For better or worse, we have reached the end of the Best of 2014. Today we are focusing on Lips & Tips (aka Nails). This is probably my favorite, but most challenging category because I switch my lip and nail colors almost constantly. Having said that, these colors may not have been worn a ton, but they definitely had more frequent repeats than others. And I should also note that I’m focusing more on the color than the formula in this post. However, if I don’t like a formula, I’m not likely to wear the color very often either so these all have at worst, a decent formula. Enough of the chit chat, I bring you the Best of Lips & Tips for 2014!
I’ll start with what has probably been my favorite new release this year. I didn’t give these a try until maybe October, but from that point on they were practically the only lip colors I wore. They are the new Butter London Moisture Matte Lipsticks. I am not a huge fan of matte lipsticks, but the formula of these is incredible! They are incredibly comfortable and remain so all day long. They wear well too, but I’m not a huge fan of the color range. I love the two shades that I have, but the rest just don’t look that exciting to me. After just explaining that I was focusing on color not formula, I’ve managed to ramble on about a formula and not even mention the colors. J The two I have and adore are, Loved Up and Ruby Murray. They are both great Fall/Winter shades in that they are deep, berry-ish shades. They are absolutely stunning and I really cannot rave about the formula enough. Excellent job on the Moisture Matte Lipsticks!
|Loved Up & Ruby Murray |
My next favorite is unfortunately not available anymore. I feel kind of bad including it, but it was definitely a repeat offender in my makeup bag this year. It is the shade Damask
from Bite Beauty’s Deconstructed Rose Lipstick
collection. Again, the formula of these lipsticks is incredible
, but Damask is just such a nice, wearable pink that is pretty much always appropriate. To see swatches and learn more about these lipsticks, check out my post with all 4 shades here
. Love, love, love the Bite Beauty Lipstick
Over the Spring and Summer, my lipstick shades were much brighter and more colorful. I managed to step out of my comfort zone this year and go for some more orange-y toned shades. My favorite of the bunch was probably from the NYX Butter Lipsticksand it was the shade Fireball. I could not get enough of this shade in the Spring/Summer. The formula is ok, but the color is just a perfect dip-your-toes-in kind of orange. Not too opaque, but still definitely with good color payoff. And much to my surprise, I loved the way Fireball looked on my lips! The NYX Butter Lipstick in Fireball was definitely a winner this year!
Keeping with the Summer Lovin’, I could not stop reaching for a lipstick from the Endless Summercollection by Lipstick Queen. It is the shade Stoked and it is another one that’s a bit out of my comfort zone. It’s kind of a pinky-coral that, like the Butter Lipstick, is a bit more sheer. There’s definitely still plenty of color there, but it’s not 100% in-your-face opaque. I definitely prefer that when going for a shade I’m not quite accustomed to. I should add that the Lipstick Crayon in “Chase” is quite similar in color and another absolute staple this past Summer, but the Lipstick edged it out by just a hair. The Lipstick Queen lipsticks that I have tried are all quite comfortable with good lasting power and this year I not only fell in love with the brand, but Stokedwas in heavy rotation. J
Finally on the lip color front is one of the Lip Crayons from Burt’s Bees. Actually, I have a number of favorite shades (I’ll mention them all), but one really stood out as a great every day kind of pinkish-nude shade. It is the color Sedona Sands. Not gonna lie, I actually thought this color would look awful on me from online swatches, but much to my surprise it is the color I have worn the most! JIt is a matte formula that’s not the creamiest, but it’s not uncomfortable in any way either. It is by no means my favorite formula, but I really love pretty much all of the shades – they’re kind of unusual as well. My other favorites are Redwood Forest – another one that I thought would look terrible, but it’s a gorgeous brownish-reddish hybrid that totally works – and Napa Vineyard, which is an appropriately named wine shade. The formula of the Burt’s Bees Lip Crayons is nothing spectacular, but the colors are truly worth checking out. Sedona Sands is my perfect nude and I absolutely love it!
