The Style and Beauty Doctor’s 2009 Best of Beauty

As both a makeup artist and a makeup junkie, you can imagine I come across many-a-product (I do!). While there are hundreds of thousands of beauty products out there to get the job done, there are some that I love so much I tend to use them most often (and would do unspeakable things for if they were ever discontinued). These products did me so well in 2009, that I’ll be bringing them with me in 2010.

Check them out:



Neutrogena Rapid Clear Acne Defense Lotion

Although 30 is right around the corner for me (countdown to August 2011!), I still deal with acne from time to time. Nothing has helped to clear up my acne faster without drying out my skin than Neutrogena Rapid Clear Acne Defense Lotion. One time while visiting family in Georgia, I forgot to pack my skin care products so I grabbed this stuff out of my teenaged nephew’s stash to hopefully cure a few pimples that sprouted on my face. I wasn’t expecting much, but when I woke up the next morning, the pimples were gone.

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock SPF 45

You know that really greasy feeling you get after applying sunblock? Or if you’re a dark skin beauty like myself, sometimes sunblock can make you look ashy. Well the good folks at Neutrogena heard our cries. For the past few years, I’ve been using Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock and have been pleased with both its SPF coverage (ranges from 30-70) and the fact that it dries to a matte finish while still thoroughly moisturizing the skin makes me and my skin very happy.

Becca Fine Loose Finishing Powder

I would put this powder on my best of beauty lists every year for years to come–it’s that good. What makes Becca Fine Loose Finishing Powder so great is (as the brand itself so eloquently puts it) that it is “lightly pigmented and micro-milled, creating a perfectly uniform, ultra thin layer that allows the skin’s natural oils to lightly shine through. The result ensures your foundation looks like real skin, with the added benefit of your makeup staying on all day. Preservative and paraben-free.” I’ve had people tell me how beautiful my skin looks and when I tell them I’m wearing Becca, they simply cannot believe I’m wearing powder.

NARS Blush

Blush is one of the most important makeup products that too many women aren’t using. We covered this in Blush 101. While I love what so many other brands have to offer when it comes to blush, my all-time favorite is NARS Blush. With colors so vibrant and pigmented, any woman from Nicole Kidman to Alek Wek can find her perfect shade (or two or three). For my MAC NW47 skin, the brighter the blush, the better. I love NARS Blush in many shades, but my top three are Exhibit A (a brilliant red that looks a lot prettier on the skin than it does in its container), Mata Hari (a rose petal pink), and Dolce Vita (a dusty rose).

Grab my fave face products here:



Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat

Another side effect of a busy lifestyle is not getting enough sleep. While I try my best to get my daily eight hours, sometimes I have to fake the funk, which is why I’m glad I have Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat in my beauty arsenal. This luminizing pen brings light and radiance to the skin, immediately erases any signs of fatigue, and brightens the complexion. I use shade #4 Luminous Toffee on my chocolate skin and not only does it perk up my undereye area, but it also makes my eye makeup look better. I love this stuff so much I buy two at a time.

MAC Eyeshadow

A favorite of mine (and many) for YEARS, MAC Eyeshadow has made my best of beauty list once again. Just a quick glance at the eyeshadow display at any MAC counter will leave even the biggest makeup critic drooling with delight. The range in colors and textures as well as being packed with pigment makes MAC Eyeshadows so great. You can take your 15 year old sister and your 75 year old grandmother into MAC and they’ll both find tons of suitable shades for themselves.

Make Up For Ever Eyeshadow

Yes, I know I just gushed over MAC Eyeshadows, but Make Up For Ever deserves some shine as well. Big, beautiful pots of brilliant colors with high staying power are what you’ll find in this French brand. They also have some gorgeous colors like #92 (a brilliant matte purple) that you won’t find in MAC’s permanent line.

MAC Paint

In order for your eyeshadows to last you all day, you need a good base. My favorite for years has been MAC Paint. They come in colors to closely match your skin tone and in bright colors to match your eyeshadow color. Swipe this on before your eye makeup to ensure better color payoff and lasting power. Try it in a color that matches your eyeshadow color to make the colors really POP. MAC has since decreased their Paint collection so there aren’t as many colors as they once had. You may also love Urban Decay Primer Potion, a colorless eye shadow primer that also maximizes your eyeshadow’s staying power.

Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes

A waterproof eye pencil that comes in a rainbow of colors and won’t budge even in the waterline? Yes, please! That’s exactly what you’ll get from Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes. I’ve even cried while having this liner on and didn’t suffer the Tammy Faye Baker Effect.

mark On the Edge Hook Up Liquid Eyeliner

I test many products staying power by sleeping in them. If anything can last hours of me rolling around under the covers then it must be good. mark On the Edge Hook Up Liquid Eyeliner did just that. Not only will it save you from having liquid liner running down your face, it’s also easy to apply Rihanna-esque cat eye looks. And best of all, it’s less than $6!

Grab my favorite eye products here:



MAC Lipstick

Whether I want a neutral lip or a bright pink, red, or orange lip, I know I’ll find what I want at MAC. With a range of colors as long as the day and formulas from matte to creme, MAC will always be my first lipstick choice.

Yves Saint Laurent Touche Brilliance

With the same pen applicator as their Touche Éclat concealer, Touche Brilliance will give you a gorgeous, brilliant pout minus the stickiness you can get with other glosses. My favorite shade is #15 Truly Red.

Grab my favorite lip products here:

Those were mine. Now tell me, what were your favorite beauty products of 2009?

About Danielle

A former finance girl, Danielle is a New York City based freelance writer and fashion and beauty expert. She's a Hofstra University and Fashion Institute of Technology grad with an obsession with fashion and beauty which she loves to tell you all about every weekday on her award-winning blog. Think of her as your style and beauty entourage all wrapped up into one bubbly brown package. Danielle's work and expertise can be found in print and across the web in Cosmopolitan for Latinas,, and more! She's also appeared as an on-air style expert on CBS New York's "The Couch" and WPIX11's Savvy Shopper segment.

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  5. 2009 was a milestone in my make up habits. I purchased more make up in 09 than I have my whole life. I blame the blogs. Here are my favorite items of 09

    – Loreal Hip Creme liner
    – Loreal Voluminous and telescopic in carbon black
    – MAC satin taupe e/s
    -MUFE aqua eyes (This one is your fault, but thanks b/c I love it when I want a touch of color)

    • Danielle says:

      LOL—isn’t MUFE auqa eyes the bee’s knees? I love that stuff!

      And I see you love L’Oreal HIP–I gotta check them out next time I’m in Walmart.

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