Hi, friends! Happy July! Instead of doing my usual Monthly Favorites post for June, I decided it would be fun to round up my absolute favorite products from the first half of the year.
If you haven’t seen it already, be sure to check out my favorite luxury/high-end products from the first half of the year: Mid-Year Favorites: Luxury Edition
Today’s post will be focused on my favorite drugstore/affordable products from this year, so far. As with the Luxury Edition, this list will only include my ULTIMATE favorites of the products I’ve tried in 2018 (or at the very latest, the ending of 2017).
So, without further ado, let’s get started!
Affiliate links may be used in this post. You can read my full disclosure here.
Also, any time you are planning on making an online purchase, don’t forget to use Ebates! Use Ebates every time you order something online so you can get a bit of your money back! (Some stores even offer in-store cash back.) Sephora, Ulta, and many more makeup stores participate in Ebates. I’ve made over $500 in cash back from Ebates since I started under 2 years ago and I literally only buy makeup LOL so if you’re not using it, you’re totally missing out! I wrote a review on Ebates when I first started using it here.Sign up HERE FOR FREE AND GET A $10 BONUS after you make your first qualifying purchase using Ebates!
Physician’s Formula – Butter Bronzer in Bronzer (~$8-15)
Even though the Butter Bronzer from Physician’s Formula is not a 2018 addition to my makeup addition, the shade Bronzer is! Up until a few months ago, I was using the shade Light Bronzer, but it got destroyed in my luggage while traveling. :(
I recently purchased the shade Bronzer because I’ve been feeling a more sun-kissed look lately and I’ve been wanting to get away from the ‘pale’ look I often have LOL. Knowing that I already love the formula of the Butter Bronzer, I figured it was a safe bet to get it in the shade Bronzer while I experiment with darker bronzers.
I absolutely love it. It’s no wonder why so many people love this bronzer. It’s a pretty universal shade (unless you’re at the extreme end of either side of the spectrum), it’s SO easy to blend out, and you can definitely build it up for a darker bronze without getting any weird streakiness or splotches.
AND it smells heavenly. Similar to the Marc Jacobs O! Mega Bronzer I mentioned in my Luxury Edition, it has the most amazing coconut scent you could imagine. It isn’t strong or overpowering in any way, it’s just GOOD. It sounds weird, but sometimes I just like to open it and smell it.
Maybelline NY – FitMe! Matte and Poreless Powder in Natural Beige 220 (~$5-8)
First seen in: January Favorites
I know, I know, pressed powder is definitely not the most exciting makeup item to talk about, but it’s very important! It’s something that you totally need to have in your makeup collection.
I like to use a pressed foundation powder to brush away excess loose powder after baking my under-eye area and to blend the liquid foundation down my neck. I really like this foundation because it adds a bit of coverage, mattifies and helps make your foundation look seamless, and it’s great for touch-ups.
I like to have this powder handy in my purse, because it’s perfect as a blotting powder to touch-up a bit of shine, without making your foundation look cakey.
On days that I don’t want to put on a full face of makeup, but I also don’t want to look sick (bare-faced=sick-looking Liana), I’ll use just concealer and this powder as my foundation. It’ll even out my skin tone enough to ensure I won’t scare anyone into thinking I’m half dead.
Flower Beauty – Shimmer and Strobe Highlighting Palette (~$12-14)
First seen in: April Favorites
Guys, this highlighting palette absolutely blew my mind when I first tried it. It’s definitely one of the brightest, most blinding highlighting palettes I have.
The formula is my favorite type of formula for highlighters – it’s really softly pressed. That means that a lot of powder might fly up if you hit it with a brush kind of roughly. But, because of that very reason, you get a super bright and pigmented highlight with one stroke. You’ll never have the problem of not being able to see your highlight with this palette.
The formula really reminds me of Ofra’s highlighter formula, so if you’re a fan of those, you’ll love this palette!
Morphe Brushes x Bretman Rock – Babe in Paradise Highlighting Palette ($29)
First seen in: April Favorites
I never really know what to categorize Morphe as because I wouldn’t consider it luxury, but at $29 for this palette, their price point is higher than what you’d expect at a drugstore. But, I definitely think it’s affordable, especially for a 6-shade palette and compared to luxury brands.
I was so happy for Bretman Rock when this collaboration came out! Being from Hawaii (he’s also from Hawaii), I kind of had a proud mama moment like, “Yesss girl, you go and show the world what Hawaii is made of!” Many of the shade names are words that you’d only know if you’re from Hawaii, so I thought it was really cute that he chose those names.
