February was nothing short of a whirlwind. From the Oscars closing out awards season, to the thrills of Fashion Week around the globe, this month definitely kept us on our toes. But, of course, we still found time to try out some stellar beauty products — and now we want to share them all with you.
From new innovative haircare products that make protective-style wash days a breeze, to cult-favorite retinols that won’t irritate sensitive skin (yes, really), we’re sharing the best of the best to make your beauty routines a little easier.
Kayla Greaves, Senior Beauty Editor
Head & Shoulders Royal Oils Pre-Shampoo Build Up Remover with Micellar Water
To buy: $9, Walmart.com
Wearing a protective style is all fun and games until one day, you take a good look at your scalp and realize you’ve got heavy product build-up forming around your roots. Head & Shoulders’ latest edition to their Royal Oils line helps to remedy this common issue by breaking up product residue before you shampoo, making in-shower cleansing a breeze. Another plus is that the spray bottle makes it easy to lightly target certain areas of the scalp without making a mess.
Carol’s Daughter Wash Day Delight
To buy: $13, Ulta.com
Once I finish pre-treating my hair with the goodness from Head & Shoulders, I’ve been following up with Wash Day Delight from Carol’s Daughter — and let me tell you, I am obsessed. It’s perfect to use with protective styles since the spouted nozzle makes it super easy to apply the shampoo directly to the scalp, and its water-to-foam formula leaves behind absolutely no residue (unlike heavier shampoos). Just one warning, though: make sure you give yourself a little extra time when using this product, because the heavenly scent may leave you wanting to spend hours in the shower.
Pat McGrath Labs Skin Fetish: Sublime Perfection Concealer
To buy: $32, Sephora.com
I’ve never met a Pat McGrath product I didn’t like, and her new concealers are no exception. When I tell you that this formula does not budge, it does not budge — and it looks just like skin. But don’t just take my word for it, check out Anna Sui’s NYFW fall/winter 2020 runway to see its brilliance in action. For extra blurring effects, pair it with the line’s new ultra-soft and smooth Under-Eye Setting Powder, which features mica-infused formula to give you an even finish and extra radiance. As Mother would say: It’s divine.
Erin Lukas, Beauty Editor
To buy: $18, Glossier.com
Glossier’s first launch of 2020 is an eyeshadow that’s perfect for people who hate wearing eyeshadow. Unlike Lidstar — the brand’s other liquid eyeshadow — Skywash has a powdery matte finish. While it’s effortless to apply (I like to dab a few dots on my eyelid and blend it in with my fingertip), it goes on really sheer. So, if you’re looking for color payoff, you’re going to need to build it up with a couple coats. That being said, all of the desert-inspired shades are amazing across a wide range of skin tones. Personally, I’m a fan of Terra, a burnt Terracotta shade that’s not too orange, but not too brown either. I’m predicting it’s going to be the eyeshadow I reach for the most this spring.
Shani Darden Skin Care Retinol Reform
To buy: $95, Shanidarden.com
My skin is so sensitive, it gets irritated when I look at it the wrong way. But now that I’m in my 30s, I want the anti-aging benefits of retinol in my skincare routine, I just need it to be gentle. While retinol is effective for treating all of my current skincare concerns — including preventing wrinkles, fine lines, and acne, as well as minimizing hyperpigmentation — it’s notorious side effects. After trying many different retinol products on the market and ending up with redness and flaking, I decided to give Shani Darden’s cult-favorite retinol serum a try. Along with retinol, the formula contains exfoliating lactic acid, which delivers instant results, plus continues to improve tone and texture over time. With just one use, I noticed my dark spots from old hormonal breakouts were lighter, and my skin overall just looked brighter and clearer. Since that fateful night, I’ve been using Retinol Reform every day without experiencing any issues.
TRESemme Compressed Micro Mist Hair Spray
To buy: $5, Walmart.com
Let’s all be honest with ourselves: Hairspray is a product we all love to hate on, but most of us regularly use it. Now that that’s out of the way, I’ll share that TREsemme has been my go-to since high school, and even though I have access to a ton of different hair sprays as a beauty editor, I always go back to this one. What I love most is that fact that it has a strong hold, but doesn’t give my hair that crunchy, helmet-like texture. This winter, I’ve been spritzing a bit on my fingertips, then running them over my bangs and roots to control any flyaways and static.