Reader Favorite Beauty Buys of 2020

Top Beauty Buys of 2020

Long time readers know I have a not so secret obsession with skincare and makeup, but only share the products I absolutely love. It’s why there are so few beauty posts on the blog, once I discover a product that works I stick with it.

A few years ago, I shared my nighttime skincare routine and it quickly became one of my most read and shared posts. Since then I’ve highlighted what I would call “hero” products, the ones the make the biggest difference, the ones I never want to be without. 

And as it turns out, many of those products are your favorites too. So today, as we continue to tie a bow on the year, I’m rounding up your favorite, top selling products from 2020.

Buy these for yourself and indulge in some much deserved self-care or pick them up as a gift for someone you love this holiday. 

Reader Favorite Beauty Buys of 2020

Top Beauty Buys of 2020

Around the time I turned 37, I started to take extra good care of my skin. I began to invest in better products, most of which are clean, and diligently use them every day (or as directed).

I lived for years with adult cystic acne, and it all but destroyed the little self-esteem I had. It’s why for years, I never posted pictures of myself here on the blog.

But now, at 41, my skin is the best it ever looked. I’m able to wear less makeup and really let my skin show, freckles and all.

It’s incredible what it’s done for my confidence levels.
Below are the top-selling products from 2020, with a short description of why I love it. If you have a product you love, be sure to share it in the comments.

Vintner’s Daughter

Vinter's DaughterVintner’s Daughter, $185 

Vintner’s Daughter was my first big beauty splurge and, to this day, is the product I am never without. It absolutely changed my skin, healing redness, acne scars, and uneven skin tone. You only need a tiny amount, so a bottle can last about three months. Apply morning and night after you wash your face and give it a few minutes to soak in before you layer on anything else.

Caudalie Instant Detox Mask 

Caudalie Instant Detox Mask

Caudalie Instant Detox Mask, $39 

Every Sunday night, I use the Caudalie Instant Detox Mask to draw impurities and toxins out of my skin. It’s an uncomplicated process that takes about 10 minutes but really works. Priced at under $40, it’s an affordable indulgence that would make a great gift or stocking stuffer.

Goop Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub

Goop Himalayan Sea Salt Scrub

Goop Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub, $42

My FAVORITE personal care indulgence is the Goop Himalayan Salt Scalp Scrub. Use once a week instead of your traditional shampoo to rid your scalp of buildup. It smells incredible, like an effervescent spa experience. And your hair and scalp feel so fresh and clean. Also makes a great gift. 

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask, $52 

I became a big fan of Drunk Elephant this year and have heard from so many readers who love this “mask” too. But it’s not really a mask. Instead, it’s the last step in your nighttime routine to lock in moisture. It’s beneficial this time of year when it’s cold out, and we’re cooped up inside with the heat on – a recipe to dry out our skin. To use, layer this on a few minutes after you apply your night cream, and it acts as a layer to keep your skin hydrated overnight.

Tatcha Oil Cleanser

Tatcha Oil Cleanser

Tatcha Oil Cleanser, $48

I do a double cleanse every night, which simply means I was my face twice, first with an oil-based cleanser, and then I follow up with a gel cleanser. The Tatcha Oil Cleanser is incredibly gentle yet effective. It removes makeup, including stubborn mascara, and leaves no residue on your skin. I’ve been using it for years and love it so much I won’t even consider trying a different brand.

Wander Beauty Mascara

Wander Beauty Mascara

Wander Beauty Mascara, $26 

I searched high and low for a mascara that created thick, long lashes without looking like spiders were growing out of my eyes, and Wander is my winner. I don’t want a dramatic eye; I don’t want to look like I’m wearing lash extensions. I just want to look like myself but a little better. This is a straightforward formula that kicks your lashes up a level – no more, no less.

Benefit Ka-Brow

Benefit Ka-Brow Pomade

Benefit Ka-BROW Pomade, $14 

If I had to pick only one product to use forever, JUST ONE, it would be Benefit Ka-BROW. Your eyebrows give your face structure, they highlight all your other features, so defining them will help bring life to your face. This product is a game changer for your brows, allowing you quickly fill them so you look natural, youthful and polished. 

Kosas Lipstick

Kosas Lipstick

Kosas Lipstick, $28 

Finally, I’m the biggest fan of Kosas lipsticks because their formula is clean, AND the pigment is on point. It’s rich and creamy like a traditional lipstick without any of the toxins. I regularly wear their red, called “Electra” and have heard how much our readers love it too. A close second is their pink called “Rosewater” which is a pretty wear-with-everything neutral. 

Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.


What to Buy at Sephora’s Holiday Sale

What to Buy At Sephora's Spring Sale

Sephora is the only retailer I prefer to shop in person. I love their in-store experience.

Give me a few hours, and I can get lost, walking up and down the aisles. And don’t get me started on the pure joy that is their checkout line that snakes around, wrapping you in sample sizes of everything you never knew you needed.

When I leave, with my glossy black bag filled with goodies, I’m convinced for a brief moment that when I use these new products, I will emerge as a better, more beautiful version of myself. Lol.

But 2020 is the worst, so even Sephora is different. Space is limited, areas blocked off, and you can’t use the testers. So online shopping is our only option.

And since we’re all emotionally hungover from the past week (and year), it might be time to revamp our beauty/skincare/self-care routine.

Right now is the Sephora Holiday Sale, marketed specifically for their “Insiders.” 

What does that mean? 

Nothing special, you just have to sign up for their rewards program. If you’re not a Sephora Insider, sign up on their site before you start shopping. It’s easy, it’s free and they don’t bug you about anything. 

This sale is different in that the discounts vary based off  your Insider level, and your Insider level is determined by your annual spend. 

If you’re just getting started you’re called an Insider and get 10% off, if you’re VIP  you get 15% off, and if you’re what they call Rouge you get 20% off. The more you spend annually, the greater the discount you’ll receive. 

Regardless of which level you are, use the code HOLIDAYFUN at check out. 

My Favorites 

For today’s post, I literally stood in my bathroom and looked up all of my favorite products to see if you can grab them on sale. Most of these you’ve heard me talk about countless times, others I started using a few months ago and am happy to recommend. 

Please note, unlike all of my other posts, I am not including the price of these because the sale price will vary based on your discount and part of our regulation as bloggers is that if I post the price, it has to be as accurate as possible. 

Also, I hope this goes without saying, while I do spend on better beauty products, I don’t buy all of these at once. Some products I have to replenish every month, most require only once or twice a year.

Below, I broke this down into Skincare, and then Makeup, Fragrance and Tools.


What to Buy At Sephora's Spring Sale

If you’ve been following for any amount of time, you know I spend a lot of time focusing on keeping my skin healthy. I’m 40 years old, with sensitive skin, and dealt with terrible cystic acne – as an adult – for many years.

Skin issues profoundly impacted my self-confidence. It wasn’t until I got my skin issues under control that I felt confident enough to put my face on the blog, so I am more than happy to spend here and save in other areas.

Now, my skin has never looked better. (Another reason why I’m so loyal to these products.)

Sephora’s Spring Savings: Skincare 

I’ve recently become a big fan of the double cleanse, which means you wash your face twice, first with an oil-based cleanser, and then follow up with a gentle gel-based one. For this, I use:

Tatcha Oil Cleanser – By far, my favorite gentle cleanser. It quickly removes makeup and cleanses skin without stripping it of moisture. For sensitive skin, it’s a dream. I’ve been using this for years. 

Drunk Elephant Jelly Cleanser – I’ve been using this for six months, and it’s fantastic. You get a deep clean, again, without stripping your skin. 

Other Skincare:

Drunk Elephant Waterfacial Mask – I discovered this “Waterfacial Mask” while researching night creams. It’s not a mask at all. Instead, it’s a thick (but not too thick) ultra-hydrating cream you put on right before bed. It’s not sticky, and it doesn’t clog pores. It just leaves my skin looking and feeling soft and smooth. 

Drunk Elephant Night Serum – When I ordered the above cream, it came with a sample size of this “Night Serum.” Not one to ever let a product go untested, I followed the directions and applied it to my skin before bed, layered right under the “mask.” It has helped even out my skin tone and softens some acne scarring. My skin looked noticeably brighter the very first morning after I used it.

Drunk Elephant Sunscreen – Using sunscreen on your face separate from your moisturizer is more effective. I use this simple SPF 30 every day, no matter what. It’s effective and fast-absorbing.  

Dr. Barbara Sturm Eye Cream – The upfront price of this is steep, BUT it lasts almost a year, which is just about when it would expire. This is another long time favorite of mine. After consistent use, the lines around my eyes are minimal, and what is there has softened. 

Goop Morning Skin Super Powder – I put two of these packets in my water every single morning. It’s filled with vitamin C and E, CoQ10, and many other ingredients that are good for your skin and general health. I actually buy them from the Goop website and have them on auto-delivery. I know, I feel you rolling your eyes; it’s okay, I know. 

