My Holy Grail Face Products

October 22, 2014

I think this is a question that all beauty bloggers must get asked at least once in their blogging life. What are your holy grail beauty products? In case you’re unfamiliar with the term, it’s basically the products that are your favourites, the ones you constantly use, repurchase and essentially can’t live without. I’m a budget blogger, yes, and there are loads of budget brands that offer amazing products, yes. I even have a few on my list, but you will also see a few “urge to splurge” items and I’m almost certain that these have cheaper counterparts but I’m currently using and loving the originals. If you do have any dupes for the “high-end” options then please share them with me in the comments section. I’m always looking for the best budget buys!

1. TheBalm Mary-Lou Manizer Luminizer – She’s one heck of a lady that sure knows how to multi-task. She highlights, dazzles, shimmers and shines. The texture is smooth and soft and very pigmented. This isn’t chunky or gritty. If we’re comparing Mary-Lou Manizer to other highlighters then she can be described as “The One”. The perfect champagne colour that in my opinion can work with almost all skin tones. I prefer to use a small brush and highlight specific areas like my brow bone, inner eye corner, cheekbones and cupids bow. Also, just take a second to look at TheBalm’s adorable packaging and insanely cute/clever name. You can purchase Mary-Lou Manizer from Feel Unique for R284.10 (free shipping) 

2. MAC Studio Sculpt Foundation – I already mentioned this little beauty in “My 5 Favourite MAC Products” and now I’m going to mention it again. I’ve used so many foundations. I mean at least 100 in my makeup-wearing life and this gem from MAC still remains my favourite. I find the consistency to be smooth and the gel-base makes application a breeze, be it with fingers, brushes or a beauty blender. My skin feels flawless when I wear it and it offers me medium coverage, which means I cut down on the amount of concealer I use. My face when I buy a new tube and my face when it’s almost finished . You can purchase the MAC studio sculpt foundation in-store or online for R350.

3. Benefit the POREfessional Primer -The day that Benefit cosmetics left South Africa was a very sad day for me. I’ve always loved their products, packaging and cute names. I remember Woolworths had a 75% sale and I might have gone a bit mad. If you like your makeup to last for a full day then this benefit primer is the way to go. This silky, lightweight balm definitely makes a difference in the staying power of my makeup. I normally only haul this out on special occasions. I need it to last for as long as possible! This creates a smooth canvas to work on and ensures that your foundation looks more natural and smoother. It mattifies your skin and can even be worn over foundation to touch up. Locally you can buy Benefit’s the POREfessional at All4Women for a whopping R867. There are also some international online stores that stock Benefit like ASOS (R432.93 with free worldwide shipping) and Ebay.

4. The Body Shop Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder –The best thing about this bronzer is the matt finish. There is zilch shimmer and that’s the way I like my bronzers. The colour options are also extremely natural. I finally have a bronzer that doesn’t leave my pale skin looking orange, muddy or ‘dirty’. The formula is enriched with honey and feels soft and silky on your skin.  It can be used perfectly for contouring or to give your skin a healthy glow. There are a few must-have makeup items from TBS and this one is definitely top of that list. You can purchase the honey bronze bronzer from The Body Shop for R185. 

5. MAC Mineralize SkinFinish Natural – Another MAC product that I’ve mentioned before. I might not like or use everything from MAC, but I have my favourites and I’m fiercely loyal. Since discovering this powder I refuse to use anything else. I think the MAC MSFN has ruined all other powders for me. I’m like a dog with a (very luxurious) bone. It completely mattifies my skin, but still leaves it looking like skin. So no flat, mask like finish here. Application is semi-sheer and it almost melts into your skin creating a soft, diffused, satin finish.  I think this even has new packaging, but I stand corrected. You can purchase MAC mineralize skinfisnish natural in-store or online for R350.


6. Bobbi Brown Corrector – When it comes to High-end makeup brands my favourite hands-down is Bobbi Brown. I love their quality, packaging and products. My first dalliance with Bobbi Brown was when I was introduced to their corrector a few years ago. It was love at first sight (application?). If you suffer from dark under eye circles then a good corrector is a must. It’s almost like a lightweight concealer with pink/salmon undertones that you apply before applying your concealer. The Bobbi brown correcter immediately picks up tired looking eyes and helps diminish any darkness under the eyes. It has a creamy consistency that melts into your skin. It’s basically a dream I never want to wake up from. This little beauty gem can be purchased for +- R270 at selected Edgars stores as well as stand alone Bobbi Brown stores.

7. Catrice Camouflage Cream – Yes, I’m mentioning this budget beauty once again. I honestly can’t get enough of this creamy camouflage cream. It hides my dark circles like no other and stays put for most of the day. It’s very pigmented and can definitely pass as a budget dupe for Benefit’s Boi-ing concealer. This is industrial strength concealer so use sparingly. You can purchase Catrice products from Dis-Chem for R52.95.

Benefit’s Boi-ing concealer