Best of Beauty 2021

Our editor’s best beauty picks for 2021

By Tria Beauty Editor Krista Robyn and Beauty Influencer Courtnei Lee

If you keep up with beauty trends and launches, it felt a bit relaxed in 2021 when it came to new beauty on the shelves. This might have been due to factory shutdowns and slower production due to COVID-19. This year, I decided to focus on my skincare routine, wear less makeup, and appreciate my natural beauty (most of the time!). I focused my shopping on staple products rather than wasting money on trendy palettes and sets that pile up and create more bathroom clutter. I also looked for brands that were eco-friendly and helped create less waste for the planet.

For this best beauty list, I collaborated with fellow beauty enthusiast, Courtnei Lee, who loves a good beauty find just as much as I do! We’ve rounded up our top beauty products of the year that we just couldn’t live without!

Krista’s Top Beauty Picks

Tom Ford Neroli Portofino Eau de Parfum – Travel Size Atomizer $65

Tom Ford Neroli PerfumeOn a trip to Bloomingdale’s, I stopped at the Tom Ford counter to take in all of the beautiful scents the brand has to offer. They are all unique, ranging from ultra feminine to some serious deep woods and tobacco masculinity. I found the perfect one for me – Neroli Portofino, which is a gorgeous blend of Italian citrus, florals and amber. The price point threw me off as the full size 3.4 oz bottle is $360 before tax. I nearly walked away pouting, but the sales associate introduced me to the travel size atomizers that were $65, and I was definitely onboard with that price. Now, if you do the math, you save money per ounce on the bigger bottles, which is the case with most perfumes. I did not want to commit to the larger bottle since I hardly have an occasion to wear fragrances with COVID still looming.

Another awesome thing about this scent is that I can wear it all year without it being seasonal. This bottle is the perfect size and price for someone dreaming of luxury fragrances without shelling out a fortune. Another tip is to take advantage of Bloomingdale’s Klarna payments offering, where you can make small payments each week until the item is paid off. I was lucky enough to have my atomizer engraved at the place of purchase with my name so that it is personalized just for me!

Natasha Denona Macro Tech Eyeliner Crayon $24

Natasha Denona Eyeliner PencilFinding a good black eyeliner is like finding a needle in a huge cosmetic haystack. What I look for in a quality pencil liner is longevity and something easy to apply. A staple product in my smokey eye look is a good black pencil liner that I can blend or wear in my waterline without it running down my eyes.

After many years of searching and trying liners, I discovered the Natasha Denona eyeliner pencil in Black. It’s creamy and highly pigmented, and draws out like a dream. If you’re looking for alternatives to black, they have a really beautiful burgundy shade that is trendy this year, and a nice warm brown.

Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Diamonds Lipstick $34

Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Diamonds LipstickI own a lot of lipstick and glosses, but I assure you that it is nothing like this next product. I was looking for something super glam to rev up my current lipstick shades, but I did not want a sticky gloss to wear under my COVID mask. The texture of the Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Diamonds Lipstick is soft, yet does not leave a texture behind that would transfer into my mask.

This gorgeous shimmering golden lip color can turn any lipstick shade that you have into a glimmering glam look as it has many micro sparkle pigments to transform your looks. I tried this lipstick over a dark burgundy and I could not stop looking in the mirror!

 

Drybar Double-Shot Blow-Dryer Brush $150

Drybar Double Shot Dryer BrushWith hair that won’t stop frizzing no matter what the humidity levels are, I was forever needing to heat style my hair with a curling iron after drying my hair. As you can imagine, it was very time consuming to blow dry my hair and then heat style it. I’ve owned a few blow dryer brushes before, but the one from Drybar is the best I’ve tried hands down!

This oval-shaped blow drying brush dries and styles my hair at the same time while taming any frizz, leaving my hair looking like a fresh blow out every time. I could not be happier with my hair! My tip to you is to invest in a really good heat protector spray, because the brush gets very hot.

Makeup Eraser Puff 5-Piece Exfoliator Set $15

MakeUp Eraser PuffsThis next item may seem very simple, but these MakeUp Eraser Puffs are little life savers and are my green pick of the list! I use these puffs to remove my makeup (works with or without soap), exfoliate and you can also apply toner with these! These puffs do so many things, there is no need to buy cotton balls or makeup rounds ever again. Each puff has lasted me a few months with proper care, and my trash can is no longer piling up with cotton waste.

The set of 5 comes with a laundry bag so you can toss your puffs into your wash with ease. These should be part of any makeup lover’s skincare kit!

Ok, Courtnei, it’s your turn! I’ll turn it over to her to share her ‘can’t live without’ products for the year!

Courtnei Lee’s Top Beauty Picks

It was a year of chaos for all of us, and it was definitely a challenge to stay on top of beauty, especially working from home! These are my top 4 beauty products that saved me in 2021!

Jubel Naturals Daily Dew Oil

Jubel Naturals Daily Dew Moisturizing Oil $34

I actually found out about the Jubel Naturals brand through a collaboration, and I’m so glad I did! This all natural, vegan, cruelty-free skincare is incredible! I have dry/combo skin and this beauty oil brings back moisture in such a gentle soothing way. It leaves my skin feeling hydrated, repaired, and ready for the day!

Tria Beauty 4X Hair Removal Laser with Courtnei LeeTria 4x Hair Removal Laser $459

I honestly can’t say enough about this powerhouse device. As a trans woman, lockdown was extra scary as my laser appointments were shut down as well. Thank God for Tria and this amazing device coming to my rescue! It’s so simple, so convenient, and the only form of basically painless hair removal I have found.

 

 

 

 

CL Essentials Cover Your Sins FoundationCL Essentials Cover Your Sins Foundation – C$39.99 – in Canada

This foundation formula is one of my greatest possessions. Whether you’re having an unexpected Zoom call, or need to run out to get groceries after a day of drinking, this foundation has you covered. It’s moisturizing, full coverage, is smooth as silk, and never leaves you feeling caked. Best of all, I offer worldwide shipping on my website!

 

Olaplex No. 0 Intensive Bond Building Hair Treatment $28

Olaplex No. 0 TreatmentWe all had our quarantine hair moments whether it was a touch up dye job, full bleach out, or a regrettable bang experience. We all tried to be our own stylist and our hair is feeling it! I was dyeing my own hair constantly, and this product was my life saver. I’m pretty confident I would be rocking Charlie Brown bald right now if it weren’t for the bond building treatment. This product is easily applied via spray bottle, and completely saved my hair structure. 10/10 would recommend.

 

Well, that about wraps up all of our best of beauty products for 2021! We hope you have an amazing New Year and stay safe!