As you know, we love a good beauty find here at The Glow Up, which is why we were seriously excited that Glamour magazine dropped its annual Beauty Awards list Monday. Aside from being one of the longest-running fashion magazines around (79 years and counting, to be exact), it’s also one of the more inclusive, featuring women of various colors, sizes and ages long before its competitors caught on.
Matter of fact, we were pleased to see that its judging committee featured several of our faves on the beauty and style scene, including Felicia Walker Benson, Lacy Redway, Patrice Grell Yursik and Sai de Silva. We were equally thrilled to see a few of our favorite products validated by Glamour’s list, which covered both designer and drugstore finds in skin care, hair care and makeup—even organic offerings.
And because we love a bargain, let’s start where we get the most bang for our buck: at the drugstore. While we love a good designer splurge, there are some low-cost products folks are simply sleeping on, and these are the ones both Glamour and The Glow Up agreed on:
- Simple Water Boost Micellar Water, $9: You want to get super clean in a few swipes? This is the product. Micellar water made big waves in 2017, but Simple’s ... simple formula is among our favorites for all types of skin, containing no fragrances, color or harsh chemicals.
- Olay Eyes Deep Hydrating Eye Gel, $30: This pick may seem equally old-school and expensive for the drugstore, but for tired eyes (Am I the only one who has those? Should it be called “editor’s eyes”?), this is an instant fix, and just a dab will do ya. Trust, it’s worth it.
- Dove Invisible Dry Spray Antiperspirant, $5: Yeah, yeah, we know ... Dove messed up big time in 2017. But we’re not ones to throw out the baby with the bath wash, so to speak, and the good this brand has done and continues to do—including inclusive advertising, hiring and ongoing self-esteem workshops for underprivileged black and brown girls—should not be overshadowed by an admittedly really stupid mistake.
That said, their Invisible Dry Spray is one of the best antiperspirants around and literally keeps us looking (and smelling) clean in our white tees ... and black tees ... and red tees ...
- L’Oreal Paris Brow Stylist Definer, $9: So yeah, this is my daily go-to for my brows, which never quite grew in any glamorous fashion even before I plucked them into En Vogue-level submission in my high school and college years. Aside from the brush at one end, the dense angled retractable product at the other is never too red, too gray, too waxy or too creamy. It goes on realistically and stays all day. Enough said.
- CoverGirl LashBlast Volume, $9: LashBlast has eclipsed GreatLash as our go-to drugstore brand, and for good reason: Every variation in this line gives us the big, lush lashes we’ve been looking for (or, at least, I, who have absolutely anemic lashes, have). Two nonclumpy coats, and we’re good to go!
On to the organics. As much as we hate the price point, one product line Glamour really got right was Tata Harper, who started her skin care in her own garden. This is a bite-the-bullet purchase, but I’ve personally been known to hoard samples to give myself minifacials on the road.
- Tata Harper Clarifying Moisturizer, $105: Damn it, I wish this stuff wasn’t so good, but for my now confused, middle-aged, “I want to dry up and break out” skin, this stuff has worked wonders. Sorry, not sorry.
- Tata Harper Clarifying Mask, $68: Also, and as well.
For curly and textured hair (first of all, can we give Glamour big ups for realizing this deserved its own category?), there were a couple of picks that hit the high and low of our budgets, but did equally amazing things for our curls:
- Alterna Caviar Infinite Color Hold Shampoo & Conditioner, $34 each: Yep, not cheap, but great—especially for aging or overworked hair. Somehow, this miracle potion tricks my follicles into believing they’re at least a decade younger. And who doesn’t want that?
- Dark and Lovely Au Naturale Anti-Shrinkage Clumping Curl Clay Cleanser, $10: Look, shrinkage is a real issue, people (take that however you want to take it), and we’re grateful that someone on Dark and Lovely’s chemistry team saw this problem and sought to solve it. This product truly puts the coils in curls and gives definition where frizz wants to flourish. We’re here for it.
- Dove Refresh+Care Unscented Dry Shampoo, $4: Yep, Dove came so nice, they made it twice, and we promise you, if you’re don’t already, dry shampoo is the one product you should include in your arsenal. Workout hair? Dry shampoo. Need volume at the roots? Dry shampoo. Too much product weighing you down? Dry shampoo. And for $4, can you really afford not to experiment a bit?
For makeup, we only found two that found us completely in agreement with Glamour, at both ends of our price range:
- Giorgio Armani Power Fabric Foundation, $64: Nope, there aren’t 40 shades, there are 20. But this range was formulated by a black woman, makeup genius Pat McGrath, and eight of those 20 shades are definitively for brown-skinned girls—even those with very deep hues (McGrath herself is a healthy chocolate). But the finish? Absolutely sublime. This is truly fashion for your face.
- Maybelline New York Fit Me! Matte + Poreless, $8: But if you want 40 shades at one-eighth the price, this should be your jam. Simple, silky and easily accessible, this foundation is perfect for every day and gets oil immediately under control. And there truly is a shade for everybody.
So there you have it: the faves that The Glow Up and Glamour agree should be in your beauty arsenal. That said, trust that we have a few faves of our own, so stay tuned for The Glow Up Beauty Awards later this year. In the meantime, you can check out Glamour’s full list in its April issue, or right here. Happy shopping!