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And we’re back with part two of my favorite beauty products of 2015! Today we’re going to chat about all things non-makeup related – from haircare to skincare, to perfume and nail polish. Throughout the year I tried A LOT of makeup, so I could very comfortably pick a favorite from each product type, but when it comes to skincare and such I tend to experiment a little less. So, rather than try and come up with a favorite for each category (best hairspray, best serum, etc.) I just decided to round up my absolute best discoveries from the last year. Perhaps some of these products will have your mutual love, or maybe you’ll find something new to try in 2016!
Pacifica Sea Foam Complete Face Wash ($10)
Could I rave about a product any more than I’ve raved about this face wash? Seriously, though. It’s so affordable, is all-natural, and works incredibly well. You get a ton of lather, without all the dryness of other gel cleansers, AND it smells like coconuts. Plus, it looks so pretty sitting on your sink or in your shower!
Read More: Rethink Your Cleansing Game
Simple Micellar Cleansing Water ($7.99)
I’ve skipped right over the Bioderma craze and went straight for this drugstore alternative. This cleansing water does a fantastic job of removing makeup from the skin without causing dryness or irritation. It has a really fresh scent, and is basically a lazy girl’s best friend. While I haven’t been using them long enough to justify putting them in a 2015 favorites post, the Simple Micellar Wipes are BOMB. I may even like them better than the original stuff (and that’s saying something).
Read More: A Full Face Routine in Under $100
LUSH Cup O’ Coffee ($10.95)
If you’re repulsed by the smell of coffee, this mask is probably not for you. However, if that is not the case, you seriously need to give this mask a try. It’s got kaolin clay to draw impurities out of your skin, and ground coffee beans to provide gentle exfoliation. This mask makes my skin so smooth and glowy, and the smell totally perks me up!
Read More: Masks and Peels for All Your Skin Concerns
Promise Organic Nourishing Coconut Milk Facial Cream with Mango ($14.99)
This new CVS exclusive brand is one I hope gets more attention in 2016 because I think it’s pretty excellent and currently flying under the radar. This moisturizer is made of all-natural ingredients and smells as yummy as the name suggests. I find that this makes my skin feel super soft and hydrated while keeping my skin looking clear and fresh.
Balance Me Congested Skin Serum ($30)
Speaking of clear skin, this serum was by far my favorite acne treatment product of 2015. That’s not to say that I have any less love for my Tea Tree Oil as a spot treatment, but this serum is wonderful for helping refine my pores over larger areas. It’s got a 99% natural formula and helps keep blackheads and pimples at bay without causing flaking and dryness.
Bath & Body
Dr. Teal’s Epsom Salt Soaking Solution ($4.99)
There are so, so many bath products that I love, and I could have easily listed off a ton of bubble bars and bath bombs that I can’t get enough of. But truly, that kind of stuff is the type of thing I only use on special occasions, while these bath salts I use multiple times a week. As I’ve said many times before, if you’ve never taken an epsom salt bath, you are seriously missing out. It does wonders for achey muscles, and this particular blend also has milk and honey to soften your skin.
Perlier White Almond Revitalizing Body Butter ($34.46, discontinued)
A body lotion that makes my skin feel extra soft and smells like Italian cookies? Yes, please! I slather myself with this from head to toe on the regular and absolutely love it. The formula is creamy and rich and sinks easily into your skin, and it smells hella delicious.
LUSH Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner ($33.95)
This was one of the splurgey-est purchases I made in 2015, but was totally worth every penny. This unique moisturizer is put on wet skin in the shower after cleansing and rinsed off (just like conditioner for your hair). It leaves you feeling baby soft and it smells like Rose Jam (my favorite LUSH scent ever).
Batiste Dry Shampoo ($7.99)
As someone who typically needs to wash her hair every day to keep it looking fresh, I’ve been on a mad hunt to find a dry shampoo that gives me second day wear without a greasy appearance. Behold, my new holy grail! This stuff is AMAZING. It actually makes my hair look clean, and gives it a bit of volume and texture without being too overly gritty. For the price it seriously cannot be beat.
