2017 Beauty Awards: The Best Beauty Products for Brides

Our editors tested these, so you don't have to!

Updated 03/22/17
Product Disclosure

We know you’re swamped with countless tasks to check off your wedding planning list (all fun and exciting things, yes, but we know it can get a bit stressful). So decided to make it a little easier for you: We used our editors as guinea pigs to test and scrutinize hundreds of beauty products—makeup, hair care, and skincare included—to find the awesome ones that you’ll love to wear on your wedding day, along with the events leading up to it (and probably for the rest of your life after your wedding because they’re that good.) What we looked for? Seamless, you-but-better makeup that will last from ceremony to reception (no smudgy mascara or flaky foundation here), hair products that will give you shiny, frizz-free styles regardless of the climate you’re getting married in, and skincare that will make your complexion even more radiant than it was when you first got engaged. (And that’s just for starters.) Happy beauty shopping!

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Best Primer: Make Up For Ever Step 1 Skin Equalizer Primer

Courtesy of Sephora

Whether you have oily, dry, combo, blotchy, or dull skin, this brand’s got a formula for you. (There are 10 primers in total.) Our oily-skinned tester loved that the mattifying one kept her face shine-free all day long. (Skin Equalizer Primer, $37, Makeup Forever)

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The Best Foundation: Giorgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation

Courtesy of Giorgio Armani Beauty

“I put so much of this on—it was a bad-skin day—and it hid everything without looking like a mask,” one editor says. Moral of the story? If you do come down with a breakout on your big day, this will have you covered. Literally. (Luminous Silk Foundation, $64, Giorgio Armani)

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Best CC Cream: AmorePacific Color Control Cushion Compact Broad Spectrum SPF 50+

Courtesy of Vendor

The light formula melts into your skin, creating a pretty, hydrated finish. “I couldn’t stop staring at my complexion,” our tester says. (Control Cushion Compact Broad Spectrum, $60, AmorePacific)

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Best Concealer: Clé de Peau Beauté Concealer

Courtesy of Clé de Peau Beauté

It’s pigmented and heavy-duty, which means it gets the job done on both blemishes and under-eye circles. (Beauté Concealer, $70, Clé de Peau)

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Best Bronzer: Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess Powder Bronzer

Courtesy of Macy’s

“The name doesn’t lie,” our tester says. “This actually made me feel like a bronze goddess.” We also love that it’s buildable, so you can go from sun kissed to sun drenched in a few swipes. ("Goddess" Powder Bronzer, $39, Estée Lauder)

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Best Highlighter: RMS Beauty Living Luminizer

Courtesy of RMS Beauty

For your wedding, you want the lit-from-within glow that this coconut-oil-infused highlighter delivers. With a touch on your forehead, cheekbones, and cupid’s bow, you’ll be radiant. (Living Luminizer, $38, RMS Beauty)

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Best Blush: Dior Rosy Glow Healthy Glow Awakening Blush

Courtesy of Vendor

This blush is alarmingly bright pink in the compact, but it works with the skin’s chemistry to create the prettiest flush on all complexions. “It actually looks better as the day wears on,” our tester says. (Healthy Glow Awakening Blush, $44, Dior)

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Best Loose Powder: Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Courtesy of Laura Mercier

Our staffer loved that this powder gave her a soft-focus finish (read: created a blurring effect) without settling into pores. (Translucent Loose Setting Powder, $38, Laura Mercier)

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Best Lipstick: Chanel Rouge Allure Intense Long-Wear Lip Color

Courtesy of Vendor

“I tried a variety of these shades—red, pink, nude—and they all looked gorge,” our tester says, adding that they felt weightless and moisturizing while packing a surprising depth of color. ("Rouge Allure" Intense Long-Wear Lip Color, $37, Chanel)

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Best Lipgloss: Lipstick Queen Saint & Sinner Lip Tint

Courtesy of Lipstick Queen, Jeffrey Westbrook, Prop Styling by Sarah Guido-Laakso/Halley Resources

It works like a lip gloss but feels (and lasts) like a stain—the best of both worlds. “I especially loved the deep red, which adds color without making a huge statement,” one tester says. ("Saint & Sinner" Lip Tint, $24, Lipstick Queen)