|Clockwise from Left Center: Sedona Sands, Redwood Forest & Napa Vineyard |
|Sedona Sands, Redwood Forest & Napa Vineyard |
|Sedona Sand & Redwood Forest |
One more notable mention more for formula than a specific shade are The Body Shop Colour Crush Lipsticks and Lip Shines. I really like these formulas. They are both very creamy, hydrating and so comfortable on the lips. There are tonsof shades to choose from, though the online swatches aren’t terribly accurate. The Lipsticks are just that – opaque lipsticks, while the Lip Shines are a bit more sheer. The Body Shop was definitely on point in 2014 with their lipstick formulas.
|Clockwise from Left Center: Lip Shine in Fuchsia Flirt, Lipstick in Coral |
Blush & Lipstick in Hot Date
|Lip Shine in Fuchsia Flirt, Lipsticks in Coral Blush & Hot Date |
|Hot Date |
So, now we move into nails. Since my nails would be even more of a disaster without a base coat, I will start with one that I absolutely cannot live without! It is the new Nails Inc. NailKale Base Coat
. I won’t waffle on about it too long since I reviewed it here
, but it is infused with Kale – kinda weird, I know – and it really does seem to add some strength to my brittle, peeling nails. Aside from the gorgeous packaging, it has what is my perfect brush too – paddle shaped in a medium width. So perfect! It also dries really fast which I appreciate. Anything to speed up the manicure process is good in my book! So excellent work on the NailKale Base Coat
, Nails Inc
Sticking with the basics, I found a surprisingly excellent Top Coat
this year from Flower Beauty
! I had been hunting for an affordable top coat that actually dried quickly, was glossy and didn’t flake off immediately. Well, Flower managed to achieve it! My most important criteria was the dry time and this stuff dries fast
. I feel like within a minute or two, I can actually touch my polish – gently – and not worry about it smudging. That might be an exaggeration, but basically by the time I finish one hand, it seems dry to a gentle touch. To read more about it, check out my review here
. Absolutely love
the Flower Beauty Top Coat
Getting on to the colors, I wore this combination for Christmas – I know, a late entry, but it’s flippin’ fantastic! – and I am so in love that I’m trying to convince myself why I shouldn’t paint it again already. (Too late. I did it!) It starts with a rather unremarkable color that is Zoya’s Kristen and is topped with the most amazing of toppers – the Snowflake Effect Polish in Whitechapel from Nails Inc. Oh. My. God. So beautiful and so perfect for Winter. It’s like a sparkly snowy day on your nails. The greyish blue underneath the white bar glitter and microglitters in white and iridescent-y gold is just unbelievably beautiful. You need Zoya’s Kristen and Nails Inc. Whitechapel for the frosty Winter weather.
|Zoya Kristen |
I’ll do a few quick mentions of some of my other favorite shades this year. My perfect Fall shade came from Pacifica and it is the shade Red Red Wine. It is such a beautiful deep reddish-wine polish. The formula is fantastic as well! For the Summer, I loved Illamasqua’s Collide which has almost a jelly finish in a neon pick hue. Really pretty and so summery. I also really enjoyed Butter London’s Stroppy this Summer for it’s crazy purple-y fuchsia glittery-ness. Also a definite standout. Finally I have to include a baby blue because I was obsessed with baby blues in 2014. My favorite was probably Deborah Lippmann’s Blue Orchid, though Priti NYC’s Baby Blue Eyes and Julie G’s Santorini (a limited edition shade) were also fantastic. I am such a total nail polish junkie that my favorites will probably change in 10 minutes, but as of this moment, these were the standout shades of 2014. J
|Clockwise from Left: Butter London Stroppy, Illamasqua Collide, Pacifica |
Red Red Wine & Deborah Lippmann Blue Orchid
|Butter London Stroppy |
|Illamasqua Collide |
|Pacifica Red Red Wine |
|Priti NYC Baby Blue Eyes |
I guess we have reached the end of my Best of 2014 Series. I could include a lot more products, but each installment is plenty long enough as it is! I hope you’ve enjoyed revisiting 2014 with me and will follow along some more during 2015. Things are still a bit crazed in my world so I’m not sure how regular my posting will be, but I’m going to do my best. This blog is a nice way to escape into something a bit more fun and relaxing, so it’s definitely a nice escape and a much needed break from the daily grind. I wish you all the best for the coming year…well, the current year now…and I thank you so, so much for coming along on this little blog journey with me. I hope I will see you again soon for my next post…whatever it may be! J