Favorites of 2020: Beauty & Fashion

Happy New Year, y’all! I hope you had a great weekend and a wonderful start to 2021! In case you missed it, last Monday I shared Part 1 of my 2020 favorites focusing on everything home and lifestyle related. Now I’m moving on to Part 2, which includes all of my most loved fashion and beauty products over the past year. I seem to have kept my makeup to a minimum, just focusing on the basics, while also making a few key changes to improve my hair and skincare routines.

When it comes to fashion, I’m all about comfort which is why these low-rise cut off jean shorts from Zumiez have been a favorite for the past two years. They’re super stretchy and were on sale for less than $25 each! Whether I chose to pair it with a t-shirt or tank top, these are pretty much all I wore from April to October.

One of my first favorites from this year, and something I’m getting a ton of use out of right now is this Columbia sherpa jacket. I found it at TJ Maxx and absolutely love it because it keeps me super warm, but isn’t heavy or bulky at all. It’s furry on both the inside and the outside, and I love that the white color matches with almost anything!

The past few years, I’ve gotten my glasses online from GlassesUSA and had been very happy with them. However, the last pair (Pam style from Amelia E. brand) I ordered were very cheaply made. They broke after a few months and so did the replacement pair of the same style!

My prescription needed to be updated anyway, so when I did that I ordered these Fossil glasses (style FOS 7033) from my eye doctor’s office. They’re a little smaller and darker with a slightly thicker frame than my last pair, but I love them! The shape is so cute and I think the frame size fits my face perfectly.

Last year must have just been the year for all my glasses to break because I also had a pair of metal rose gold sunglasses from Target break when I pulled them out of my purse one day. To replace those, I bought another pink mirrored style from Target with a pink plastic frame instead. They’re a little more chunky than I would like, but I love the color and they do a great job of fully blocking the sun from my eyes.

During the Summer, I spent a lot of time outside and every time I did I made sure to apply an after sun lotion at the end of the day. I went through a few bottles, but my favorite was the Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration Weightless After Sun Lotion. It has ribbons of lotion and aloe to soothe the skin, it absorbs very quickly, and the Coconut Papaya scent smells absolutely delicious!

Speaking of delicious smelling products, Eos never disappoints in the scent department. I’ve been applying their Shea Better Hand Cream before bed and it’s done a great job at moisturizing my hands, even during all this dry Winter weather. Even my husband loves it! The Coconut scent was great, but the Pomegranate Raspberry is definitely my favorite!

Skincare has become one of my top priorities over the past few years and dermarolling was one of my favorite new discoveries of 2020. It looks very intimidating and the thought of rolling a bunch of needles on my face had me freaked out, but the results have been unbelievable!

I started out with a .25mm roller, but the .5mm is definitely the size to use for correcting texture and fine lines. I use this only once every other week and have been able to eliminate all harsh chemicals, like retinol, out of my routine. It’s very easy to use and doesn’t hurt at all!

It’s very important to apply gentle products onto the skin after dermarolling and one of my favorites has been the CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion. Just like my favorite Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser, this lotion is super simple with no harsh ingredients. It provides a ton of moisture to the skin, but doesn’t feel heavy or make my already oily face any more shiny.

Pixi Beauty released a new Hydrating Milky Collection at the beginning of 2020 and although I did enjoy the entire line, the Hydrating Milky Serum topped with the Hydrating Milky Lotion were definitely my two favorites. This combination feels so luxurious on the skin and has such a calming scent. I was surprised with how well these paired with my oily skin!

In the Fall, I finally made the decision to switch to sulfate free hair products. I avoided it for so long because I was worried about what the transition phase might be like, but it wasn’t actually that bad at all. I stopped using all other products and started exclusively washing with the As I Am Coconut Cowash instead.

I was super nervous about using a cowash with my extremely oily scalp, but that hasn’t been an issue at all. This particular cowash is great because it includes specific cleansers, so the hair still feels squeaky clean when rinsing it out. I’ve repurchased this many times already and am loving the convenience of washing my hair with just one product!

The only thing I don’t really enjoy about the cowash, and some other sulfate free products, is the lack of lather. It feels very strange on my fingers to scrub my hair without any suds, so I got this scalp massager on Amazon and that has completely solved all the issues! It does take a little longer to scrub my head when using this, but it works great and even prevents my nail polish from chipping!

I’ve always liked the Touch in Sol No Poreblem Primer, but last year I really fell in love with its pore blurring properties. I definitely went the more simple route on the face makeup all year and this made such a difference in improving the appearance of my skin’s texture. It’s not very good for controlling oil, but it does improve the blendability of concealer.