Beautyblender -Beautyblenders are expensive (usually $20 for a little sponge), so if you use them regularly, pick them up here. 

Caudalie Detox Mask – This is the one mask I go back to time and time again. It’s affordable, gentle, and effective. I use it a few times a week because it only takes 5 minutes to do, so you feel like you indulged, but you didn’t waste any time. 

Makeup, Fragrance and Brushes

What to Buy At Sephora's Spring Sale

One of the many benefits of focusing on skin health is you don’t require much in terms of make up. You’ll never see me “baking” or conturing to an inch of my life. I like to see my skin come through, freckles and all.

You have seen all of these on here before. These are my everyday, go-to, 5 minute face essentials. 

Sephora’s Holiday Sale: Makeup, Fragrance and Tools 

Bobbi Brown Foundation Stick – I use this foundation stick every day. What’s great about it is that it isn’t heavy or cakey. You can build for the kind of coverage you want (use a BeautyBlender for easy application). The best thing about Bobbi Brown is the array of skin tones. You can be pale as a ghost (like me) or have deep and dark skin. It’s truly inclusive.

Sephora Collection Brush Set – They call this the “uncomplicated brush set.” How perfect is that? It’s under $50 and has everything you need to get the most out of your application. 

Benefit Hoola Matte Bronzer – I have been using this bronzer since I was in my twenties. For my skin tone, it looks natural. If you want a healthy glow, you seriously don’t need any other product. And it lasts forever. 

RMS Beauty Signature Set – I have two of these compacts, one lives in my bag, and one lives in my bathroom. It has everything you need for a quick, natural face and is ideal for touch-ups on the go. 

Jo Malone Peony and Suede Blush – This has been my signature scent for several years. It’s just lovely, and I am forever complimented on it. 

Benefit ka-Brow – Brows are EVERYTHING. They shape your face and make you look youthful, happy, and healthy. As I’ve aged, my eyebrows have disappeared. This product helps you quickly define them in a very natural way. I use it every single day. 

Wander Beauty Mascara – Get super natural-looking, long lashes that don’t smudge or look ridiculous. 

Bobbi Brown Face Primer Moisturizer – I don’t use a primer every day, especially right now, but when you need your makeup to go on and stay in place, a layer of primer first will help.

Kosas Lipstick – I adore this non-toxic, high pigment lipstick from Kosas. “Electra” is my go-to red, and “Rosewater” is a feminine pink-based neutral I like for every day. 

Other posts you may like: I broke down my nighttime skincare routine a while ago; you’ll see many of these products featured. However, the point was to discuss the best order to apply your products – so use whatever works best for you. 

Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

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The BEST Beauty Products on Amazon

Amazon Beauty Buys

Let’s talk about the best beauty products on Amazon.

I find myself reaching for my Amazon app an embarrassing amount of times during the day. With three kids and what feels like a dozen full-time jobs, it’s one of the few resources that make my life easier.

One of the elements of my job that I love most is trying different self care products and tools. Some are crazy, others silly, but over the years I have discovered some truly fabulous finds.

The kind that make you wonder, “how did I live without this?”

So today, I rounded up my all time favorites, the ones I use on a daily basis, and reorder constantly. 

The Best Beauty Products on Amazon

BEST Beauty Products on Amazon


BB Cream, $29  |  It’s a 10, $19.50 |  Self Tanner, $40  |  Ice Roller, $18  |  Derma Roller, $23  |  RMS Signature Set, $44  |  Eyebrow Razor, $4.50  |  Detangling Brush, $10  |  Body Blur, $39  |  Muslin Cloths, $10


BB Cream, $29

Back in my youth, I used to cover up my wrinkle-free baby skin with layers and layers of skin clogging foundation – all in an attempt to hide my freckles. Thankfully, as I’ve aged, I’ve embraced those freckles and wear much less makeup. A year ago, a sample of this BB Cream by Marcelle showed up in my Birchbox. Called “Golden Glow” It looked too dark for my (very) fair skin, so I almost threw it away.

But, I gave it a try one morning, and my skin looked beautiful. The pigment adjusts to your skin tone if it’s between fair and medium. You can still see your skin, freckles and all; it just evens it out without clogging your pores. I quickly ordered a full size from Amazon while standing at my bathroom skin

I use it in the summer, when I have a self tanner on. It’s become my go-to for a super fast, almost make-up free face that is Zoom call ready. 

