Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Beauty 2015 I: Best Beauty Launches of 2015

With the new year upon us, it's a time many pause and reflect on what has happened in the past year and what they would like to happen in the one that is just beginning. I didn't feel the desire to do a recap post on the year and this blog but, suffice it to say, it saw change and progress as always. I began working with lots of new brands, went to amazing events, put lots of products on my face, met lovely people, attended my first fashion week, etc, etc. As a result of all this madness and all these new PR contacts, I tried out more beauty products than ever this year and was fortunate enough to be invited to some of the biggest launches and given samples that afforded me the opportunity to try out more things than I would have been able to otherwise.

Basically, what I'm try to say is, I've personally tried a lot of the year's beauty launches and feel that I am, therefore, able to round up some of the best ones as a result. Here are the things that rocked my 2015 and will be carried over into 2016.


Urban Decay are best known for their eyeshadow palettes but their full line is also home to many a cult favourite. This past year birthed some new icons, particularly when it comes to lip products. I already discussed the products that I'm about to list here in my Winter Lip Edit but I want to briefly reiterate why they rock for anyone who hasn't read that post. First off, is one of the new matte formula Revolution Lipsticks, which were launched this winter, in the shade Bad Blood (€19.00). These lipsticks are a magic formula that gives a matte finish but are rich and creamy enough that you don't feel as though your lips are being utterly drained of any moisture and that they don't catch on any pre-existing dry skin from winter weather harshness. Basically, all the nice points of a matte lip without the downsides. 

I also have one of the 24/7 Glide-On Lip Pencils (€18.50), which were launched before summer, in the same shade which is actually a slightly lighter colour but both are similar berryish, deeper reds. The two products look lovely together and make for some serious staying power as a pair but also work well separately. The pencil, on its own, feels and looks lighter and less intense but is equally pretty.

Also a favourite are the recently released Urban Decay Revolution glosses (€19.00). Glosses that are super-pigmented and infused with lovely ingredients, these products give the colour of a liquid lipstick, the shine of a gloss and the sensation of a balm. They're pretty magic. I was a big fan of  Apocalypse and Big Bang - both shades are intense purplish colours with the latter being pinker and specked with glitter and the former being deep and a little Goth, in the best possible way. I can't reccommend them highly enough as they even managed to convert me - a serious lipgloss anti-fan - just remember that these require more careful application as they are so pigmented that straying off the lip even a fraction will result in disaster.




Other than my serious love for Urban Decay lip products, one other product from another brand managed to capture my heart. Chanel's LĂ©vres Scintillantes Glossimer Lipgloss (€27.00), in the shade Allegria, came into my life at the very end of the year as a gift and I instantly fell for it. Since I'd been converted to glosses thanks to Urban Decay, I went into the relationship hopeful and found a pigmented gloss in an exceptionally pretty shade which sits beautifully on the skin and blends out perfectly for creating a gradiated Korean lip look. While this product isn't a new one, the shade is Limited Edition and I felt that merited being included in this post.


Another favourite launch from Urban Decay (they really killed it this year, didn't they?) has to be their Brow Tamer (€18.50). I've already reviewed it in detail and ranted about it multiple times but the real proof here is that it immediately kicked all the other tinted brow gels out of my make-up bag. And that remains the case.

Of course, I can't end all this talk of Urban Decay without mentioning my, hands down, favourite launch from them (and probably anyone, really) this year: the Gwen Stefani palette (€46.00). I'm not a palette fiend as some might be but it's like the woman personally inquired of me what I would like in one. Seriously. There's the neutrals, yeah, but then the pretty pink of Harajuku for a girlier, sweeter look, shimmers perfect for accentuating my aegyo sal, gold and blue for braver moments and a dark brown and intense black for liners. I don't really need any other eye products if I have it on hand. Plus: Gwen Stefani. Plus, plus: that packaging tho. Need I say more?



It would also be remiss of me not to mention Billion Dollar Brows, who officially launched into Irish and UK retailers in November after previously only being available in salons. I could talk about the whole line but a particular favourite, which has been cracked out for multiple friends and family members now, is the Brow Buddy Kit (€31.00) which includes their innovative Brow Buddy tool that allows you to measure your brows to perfection and shows where you need to pluck or fill in, a pencil for marking it out and a step-by-step guide


When it comes to skincare, the most exciting launch for me, by far, was the Clarisonic Smart Profile (€249.99). I've been using it for months now and, overall, my skin looks visibly much more refined and smooth. It even looks okay under the horrid lighting in the bathroom at work which makes everyone look terrible an saps all self-confidence away in seconds. Hormonal breakouts do continue to plague my existence but this product is a genius tool not an actual miracle-worker so what can you do?


Another skincare fave was the Hydra-V line from Artistry which is uber-luxe and makes winter look like a wimp in the face of my skin's moisture levels. I was particularly fond of the Artistry Hydra-V Nourishing Gel Cream (€40.75) which I have tragically just run out of...It was my go-to daytime moisturiser this winter as it packs a serious punch but its cream-gel formula means that you don't have to look like an oil slick all day to keep moisturised. Sigh, if only it came in an industrial-sized tube...


Finally, I want to give a shout-out to the new range of Primark/Penneys make-up brushes. I got some at the press day to play with and while I've yet to try them all out, I'm majorly impressed so far! Pretty and sleek in black with rose gold accents, many are double-ended maximising value and make-up bag space. Prices begin at just €1.50 so they're really very reasonable. They've also seriously improved. The brushes are fluffy and soft yet denser (still a little bit rough around the edges but, at that price point, you really can complain) than previous incarnations. The double-ended eyeshadow and eyeliner brush, in particular, is amazing. It blends out beautifully and having the liner brush together on one is really handy for me as that's all I really need. Seriously, if you're in need of new make-up brushes these are well worth a shot.

Now, the astute among you may have notice items in the background of the pictures which were not mentioned. These are items that aren't new to the market, but to me, and were favourites of mine in 2015 but I felt they warranted a separate post to keep things in order here. Look out for that next post as it has deets about a lot of cult faves that I tried, and was pleasantly surprised by, this year.

That's all for now, folks!

(All of these items, bar the Chanel lipgloss, were press samples. However, I was not paid to write about any of them and all opinions expressed are entirely my own.)


Liked this post? Want more?

Follow me here using google friend connect or bloglovin.

Or follow me on tumblr - twitter - facebook - instagram.

1 comment:

  1. oooh love the glosses. Thanks for showing the colours in the UD Palette