I'm a Beauty Editor—17 Staples I'd Put In Your Basket If We Went Beauty Shopping



Most Wanted is a weekly series in which one editor, staffer, or influencer shares their top 30 must-haves or current wish-list items.

I can, quite literally, shop until I drop when it comes to beauty products. And, if you give me a shot of espresso or two, I can pick right back up again. Sure, I might spend most of my waking work hours ingesting everything and anything related to the topic, but get me in beauty department or steer me to the best online beauty retailers, and I can do some serious damage for hours on end. 

Suffice to say, I've become the preferred shopping partner when any of my friends or family have the urgent need to re-stock or replenish their beauty wardrobes. (A job I take very seriously, I might add!) With summer just around the corner, I've been getting more and more DMs and texts from people asking what they should be buying right now. So, I thought I'd add my picks to your theoretical basket too! Just think of me as a beauty-oriented Jiminy Cricket. Keep scrolling! 

Whenever I wear this mascara, random people will literally stop me on the street to ask me what I have on my lashes. I'm incredibly particular when it comes to mascara, and ever since my first swipe (probably back in school), there are only a few formulas that have truly ticked every box for me. This one delivers, and it's my latest favorite. The ultimate mascara, in my opinion, needs to curl and lift (no easy feat when you have naturally long and straight lashes like I do), lengthen, and thicken without getting clumpy and goopy. Check, check, and double-check!

I'd been manifesting a body version of U Beauty's fantastic Super Hydrator ever since I first touched it to my face and my complexion quite literally turned to glass (in the best way possible, mind you). So you can imagine my excitement when the brand recently launched an iteration for every other body part from the neck down. Five different forms of hyaluronic acid (plus niacinamide, B-glucan, antioxidants, peptides, purified oat extract, and high-quality argan, grape-seed, and avocado oils) perform some kind of witchcraft that ensures the cream absorbs almost instantly while somehow lending the prettiest, longest-lasting glisten and hydration to your skin. Words cannot even describe my obsession.

Summer Fridays previously sold-out Pool Time Glowing Body Oil is back (temporarily), just in time for warm weather season. Buy it while you can, and reap all of the shimmering, deliciously glowy skin perks this summer. It gives your skin a natural hit of sparkle and shine, and I love that it's infused with the brand's signature summer scent featuring coconut, vanilla blossom, and warm almond. Yum.

I'm not a huge face mist person, so if I'm ever taking the time to write about one here on Who What Wear, trust that it's worth your time and attention. I am obsessed with this delicate floral one from the French brand Sisley-Paris, and I know you will be too. It features soothing cornflower and rose, witch hazel, and orange blossom. You can use it to help set your makeup, but I've been loving it as a refreshing way to re-invigorate my skin throughout the day. (It definitely gives you a nice little dose of added glow, too!)

I can't stand the feeling of heavy and thick lotions on my skin, so I'm absolutely wild for this fast-absorbing (yet super-hydrating) serum-lotion hybrid from GolfadenMD. It's a potent, targeted formulation that was specifically created to help sculpt, smooth, and renew dull or lifeless skin anywhere on the body. Its key ingredients include radish root extract (for boosted skin elasticity), marula oil and shea butter (for velvety softness, hyaluronic acid (for mega-watt plumping and hydration), plus other luxe fares such as brown and red algae, coffee, and Gotu kola extracts, which rev up microcirculation.

Is it just me or does thispaddle brush from Emi Jay look like it was taken straight off of the Euphoria set? It has serious vanity appeal, and it will also do great things for your strands. It comes in so many chic designs.

I hate most texture sprays. There, I said it! I don't like anything that makes my hair feel gritty, gummy, or sticky, but this one from Color Wow avoids all of the above. It beefs up my style, it lends maximum hold, and it somehow transforms the look of my limp fine strands. I also love that it offers heat protection so you can spritz it on before or after you use any styling tools, and your hair still feels soft and silky enough to glide your hands through. If you haven't tried this one yet, you're seriously missing out.  

Refy is still a relatively new brand, so the fact that it's quickly become one of the most buzzed-about brands on the scene is impressive. I highly recommend all of the products, but I'm a brow pencil girl through and through, so this is the one I've gotten all of my friends hooked on. The color is spot-on and it blends to perfection. 