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Best Makeup Brushes: Artis Brushes

Courtesy of Artis Makeup Brushes

These luxe oval-shaped tools blend so well, you’ll look like you had your makeup professionally done. “Worth the splurge,” our tester notes, “because you can use them before and after your wedding.” (Artis Brushes, $35–$75)

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Best Brow Pencil: Chanel Crayon Sourcils Sculpting Eyebrow Pencil

Courtesy of Chanel

This pencil won major points for its smooth formula, which creates full, defined brows that don’t appear drawn on. “My brows get sparse at the ends, and this did the trick. I’m using it every day now,” our staffer says. ("Sourcils" Sculpting Eyebrow Pencil, $29, Chanel)

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Best Eye Shadow: Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Shadow

Courtesy of Bobbi Brown

With nine different nudes to choose from, these are the ultimate you-but-better eye shadows. “They subtly bring out your eyes and are easy to apply with your fingers or a brush,” our tester says. (Long Wear Cream Shadow, $28, Bobbi Brown)

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Best Eyeliner: Mary Kay Eyeliner

Courtesy of Mary Kay

A glide-friendly tip means you can create a defined line sans Q-tip cleanup. “Not kidding—I received several compliments when wearing this liner,” our tester says. (Mary Kay Eyeliner, $12)

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Best Liquid Eyeliner: Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner

Courtesy of Stila

Our feline-flick-obsessed editor loved that this gave her steady control to create the perfect wing. “And it didn’t transfer to my upper lids midday,” she adds. ("Stay All Day" Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner, $22, Stila)

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Best Mascara: Lancôme Définicils Mascara

Courtesy of Lancôme

“Even, feathery long lashes—this mascara gives you exactly what you want for your wedding day,” our tester says. ("Définicils" Mascara, $28, Lancôme)

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Best Waterproof Mascara: Eyeko Sport Waterproof Mascara

Courtesy of Eyeko

One staffer tested this during a SoulCycle class, and it stayed put. It also doesn’t clump, which can happen sometimes with waterproof formulas, FYI. ("Sport" Waterproof Mascara, $26, Eyeko)

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Best False Lashes Applicator: Flirt Cosmetics Flashes Lash Applicator

Courtesy of Flirt Cosmetics

These lashes come in a dispenser, so you can easily add singles where you want them. “It’s perfect for those of us who don’t use falsies on the regular—which I think is most of us,” our tester says. ("Flashes" Lash Applicator, $28, Flirt Cosmetics)

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Best Eyelash Curler: Shu Uemura Lash Curler

Courtesy of Shu Uemura

This one is the gold standard: “It curls like a dream, without pinching,” our editor says. (Shu Uemura Lash Curler, $20)

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Best Setting Spray: Urban Decay All Nighter Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

Courtesy of Sephora

Our tester applied this before a night out and found her makeup looked just about as fresh at 3 a.m. as it did when it was first applied. ("All Nighter" Long-Lasting Makeup Setting Spray, $31, Urban Decay)

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Best Fragrances

Jeffrey Westbrook, Prop Styling by Sarah Guido-Laakso/Halley Resources

Fruity: Jo Malone English Pear & Freesia Cologne

This scent stood out for its sophisticated sweetness—an unexpected combo of freesia and pear. ("English Pear & Freesia" Cologne, $130 for 3.4 ounces, Jo Malone)

Clean: Philosophy Amazing Grace Eau de Toilette Spray

Don’t love perfume? Try this subtle blend of bergamot, muguet blossoms, and musk. ("Amazing Grace" Eau de Toilette Spray, $48 for 2 ounces, Philosophy)

Musky: D.S. & Durga Radio Bombay Eau de Parfum

Cedar and sandalwood make this the ideal sexy fragrance. ("Radio Bombay" Eau de Parfum, $175 for 1.7 ounces, D.S. & Durga)

Beachy: Maison Margiela Replica Beach Walk

If you’re getting married at the shore (or just want to smell like it), this coconut-milk-and-lemon scent fits the bill. (Replica "Beach Walk", $125 for 3.4 ounces, Maison Margiela)

Floral: Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Eau de Parfum

Jasmine and rose are at the heart of this scent, but vetiver and patchouli give it a nice kick. ("Coco Mademoiselle" Eau de Parfum, $94 for 1.7 ounces, Chanel)