Note: They are calling this a “Universal Color” which makes me a bit crazy. This will adjust to the pigment of your skin up to a deep medium. Any darker than that and I think this would be too light. The beauty industry, like the fashion industry, has a long way to go when it comes to inclusion. 

Self Tanner, $40

I featured this self-tanner back in May, and after a summer of use, it’s my all-time favorite.

As a fair-skinned girl with long limbs, who spends a ton of time at the shore in the summer, I feel more confident with a little natural-looking color. While love a spray tan, they take time I don’t currently have to spare. This two-hour tanner gives you the perfect glow without all the fuss. 

Apply it, let it sit for two hours (sometimes I keep it on longer), hop in the shower, and rinse it off. Over a few hours, you’ll see a lovely natural looking tan emerge, with no funny smell or stained clothes. 

Body Blur, $39

This “body blur” by Vita Liberata is like a combination of a BB Cream and a Self Tanner. It’s a make up artist go-to to create an all over glow to the body. You’ll see celebrities slather on something similar before press events to get that flawless look to their legs, arms and neck.

Unlike a self tanner, the color is immediate and will wash off in the shower. Use it for special occasions, or to extend the life and look of a tan. 

It’s a 10, $24

I should buy this in bulk. Doing my girl’s hair is bearable since I discovered It’s a 10 several years ago. It is a detangler, and leave-in conditioner spray that leaves soft hair, works through the worst of knots and makes hair easy to manage. I’ve tried countless less expensive brands, but keep coming back to this. 

Tangle Teezer Brush, $10

Speaking of detangling, this brush is a game-changer. I bought it as a stocking stuffer for my kids and it turned out to be a true Christmas miracle.

All of my daughters have long, thick, curly hair. Brushing their hair at night or getting ready for school in the morning use to leave us all in tears. But the combination of It’s a 10 and the Tangle Teezer, we now have yelling-free (for the most part) mornings, and they can be left to do their hair on their own.

It has hundreds of 5 star reviews you can read here

Ice Roller Face Massager, $13

This ice roller may be the silliest beauty product I ordered  from Amazon in a long time, but it is surprisingly fantastic.
I keep it in my freezer drawer and use it first thing in the morning, while the house is quiet and I’m getting my coffee ready. Admittedly, I’m tired these days. Like many of us, I’m not getting a ton of sleep and wake up looking and feeling puffy. It helps reduce the puffiness and tightens pores and is especially lovely during allergy season when I feel like I can barely fully open my eyes.

Derma Roller Kit, $22

By now you know how much I love my derma roller and this set, in particular, is fantastic. You can’t beat the price or quality.

You can see my step by step break down of how to use a derma roller here.  If you’re already thinking of inexpensive holiday or birthday gifts for girlfriends, this is a wonderful, under $25 idea.

Makeup Palette, $40

My single best beauty find on Amazon in 2019 was  this RMS makeup palette. It’s seriously the perfect little on-the-go pallet. I have multiples and keep one in my bag and the other on my vanity. Use it to bring a little color to your lips and cheeks, swipe the highlight down your nose and in the corners of your eye to make them pop. So simple. 

It also feels very age appropriate to me for young girls, so I do let me 13 year old “steal” mine on occasion. 

Face Razors, $5

The secret to flawless makeup is smooth skin. To get that, I take one of these slim razors, and gently run it up my checks and along my jaw line to remove baby hair and peach fuzz.  Holy cow, does it make an incredible difference in how your products sit on your skin! I’m never without these. 

Muslin Cloths, $10

It’s so important to be as gentle as possible with your face. You want to minimize how much you tug and pull at it. These muslin cloths (marketed as organic baby wipes) are fabulous. I keep stacks of them in my bathroom and use them nightly. 

A great tip I’ve learned to remove clay masks or any product that leaves a residue is to soak a muslin cloth in warm water, wring it out, and place it on your face, covering the entire surface. Gently press it on your skin, let it sit for a second, and remove it. Do this a few times. The steam will help to breakdown anything on your skin, and you’ll avoid having to wipe it off aggressively. 


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Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.



5 Products for a 5 Minute Summer Face

5 Products for a 5 Minute Face

Remember when you first started wearing makeup? I do. I would layer on everything, all at once. Concealer, liquid foundation, powder; whatever Seventeen magazine said to do, I followed, exactly. Regardless of if I actually had anything to “cover up.”

Now, I have a 13-year-old who is sneaking mascara and lipgloss to school. I pretend I don’t notice. She reminds me of myself at her age. I can still feel that surge of confidence I would get when my hair looked a certain way, or I felt pretty heading off to school – something I didn’t regularly feel. 