Concealer is pretty much the only coverage type of product I wore at all last year and the Trèstique Crayon Concealer in Bisque was by far my favorite option! I’ve never liked crayon concealers in the past, but this formula is so magical that I was left completely speechless after the first application. It blends in effortlessly, it’s incredibly lightweight, and it provides a ton of coverage with a natural skin-like finish.

The Cover FX Perfector Face Palette was definitely my most used face palette throughout 2020. A lot of times I just applied my face makeup with some mascara, skipping eyeshadow completely. I love the formula of these blush and bronzer shades, they’re the perfect match for my skin tone, they’re great for doubling as eyeshadow, and I love the huge mirror!

My second favorite bronzer and blush combo are both from Neutrogena. The bronzer is in the shade Sunkissed and the blush is called Vibrant. These look so natural on the skin and are incredibly easy to blend. The best thing about this formula, and the Cover FX palette, is the absence of talc. Talc is an ingredient known for causing breakouts and is one of the main things I try to avoid in powdered face products.

It’s not very often that I get excited about makeup brushes, but I’ve been obsessed with these two from Alamar Cosmetics! The Bronzer brush is flat and dense with a few little nubs for better blending. I actually like using that to apply my blush and prefer the angle of Complexion brush for bronzer. Both of these are super soft and have been through many washes without shedding any bristles.

My number one most used eyeshadow of 2020 is definitely Ofra’s Bliss. I’ve had it for a while, but it wasn’t until last year that I realized how flattering it actually is on the eyes. The formula is buttery smooth and the amount of pigmentation it provides is just unbelievable. This specific color is beautiful paired with a brown smokey eye, but I also loved wearing it by itself - as shown in my Two-Step Eye Makeup tutorial.

Elf released these Bite-Size eyeshadow quads pretty early in 2020 and they’ve received a ton of love across the beauty community. They’re only $3 each and the quality is amazing. I kept going back for more shade options, but the Cream & Sugar palette (shown first in the photo below) is still my favorite. It has everything I need to create a full eye look and is the most versatile in its colors.

This Violet Voss Essentials palette was one of the more surprising favorites of mine last year. I had always heard great things about this brand’s eyeshadow formula and although I was excited about an “Essentials” palette, I was a little thrown off by the pops of color. Besides the bright green and orange, I’ve gotten a lot of use from all the other shadows. The pinky purple shades are fun, but my favorite color combo for every day is Cream, Sand, Cinnamon, and Black.

These Wet n Wild 10-pan palettes have been in all of my yearly favorites ever since they were released. They’re super affordable at only $5 each, the formula is insanely pigmented, they’re easy to blend, and there are a ton of colors to choose from. These are my go-to palettes when I don’t want anything fussy because I know the quality is good and they have all the colors I need. I just can’t get enough of them!

Although I didn’t discover a new favorite mascara last year, I did finally find a good (and affordable) lash serum that actually works! I’m in love with this Maybelline Lash Sensational Boosting Serum! I started noticing results within a few weeks and by the time I finished the first tube, even my husband could tell a difference! I’ve already repurchased it a few times and it will definitely continue to be a favorite going into the new year.

I didn’t wear many colored lip products during 2020, but I did find a new favorite lip balm! When battling dry, chapped lips I learned that petroleum based products weren’t helping at all because they create a protective barrier rather than absorb into the skin.

The Eos stick balms were one of the only products I could find without petroleum and the difference is noticeable immediately after application! The formula is very lightweight, but also incredibly nourishing. I prefer the stick form more than their spheres and am already on my third tube. So far, the Strawberry Sorbet scent is my favorite!

My last two favorites are for the nails. Seche Vite used to be the best top coat, but I got so annoyed with it gooping up halfway through the bottle that I started looking for other options. I remembered using this INM Out the Door top coat years ago and decided to give that another try since it was half the price.

Although it doesn’t leave as glossy of a shine as Seche Vite does, it also doesn’t get thick and goopy over time. It dries in a matter of seconds and does a great job at preventing the nail polish from chipping. This has saved me so much time and it makes me feel much better knowing I’m not wasting half of the bottle!

I never thought buying the name brand nail polish remover would make any difference until Walmart was sold out of the store brand and I had to buy Cutex instead. I can’t believe how much faster this removes the nail polish! I was used to scrubbing the polish off of my nails, but when I use the Cutex brand I can have the polish removed from both hands (with minimal effort) in two minutes. Even with glitter nail polish, this stuff is magical!

While I thought I kept my makeup to a minimum this year, I clearly had many new favorites! My two biggest changes were introducing the derma roller into my skincare routine and making the decision to eliminate sulfate products from my hair care. I’m still amazed by both of those results! I’m also totally obsessed with my new glasses and very grateful for all the time I got to spend soaking up the sun - something I definitely hope to continue in this new year!

XO ♥ Christina ♥

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