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Best Body Scrub: Dermadoctor KP Duty Body Scrub

Courtesy of DERMAdoctor

“I never knew I could get so excited about a scrub, but this one made my skin so soft that I had my roommate touch my leg,” our staffer says. ("KP Duty" Body Scrub, $46, Dermadoctor)

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Best Bodywash: Neutrogena Rainbath Shower and Bath Gel

Courtesy of Neutrogena

It’s nice to know that some things never change—like the nostalgic scent of this wash, which left our staffer “feeling super clean." ("Rainbath" Shower and Bath Gel, $10, Neutrogena)

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Best Body Lotion: Curél Hydra Therapy Wet Skin Moisturizer

Courtesy of Target

Apply this as the name suggests—on wet skin—for optimal hydration. “It’s the only lotion that got rid of my eczema,” one tester says. (Hydra Therapy Wet Skin Moisturizer, $11, Curél)

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Best Deodorant: Dove Clinical Protection

Courtesy of Dove

The fact that this keeps you smelling great for 48 hours means you’ll have one less thing to worry about on your wedding day. (Dove Clinical Protection, $4)

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Best Self-Tanner: James Read Self Tan Bronzing Mousse

Courtesy of James Read

Our tester raves about this product, which “fades gradually, so you won’t look patchy, even on the last day of your honeymoon.” (Self Tan Bronzing Mousse, $38, James Read)

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Best Teeth Whitener: Crest 3D White Whitestrips with Light

Courtesy of Crest

DIY whiteners have upped their ante. This system contains a blue light (what dentists use in their offices) that makes strips more effective. (Crest 3D White Whitestrips with Light, $100)

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Best Base Coat: OPI Natural Nail Base Coat

Courtesy of OPI

This base ensures polish goes on smoothly and can prevent nails from yellowing, which is especially impressive when you wear red exclusively, as our tester does. ("Natural Nail" Base Coat, $10, OPI)

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Best Nail Polish: Essie Gel Couture

Courtesy of Amazon

The only thing that can beat Essie’s regular nail polish? The new Gel Couture line, which lasts up to 14 days—no UV lamp required. ("Gel Couture", $12, Essie)

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Best Top Coat: Jin Soon Top Gloss Quick Dry Top Coat

Courtesy of Jin Soon

This chip-resistant formula will keep nails looking glossy for days. Did we mention it dries in five minutes? ("Top Gloss" Quick Dry Top Coat, $18, Jin Soon)

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Best Cuticle Oil: Sally Hansen Color Therapy Nail & Cuticle Oil

Courtesy of Sally Hansen

Start using this ASAP to make your nails stronger by the wedding. ("Color Therapy" Nail & Cuticle Oil, $9, Sally Hansen)

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Best Color Correctors

Jeffrey Westbrook, Prop Styling by Sarah Guido-Laakso/Halley Resources

Work magic on your stubborn spots: Pink brightens dark circles, green erases redness, violet balances sallowness, and yellow eliminates dullness. Try Urban Decay "Naked Skin" Color Correcting Fluid ($28) or Yves Saint Laurent Touche Éclat Neutralizer ($42).

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Best Custom Drops

Jeffrey Westbrook, Prop Styling by Sarah Guido-Laakso/Halley Resources

Doctor your foundations and lotions with ingredients tailored to your needs. Looking dull? Add radiance-boosting Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops ($42) to your primer. Want to mattify your tinted moisturizer? Put in a few of the company’s Custom Blot Drops ($42), and just like that—problem solved.

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Best Hair Primer: Nexxus Color Assure Pre-Wash Primer

Courtesy of Nexxus

Comb a few pumps through your hair before shampooing and you won’t have to worry about fading. In fact, it made a blond staffer’s hair more vibrant. (Don’t have color-treated hair? It will still nourish strands and prevent breakage.) ("Color Assure" Pre-Wash Primer, $18, Nexxus)

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Best Shampoo and Conditioner: Pantene Pro-V Daily Moisture Renewal Shampoo and Conditioner

Courtesy of Target

This combo gives lustrous shine with each wash. “I air dried my hair after, and this gave me a smooth wave,” our tester says. ("Daily Moisture Renewal" Shampoo and Conditioner, $4 & $5, Pantene Pro-V)

