Dec 27 2017

My Year in Favorites!

Disclosure: Some prior PR samples, see bottom. favorites of 2017

As I considered how to approach a “favorites” post for 2017, I thought about how I’d done it in years past, but decided I didn’t want to gather up all my favorite lippies, nail polishes etc. I wanted to be specific.

I thought…why not challenge myself to come up with ONE SINGLE favorite in as many categories as I could consider – kinda like the Golden Globes or the Oscars! I thought this would be difficult, but as I mapped out my categories, clear favorites popped into my head.

So my list spans skin care, hair care, body care and makeup, and it runs all over the place from mainstream brand to homemade products. It’s my honest-to-goodness favorites!

Since the list is long, I don’t want to spend a lot of time on each product, but I will share a thought about why it made top billing for me in 2017, and I’ll link back where I have a mention or a review – click on the product name.

Also, these are not all new products. Some of my favorites are carried over from years past. If it ain’t broke, no need to fix it! I hope you enjoy it – I’d love to know if you and I share any favorites this year, too!!

Hair Care

Favorite products of 2017 on

Shampoo and Conditioner

L’Oreal EverPure Sulfate Free Frizz-Defy Shampoo and Conditioner

I’m on my second helping of these two products. I like the Marula oil scent and the fact that they are sulfate free!

Hair Styling Product

Shea Moisture Sacha Inchi Oil Omega 3, 6, 9 Rescue and Repair Curl Defining Smoothie

I tried a sample of this, which lasted me several days, and knew I needed the full size. It helps me embrace my natural wave and curl, while keeping away the frizzies so all I have to do after I get out of the shower is brush my wet hair, massage this all over, scrunching my hair, and GO.

Facial Skincare

Favorite products of 2017 on

Lip Scrub

Jeffree Star Cosmetics Velour Lip Scrub in Watermelon Gum

I just recently raved about this lip scrub – it’s helping me keep my lips in soft shape this winter!

Face Mask

The Body Shop Himilayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask

I received a one-use sample of this face mask at this year’s The Makeup Show NYC in May and decided I needed the full size container. It’s a great mask to brighten and clarify my skin!

Facial Moisturizer

LEH Company Save Your Face Youth Creme with CoQ10

I hauled a bunch of stuff in August at the Little Egg Harbor (LEH) Soap Company store in Smithville, NJ, and this facial moisturizer was one of them. I have used it every morning for the last few weeks and my redness has subsided, and my face is responding very well to the infusion of moisture and consistent care!

Facial Cleanser

Pixi by Petra + Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse

This cleansing genius is my preferred nighttime cleaning routine, when I have time. It really cleans my skin, and my skin feels wonderful after.

Eye Moisturizer

Pixi by Petra 24K

I slide this across my under eye area in the morning before my moisturizer or oil. It’s fast, easy and does a nice job of moisturizing my sensitive eye skin area!

Eye Makeup Remover

Neutrogena OIl-Free Eye Makeup Remover

The linked empties post there will lead you to see Rite Aid’s version of this name-brand remover, which is fine. Because I use Neutrogena’s version, as well as Rite Aid, Walgreens, Target and just about anyone else’s version of it. It’s Holy Grail!

Body Care

Favorite products of 2017 on

Body/Hand Moisturizer

Homemade Body Butter with coconut oil, shea butter, lavender and eucalyptus essential oils

I recently bought a kit from Young Living, after attending a DIY day at a friend’s house who had us make different bath products for $5 each. I did a body butter – coconut oil, shea butter and lavender and RC (a Young Living blend of eucalyptus oils) essential oils – and I use it once or twice a day on my hands and arms. It’s helping my hands battle the early winter! Stay tuned for an essential oils series on BeautyJudy in 2018!

Body/Face Scrub

LEH Company Sugared Vanilla Coffee Scrub

This coffee scrub from a local small business does an amazing job of exfoliating my face – the caffeine in the coffee is good for my redness/rosacea – and leaving behind moisture. I have other scrubs, but I use this one on my body, too.