I try to remind her, as my mom did, that less is more when it comes to makeup. But she’ll figure that out on her own, like the rest of us. 

As we age, we learn the importance of letting our skin breathe. For years I’ve advocated focusing your time and dollars on skincare first. 

Get your skin as healthy as possible. Drink a ton of water, wear SPF every day and moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. If you have the budget, consider a few facials with an esthetician throughout the year. 

You’ll benefit from a deep clean, but also recommendations from a professional to help with your specific skin challenges. 

This time of year especially, I like to keep my skin bare as much as possible. So I edit my everyday makeup down to the essentials.

These products help me look healthy and pulled together and take less than five minutes to apply. 

5 Products for a 5 Minute Face

5 Products for a 5 Minute Face

These are the five products I wear every day. It’s a beautiful base that you can add to if you need more coverage or want to create a more dramatic look.

For me, a typical summer day has me working from my home office, running errands, stopping by our pool to pick up or drop off the kids, and maybe grabbing dinner with Bri when we get the girls settled for the night. Nothing crazy.

As many of you already know, I follow a specific nighttime skincare routine but am low maintenance in the morning.  I simply wash my face with this oil cleanser, apply my favorite serum and add either this SPF or follow the five steps below. 

BB Cream

Bare Minerals BB Cream

BB Cream, $33 

What is BB Cream? It’s like a tinted moisturizer, filled with lots of good-for-your-skin ingredients and an SPF in one. You’ll get light to medium coverage that looks pretty flawless.

I discovered bareMinerals back in my QVC days. They are still one of the only beauty brands with a consistent inclusive color range. 



For reference, I wear the Opal in the winter, and the Natural when I have a self tan – that’s how pale I am. lol.

Simply apply this to dry skin, a little goes a long way. I use a BeautyBlender to get an even application and finish. 


Benefit Kabrow Eyebrow Color

Eyebrow Color, $24 

One of my all-time favorite beauty products is Ka-Brow by benefit. Earlier this month, I shared how I tint my eyebrows. It makes a huge difference when you go makeup-free. But when I do wear makeup, I enhance them just a little bit more. 

Ka-brow is a gel eyebrow color. It comes in the jar (above) with an angled brush for easy application. Follow the shape of your natural brow with little brush strokes for a perfectly shaped, natural brow. It makes a huge difference.

Benefit is another inclusive brand. Ka-brow offers six universal colors, I wear the #2 Warm Golden Brown, 

Wander Beauty Mascara

Wander Beauty Mascara

Mascara, $26 

I try a ton of mascaras. Right now I have at least six that rotate through. This Wander Beauty, Mile High Club mascara is my FAVORITE for daily use. It creates long (but not too long), natural looking lashes with no clumps. 

Tinted Lip Balm


Lip Balm, $20 

RMS Beauty is a recent discovery last year. I first purchased this compact, in Pop, filled with bronzer, highlighter, balm, and two lip colors. It’s the perfect size to keep in a bag for quick and easy touch ups during the day. 

I loved the lip color so much I wanted a full size. So I ordered these tinted lip balms in hibiscus pink tint and passion lane. They are nicely pigmented and moisturizing. I add a little to my cheeks too.


Benefit Hoola Bronzer


Bronzer, $30 

The Hoola Bronzer, also by benefit, is a staple for beauty gurus. So many bronzers look orange or have shimmer in them. Not this one, you get the slightest hint of a natural glow without being over the top.

I apply it to my cheekbones and the side of my nose. I also swipe around my hairline to help pull my face in, and under my chin to give my back my once strong jawline.

It’s available in four colors to work for many skin tones. I wear the original “Hoola,” above, in the summer and the “Hoola Lite” in the winter. They also offer “Carmel” and “Toasted” for deeper and darker tones. 

Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist View Post and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

How to Shape and Tint Your Eyebrows at Home

Eyebrows are the key to an easy, natural five-minute face.

When I was younger, I had great brows. Full, lush, dark, perfectly face-framing. But as I’ve aged, they’ve become thin and sparse, and they grow in with more and more gray. 

While I have no interest in going back to my twenties, I would very much like my eyebrows from then.

A balanced and shaped eyebrow will make you look youthful and modern. They highlight your bone structure and pull out your cheekbones.

So I thought it would be helpful to share what I’ve learned over the years working with beauty industry professionals (and lots of trial and error of my own), and share how I get perfect brows at home.

Follow the steps below or watch my IGTV video at the bottom of this post.

