average brush but not obnoxiously so (cough, Mason Pearson, cough) and is in my opinion worth every penny.
The Girls' BFF
Braza Bras Adhesive Backless Strapless Bra ($14): If you read my Wedding Recap: What I Wore post, you'll remember this sticky bra that I wore under my wedding dress. It's become my must for outfits with an open back but where I'd like a little cleavage in the front, or for strapless pieces with low-ish backs and where I don't want to worry about my strapless bra showing. It sticks like crazy and is a steal for how useful and effective it is.
Tights That Flatter
Hue Flat-tering Fit Opaque Tights ($12): I'm about to RAVE about tights. Yes, tights. You have been warned.
First off, I weirdly know a LOT about tights. Maybe it has something to do with having lived in Germany (home of hosiery juggernaut Falke, and their neighbor Austria, is home of Wolford), but I am always looking for my new HG hosiery. There are two requirements I have for perfection: The first is opacity. It's easy to find opaque tights nowadays, but I've found I'm more into a semi opaque coverage right now, in matte (shimmer looks dated), so that when I wear over-the-knee boots there is a visible separation between the tight and boot (while still having a little warmth for my legs). Too opaque and my boots just blend into my tights.
My second requirement has been much trickier to find, and that's a smooth waistline with no risk of digging in and creating a muffin-top situation. It feels like 99% of tights right now are "control top", meaning they're meant to sort of suck you in like sausage casing. I am SO not into this, since the line between the control top and bare waistline skin is rarely a pretty situation. I like tights that have a (vertically) wide waistband. In the past, I've stocked up on lace-waist tights in Germany when I've gone back to sing (I've literally brought back 10+ pairs at a time). That was until I discovered these new ones by Hue. They have the perfect semi-sheer opacity (these are 40 den) and an ultra smooth, wide waistband. They're also just comfier than most.
The one catch with these is that you do have to baby them a bit—no sharp objects and sudden movements or you'll have a run. But for the right outfit, these are a godsend. You could wear a skintight bodycon with these tights on and not worry about that waistband "crease" so common with control tops. Or for something with an open, drapey back, you don't have to worry about back rolls at certain angles. This is huge! If you wear your share of tights in the colder months like I do, try these.
SimpleHuman Sensor Vanity Mirror With 5x Magnification ($180): This is one of those items where within days of buying and using it I suddenly didn't know how I lived without it. I did a lot of research before opting for this model of vanity mirror. I actually began thinking I'd get an ever-popular Impressions Vanity model but my thorough homework brought me to this less trendy choice and I couldn't be happier.
Where to begin? I love the sensor light, which is incredibly bright without being blinding (I compared the brightness on several models... this one blows the others—particularly the smaller Impressions Vanity models—out of the water), and how I never have to think about turning it off or on. At 5x, the magnification is the perfect and plays into my OCD side (hello, pores!) without becoming impractical; I can see my whole face at once (which can sometimes become an issue with magnified mirrors). For better or for worse, you can just see EVERY detail in this mirror, so when I feel satisfied with how I look in this baby, I know I'm good to go. It's on the compact side, perfect for our space-conscious New York pad, but never feels remotely too small. It charges with a simple USB plug and a charge lasts for a crazy amount of time, and I'm talking for weeks with multiple uses per day. Seriously, this is the item that inspired me to do this blog post. If you can justify the cost, buy this mirror. You can thank me later.
Echo Classic Pop-Top Tech Gloves ($89): Yay for the colder months! I've been obsessed with this glove/mitten hybrid as the temps have dropped here. These mitts have thought of everything: they're buttery soft leather mittens, but under the zippered (magnetic!) pop top is a super soft wool glove with tech-friendly tips on the index fingers. My hands appreciate these when I'm biking around the city in the colder months, I love that I don't have to take off my whole mitt to check my phone, and overall they're as functional as they are cute (which is very).
Hives and Honey Photo Collage Jewelry Frame ($70): Before getting this, my jewelry storage situation was bordering on disastrous. I had necklaces hanging from my moose rack on the wall and stuffed into little baggies which were stuffed into a large jewelry box that became too daunting to even open (I just began wearing the same jewelry over and over 🙈). I wanted something along the same vein as those full-length jewelry storage mirrors but since we have all the mirrors we need and space is always a concern, I googled my options and eventually found this. It looks like a collage photo frame so it doesn't stand out as being a jewelry holder, but it opens to reveal a treasure trove of storage. This unique piece has been a game changer for me. I still have my larger statement necklaces hanging from the moose head, but my (many) daintier pieces now live inside this frame. I love being able to find my pieces without having them out in the open all the time, and when the frame is closed it's got a good sentimental-value factor as I filled the collage frame with wedding photos. Double win!
Any discoveries I should know about? I am always on the lookout, so let me know in the comments below...
Thanks for stopping by!