Favorites | Best of 2018

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This year was beautiful.  I reached many personal milestones and obtained opportunities that seemed out of reach.  Don't be mistaken - with good comes bad or intense grafting.  Nonetheless, I feel blessed.  I sincerely pray that the coming year enables all your dreams to come into fruition, with happiness and health to you and your loved ones.  Last year, I did the same tag for a round-up of my favourites in 2017 and it's quite exciting to see how much (or how little!) things have changed and where I was in life at that point.  Those favourites are still products or entertainment I would reach for now and you can read about them here!

BEAUTY


1. Face product - Revlon PhotoReady Powder - £10.15


I am very surprised I didn't pick this product in 2017 as I've been using this powder for nearly 5 years. I am in the color 030 medium/deep but the picture below depicts the powder to be a lot darker than it truly is. It is the perfect setting powder which adds coverage on top of light-medium coverage foundations, bb creams, or serums. I personally prefer a light foundation in comparison to full coverage looks and a majority of my foundations or creams promote a dewy appearance. Hence, this is perfect for mattifying the face without taking too much of the glow. More often than not, I pair this powder with concealer or simply use this on its own as it brightens the face without looking cakey. I recommend purchasing from feelunique.com as it provides free shipping and stocks the product for a few pennies cheaper than mainstream Boots or Superdrug.



2. Cheek product- ELF Baked Highlighter in Apricot Glow - £5.00

I can't seem to run away from ELF even if I tried. My go-to highlighter is my Marc Jacobs 'Dew You?' coconut gel highlighter because nothing can top it. However, I am cheap. Therefore, I do not want to exhaust my favourite staple so for day-to-day I prefer the ELF highlighter in apricot glow. The reason I love this item is because you can build up the intensity with ease. On top of this, the warm and peachy undertones compliment deeper skintones beautifully. I love to top up my Marc Jacobs' highlighter with the ELF one to exaggerate a warmer and peachier glow.





3. Eye product- L'oreal Paris Color Riche La Palette Nude - £14.99


Whenever I reach for eyeshadow, I only use this palette. Granted I have detoxed my makeup collection extensively, but it is still these sets of eyeshadows that I love and adore. It is a steep price for eyeshadows but the colour range is phenomenal if you want to venture in rose-based tones without seeming 'overdone'. Furthermore, the pigmentation can easily compete with the likes of Morphe and Mac in my personal experience and opinion. Therefore, you can stay classy and colourful!


4. Lip Product - Arrow Boost Color Enhancing Lip Balm - £11.00

Although I dwelled into many new lip products this year, my favourite is a lip balm! The Arrow Boost Color Enhancing Lip Balm by Birchbox is a beautiful product that gives the appearance of naturally hydrated and moisturised lips with a gorgeous wash of color. Of everything, this is the product I used on a daily basis. Unfortunately, it seems this product may no longer be available in the UK but perhaps they will be bringing this back soon!



5. Skincare Product - Suncream

After learning that we are born with a fixed amount of elastin for our life, sunscreen quickly became my best friend. You do not have to spend double figures on a suitable suncream. Do note that new studies have come out that informs us to re-apply all sunscreen at least every two hours due to loss of protection through sweating and other natural biological processes. Nonetheless, do head over to my post here which discusses the truth about SPF. Hopefully this comprehensive guide will enable you to pick the perfect suncream for you! On top of that, always ask a GP or pharmacist for what is right for you.
6. Nail Polish - L'oreal Color Riche Les Vernis A L'Huile - 221 26 in Rue Cremieux - £4.99

As someone with a deeper skin tone, I've always shied away from nude nail polish in fear of looking washed out. Nevertheless, I was determined to venture out and fell in love with the L'oreal Color Riche Les Vernis A L'Huile line of nailpolishes. Admittedly, I hadn't bought a nailpolish in over 3 years when I purchased this. This varnish applies like a dream: easy and done in 2 coats. For increased longevity, I recommend trying the Maybelline Gel Effects Top Coat in conjunction to have a salon-finished appearance that does not chip away in over a week!



7. Hair product - L'oreal Elvive Dream Lengths Restoring Shampoo - £2.47

I am in love with the L'oreal Elvive haircare line. It has been one that I've hyped for a while on my blog so it would be a sin if I didn't give it a final applause for serving me well in 2018. As you may know, I've been limiting the use of heat on my hair to aid its growth and allow it to appear healthier and bouncier. I am starting to grow in love with the natural texture of my hair and I can attribute the Dream Lengths line for that. Pairing this shampoo with a conditioner, my hair not only smells delightful, but the frizz has improved tremendously. For the price, you really can't go wrong! I have done another thorough review of the product here.


