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Best of 2011
Best Of - January 7th, 2012

2011 was an interesting year. I stopped buying a lot of corporate cosmetics and started buying a lot of indie cosmetics, which was really satisfying. I didn’t buy as much perfume as I have in the past, but what I did buy I really love. One the minus side, some of the companies I reviewed have closed, but on the plus side others have thrived. Overall, it was a pretty good year for beauty.

I found a lot of products to love this year, so my list is kind of all over the place. Here are my picks for Best of 2011.

Best New Eyeshadow Color: This one is easy. It’s THEO! The lovely Rosa at Black Rose Minerals created Theo for me, a color inspired by my kitty’s fur and green eyes. It’s like taupe with a bonus.

Best Eyeshadow Collection: By collection, I mean a group of colors meant to go together. This is a tie, between Linnaeus Cosmetics’ Echidna and Ruby Throated Hummingbird collections. The Echidna colors are wonderful neutrals, and the Ruby Throated Hummingbird has bright, VERY sparkly colors. I love them both.

Best New Lip Color: My favorite this year is Morgana Cryptoria’s Hibiscus Lip Balm. Last I heard, the lip balms were probably going away, but I bought this same shade in the Lip Gloss formula. Whatever formula it’s in, I hope the shade remains permanently! It’s the best baby pink I’ve found.

Best Eyeshadow Name: Nutella Whore from RockABetty Beauty. I was there when the name originated, so it’s fun being “in” on the joke. Also? It’s a great sparkly brown.

Best Product I Still Can’t Live Without: Urban Decay Primer Potion. I still haven’t found anything that works as well for me and my crazy-oily eyelids. Without Primer Potion, wearing eyeshadow would be impossible.

Best New Mascara: I love Maybelline’s Volum’Express One By One mascara. It’s the perfect combination of volume and separation in one tube.

Best Face Care Product: Annmarie Gianni Skincare’s Herbal Facial Oil for Oily/Acne Skin is amazing and splurgeworthy. I love how my skin looks when I use this regularly.

Best High End Perfume: I try a whole lot of high end perfume this year, so it’s pretty easy to give this to Balenciaga Paris. I love how sophisticated and interesting it smells.

Best Cheap Thrills Perfume: All of One Hand Washes The Other’s Solid Scents in the Private Stock collection. At a mere $4 each, they’re like Pokemon – gotta catch ‘em all!

Best Body Care Product: Aveda’s Composition oils are probably my favorite body care product I discovered this year. I have the Energizing, Calming, and Men Pure-Formance varieties, and they are all equally wonderful. They are wonderfully versatile: apply to your scalp and leave overnight for a deep treatment, apply to your skin after your shower for a body oil, add a little to your bath water for a lovely aroma… I primarily use them as an after-shower moisturizer and love them.

Overall, 2011 was a pretty good year for beauty shopping! What are your favorite products that you discovered last year?

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