My 12 Favorite Beauty Products of 2012

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Brought to you by the we heart this beauty captain, Stef

My favorite beauty products of 2012 text with confettis inside a container

I am the self-declared captain of the beauty-obsessed portion of this ship. Don’t get me wrong, Tyna could easily steer the wheel in a moment’s notice. But she also sails happily knowing that I dutifully try every item that passes through the wht harbor. So, all aboard – these are my favorite beauty products that sailed our way this year; 12 of them to honor the year (in no particular order).

MAC Collections

1. MAC By Request (prices vary)
We saw A LOT of MAC launches this year. As always, the special packaging and inspired collaborations were fabulous, but how cool when a company listens to little ol’ us? I loved By Request; a nine product launch whose lineup was chosen by MAC fans from a list of former limited edition releases. And while I still hold out hope that I will see Strawberry Blonde lipstick again one day (please?), I was super excited to get my hands on Moth Brown eye shadow, Moxie lipstick and a back up Cult of Cherry lipglass. (sorry, sold out)

2. Milani Nail Lacquers ($4.49)
We all had a case of Milani fever this year. While their Shadow Eyez made the Review Team’s Top 12 list – it was their Nail Lacquers that I loved most. With so many affordable on-trend shades, we even made our very first video in tribute to them! (buy them at drugstores, Target or here)

A blonde haired woman wearing a red lipstick, looking at the camera smiling

3. Stila Liquid Lipstick in Beso ($22)
My other red lip products have felt a bit envious ever since Stila’s Beso arrived. It’s bright, bold, matte and incredibly pigmented; a pin-up sort of red that has me in an absolute tizzy. Plus the vitamin E and avocado oil packed liquid formula applies like a dream, taking the term lightweight to a whole new level. All that and six hours of wear! (buy it here)

bareMinerals READY eye shadow duo collection

4. bareMinerals READY eye shadow duos ($20)
These made it on the Review Team’s Best of 2011 list when they first launched. This year, it was me who couldn’t get enough of their buttery, pigmented formula. I’ve become a bit obsessed with them, to be honest with you. I collect them like it’s cool!
(buy it here)

MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultimate Eye Liner Collection swatches

5. MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultimate Eye Liner Collection ($160)
What do you get when you combine some of the best liner formulas that a beauty junkie can buy: seven Aqua Pencils, three Khols, four Aqua Liners; with a precise German-made pencil sharpener in an artist-inspired flip top box? Why, you get one of my favorite products of 2012, that’s what! This is also the winner of the biggest squeal award, due to the sound that I made when I opened it. (buy it here)

Urban Decay Smoked Palette Swatches

6. Urban Decay Smoked Palette ($49)
Urban Decay had some amazing palettes this year, as always. But Smoked really floated my boat; 10 of their newly formulated, richly shaded matte and shimmer shadows, five which were exclusive to this palette. The full size rich black Perversion eyeliner and a mini Primer Potion were a plus too. As is the AMAZING Look Book with 12 well-explained tutorials on various degrees of smoked eyes in a range of shades. (buy it here)

A hand wearing a mixed of yellow, orange and white colored nail polish

7. It’s So Easy Nail Art (prices vary)
I doubt I had more fun testing a product this year than I did with It’s So Easy’s nail products, from the vast array of shades and textures of glitter powder (shown at the top of this post) to the dotting tool (trust me, you need one of these) to the Stripe Rite shades that created the neon tribal look above. Plus, they’re inexpensive and easy to use even for a beginner. (available at Sally’s Beauty Supply)

Moroccanoil Treatment Light

8. Moroccanoil Treatment Light ($40)
This is, hands down, my favorite leave in oil that I have EVER used. I love the smell; subtle, warm and spicy. And I love the light formula that somehow gives me the silky smoothness my hair craves with way less product. Bonus, if I pump too much I use it on my skin! This is one of those products that will be in my cabinet for the rest of my life. (available in salons)

A closed up image of a one-eyed woman with a Revitalash Advanced treatment

9. Revitalash Advanced ($70)
I heard about the miracle of Revitalash for ages, but it wasn’t until I watched my own lashes grow right before my eyes that I became a true fan. We’re talking lashes so long and thick, you can easily skip mascara. Amazing! (buy it here)