I'm a huge, huge fan of this concealer—a product category I'm notoriously picky about. It's medium-to-full coverage and is packed with potent ingredients to immediately cover dark circles while imparting a luminous, ultra-brightening effect. The powerful formula featuring arnica, panthenol, caffeine, peptides, and hyaluronic acid is truly impressive, and the thirsty skin around your eyes will definitely thank you.

I take the art of smelling good extremely seriously, and I have an entire dressing table littered with perfumes as proof. It's truly so hard to choose a favorite child, but I have a next-level obsession with Bitter Peach from Tom Ford. It's juicy and rich and has the most intoxicating fruity, floral scent courtesy of notes such as peche de vigne, blood orange, and patchouli. It will put a spell on you and anyone lucky enough to be in your presence. The regular perfume will set you back a spine-tingling  £240, so I suggest opting for the new, comparably affordable body spray to get in on the magic without angering your bank account.

This is one of the only lip products that can keep my dry-as-a-bone lips hydrated, pillowy, and velveteen-soft throughout an entire night's sleep and the entire next day sans re-application. I always roll my eyes a little when a product claims filler-caliber results. And no, nothing will ever take the place of actual filler, but this one comes pretty dang close. Usually, lip masks are too heavy and sticky for my taste, but this one is significantly lighter and more comfortable without compromising on that aforementioned hit of hydration. Maxi-Lip is the key ingredient and is scientifically and clinically shown to visibly increase lip volume by 40% while also helping to support natural collagen production over time. Other key hitters include shea butter and hyaluronic acid. If you want plumper lips immediately and long-term, this best-in-the-world lip mask (yep, I went there!) needs a spot in your basket.

I'm telling you now that you absolutely positively need to add this bonding serum from Olaplex to your basket. I love anything and everything Olaplex makes, but dare I say this is my favorite formula yet? I'm a minimalist when it comes to hair products, but this lightweight serum has officially edged itself into the deepest valves of my heart. I apply a nickel-size amount to my damp hair pre-oil and any other styling products, and once my hair dries, it's impeccably soft, smooth, shiny, and healthy feeling. If you like instant and long-term gratification when it comes to the look and feel of your strands, you'll flip for this.

People always want to know how I wave my hair (see the main photo from this story) and this tool is my not-so-secret secret. I don't know what else to say about it other than it gives you perfect beachy waves in about 10 minutes' time. This easy tool gives me the creaseless, super-cool mermaid waves of my dreams without the frustration of other more complicated hair tools. Bless you, Amika!

I did the riskiest thing imaginable a couple of months ago. Pre–first date, I tried a new self-tanner I had never used before. I wanted some glow and a nice dose of colour fast, so when I found this unopened express formula from Bali in my self-tanning cabinet (yes, I have a self-tanning cabinet), I had a true Jesus-take-the-wheel moment and decided to take it for a spin. I had heard from my fellow beauty editor Caitie Schlisserman that it was amazing, and let me just say she wasn’t lying! This is hands down the best self-tanner I have ever tried—and I have tried hundreds. (That's not an exaggeration, I've been regularly self-tanning since middle school, folks.) It applies like a dream and has a nice colour guide—definitely use a mitt—and you can leave it on for just one to three hours depending on how deep of a tan you want. Also, thanks to the aerated texture of the foam, it’s touch-dry instantly! No stickiness, no transfer. I left it on for three hours and was left with the most even, natural-looking tan that continued to develop hours after I rinsed it off. I did apply a second coat a few days later, and the results have lasted a full week, and the fade is so even and unnoticeable. It ticks every box.

If you're looking for smoother, brighter, clearer skin long-term and instantaneously, then you can't beat this retinol from Shani Darden.

The internet has been blowing up over this new frizz-blocking smoothing spray from Virtue. Even though there are quite literally hundreds of other products with similar claims out there, this one is special (and crazy-effective) due to its impenetrable humidity-blocking, frizz-stopping, moisture-locking mist that works its magic for a full 72 hours. Created with humid climates, in particular, in mind, this alcohol-free, heat-activated spray is the only thing that can really stop frizz in its tracks. 

I didn't think it was possible to become utterly obsessed with something as simple as hand cream, but here we are. I had heard rumblings from a few of my other editor friends that this stuff was ridiculously amazing, and let me say, they weren't lying! It feels rich and decadent (yet somehow not sticky in the slightest!) and leaves your skin silky, smooth, and practically sparkling with nourishment thanks to the brand's signature honey concentrate. It goes without saying that it also smells intoxicatingly yummy, without being overly sweet. 

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