How to Shape and Tint Your Eyebrows at Home

How to Shape and Tint Your Eyebrows at Home

It’s so easy to get gorgeous eyebrows. All you need are a few affordable tools and a few extra minutes. 

I’ll walk you through each step below and share a video in real time below. 


ice roller and face massagerIce Roller, $18

First, if you don’t like the “pinch” from plucking, run this ice roller over your brows. This was a middle of the night impulse buy that ended up being one of my favorite things of 2019. I use it all the time to calm puffy skin, help with sinuses, and to get my brows ready.

You move much faster and remove more hair with the tweezer if it doesn’t hurteyebrow kitBrow Kit, $14

Next you need a spoolie, tweezers and, if your brows are extra long, a small pair of trimmers to help tame them. This brow kit from Target has everything you need. 


anastasia beverly hills eyebrow stencilsBrow Stencils, $22

Next, pick up this pack of eyebrow stencils. You’ll see in the video below: I use the “Full Arch” option. This helps you understand your brow’s natural shape and determine where you should pluck and how to fill them in.

eyebrow tint kitTint Kit, $20

Finally, to tint them, use this kit from TintKit. I use “medium brown” but there are lots of other options. It’s so easy to use.

Simply mix on capsule of the dye with a 1/4 teaspoon of the developer in a small dish. Then, paint it on your brows with the included brush. 

Let it sit for 1 – 2 minutes and wipe off. 


When you are finished tinting both brows, use a face wash that includes some kind of gentle exfoliator, this will help remove any shadow dye left on your skin. 

Then you’re done! Below is me with only mascara, a tinted moisturizer, a little lipgloss and some good old fashion lighting 😉 You can see the before in the video below. 

How to Video


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Our Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist View Post and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

If you enjoy our content and would like to help us grow, please consider following on Instagram and join our Private Facebook Group to access more advice and exclusive in-depth conversations with other like-minded women.

My Best Beauty Buys of 2019

The Best Beauty Buys of 2019

Looking presentable is part of my job, but having a professional hair and makeup team on hand is not part of my budget. Whether I’m getting ready for an event, a photo shoot, or simply getting ready for the day, it’s me, in my bathroom, begging my children to leave me alone for just five minutes.

I’m not a beauty expert (and have no interest in becoming one), but I do try a TON of products and tools during the year. I buy everything with my own money and have never done a review or made a recommendation in exchange for any kind of compensation.

That means when I say I like something, you can trust that I do.

And my requirements are high. First and foremost, it has to work. It has to save me time, or in some way, make my life easier. Much like yesterday’s Best Buys of 2019 post, I have to be delighted that I bought it every time I use it.

The Best Beauty Buys of 2019

Things you should know: 

My skin is normal, but sensitive. I burn just looking at the sun. I used to deal with pretty severe acne in my early to mid thirties, but have cleared it up amazingly with proper skincare and drinking a ton of water every day. 

When it comes to products, I am incredibly loyal. That’s one of the reasons I don’t write regular beauty content. There’s not a lot to talk about, since once I like something, it stays in rotation for a long time. 

Over the years, my skincare philosophy has gone from focusing on makeup and covering things up, to taking the best care possible of my skin. I put the time and money into that, and the benefit (aside from glowy natural skin) is needing less makeup and spending less time getting ready.

I take my nighttime skin care routine most seriously, as you can see in the post from earlier this year. Some people loved it, some thought I was nuts. It actually doesn’t take long to do, and it’s a lovely way to get ready for bed. Most important, since my skin has healed from the acne I feel a million times more confident, and I don’t think you can put a price on that. 

Favorite Products

Vintners Daughter is still my most favorite product of all time. It transformed my skin. The Goop Exfoliating Instant Facial is a close second and I wouldn’t be able to pick between the two since I think using them together is the holy grail of skincare. 

I am also still obsessed with my dermaroller and recently upgraded to this one. I use it several times a week, depending on what else I’m doing to my skin.

This year I found some real winners, so let’s jump in. 

My Best Beauty Buys of 2019

The Best Beauty Buys of 2019RMS Signature Palette, $44  |  Ice Roller, $15  |  Juice Beauty Overnight Cream, $75  |  Wander Beauty Mascara, $26  |  Jo Malone Peony and Blush Suede, $60  |  Almond Oil, $50  |  Hanacure Facial Set, $29  |  T-3 Curling Iron, $136  |  Tyme Iron, $165 

RMS Signature Palette

This pocket size palette is ideal for an on-the-go, five minute face. It includes a bronzer, highlighter, two lip and cheek stains and a balm.  I love it so much I bought two, so I always have one in my makeup drawer and one to float around in my handbags. The colors give just enough pigment, that you can layer, in hues (I use the palette called “Pop”) which is a classic color, for warmer tones go with Mod (pictured above).

