By now, you've probably surmised that we test-drive a lot of beauty products here at Who What Wear HQ. From nail polish and makeup to hair and skincare, we're eyebrow-deep in all things new, exciting, and, yes, wish list–worthy. That said, due to the number of products we come in contact with, we've also transformed into the nitpickiest of beauty consumers. Within seconds, we can tell if a new hair oil is too heavy, and we're quick to ignore a serum that yields disappointing results.
The good news? We're far more often impressed than unimpressed after trying out a new product, and usually we simply can't wait to spread the word to all of our fellow beauty junkies (aka you). Therefore, we've decided gushing over our latest fave products should become a monthly ritual, and every 30 days or so, you can expect a full report detailing the highlighters, hair wands, and overnight skincare saviors we've become quickly addicted to.
For the most part, we'll be covering buzzworthy launches (as those typically take up most of the action atop our product-filled desks), but we won't dismiss new-to-us products either. Because hey, sometimes our best discoveries are found on a friend's vanity or on someone's face at the bar—true story. Ahead, the best beauty products we tried in January! Grab your game face and wallet. You'll be needing both.
Erin Jahns, Beauty Editor
First of all, anything Miss Dior makes me so nostalgic and happy. (Miss Dior Cherie was my signature scent in junior high, after all.) That said, don't be fooled. The brand's newest rose-scented debut is so elegant and sophisticated. I haven't felt this addicted to a fragrance in a long, long time. And, you know a perfume is a winner when random strangers tell you how amazing you smell. This is a must-try! Especially with spring just around the corner. It's so fresh and truly beautiful—my favorite Dior perfume by far!
If you've been reading any of my stories recently, you already know how obsessed I am with this primer. It's the brilliant lovechild of two of the best brands in beauty right now (Victoria Beckham Beauty and Augustinus Bader), and it's basically bottled insurance for being photogenic. It features that same anti-aging technology Bader is known for, and I swear my skin has never looked as smooth and poreless as it does after I use this underneath my foundation. Try it, and tell me it's not magic.
Honestly, when am I NOT discovering a new favorite Charlotte Tilbury product? (The correct answer here is never.) Regardless, this month's obsession has been the brand's new, limited-edition Pillow Talk–inspired eye palette. I'm not one for bold eye looks, so I appreciate the buildable and subtle shade range. And, unlike so many palettes, I've found myself dipping into every single shade. (That's when you know an eye palette is worth the extra splurge.)
I'm not sure what's gotten into me lately, but I've swapped out my favorite black liquid liner in favor of more subtle shades like brown or burgundy, instead. I loved Lady Gaga's matte black liner when I first got my hands on it last year, so you can imagine my excitement when Haus Labs recently launched a pretty chocolate brown hue. It's all I've been using, the tip is the perfect size for precise cat-eye execution, and it literally doesn't budge. Plus, I like that this shade is demi-matte versus the full-on matte of the black. (It's just a little softer looking in my opinion, and I've been pairing it with the CT palette, above!) Add this to your Amazon cart ASAP.
Sorry I don't have an IRL image of this one, but I know that Pati Dubroff (Margot Robbie's amazing makeup artist) is a fan of Shiffa, so the brand has been on my radar for a while now. I just got my hands on this lush rose-infused body balm, and even though I'm not typically a balm kind of girl, one whiff converted me. It's made with tons of the most luxurious oils all designed to help dry or winter-chapped skin live its very best life. I like applying it the second I step out of the shower while my skin is still damp.
Courtney Higgs, Associate Beauty Editor
I am head over heels for this rich, earth-toned nail Essie polish. It's the perfect terra-cotta color and really pops on my brown skin. It's muted enough that I don't feel like my hands are too flashy, but vibrant enough that it doesn't bore me to death, either. Ugh, it's perfect.
A hairstylist recently told me that ever since she discovered this styling cream in Paris, she couldn't live without it. I'm officially a convert, as well. I use it as a heat protectant and it honestly helps make my at-home press-out look like a salon job.
Kristen Nichols, Managing Editor
Pat McGrath is known for her epic eye shadow palettes and I've had the Mothership VI Midnight Sun one on heavy rotation in my makeup routine recently. I've been using the pigmented shades like the gorgeous burgundy and electric purple colors for a bold eye—a departure from my standard taupe. I've also been using the shimmery champagne color to brighten the corners of my eyes and the high points of my face for an otherworldly glow.
Allyson Payer, Senior Editor
My obsession with Charlotte Tilbury's user-friendly eye shadow palettes is hardly new. I'm not typically very adventurous with my eye shadow but her shades are so wearable that I'd even wear blue eye shadow if she made it. But her latest eye shadow palette releases are decidedly more within my comfort zone. I recently got my hands on Queen of Glow, the Rebel, and Charlotte Darling.
The first two are quads and the latter is six-shade palette of pinks, browns, and bronzes. They all contain shades that prime, enhance, smoke, and pop, with a handy guide on each box (and a more extensive guide on her e-commerce site). Queen of Glow literally makes your eyes look like a sunset; the Rebel (my personal favorite) is the most stunning muted green eye palette I've ever laid eyes on, and Charlotte Darling is an everyday palette that's ideal for travel—there's a combo for every occasion and is thus the only eye shadow you'd need to pack.