Too Faced La Crème Lip Creams with multiple colors

10. Too Faced La Crème Lip Creams ($21)
These beauties were the number one favorite product on our Review Team’s Top 12 list, so you know they’ve got to be on mine too. How could they not be with pretty packaging, a great range of shades and a moisture rich formula? Coral Fire and Naked Dolly (shown above in the # 1 and 4 spots) quickly became two of the lip products I reached for most this year. (buy it hereicon)

Becca Balearic Love Palette

11. Becca Balearic Love Palette ($45)
I love this palette. It’s smooth, nicely pigmented and the smoky brown/plum eye you can get with it is rich and beautiful. I can see it working on anyone, but it does wonders for people with light eyes. I swear, every time I use it I get a compliment! Plus, the packaging slays me. (buy it here)

3Lab Perfect C eye cream on a white background

12. 3Lab Perfect C eye cream ($85)
Oh, how to put my love of Perfect C eye cream into words? It’s a dense cream that has a buoyancy to it, it feels light and really emollient all at the same time. It soaks in well: not too fast that you wonder where it went and not to slow as to leave you looking shiny or oily. And when it does, my eyes look instantly better. Not just one of the best I’ve tried this year, but the best I’ve tried EVER. (buy it here)

How about you readers, what were your favorites of 2012?


  • Stef Andrews

    Stef is a plethora of things. Amongst them: co-founder of we heart this, photographer, condiment connoisseur, Philly girl in the California desert, borderline hoarder and a hardcore beauty junkie. She also has a touch of wanderlust and, arguably, the cutest dog in the whole world... skin tone: NC 25/30 skin type: oily with a fear of rosacea favorite beauty product: high end skincare and lip products


  1. I love my Two Faced Lip Cremes. They are so moisturizing it is practically a treatment!

  2. @Stef, I just can’t get Stila Beso outta my head!!! I got a Sephora gift card for Christmas and I’m definitely picking that up. Yeah, I have a bunch of nice red lippies, but Beso is just outstanding. I’ve been wanting it for MONTHS.

    I’m also trying to decide which of the Too Faced Lip Cremes I want to get…

    1. I went to Sephora inside JCP yesterday to buy Beso… and they didn’t have it. They had Fiery but it just didn’t cut it. Even though I had a Sephora gift card burning a hole in my pocket, I knew I’d still be obsessed with getting my hands on THAT shade.

      I was tempted to buy one of the Too Faced Lip Cremes but couldn’t decide which shade I wanted. I wanted them all, but that was too expensive ;)

  3. Love seeing your picks @Stef – I am still so worked up over that Make Up For Ever Ultimate Eye Liner Collection That arm-full of swatches is complete makeup inspiration. MUFE makes such great great liners, and the thought of 16 brand new shiny liners of various formulas at my fingertips makes me feel light-headed ~ I so want it!

    And as a fan of Becca and their eyeshadows in particular, I also am envious of the Balearic Love Palette – such pretty colors. And all the Becca shadows I’ve worn have a great formula – finely milled and easy to work with, layerable and blendable and always flattering.

    1. @tyna , every time I see a pic of the MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultimate Eye Liner Collection, I go a little crazy and have to talk myself down. It’s so extravagant but soooo tempting!
      Love your list, @stef !

  4. I am with @tyna – the MUFE eye liner collection is STILL tormenting me with how gorgeous it is. And spendy. ARG! *raises clutched fists at the heavens*

    1. I am right there with you. I would only use about 60% of the liners, but it’s just so pretty!

  5. This isn’t new, but my favorite of 2012 is the discovery of MAC’s Studio Tech creme foundation. I’m a full coverage gal and this little compact has been a life saver since I’ve had the baby; I can do my makeup in parking lot before work if I’m running late and I don’t have to schlep a bottle and foundation brush with me in the morning. Plus it’s smooth and light, barely feels like I’m wearing anything.
    So nothing new, but new to me!

  6. My favorite from this list is MAC By Request. I purchased the Moth Brown and Jete, and love them both, and the Flash of Flesh proved to be a great gloss, especially on top of some my nude lipsticks.

  7. Those Ready. Eyeshadows are like butter. I want to eat them…nom, nom, nom. Love!

  8. Love these!! The Moroccanoil Treatment Light is my fav. out of all of those. It really works on all hair types and make it feel amazing.

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