Body Wash

Dove Foaming Body Wash

I am almost through my second container of this body wash. It’s light, has a nice scent, and does the job. I will be buying more of it in 2018!


Dove Original Anti-perspirant Spray

This is a staple in my medicine cabinet. It briefly stopped working for me when I was in my first trimester of pregnancy, but it’s back in business for me and I swear by it! It’s a staple in my empties posts!


Favorite products of 2017 on

Eye Shadow Palette

Huda Beauty Desert Dusk

I’ve used this palette several times, done several different looks, and I haven’t encountered one bad shadow in the bunch. I love everything from the packaging and colors to blendability and how I feel when I have an eye look on using it.

Face Primer

Make Up For Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizer Mattifying Primer

This past summer I struggled with oily skin so badly that I tried a handful of primers and setting sprays until landing on the perfect ones. I never reviewed this, but MUFE’s mattifying primer was THE ONE.

Eye Primer

Urban Decay Primer Potion in Eden

I love that this is multi-functional – I can use it on my nose under my makeup to help mattify one of my oily trouble spots (thanks to Phyrra for posting about that!) and it’s a great base for my eye makeup.

Makeup Brushes

e.l.f. Ultimate Blending Brush

This brush gave me a $6 version of a $48 face brush I used. It does the job, it blends out my liquid foundation perfectly!


Maybelline Super Stay Matte Ink

I can’t believe I haven’t reviewed this lippie, because it is the most amazing long-lasting lipstick I’ve ever picked up at the drugstore. I use my oil-free eye makeup remover to take it off at the end of the night.

Setting Spray

FACEatelier Ultra Matte Mist

This spray feels like nothing else I’ve used, and mattifies my makeup instantly! It’s a summer must-have for me.

Face Powder

Milani Prep + Set + Glow Illuminating Transparent Powder

This powder gives my foundation a nice finish, helps it stay put, and has a drugstore price. It can’t be beat!!


Jesse’s Girl Black Liquid Eyeliner

This $6.99 eyeliner is the easiest to use, stands up to hours of wear, and is highly pigmented. Everyone I recommend it to, loves it. I love it so much, I have two of them open right now.


Serenity + Scott Brow Gel

I’ve been using this Brow Gel in Golden Blonde since 2014 – another longtime-running Holy Grail. I have a couple stashed away somewhere, I have to find them. I’m almost out of my current tube!



I got a sample of this from Sephora and fell head-over-heels, but hesitated to pull the trigger. Until I was on a work trip, with the most important client I could have, and I needed something reliable, not experimental. Best splurge of 2017 – I’ll do it again in 2018.


Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Blush Palette

This palette didn’t come out this year, but I got it for about $12 at Ulta on clearance. Best. Decision. Ever. Every shade works on my skin tone, and I love the packaging and mirror. I wish I had a backup!


Lime Crime Hi-Lite Palette – Opals

I used a lot of highlighters this year, so this was a tough decision. But Lime Crime’s Hi-Lite Palette in Opals really gives me a classy glow in three shades that are perfect for my pale skin tone.


L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation

If there were no other foundations left on this Earth, and all I could do was use this, I would use it and I would be HAPPY.


NYX HD Studio Photogenic Concealer

I don’t use a lot of concealer, but when I do, this one is a great, low-priced pick that does wonders to brighten up and conceal imperfections under my eyes. I recently recommended it to a friend who is a believer now, too!


Mehron Aura Bronzing Gel

I haven’t reviewed this bronzing gel yet, but it is perfectly multi-functional, which fits into my busy lifestyle. You can use it all over your body for a glow, mix it into your primer or foundation, or use it as a bronzer in those spots you want definition on your face.


Favorite products of 2017 on

Nail Polish

KBShimmer Northern Frights

How could I not pick my collaboration nail polish with KBShimmer as my favorite nail polish of 2017?! It was a honor and an exciting journey to do this and the truth is – it’s just a beautiful polish! I’ve worn her a handful of times already.

