Hello and welcome back! As promised, I’m here with my top 10 makeup products to launch in 2020. If you missed skin earlier in the week, by all means catch up here.
It’s been a weird year for makeup. Most of us have been working from home, making traditional corporate get-up redundant, a full face of makeup included. I was hardly putting pants on, as if I was going to apply mascara? Initially it was refreshing to go bare faced every day. But then I got over it. I missed those little rituals, like curling my lashes or choosing a lip colour.
Thankfully, trailing new stuff is a big part of my job, so the break between products was short and sweet. Which leads us to this list, the top 10 new launches I discovered this year. Sure, the world is still in shambles and most of us are dragging ourselves over the 2020 finish line, but if you want a mood boost in the form of makeup or are looking to up your game for party season (virtual or otherwise), then this is for you.
Keep scrolling for the edit.
For The Longest Lashes
Hourglass Unlocked Instant Extensions Mascara, $46. SHOP NOW
The mascara of the year was undoubtedly this launch from Hourglass. It’s a tubing mascara, meaning it creates a tube around each individual lash, unlike traditional formulas that just deposit a bunch of tiny fibres. For this reason you can’t apply multiple coats, but you really don’t need to. The firm plastic bristles sweep through the lashes, pulling them up and out for a long, defined aesthetic. I love the way it gives clean volume (I don’t like a chunky lash) and stays put all day. You don’t even need cleanser or micellar to get it off, just warm water and gentle pressure. It’s also Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s favourite, and if it’s good enough for her, it’s good enough for me.
For a Renaissance Painting Flush
Chanel Baume Essential Glow Stick in Rosee, $71. SHOP NOW
If I had a dollar for every time I recommended the Chanel Baume Essential Glow Stick, I’d have probably cracked Sydney’s exorbitant property market by now. Rosee is a new hue that was introduced to the existing franchise this year. The perfect shade of creamy pink, it will give you a Renaissance-style rosy flush with a glossy finish to match. Don’t stop at just the cheeks either; it works incredibly well on the eyes, lips or both.
For Filtered Skin
Victoria Beckham by Augustinus Bader Golden Cell Rejuvenating Priming Moisturizer, $145. SHOP NOW VIA NEt-a-porter
The pandemic may have left me anxious and sleep-deprived but you wouldn’t know it, because I’ve been wearing this miracle priming cream from the dynamic duo that is Victoria Beckham and Augustinus Bader. Luminous and hydrating, it’s like golden hour in a bottle (plus added skincare benefits). It’s wonderful on a bare face or as a primer, but my favourite trick is to add a pump to a lightweight tinted moisturiser for a dewy, plump, radiant complexion. Expensive, but it’s warranted. I’ll probably cry on the last pump.
For colour on the Cheap
Mecca Max Off Duty Blush Stick, $18. shop now
When I die, bury me in Mecca Maxima (preferably wearing this chubby blush stick). Cheap, cheerful and available in a wide range of poppy shades, this product is one of those rare finds that’s both fun and functional. I find they’re super creamy on application, but dry down to a skin-like finish, resulting in a natural, healthy-looking flush. My favourite shades are Moody (pictured) for a burnished glow and Tutu for a look that says “I’m wealthy and I’ve been skiing in the Swiss Alps all day”.
For curly, brow-skimming lashes
Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara, $56. shop now
Diorshow Iconic Overcurl is just that, iconic. The mascara itself has been around since before my time as a beauty editor, but 2020 saw it reformulated into an even better version of its former self. I love this mascara because it does what it says: curls the lashes. The spoon-shaped wand pushes them up whilst the inky black formula gives incredible hold. They say it’s hard to improve on perfection but Dior are clearly in the business of proving people wrong. It was great before, and it’s even better now.
For A low maintenance lip
Revlon Super Lustrous glass shine Lipstick, $25. shop now
Lipstick need not be difficult. Just ask Revlon, who created this beautiful, glossy iteration that can be applied in the back of an Uber without a mirror. They’re super hydrating and carry the perfect amount of pigment – enough to look like you put effort in but not so much it’s high maintenance. I love Strawberry during the day or Fire & Ice if I’m feeling flat and need a boost that only a bright lip can offer. You don’t even need a lip liner – lazy beauty at its finest.
for a fresh face (when you’re feeling otherwise)
Fenty Beauty Cheeks Out Freestyle Cream Blush, $33. SHOP NOW
Cream blush is like the caffeine of makeup and all too often its transformative power is overlooked. Rhianna is no fool though, so of course this year she launched one of the greatest cream blushes I’ve ever had the pleasure of using. These are super emollient and blend really easily, not to mention come housed in a mini compact for colour on the go. Personally, I think fingers work fine, but you could definitely buff in with a fluffy brush for an airbrushed finish. Also, the shade range is superb.
for a euro glow
Gucci POUDRE DE BEAUTÉ ECLAT SOLEIL BRONZER, $95. shop now
I am infatuated with Gucci’s ugly-beautiful incarnation of beauty. Their campaigns are spectacular and every product feels more decadent than the last. This bronzer is all of my 1950s beauty advertisement dreams realised: the chunky compact, the retro aqua, the gold detailing. Even the scent – a soft, powdery floral – is perfect. But not to be missed is the product itself. I admit I resisted for a while because I didn’t want to dust off the Gucci impression, but life is short! Use the bronzer! This is a velvet-like powder that imparts a subtle warmth without too much shimmer. I sweep it across the bridge of my nose and temples and it’s as if I spent a long weekend sunning myself in Lake Como.
for treating yourself
Rouge Hermès Lipstick, $94. shop now
Few products carry as much sentimental value to me as Rouge Hermès, an object devoted to the beauty of lips. In an industry where more is more and launches roll out thick and fast, it is remarkable to consider this product was 183 years in the making. The French fashion house is revered for its craftsmanship and attention to detail, all of which are evident here. From the refillable geometric bullet to the leather-inspired textural elements, this is so much more to me than just a lipstick – it’s art.
for a flawless base
Kosas revealer COncealer, $45. shop now
Kosas, with its less-is-more approach to beauty, is a brand after my own heart. I love every launch, but this concealer is particularly noteworthy. It’s super creamy and pigmented but still melts into the skin, offering up coverage that’s somehow full but still invisible? It’s full of botanicals, peptides and hyaluronic acid giving it skincare-like benefits too. It also hardly ever creases under the eyes – a revelation, I know. Buy it, love it, and thank me later.