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Best Shampoo and Conditioner for Textured Hair: Kérastase Discipline Bain Fluidealiste and Fondant Fluidealiste

Courtesy of Kérastase

A gentle shampoo that cleans without stripping, plus a rich, nourishing conditioner that prevents frizz? Believe it; our tester saw it firsthand. ("Discipline" Bain Fluidealiste and Fondant Fluidealiste, $43 & $45, Kérastase)

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Best Deep Conditioner: Christophe Robin Regenerating Mask with Rare Prickly Pear Seed Oil

Courtesy of Christophe Robin

The prickly-pear-seed oil in this mask is one of the richest sources of vitamin E, and it helped detangle and moisturize strands for thick- and fine-haired testers. (Regenerating Mask, $71, Christophe Robin)

38 of 52

Best DeFrizzer: It’s a 10 Haircare Miracle Leave-In Product

Courtesy of Amazon

Our curly-haired tester applied a generous amount of this leave-in treatment on a humid, rainy day and was left with bouncy spirals. A miracle? Perhaps. ("Miracle" Leave-In Product, $18, It’s a 10)

39 of 52

Best Volumizer: Bumble and Bumble Dryspun Finish

Courtesy of Sephora

“If you’re wearing your hair down for your wedding, a few spritzes of this volumizer will keep it from falling flat,” says our fine-haired staffer, who is obsessed with the body this creates. (Dryspun Finish, $31, Bumble and Bumble)

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Best Texturizer: OGX Moroccan Sea Salt Spray

Courtesy of Walmart

Thanks to hydrating sea kelp and Moroccan argan oil, this mist gives you tousled waves without the crunch. (Moroccan Sea Salt Spray, $8, OGX)

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Best Curl Cream: Tresemmé Flawless Curls Extra-Hold Mousse

Courtesy of TRESemmé

For full, bouncy curls that won’t wilt, “shake the can, rake the product through damp hair, and you’re good to go,” says our new expert, who now stocks up on this product. ("Flawless Curls" Extra-Hold Mousse, $4, Tresemmé)

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Best Blowdryer: Harry Josh Pro Tools Pro Dryer 2000

Jeffrey Westbrook, Prop Styling by Sarah Guido-Laakso/Halley Resources

Our staffer couldn’t get over how quickly this dried her thick lob. “It’s small and comfortable to hold but super powerful,” she says. (Pro Dryer 2000, $250, Harry Josh Pro Tools)

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Best Styling Iron: Bio Ionic 10X Pro Styling Iron 1”

Courtesy of Sephora

We won’t get too technical, but here’s the gist: This high-tech tool drives tiny water molecules into your hair using negative ions, which means you get shiny, healthy-looking curls (or straight hair—it does both!) that look professionally done. (10X Pro Styling Iron, $230, Bio Ionic)

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Best Hairspray: Big Sexy Hair Spray & Play Volumizing Hairspray

Courtesy of Sexy Hair

Whether you wear your hair up or down, this keeps it all in place. “I couldn’t feel or see buildup, which is especially telling since I have fine blond hair,” our tester says. ("Spray & Play" Volumizing Hairspray, $19, Big Sexy Hair)

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Best Dry Shampoo: Oribe Gold Lust Dry Shampoo

Courtesy of Oribe

The translucent formula works to create French-girl texture. “It makes it seem like you woke up like this—even when you’re wearing a white gown,” our staffer says. ("Gold Lust" Dry Shampoo, $44, Oribe)

46 of 52

Best Meal-Delivery Services

Courtesy of Sakara, Urban Remedy

Plant-based and organic Sakara Life, offers surprisingly delicious dishes—like a golden-berry-banana muffin for breakfast and Indian samosas for lunch—that make you feel light (and hungry, in a good way), while Urban Remedy, combines raw juices, soups, and salads that leave you satiated and glowy.

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Best Probiotics

Courtesy of Be Well, Tata Harper

Add these multitaskers to your wedding regimen, stat. Available as pills (try Be Well by Dr. Frank Lipman Probiotics, $68), in fermented food, and in skin care (like Tata Harper Purifying Mask, $65), they’re chock-full of good bacteria that promote digestion, clear skin, flatten your stomach, and up your energy, for starters.

