Best in Beauty 2018: makeup (complexion)

Hello and welcome to my next Best in Beauty post for 2018!

As with the past couple of years, I'm dividing these makeup favourites into two: so I'm doing one for complexion and one for cheeks, lips and eyes.

If you're interested in seeing last year's complexion favourites, they're here. And my 2017 cheeks, lips and eyes favourites are here if you'd like to see those.

You'll note that some of the items below are different from last year's list, but three of them are repeats because I haven't found anything in 2018 that knocks them from top position.

So without further ado...

Best Primer: Becca First Light Priming Filter

Full review here. This quickly became my HG primer from the moment I started using it. I absolutely love it. Funnily enough, Becca's Backlight Priming Filter was my favourite primer last year, and when I tried First Light this year, I knew early on that it would likely be making my 2018 favourites.

What this does is brighten my skin and add a subtle luminescence, so my tinted moisturiser always looks better when I've got this on underneath. It's been designed to counteract any dull yellow tones, and I absolutely agree that it does this. 

If I had to choose between this and Backlight, I would probably pick this because Backlight can be too glowy so it doesn't work with my lighter-coverage bases (my skin looks too shiny). Backlight is more hydrating, though. Still, I love both.

Best Liquid Highlighter: Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector (Liquid) 

These liquid highlighters are my favourites and I've loved every single one I've owned (this is my third). I've reviewed one here. Do note that while I'll be including my favourite powder highlighter in my second Best in Beauty makeup post, I'm including this one here because I use it more as a complexion product: that is, as a primer or otherwise mixed in with my foundation.

What I love about this formula is that it looks so natural on the skin, and it works well for spot-highlighting, on its own, as a glowy primer and also mixed in with my foundation. Indeed, it's an incredibly versatile product and I always have some kind of use for these.

I also think these highlighters are good value because you get a lot of product and they last for ages. They're my HG liquid highlighters for a reason.

Best Foundation (everyday use): Koh Gen Do Aqua Foundation

Full review here. This is my HG foundation for day-use and I honestly don't know what I'd do without it. It's one of the most natural-looking foundations I've ever used and it's undetectable on the skin, which is exactly what I'm after.

While it doesn't build well so I can't get even a medium coverage from it, I'm happy with a light-medium for day-use - especially because it doesn't announce itself as makeup. What it does is even out imperfections and add a natural radiance, without sitting in pores or fine lines. It's super hydrating too. 

Can't rave about this enough. I've already bought myself a second bottle, and I so rarely return to foundations: that should tell you something.

Best Foundation (event use): Kevyn Aucoin The Etherealist Skin Illuminating Foundation

Full review here. While I prefer my Koh Gen Do Aqua for day-use because it has a little less coverage and is undetectable on my skin, this one's better for night-use or big events because the coverage is better and it's also buildable, which the KGD isn't.

What I love about this product is that it's incredibly natural on the skin while still doing a beautiful job of evening out imperfections, and a little goes a long way so I only need one pump to get a solid medium coverage that looks like skin.

If you have dry skin and want something that looks heavenly and feels hydrating, grab a sample. Sure it's not cheap, but given that I don't need much per application, it's going to last me a while. Love. It's an HG for a reason.

Best Setting Powder: Coty Airspun Loose Face Powder in Translucent

Full review here. This is an amazing product and I'm so glad I found it. It's just as good as Laura Mercier's offering (if not better) and it's also significantly cheaper, so I really don't think you can beat it. Yes I wish it didn't smell so much (it smells like perfume), but at least the smell has faded over time: that's something!

It performs so unbelievably well. It smooths out my face so that my fine lines and pores seem to vanish into thin air. It's quite incredible. Even if you didn't want to wear makeup, I can see that you might want to throw a dusting of this over your face because it has such a huge impact.

Honestly, it's a remarkable product. It all but eradicates the look of pores, it gives a perfected but not 'makeup-y' look to the skin, and it lasts well throughout the day. Love. Another HG product for me.

Best Finishing Powder: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light

Full review here. This has been a favourite for years and indeed it's my favourite makeup product of all time. If I could wear it every day for the rest of my life, I would be happy. I wear it most days and mine is lasting forever because you don't need much per application, meaning it's better value than you might think.

This powder does the unthinkable: it airbrushes my skin, makes me look five years younger and diminishes the look of pores and fine lines. It also adds a subtle sheen that makes me look healthy, and I honestly couldn't live without it. Love. If you haven't tried one of these yet, I urge you to find your nearest outlet and have one applied to your face so you can see the magic.

Best Setting Spray: Banana Boat Soothing Aloe Mist After Sun Spray

Full review here. This is another product that made my yearly favourites last year, and I'm not surprised that it's made the list again because it can't be beat.

Yes I've tried the Urban Decay All Nighter and yes that makes my makeup last longer than this one does, but the All Nighter doesn't hydrate and plump my skin like this Banana Boat offering (plus this one's a lot cheaper) so it's won again in this category.

It does exactly what a setting spray should do - it takes away the any powdery look to the skin and merges things together, plus it refreshes the face and gives me some much-needed moisture - and it only costs a few bucks for this large bottle if you can find it on special. Amazing.

In sum

I hope you enjoyed this little post and found some ideas for new things to try next year.

I always have quite a few items I could put on this list but I've narrowed it down so I'm only including the best of the best, because I want this list to contain the stand-out products and nothing else.

Note that I'll shortly be doing my Best in Beauty post for cheeks, lips and eyes - so stay tuned for that if you're interested.

Do let me know in the comments what your favourite makeup products were this year: I'd love to hear.

Hope all's well with you, and speak soon x

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