Since my skin resembles the Sahara in the winter, Drunk Elephant's newest product was music to my ears: F-Balm Electrolyte Water Facial Mask. The antioxidant-packed mask reduced the redness in my skin and left it looking plump after just one use. It's recommended that you layer it over T.L.C. Framboos Glycolic Night Serum ($90), which is one of my favorite Drunk Elephant products, and even comes with a large sample of it. But you could easily layer it over any of your favorite peels or acids, or just use it alone when you need some hydration. I also think that it's light enough to use it when the weather warms up.
I've yet to meet a Byredo fragrance I didn't like, so even though Unnamed is sans-name or description, I had no doubts it would be amazing. It was first released back in 2016 and developed a cult following, so the brand just brought it back again for a limited run. According to the press release, the lack of name "leaves us free to create our own associations, with no semantic boundaries". (That said, the bottle comes with black and fluorescent colors to customize it yourself.) My reaction when I sprayed it on for the first time was that it was a clean scent with some depth. The top notes are pink pepper and gin accord, with the rest of the notes being floral and plant-based. I think I found my new go-to scent for spring and summer, folks.
Anna LaPlaca, Associate Editor
Welcome to the next episode of my love affair with Kosas. I've tried a lot of its non-toxic makeup products, and this perfect shade of lipstick is my latest obsession. As the name suggests, it's a cool-toned shade of rosy pink that reads as an everyday nude. The formula is on the creamy side, too, so it goes on smoothly and actually stays put.
Also, this lightweight tinted moisturizer I'm wearing is another new favorite. Fully transparency: It doesn't cover up much, but it does even out skin tone and neutralizes any redness, leaving my skin with a nicely balanced and natural-looking canvas.
I've tried to use other all-natural body washes, but none have even come close to this Necessaire one. With vitamins A, B3, C, and E, along with rich oils, it's nice and hydrating. But what really won me over on it was how gentle and non-irritating it is on my sensitive skin, thanks to the pH-balanced formula.
Simply put, this rich face cream leaves my skin feeling (and looking) expensive. Its intensely hydrating formula feels so luxurious and creates the ultimate dewy canvas for makeup. I know it really does the trick because I find that my skin needs fewer products when I use it. I've been using it daily for the past two months and I've barely made a dent in the jar since a little bit goes a long way.
Drew Elovitz, Director of Content Strategy
I received this all-natural face moisturizer in the January Beauty Heroes Discovery and have been using it every night since. It feels so rich in a very luxurious, hydrating way—the consistency and texture of the product easily blend into skin without weighing it down or rubbing off on your pillow at night. On lazy weekend mornings, I'll apply this (plus a few dots of under-eye concealer and a swipe of mascara) and head out to do errands in my neighborhood. I feel like it keeps my skin not only hydrated but also protected from the harsh cold and winter elements. Plus, my skin is happy, and it smells great!
Kat Collings, Editor in Chief
Well, guys, this is it. This is actually the natural deodorant that will end your search. I've been using it for weeks now, and it has lasted through workouts and long days on set without failing me. My entire book club is hooked. We've collectively spent hundreds of dollars on natural deodorants that haven't worked, and the failed deodorant money pit has officially been closed thanks to this product. It also doesn't have any baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) in it, which is necessary for me, since that ingredient gives me a rash.
Similar to my non-toxic deodorant quest, my natural shampoo and conditioner hunt was long and fruitless. The ones I tried lacked in at least one department, whether that was suds, scent, feel in the shower, or how my hair looked post-shower. I was, yet again, trudging through another disappointing purchase, when Merrady Wickes, beauty director at The Detox Market, said her favorite is from EVOLVh. It's her job to test and be familiar with all the clean brands on the market, so I had the hunch my search may be over. To my delight, it is by far the best natural shampoo and conditioner I've tried. The scent is amazing, it lathers up just like all the toxic shampoos that have sodium laureth sulfate, and leaves my hair looking lovely. Plus, the brand has a handful of varieties for different hair concerns. Sold!
Hello, luxury, nice to meet you. While owning a fancy brush is obviously not a necessity, using it has become a small daily treat that sure feels lovely. I've found the brush makes my hair shiny and is gentle on knots. It's also made in France, just in case you weren't yet convinced of the utter chicness.
Speaking of France, Diptyque just launched a new scent designed to perfectly epitomize Paris. It seems to be a theme for me this month! This fragrance smells quite unisex to me, which I adore. There are notes of rose, bergamot, and berries, which is tempered by patchouli to keep it from being too sweet. Whenever I wear it, I always get at least one, "What are you wearing?"
In terms of skincare, I'm guilty of treating my face well, and absolutely neglecting my body. I don't even use body lotion unless I'll have my limbs exposed, so a body serum was definitely a stretch for me in terms of amping up my bodycare. But against all odds, after trying this new launch for a month straight, I'm officially hooked. I did a little experiment where I put it only on my right elbow and went around asking people to feel my elbows and tell me which was softer. Needless to say my co-workers and I work in a very open environment where that kind of behavior doesn't really raise an eyebrow. Everyone picked the elbow that had been regularly Necessaire-ed immediately, securing the Body Serum as my new favorite discovery.
Bobby Schuessler, Senior Market Editor
I recently introduced this new face wash from Huron into my daily regimen, and I'm very into it. It cleans, hydrates, and keeps my skin feeling smooth. Check, check, check.