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Best Bridal Workout for a Total Body Revamp

Courtesy of Orangetheory Fitness

The way to go is Orangetheory Fitness: You’ll get half an hour of cardio and half an hour of strength training for a toned, trim physique. Check the Web site for locations.

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Best Bridal Spa Services

Courtesy of Biologique Recherche

One of our favorite skin-care brands is Biologique Recherche; we’re obsessed with the products, and the line’s facial treatments deliver, too. Tell them you’re a bride and the beauty company will put you on a regimen for your face (and body, if you wish) that will transform your skin. Trust us. We’ve tried it.

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Wellness Guru to Follow

Nutritionist Kimberly Snyder has a star-studded following that includes Drew Barrymore and Reese Witherspoon, and she’s written books about clean eating (including our favorite, The Beauty Detox Solution, $17). She shares delicious vegan recipes on her Web site, and Instagram account (@_kimberlysnyder) that’ll make you excited to change your diet.

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Best Destressing App

Courtesy of Headspace

Get in on the meditation trend (studies show it reduces stress, leading to weight loss and clear skin) with Headspace, an easy-to-use app that’s perfect for beginners. Subscriptions start at $13.

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Drugstore Scores

Jeffrey Westbrook, Prop Styling by Sarah Guido-Laakso/Halley Resources

Tree Hut Moroccan Rose Shea Sugar Scrub: This has sugar to exfoliate, argan oil and organic shea butter to moisturize, and an addicting rose scent. (Moroccan Rose Shea Sugar Scrub, $8, Tree Hut)

Eco Tools Makeup Brushes: These soft-bristle brushes, which come in every size and shape you could need, helped our tester’s makeup glide on streak-free. (Makeup Brushes, $6–$9)

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Cream: This hyaluronic-acid lotion hydrated our staffer’s skin without looking greasy, felt cool to the touch, and absorbed instantly, so she could apply foundation right after. ("Hydro Boost" Gel Cream, $19, Neutrogena)

NYX Professional Makeup Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick: This lip color stands the test of time, as our staffer so specifically describes: “It got me through 11 hours, two venti coffees, an omelet, and a large bowl of chili, and I haven’t had to reapply once. I’m not even wearing lip liner.” (Liquid Suede Cream Lipstick, $7, NYX)

Almay Smart Shade CC Cream Complexion Corrector: The lightweight formula changes color as you apply it, giving you a sheer, second-skin finish (just the thing for brides who don’t like foundation). ("Smart Shade" CC Cream Complexion Corrector, $10, Almay)

Olay Regenerist Luminous Overnight Mask: You don’t have to wash off this mask. Let your skin soak up all of the vitamin B3, mulberry extract, and humectants, which work to moisturize, even out skin color, and brighten. “It’s exactly what I needed to bring my lackluster skin back to life,” a glowing staffer says. ("Regenerist" Luminous Overnight Mask, $26, Olay)

CoverGirl Jumbo Gloss Balm: “Moisturizing, sheer, super long lasting, and easy to reapply on the go—it checks all the boxes,” our new devotee says. (Jumbo Gloss Balm, $7.49, CoverGirl)

Maybelline New York Brow Precise Micro Pencil: This pencil has a fine tip that lets you draw on natural-looking hairs. Says one editor, “Top it off with gel and you’ll have brows as close to Cara D.’s as humanly possible.” (Brow Precise Micro Pencil, $8, Maybelline New York)

Revlon Ultimate All-in-One Mascara: A tiny wand coats every last lash, and the no-clump formula gives you a doe-eyed look. Says our tester, “I was so used to large wands, I never thought this could make my lashes so big and bold! Love it.” (Ultimate All-in-One Mascara, $9, Revlon)

Simple Dual Effect Eye Makeup Remover: We tested this gentle formula on an editor who has super-sensitive eyes, and it left her irritation free while removing mascara, eye shadow, and eyeliner. (Its secret is a combo of oil and vitamin water that works like a charm.) (Dual Effect Eye Makeup Remover, $8, Simple)

RoC Deep Wrinkle Night Cream: This multitasking no-frills product (it’s oil free, noncomedogenic, and hypoallerg

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