Cuticle Moisturizer

Duross & Langel Cuticle

I’m still as obsessed with this cuticle moisturizer as I was when I purchased it back in March. Its shea butter, almond oil, and vitamin E formula loaded with healing extracts and essential oils have kept my cuticles in great shape this year.

Nail Wraps

Jamberry Nail Wraps

Once I figured out my perfect application, I fell so hard for these nail wraps I started selling them two years ago. The designs satisfy my desire for nail art, helping me save time in my busy work-life balancing act!

Base Coat

KBShimmer Fillin’ Groovy

I picked this up earlier this year at PolishCon in NYC, and it’s been my go-to ever since. Combined with my favorite top coat (see below!), my mani will last without chipping for five – sometimes more – days. It’s great!

Top Coat

KBShimmer Clearly on Top

I first reviewed this in 2014 – and it instantly became a Holy Grail. Guess what? It still is. Three years running!


Zoya Fast Drops Speed Dry Drops

When I want my polish to hurry up and dry, I add a drop of this magic potion to my nail bed and off I go. I highly recommend it, especially as part of the Zoya Naked Mani system!

Press-on Nails

imPRESS Press-On Manicure

While the design I tried was a Halloween mani, these press-on nails were locked down, they weren’t popping off. I would have gotten days of wear if I wanted – and they made me a believer in press-on nails!

Nail Polish Remover

Zoya Remove+

Zoya Remove+ has been a staple in my mani routine since 2010. Seven years running, my absolute favorite nail polish remover – great on glitter, gentle on my nails, smells unlike anything out there.

Disclaimer: I received some of the products featured for previous, honest consideration from the PR/Manufacturers. Please visit my Disclosure tab for more information on how keeps it real!

  • 25 Sweetpeas

    I have still yet to try pixie!

  • Painted Fingertips

    I liked the Loreal Everpure shampoo & conditioner too, but not as much as I like my HG Schwarzkopf Gliss.

    • BeautyJudy

      I haven’t tried that one yet!

  • Kathryne

    Really intrigued to try that Huda palette because I like warm shades

    • BeautyJudy

      Ugh I love just looking at that palette, it’s so pretty! And of course, it’s great to use 🙂

  • Kristi Vasquez

    Woo hoo – I own a few of your favorites – including your blogger polish! <3 Love Zoya Remove!

    • BeautyJudy

      Aw yay!!!!

  • marciaf

    I love reading favorites but I never seem to put a post like this together. You’ve got some excellent choices. I would have loved that Gwen Stefani blush palette at that price!

    • BeautyJudy

      It was tough to choose between the Gwen palette and the Pirates of the Caribbean Lorac face palette! But ultimately I felt the UD palette gave me more versatile uses!

  • Ehmkay Nails

    This was such a fun post to read. It makes you think about how much we use!

    • BeautyJudy

      Ha, yes! And what we truly value of what we have!

  • Megan

    I love Dove products and the Pixi Double Cleanse. The cleanser is great for travel since I don’t need to bring two separate bottles with me. Looks like I’ve got some new recommendations for stuff to try in 2018! I just placed and order for the Zoya nail polish remover because I heard really great things about it. Looking forward to its arrival even more!

    • BeautyJudy

      You will love the remover!!! And all the yes on the cleanser – it’s so convenient!


    I could pick ONE favourite per category for skincare, but definitely not makeup (especially lippie and eyeshadow). Well done on doing this! The Desert Dusk Palette has been tempting me so much (though I’ve exceeded my quota of palettes for the year LOL).

    • BeautyJudy

      I have several favorites in many of the categories but his year I was really surprised I could pick my most favorite!!!

  • Allison @neversaydiebeauty

    I love year end favorites like this. I have to do mine. I didn’t realize that Zoya had drying drops – I need those. Also curious about the KB Shimmer Fillin’ Groovy base coat. I have more ridges now, and I love that you get 5+ days wear when you use it

    • BeautyJudy

      Yes, the combo of Fillin’ Groovy and Clearly on Too work so well for me!! And all the yes to those drying drops! I need a new bottle 🙂