All of the shades are so creamy and beautiful, even though I can only really use 3 out of the 6 shades – Vaygation, Mahu, and Get Lei’d. But, that’s the thing with many palettes – they’re made so everyone of all skin tones can use at least one shade. That’s where you have to think if it’s really worth the money to get a palette if you’re not going to use every shade. For this palette, using 3 shades for $29 is still worth the money in my books. Plus, I can use the other shades for eyeshadow, so they’re definitely not going to waste.
Pixi Beauty – Eye Define Waterline Pencil in Tightline Black ($14)
c/o Pixi Beauty
First seen in: April Favorites
I never really paid much attention to Pixi Beauty – I don’t really know why, just none of their products really caught my attention. And it doesn’t help that the Walgreens that I frequent in Maui doesn’t carry Pixi… Walgreens Kahului, what up with that?!
Anyway, Pixi Beauty so kindly sent me a whole box of their eyeliners and lash products, so I finally had the chance to really try out some of their products. GUYS, their eyeliners are so good! This liner is meant for the waterline so it stays there ALL DAY and it applies so smoothly and it's SO BLACK. I was so shocked the first time I tried it.
This pencil is now my everyday pencil for my waterline. Yes, I wear black liner on my waterline every day – I just love a more smoky/sultry look. However, if you are looking for a brightening liner instead, Pixi makes the exact same pencil in a cream color and it’s just as amazing.
Milani – Baked Blush in Luminoso (~6-8)
I know I’m a little late to the party with this blush, but hey, I got there eventually! It’s no wonder so many people rave about this blush – it’s absolutely gorgeous. The shade Luminoso is like a peachy pink with a bit of gold shimmer in it.
It’s commonly referred to as a dupe for the NARS Orgasm blush (which is also one of my favorites), and I’d have to totally agree with that. Luminoso may be a little more peachy and a little less shimmery, but the two are very similar.
This blush is so damn pigmented that I was actually really shocked when I first tried it. A ton of product comes up on the brush, so you really don’t need a heavy hand when applying it. But despite it being so pigmented, it’s very easy to blend out if you apply too much and it blends out so smoothly without any patchiness. It’s a total win.
ColourPop Cosmetics – Double Entendre Palette ($16)
This palette is hands down my most favorite palette that I got in 2018. It really is the most perfect everyday neutral palette and it’s perfect for traveling. I recently took it on a 2-week trip to Australia and it was all I could have wanted. It has a great variety of shades to create just about any type of look you’d want.
Read my full in-depth review of Double Entendre Palette here.
ColourPop Cosmetics – Super Shock Shadows ($5)
Shades Pictured: Fluffy, LadyBird, Polly, Amaze, Frog, Birthday Wish
First seen in: January Favorites
If you’ve read any other of my Monthly Favorites lists, you know how much I love ColourPop Super Shock Shadows. They are just so long-wearing and they never crease at all. I love how I can put on a super glittery shade on my lid in the morning and it’ll look exactly the same by the end of the day. And did I mention there’s no fallout? Yeah, they’re amazing.
Although I’ve tried Super Shock Shadows prior to this year, I’ve only gotten really crazy about them this year. I wear a glitter/shimmer Super Shock Shadow on my lid EVERY SINGLE DAY. That’s how much I love them.
Real Techniques – Miracle Complexion Sponge (~$4-6)
I really am SO late to the party on this sponge. I know in my Best Brushes post, I mentioned the L’oreal Infallible sponge as my favorite sponge, but that was before I tried this sponge!
I never really used sponges to apply my liquid/cream products – I used to use it only to apply setting powder. But, I think the reason for that is because I never tried a sponge this good!
I’ve heard people saying this sponge is better than a Beauty Blender (or a dupe), but I’ve never tried one so I can’t say if that’s true or not. However, I now know why so many people just swear by applying their liquid products with a sponge. It seriously creates such an even, flawless finish that is really hard to achieve with a brush.
I still use my favorite Morphe Y-6 to apply and blend out my foundation because you get more coverage using a brush over a sponge. But after applying concealer, I use this sponge to blend it out and then go over the rest of my face with the sponge to ensure a flawless finish.
I don’t even know what I was doing with my life before this sponge. I’ll never go back.
And that's it for my mid-year drugstore/affordable favorites! I've tried so many new products this year that it was hard to narrow it down for this list, but I tried to be super selective with this one so we're not here for days.
I know I said this in the beginning, but I don’t want you to miss out! Any time you are planning on making an online purchase, don’t forget to use Ebates! Use Ebates every time you order something online so you can get a bit of your money back! (Some stores even offer in-store cash back) I’ve made over $500 in cash back from Ebates since I started under 2 years ago and I literally only buy makeup LOL so if you’re not using it, you’re totally missing out! I wrote a review on Ebates when I first started using it here.ign up HERE FOR FREE AND GET A $10 BONUS after you make your first qualifying purchase using Ebates!
Thank you so much for reading, until next time. <3
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