Shop: Pop / Mod

Ice Roller 

I’ve mentioned this ice roller a few times this year. It was a middle of the night purchase made in between feeding the baby and trying to sleep. I still can’t believe how much I use it. It’s perfect for the morning after a late night, maybe you overindulged or watched a sad movie and had a good cry. If you’re puffy or red, roll this over your entire face, and it will wake you up and depuff instantly. 

I’ll even use it after my morning routine, before I put on makeup. The cold tightness your skin, and makes your products glide on flawlessly. 

Shop: Assorted Colors 

Juice Beauty Overnight Cream

For a while, I was using Goop’s night cream, and it was just okay – not worth the price. Then I used Estee Lauder’s Night cream and liked that very much. But when I read about Juice Beauty’s Cell Renewal Night Cream, I decided to give it a try.
It’s loaded with good-for-you ingredients, like Hyaluronic Acid, and helps cell turnover and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. In the winter, I prefer a thick night cream since it’s cold outside, but my house is dry and I notice how the change of temperature almost immediately affects my skin. I can see a difference in my skin’s moisture and texture in the morning after I slather this on at night.

Shop: One jar last approx. 2 – 3 months with daily use 

Wander Beauty Mascara

Early this fall, my social feed was flooded with ads for Wander Beauty, and after a while, I couldn’t resist. (I am clearly their target market.) Admittedly, I have a drawer full of mascaras, yet still always on the hunt for the next great one. This one by Wander Beauty hits it out of the park. It lengthens, it’s smooth, doesn’t clump, and doesn’t leave a dusty residue on your face.

Shop: Mile High Volume Mascara

Jo Malone Fragrance

For the longest time, my go-to fragrance was Flowerbomb by Viktor&Rolf, and it remains an all time favorite. But Jo Malone has always been one of those aspirational brands, with their chic packaging and exotic fragrance combinations. So while I was in NYC a few months back, I splurged on Peony and Blush Suede, and it’s stunning. It’s a similar scent to Flowerbomb, less sweet, and a little more sophisticated. I get nonstop compliments on it, with everyone saying it smells uniquely fresh and feminine.

Shop: Travel size, currently 15% off

Almond Body Oil

Body oil absorbs into your skin better than lotion, so I went on the hunt for an effective, daily oil that didn’t leave a slick residue. After trying a few, I discovered this Almond Body Oil by L’Occitane. It’s expensive, but a little goes a long way. It dries quickly, doesn’t leave a mark on your clothes, and smells clean without being overpowering. The key is to put it on damp skin right after your shower, so you lock in as much moisture as possible.

Shop: Supple Skin Oil

Hanacure Facial Set

This all in one, at home facial, claims to fix everything with regular use – from dullness, and wrinkles, to fine lines and age spots. That’s such a tall order I almost didn’t buy it. But out of curiosity disguised as research, I bought the all-in-one set, which includes four treatments.

I used all of them, and I’m telling you, your skin does look amazing when you’re finished. Whether I see a long term, lasting difference is yet to be determined.

BUT! I used a treatment before a few parties and photoshoots, and my skin looked fantastic for those events, so I’m keeping a stock of them for that very reason, and if my skin improves over time, even better.

Shop: Starter Set (One Application) / Kit (Four Applications)

T3 Curling Iron

This is my second T3 Curling iron. I bought my first one several years ago and only replaced it because I left the first one in a hotel.

It’s fantastic. My hair is flat and straight, but I like to wear it with curl. This lets me get a gorgeous barrel curl, around my entire head, in less the five minutes. 

Be sure to use it on dry hair and spray on a heat protector, because this gets hot. To give the curl lasting hold, I let it cool completely in my hand once it comes off the barrel, and then I leave it. I don’t run a comb or brush through it. Eventually it falls and gives me the natural wave I’m looking for. 

Shop: T3 Curling Iron

Thyme Iron

Yes, I bought two rather expensive curling iron tools this year. I actually bought them within a few days of each other and I ended up loving them both equally. The Thyme Iron is different than the T3. You’ll get a lot more volume and a different kind of curl. I use the T3 to get my everyday style, parted to the side, with a soft curl.

