The Best Cult Beauty Products of 2010

The culty beauty products on my radar (and Santa's too, I hope!).
Michelle Villett
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The culty beauty products on my radar (and Santa's too, I hope!).

Okay, so I probably should have posted this at least a week ago, seeing as it's already December 17th—eeks! But it just occurred to me that while I've posted a list of the beauty products I think are definitely worth it and that YOU should be asking for from Santa... I hadn't actually posted about what I'd like Santa to bring ME.

Because, you see, I already have quite a healthy-sized (okay, embarrassingly huge) product collection and realistically have zero need to expand it any further. But then a couple of blog friends—Coco&Lowe and The Style Spy—asked me to participate in their Christmas wish list round-ups (check me out here and here), and I realized that I should probably share those picks with you guys too.

And surprise, surprise: they're all cult products, most of them hard to find. And while I haven't tried any of them yet (have you?), I've been hearing VERY good things...

1. Ellis Faas Milky Lips in Ellis Red


I have wanted this lipstick (and, well, lots of other things from this line) for at least a year now, maybe two. It's not available in Canada yet—although Canadians can order online—and what has me so intrigued is that all of the shades are based on colours found naturally in the human body... like blood!

Yes, blood. That's the deal with the Ellis Red (above), which is supposed to suit any skin tone since we all have blood, right? Such a smart concept by makeup artist Ellis Faas, who has tossed that whole confusing thing about warm versus cool tones out the window.  This lipstick comes in three "finishes": Creamy, Milky and Glazed. I suggest you read more about it here.

2. Tarte LipSurgence Natural Lip Tint in Amused (Bright Pink)


Speaking of lip products, I've been on a mission to get more Tarte in my life ever since it had a makeover and went from being just a cutesy-packaging brand to a proper natural cosmetics line. I've heard from PR and beauty editor friends alike that this lip stain is The Bomb. I fully approve of the ingredients lint (no yucky stuff) and it's supposed to be highly moisturizing, so it will be an upgrade for my Joe Fresh (which I still love, but... you know). Find out more here—you can actually buy this one at Sephora.

3. The O Cloud Nine Heated Rollers


I LOVE old skool hot rollers, and these are currently the biggest deal EVAH in the U.K. so I desperately hope they come to Canada very soon. What makes them different and better than regular hot rollers: They heat up in three seconds—THREE seconds!—and give natural-looking body that actually lasts for hours instead of falling flat within 10 minutes. The trick (as with all hot rollers) is letting them cool to set, and these are very clever on that front because they have a handy indicator light telling you when it's time to remove. It doesn't look like Cloud Nine will ship to Canada, but I'll leave you to investigate further here.

4. Jane Iredale Pressed Powder Foundation


So you may remember me posting about a little experiment-gone-wrong called The Oil Cleansing Method? Oh HAI. Still dealing with that, and I'll maybe post a follow-up about it as soon as this nightmare is behind me—damn stuff gave me some kind of allergic, flaky rash AND an infection. (I have two theories: it was either the castor oil that irritated and dried out my skin so much that bacteria found its way in, OR one of the oils themselves was somehow contaminated.)

Anyway, this is why I am going against my own recommendation about liquid, not powder, foundation and looking to invest in this Jane Iredale puppy so as to avoid any skin mishaps in the future, seeing as my mug is a touch more sensitive than I thought. I already have a very similar product, Pure + Simple's pressed powder foundation, but then I read ex-Lucky beauty editor turned Lemondrop contributor Cat Marnell's piece about how Jane Iredale's is the one foundation all facialists swear by. Therefore I must own it. (Find it at Pure + Simple.)

4. Tata Harper Skincare


This line (along with #5 below) is a favourite of FASHION's beauty director—and when she says something is awesome, I believe her. Made on a farm in Vermont, Tata Harper prodz are the real eco deal: 100 percent natural, completely non-toxic and suitable for all skin types. Like I was saying when I raved about Aïny (pre-OCM disaster), it's such a rarity to find a natural brand that is also luxurious. Read more about it here—they do ship internationally.

5. Dianne Brill Brow Pencil


A good brow pencil is hard to find. Even though I'm happy with my current favourite (Dior's Brow Styler), Dianne Brill's is, apparently, excellent (and according to the web page, award-winning—although I'm not sure whose award it was). Also cool: Dianne Brill was a Warhol muse and Jean-Paul Gaultier model. Beauty is so random sometimes. You can find this in Canada at Abe & Mary's in Montreal or Beauty Bar in Vancouver.

6. CB I Hate Perfume At The Beach 1966


I have a thing for beach scents. I used to wear Bobbi Brown Beach nearly everyday and Bond No. 9's Fire Island is also a favourite—and don't even get me started on how many others I have (from Estée Lauder, Clarins, etc.). Even though they're having a time-out at the moment in my fragrance rotation, I would sincerely love to add this one from CB I Hate Perfume to my line-up, which has been on my radar for YEARS. There's a great article about the founder here—he really does hate (mainstream) perfumes, and I soooo identify with that.

The description for At The Beach 1966 is "Coppertone [circa 1966] blended with wet sand, seashell, driftwood and just a hint of Boardwalk." Do you love it??? I don't even need a sample to know that I want this. More about the brand here; it's sold at Ewanika in Toronto and Gravitypope Tailored Goods in Edmonton.

7. ghd Classic 1" Styler

Busted Image

I am very loyal to my Chi flat iron, which must be at least six years old at this point and still going strong, but this is another U.K. gadget that I want to experience for myself, just to see what all the fuss is about. You can read up on the brand here. A word of warning: apparently there are a lot of ghd scammer sites out there, so make sure you only buy this from somewhere you trust, like Sephora.

8. Illamasqua makeup

Busted Image

Wowza—how many blogs have I read where the author has sung the praises of this cult makeup line? Illamasqua hasn't arrived in Canada yet, but you can find it on the U.S. Sephora website, and I don't particularly care what I try, I just want SOMETHING. This is high-drama stuff: I love that the tagline is "night time makeup for your alter ego."

9. Omnilux new-U

I have a few at-home light therapy devices already (Quasar, Tanda) that stay in their boxes a lot more than they should. But based on what I've been hearing about the Omnilux, that might change if I somehow got my greedy little hands on (and face under) this product. It's actually an at-home version of a light that dermatologists use in their offices, and has been covered in Marie Claire as one of the few light gadgets that actually DOES work. On what, you say? Apparently, it improves skin tone and clarity and gives you a lovely juicy plumped-up glow. Sign me up.


More deets here; Canadians can buy from and it comes in a Clear-U version for acne as well.

Gosh, it feels kind of wrong to only have NINE instead of ten products, but I honestly can't think of any others right now (but just give me time...)

Tell me...

Have you tried any of these puppies?
How did they measure up?
What's on YOUR wish list?