Sunday, 1 January 2012

My Favourite Buys of 2011

I wasn't going to post today, giving myself a day off, but I started getting twitchy! I thought it might be fun to have a little look back at my posts from 2011 and see which of the items that I purchased were real stand outs. My apologies for this being a mostly visual post but I have linked back to original posts if you want to know my thoughts on any particular item. This isn't a best of so I'm afraid I haven't picked out items from specific categories instead it's more of an overview of those items that I really thought were worth every penny.

The first four items I picked out were my favourite lipstick purchases in 2011. Hourglass Femme Rouge lipstick in Fresco, Chantecaille Lip Chic in Zinnia, Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Bonheur and Rouge Bunny Rouge Sheer Lipstick in Murmurings. Fresco is my everyday opaque MLBB shade, it wears really well and the formula is comfortable to wear. In contrast to Fresco, Zinnia isn't an everyday colour but the Lip Chic formula is a real winner for me. It's nice to wear something less muted every now and again too. I've mentioned both Murmurings and Bonheur in favourites posts several times but they're deserving of the praise. If I could only have two lipsticks for the rest of my days (heaven forbid) I would choose these two.

Fresco 5
Hourglass Fresco

Chantecaille Zinnia

RBR Murmuring and Chanel Bonheur

I bought Becca Turkish Rose and Hourglass Aura Cheek Stain in Rouge at the same time. Both have had a lot of use and, despite my fondness for buying blusher brushes, I often pick out a non-powder formula for speed or if my skin is looking dull or tired. Both Turkish Rose and Rouge are very easy to wear cheek shades and never clash with other colours that I am wearing.

Turkish Rose
Hourglass Rouge

Strictly speaking Chanel Topkapi was a swap item rather than a purchase but a fabulous swap it was too! As a Chanel eyeshadow virgin, this was a great start although I fear it may have spoiled me for the European quad releases. The eyeshadows are beautifully pigmented and creamy, I also find the inclusion of the dark brown stops it from being too bling.

Chanel Topkapi

I realised when I went hunting that I've never devoted a post to GOSH Truly Brown eyeliner but it has had a lot of mentions since I bought it. It's a great pencil liner at an equally great price. If you like dark brown liners but don't want to spend a fortune, I would highly recommend having a look at this pencil.

I can't resist some brush related mentions. The real standout purchases for me last year were my Rouge Bunny Rouge Large Shader (003) brush and Medium Pointed Yachiyo from Hakuhodo. The RBR brush is really rather versatile. It's great for all over lid colour but you can also use the tip to apply a crease colour or blend eyeshadows. I have successfully used this one brush to apply all four colours of a LMdB Kaleidoscope before. The Yachiyo has equally been a winning purchase. As yet, I have been too scared to check out the Hakuhodo website to see how much the price has gone up.

RBR Large Shader

Medium Pointed Yachiyo

I had to include my brush roll from aSoftBlackStar's Etsy Store in favourite purchases of 2011. It's really such a practical way to store brushes but I love it especially because it's handmade and not just a boring black. I'm already plotting buying a new roll just for my face brushes and love that I could talk to Lotus on Twitter about the possibility of spacing the slot sizes differently.


Making this a post about favourite buys meant I had to leave out several of my much loved items of 2011 as they were sent to me as PR samples. I have always had a policy of disclosing which items were sent to me without cost but equally I endevour to review all items as if they had been bought by me. So, I wanted to include the following items as honourable mentions. If I had bought these products, I would have considered it money well spent.

Both the Becca Enigma palette* and the Lancôme Blondette Fatale palette* are excellent groupings of colours and stand out as being versatile enough for day or evening looks. I've never considered Lancôme for neutrals but Blondette Fatale was so well done.

Becca Enigma

Blondette Fatale

The Kevyn Aucoin Aquarouge* and W3LL People Highlighter* both stood out for me as items I loved from 2011. Aquarouge is a stunning colour and the liquid lipstick formula is comfortable and long-lasting. It's not a colour I reach for everyday but it has that instant feel good factor. The W3LL People Highlighter is something that I do reach for on a daily base. It's so easy to use and provides a really subtle highlight.

Kevyn+Aucoin +FOTD9
Kevyn Aucoin Aquarouge


Do you have any favourite purchases from 2011?

Disclosure: Items marked with an asterisk were PR samples.


  1. Happy New year! What a comprehensive list of favorites--- Becca Enigma certainly looks like a standout to me.

  2. Great list. I lost my Becca Enigma but it recently turned up so it will be put back to use soon.

  3. Well,
    I took a look on hakuhodo website and price increase is quite high :(

  4. Happy New Year Jane! Great post, as always I seem to have missed the Lancome quad post so going back to have a read of that as it looks lovely.

  5. My favourite 2011 purchase, Lancome's Photogenic Lumessence.
    My worst will be Garnier BB Cream!

  6. Ha! Several of your favorites are also my favorites, but I had a feeling that would be so. :)

  7. Sadly the Yachiyos (and lots of the other Japanese Traditions Brushes) have increased a lot: each one costs 40%-55% more. Apparently the Large Pointed still costs less than the NARS offering though?

    That brush roll is lovely, I make my own at home but they're definitely not that professional-looking!

    I love favourites posts, thanks for yours!

  8. those chanel and lancome palettes look amazing and easy to wear! my fave purchases of the year have been the kat von d tattoo liners found at sephora because apply so evenly and smoothly for a liquid liner, it's easy as pie!!
    so glad i found you blog and i'm now a new follower! i'm a mom of 3 lovely kiddos too -check my blog out if you get a moment, i'm a mommy with a makeup problem....

  9. Lovely picks! Yes, the prices on the Hakuhodo brushes have gone up by a lot. Still, I plan to place a small order once they restock. Some of my favourite purchases of 2012 were definitely the NARS Sheer glow foundation, Paula's Choice products, Chanel Illusion d'Ombres and lipsticks in general :)


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