8. Body product/Perfume - The Body Shop Eau de Toilet in Fijian Water Lotus - £15.00 for 50ml

Given that lotuses are one of my favourite flowers, after roses and jasmines, I was beyond excited to try out this scent. It is so light and refreshing.  After just two sprays, my mom could smell it as it filled up the living room.  The main accords are: marine (sea air), citrus (mandarines), floral (from damascus rose), aromatic, and aquatic.  I have always enjoyed aquatic tones in perfumes as it never fails to be revitalising and tropical.  However, to say it has a 'citrus' note is quite surprising as I did not find it very citrusy.  The sillage (the length and degree to which a perfume lingers) is most certainly softer with a stronger longevity, which is comparable to my higher end perfumes. FASHION

9. Clothing piece - Boucle fabric

If you have read my post on professional styles that emulate a classy and feminine vibe (link here), then you would know that boucle has become a newfound love of mine in 2018. This fabric initially screamed vintage and old to me, however, I have grown very fond of the textile. When used correctly, it can appear luxurious and elegant, much like tweed. It embraces a majority of Chanel's infamous pieces as most of them are made of tweed and boucle which are similar fabrics. If you're unsure if this is an appropriate choice for you, I recommend Dorothy Perkins as, not only are their products of high quality but they are cheaper in comparison to other high street and high end brands. They have a huge variety of boucle dresses, blazers, and skirts which will enable you to dip a toe in a new design.
10. Accessory - Berets

I was yearning to project a Parisian style this year and failed miserably. Nevertheless, I fell in love with berets. Not only are they stylish and sweet, but they are one of the few hats that are acceptable to wear in doors! Hence, on terrible bad-hair days, berets come to rescue. It is usually the top of my head which appears chaotic and out of control. Therefore, either slapping on a beret and leaving the rest of my hair down, or braiding my hair for a cleaner vibe are life savers on those lazy bad hair days. I attribute a lot of my 'no heat for weeks' challenge to cute hats like this.


11. Pair of shoes - Adidas Gazelles in Burgundy - £39.00

For shoes, it had to be my burgundy adidas Gazelles without a doubt. Not only were they a wonderful gift, but they are my go-to shoes. I generally have a very laid-back and comfortable style, especially when going to university. On top of that, I have been walking and taking more dance classes on lately so these shoes have been perfect in meeting all of my needs. They're comfortable from the get-go so no need to break them in, and they can pull a look together even if you weren't going for anything. For example, any sweatshirt, jeans, and gazelles will look sporty regardless.


RANDOM
12. Favorite TV Show/Movie

As for TV shows, it has to be The Good Doctor, The Resident, and Chicago MD (see a theme?) and movie is the Winnie the Pooh Movie and Moana. I think both are wholesome and happy films that are perfect for families and just never fail to bring a smile to my face!

13. Favourite book

I cannot remember the title of the book for the life of me but I will discuss the plot in hopes that someone else can remember.

*SPOILERS*

It is a thriller that involves a wife who had committed a murder and ended up in hospital with memory-loss. She doesn't remember committing the crime and her husband is in shock as they have a very happy marriage and she is a very law-abiding citizen. Then, it turns out the neighbour is in love with the husband of the wife that committed this crime she doesn't remember and the story goes on from there. Basically, I've been into psychological thrillers that are parallel to Gone Girl.

I believe the title is something to do with 'someone is in our house' or 'someone broke it in' maybe? Sorry to be of no help whatsoever.

UPDATE: It is called A Stranger in the House by Shari LaPena!
14. Food - KFC Zinger Burgers

KFC Zinger Burgers are a winner. I haven't eaten fast food in a long time, therefore, my appreciation for just two pieces of bread with spicy chicken in the middle is very high. I miss eating out and having such food chains at my doorstep. Where I live, we have access to such fast-food places but I am chicken (haha) when it comes to trying out a new shop in fear that it may not taste very good. Finally, always order the KFC zinger burger with super charger sauce if you like a kick (it's more flavoursome than it is spicy).




15. Beverage - Lemonade

My mom's home made lemonade is a sincere favourite. I normally drink coffee (and the powder I purchase hasn't changed from last year - Alta Rica by Nescafe) or water (rarely). However, my mom has been making me mint lemonade which tastes delightful. I'll put up a recipe in due course. On top of that, my mom recently purchased a squash/syrup of Rose and Raspberry lemonade which is my all time favourite drink.

16. Favorite song - Raxstar's Rewind.

According to iTunes, my most played song is Raxstar's Rewind. Surprise surprise. Last year, I had a Raxstar favourite for this question as well. Guess we all know who my favourite artist is.


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