The Thyme Iron can be used in several different ways, but I use it for a more dramatic look. It takes some time to get the hang of how to use it, but the company does a fantastic job creating how-to videos and tutorials. Once you get the hang of it, the process moves fast.

The real benefit is how long the curls last. If you do it the right way (and depending on how frequently you need to wash your hair), you can get a full day and then next out of one style.

Shop: The Thyme Iron (be sure to purchase from Thyme and not one of the knock offs.) 

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2019: Best of Beauty

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2019: Beauty Picks

We are wrapping up our Nordstrom Anniversary Sale coverage with a quick beauty post. As long-time readers know, I am incredibly loyal to my products and beauty tools. It took me a long time to find a skincare routine that works for me. It’s extensive but effective, so why mess with it? That’s why we don’t feature a ton of beauty content. 

Anyway, I’d also like to move on and talk about other things, so this is our last post about the sale. I’ll update our Facebook Private Page with some specific deals over the next few days, so if you’d like to join just click here and answer our three membership questions.

But back to the sale. Many of the beauty items in the event are fragrance related, be it perfume, candles or diffusers so check and see if your favorite is on sale. There are also a lot of gadgets and tools, some are helpful, but many aren’t necessary (more on that below). And if you love luxury brand makeup, there are a few that are a decent value.

My advice, though, is to make sure you’re not paying for something you don’t need.   For example, most of the perfume exclusives come in a gorgeous box, with an extra body wash or cream. I don’t ever use them, so I don’t find much value in the set.

Today, I sorted through all the options and narrowed our list down the products I love and use, that are worth the spend or splurge. 

Once again, this post is not sponsored but if you make a purchase from one of our links we may receive a very small commission. 

Top Beauty Picks from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2019 


Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2019: Beauty Picks

Living Proof Trio, $84  |  Mario Badescu Set, $23  |  Alterna Caviar Set, $72  |  Philosophy Set, $55  |  T3 Curling Iron, $107   |  Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Duo, $25  |  Slip Pillowcases, $119


Two haircare sets made my list. First, I have loved Living Proof for a long time. This full-size set featuring the brand’s hero products is a nice value. Their dry shampoo is the best on the market, and their shampoo and conditioner make my hair look full and shiny after one use. 

I also included Alterna Caviar Replenishing Moisture Shampoo and Conditioner, another brand I’ve been loyal to for years. Between aging and processing my hair to an inch of its life, this set helps bring it back to life and gives it the surge of moisture it is desperately lacking.

They both have a steep price point but they last a while since my kids aren’t allowed near them. I alternate between the two depending on what my hair needs. 

Hair Tools

Part of the reason I need a powerful conditioner is due to the heat I use to style my hair most days. I bought this T3 Curling Iron to replace my old T3. The first one lasted a little over 2 years, with lots of daily use so I feel ok replacing it now. It cuts my styling time in half and the curls last longer than with a drugstore brand curling irons. 

If you are in the market for a new hair dryer, I also highly recommend T3.  Their Cura Dryer is part of the sale for $155

Little Luxuries and Gifts

I’ve been sleeping on a silk pillowcase for a few years, and guess what? It’s still one of my all-time favorite, most-used purchases. There are lots of benefits, from helping to keep hair from breaking to preventing wrinkles. But I just like that it feels a little indulgent. After working all day, wrangling three kids, and running our home, I think I deserve every little luxury I can get. Pick one up for yourself, or save one to give to your mom, sister, or favorite friend this holiday. 

This Philosophy Amazing Grace set for $55 is another stock up for the holiday’s option. I picked one up to put under the tree for my oldest. (And yes, I am super impressed that I am already planning Christmas gifts.) 


In the skincare category, Mario Badescu’s drying lotion destroys breakouts. I use to have terrible cystic acne for years, and a few drops of this right on the inflamed part of the pimple would remove it in a day or two. Next, his aloe and rosewater spray would help with inflammation, reduce redness, and cool down my skin.  I keep them both on hand still and will be happy I have them if and when my girls start to experience their first breakouts. 

Makeup Must Have 

Next, who doesn’t love a good eyebrow? When I really want to kick up my look, I use the Anastasia Beverly Hills eyebrow duo. It helps you create a strong brow in minutes and gives your whole face more definition. 

Finally, a few honorable mentions in makeup. Nars has a pretty blush/bronzer/highlighter kit for $42.  Laura Mercier’s Lip Duo in rose is a lovely neutral for every day. And for fun, I picked up this Trish McEvoy Brighten and Define Eye Duo – I’ll report back my findings if it’s worth it.