Not Your Mother’s Dèjá Vu Do Style Extender ($7.99)
A new launch in 2015, this styling cream quickly became one of my must-have products. All you need is a dime sized dab to run through your hair and it not only decreases your blow dry time, but it also helps to keep your hair looking fresher longer. I’ve noticed that my second day hair always looks better after I used this opposed to days when I skip out. And it smells deliciously fruity (like juicy red apples and fresh berries) which is always a selling point to me.
Amika (mod)ern Curler & Clutch ($50, discontinued)
I very infrequently use curling irons in my hair, mostly because it’s incredibly time consuming and the payoff is usually sub par. My hair is SO STRAIGHT and most traditional curling irons fail at leaving a lasting curl in my hair. And then I tried this bad boy and everything changed! This curling iron is clipless, which I think helps me to get more of my hair in direct contact with the barrel and therefore have a more lasting curl. It also means not kinks or funny lines will be left behind!
The Wet Brush ($11.99)
When I think back to the days before I discovered the wet brush I realize how barbaric combing out my towel dried hair used to be. I could spend so much time working through knots with my comb and ripping my hair out of my head. But NO MORE! This plastic paddle brush works tangles out of wet hair with zero pain, and faster than any comb could imagine.
L’Oreal OleoTherapy Oil Infused Shampoo & Conditioner ($6.99, discontinued)
It’s been a few months since this duo has been in my shower, as I’ve been trying to test out some new formulas. However, of all the shampoo and conditioner pairings I tried in 2015, this one was probably my favorite. Unlike a lot of other drugstore shampoos, this one has a really thick texture that leaves your hair feeling silky soft. And the conditioner is super hydrating without making your hair look weighed down and greasy. As we move into the winter, if you’re looking for something to try to keep your hair soft and manageable after being exposed to the elements, this is definitely a great option.
Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray ($44)
Ahhh, the bottle of liquid gold. Considering the hefty price tag on this sucker you’d hope it’d be the stuff dreams are made of. Truly, though, this might be the best styling product I’ve ever laid my hands on. It adds instant texture and volume to your hair without any of the stiffness or stickiness you find with hairspray. And, unlike dry shampoo, there is zero white cast to be found, and no strange gritty texture that builds up in your roots. It’s basically like magic. Crazy expensive, delicious smelling magic.
Read More: Texturizing Sprays to Try
Fragrance & Nails
YSL Black Opium ($25)*
I became obsessed with this fragrance over the summer, and was super pumped to get the purse-sized spray for Christmas. This perfume is both feminine and sexy, with a mixture of floral and gourmand notes that I just can’t get enough of. If you’re a fan of Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb, you definitely should give this a whiff, as I think they have a very similar kind of vibe.
Replica Beach Walk ($25)*
I wore this rollerball to death in the summer months, as its just the perfect carefree fragrance for a warm, sunny day. With notes of bergamot, lemon, coconut milk, and musk, its just got the most creamy, fresh, delicious scent that is definitely reminiscent of summertime.
Read More: Beach Day (Minus the Getaway)
Julep Oxygen Smoothing Base Coat ($18)
This base coat seriously upped my mani game in 2015. It creates a matte white base that fills in any lines or ridges on your nail surface, and lets your colored polish glide on with incredible ease. I’ve noticed that some base coats are quite sticky, which doesn’t always play well with polishes that are already prone to streaking. Not the case with this! Even the trickiest of polish formulas always seem to go on better after I’ve used this, and they hold up quite well to chipping too!
Smith & Cult Nailed Lacquer in Psycho Candy ($18)
By far my favorite nail polish discovery of 2015 was Smith & Cult. Can we talk about how gorgeous the packaging is?? But aside from being an artistic masterpiece to proudly display on your vanity, the formula really is quite wonderful. Rich in pigmentation, easy to apply, and resistant to chips, this stuff is exactly what a luxury polish should be. I donned the shade Psycho Candy, a vibrant coral red, all spring and summer, but there are a ton of other gorgeous shades to choose from.
Essie Gel Setter Top Coat ($9.99)
This 2015 polish launch was definitely my favorite drugstore nail product of the year. It leaves your manicure with a super glossy finish, and is incredibly quick to dry. I don’t know how “plumped” or “gel like” any non UV cured polish really can be, but I definitely think this at least rivaled my coveted Nails Inc. Kensington Caviar Top Coat and Julep Freedom Polymer Top Coat in application and finish.
Read More: Essie Gel Setter Review