For the past year, I’ve had a handful of products that I kept on my countertop shelf and used religiously; some daily, some weekly. Regardless of frequency of use, these products are all incredible and I’m excited to share them with you! As routines usually go, I’ll have links and prices listed for anyone interested!
_Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser
I’ve tried quite a few cleansers in my day but this one in particular is really something special. The consistency and quality of milky jelly is unparalleled. It dissolves makeup effortlessly and gives a good gentle cleaning off of the day without stripping your skin of its natural oils. Milky jelly contains poloxamer which is found in contact lens solution, so it’s tough on dirt yet gentle for your eyes (ophthalmologist tested!) Glossier swapped out 1/4 of the water content in this formula for rosewater for it’s soothing properties and warm, soft smell. IMO, milky jelly is like a gel micellar water that removes makeup & dirt. Personally, since it doesn’t lather or foam, I use MJ as a dry cleanse before I go in with a cream cleanser + water. A 6 fl oz. bottle goes for $18.
_Davines: OI Oil + All In One Milk
THIS! DUO! Previous to 2017 I did not care about my hair at all. I would shampoo + condition as normal, spritz my wet hair with a cheap leave in conditioner and let it air dry. This tragic regimen left my hair brittle, dry, frizzy, with split ends for days. As an esthetician, skincare gets me excited and I hardly ever put effort or had any excitement towards haircare. My hairdresser and old friend Courtney used these in my hair the first time she ever touched my head and I bought them immediately. The Milk is a great detangler that adds the perfect amount of shine and really controls frizz. There are two sizes; a bigger bottle, 4.56 fl oz. is $32 and the smaller “trial” size bottle is 1.69 fl oz. and costs $17. The Oil basically claims the same thing, detangles, adds shine, and protects against frizz, but is obviously a bit more concentrated and can also double as a heat protectant for when you want to style. I personally focus only 2-3 drops towards the ends of my hair as a reparative/preventative oil. The smaller size bottle is the same 1.69 fl oz. for $23 and the same 4.56 fl oz. for $44. Both products are easy to use and worth every penny.
_OleHenriksen Pore-Balance Facial Sauna Scrub
I could not say enough good things about this scrub. Since this product contains volcanic sand to slough off the dead skin, this is one of those weekly products on my counter so I don’t overdo it. This scrub is so unique that it truly blew me away the first time I used it. It starts off warm and feels as if it’s “activating” as you start to scrub, which really open up your pores. That volcanic sand and a potent blend of alpha hydroxy acids really get in there to buff off the dead skin physically and chemically, and clear out any clogged pores. The scrub then starts to have a strong cooling effect, thanks to the peppermint oil & eucalyptus that closes and tightens those pores back up so the hard work of the AHA’s doesn’t go to waste. This scrub leaves your skin looking so healthy, feeling so smooth and visibly refreshed. A 3 oz. tube goes for $28. A total game changer for my routine.
_Living proof. No Frizz Weightless Styling Spray
Okay, first of all; the smell of this spray is so irresistable I wish I could wear it as perfume or drink it. It smells so fruity ‘n fresh and while I would buy it for that reason alone, that is not why I keep this on my “top shelf.” Another recommendation from Courtney, I asked what to do for that baby hair/flyaway issue that I seem to have on a whole other level. This spray totally eliminates that issue while keeping it “weightless.” It has a bit of castor oil in it which is great for your locks because it packs a lot of Vitamin E, keeping it healthy and promoting thickness and length. This product is great when used with heat styling or as a finishing spray. 6.7 fl oz. for $37!
_Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser
This was originally my moms and was kept in the shower and I think I used all of it (oops!) so, for Christmas, I asked for my own. I always steered clear of Tata Harper because of the high prices but I now see that you truly get what you pay for. This cleanser is the one I use on wet skin following milky jelly (mentioned above.) It’s a bit exfoliating from the apricot seed powder and pomegranate enzymes leaving my skin soft n supple but doesn’t ever strip my skin of it’s natural moisture. It’s uplifting scent of grapefruit & bergamot are a great wake up in the AM. It’s got a base of French pink clay that detoxifies while you cleanse. 1.7 oz goes for $42 & the larger bottle is $78 for 4.1 oz.
_Glossier Priming Moisturizer Rich
This moisturizer is my #1. The formula is as rich and luxurious as a high end face cream without breaking your bank accounts heart. It feels like you’re applying buttercream frosting to your skin in the absolute best way possible. This is the sister product of the regular Priming Moisturizer (which unfortunately didn’t work for my skin) but with a thicker more hydrating “rich” consistency. The blend of shea and murumuru butters fuse with your skin and hydrates deep. It’s loaded with ceramides 3 & 6 to protect your moisture barrier. Also, rich in lavender oil for a calming smell and effect. 1.7 fl oz. sits at a pretty price of $35 and will last you a while as a little goes a long way. This is one product that I’ve repurchased time and time again.
_Chloé Eau de Parfum
A true Balie classic; rose, peony and springtime freesia hit you first as the fresh floral head notes start to transform into the more dark and sensual, warm scents of cedarwood & amber. This perfume is feminine and modern, the perfect balance of vintage and brand-new. There are sets and many sizes, but the size I keep is 4.2 oz for $180, which I thankfully got as a gift from my dad, but worthy of my own money too.
_essie – Ballet Slippers
Essie’s Ballet Slippers is a classic and timeless simple flat baby, millennial, Glossier pink and is available almost anywhere for $9! Fun facts: 91-year-old Queen Elizabeth has only worn Essie’s Ballet Slippers on her nails for 28 years! In addition, Duchess Kate Middleton also started wearing Ballet Slippers in 2011 and actually chose to wear it at her wedding.
OKAY, I won’t bore you with any more but those are a handful of amazing products I own and adored through 2017! I fully intend to keep these products ‘top shelf’ as we venture into 2018. Thank you for reading, if you’ve gotten this far. Let me know if you try anything out, I’d love to know what you think! ❤
Photos: Balie Mara, Sony a6000