Athena Tries It: The Beauty MVP’s of 2017

Glitz & Glam

My 2017 New Years Resolution was to learn how to do eye shadow properly. It turns out that eye make-up intimidated me for a reason! But there were many products that were easy to use & helped me get super comfortable with the brush Here are my top beauty picks for 2017 — my must haves for a elegant & edgy eye look:


1: LORAC Mega Pro 4 Palette ($59)

lorac mega pro 4
Image via Instagram.

Coupons from Ulta helped me snag the Mega Pro 4 it for $30 as soon as it dropped & I will be forever grateful. This palette is highly versatile with a mix of bold & muted shades with high color pay-off. My favorite mattes are Flamingo, Oat, & Light Sage. Excellent shimmery shades include Honey, Lotus, & Copper Pearl. This palette can create bold, monochromatic, & natural looks. It comes with a whopping 32 colors, so it’s quite the bang for your buck, even at full price.

2: Lancôme CILS BOOSTER XL Super Enhancing Mascara Base ($13)

Image via Sephora.

Lancôme’s Masacara Base is a product I would have NEVER tried on my own, but I was lucky & got some as as a birthday gift. Now it’s an every day essential that I wear, whether I’m going for a full-on glam or no make-up make-up.

Image via Instagram.

I have short, fine lashes; I’m always struggling against clumpy little hairs. Living in a hot climate, I run of the risk of sweating myself into some SERIOUS raccoon eyes. This primer makes my lashes look long & fluffy. I can use it with non-waterproof mascara, which makes removal super easy & has helped me to regrow some of my damaged lashes. This product is a daily must for me now.

Death of the Instagram Brow?

After years of ombre fades, 2017 began to revive the trend of the natural brow. This year, we were all about full, feathery, bushy brows, & honestly, I’m relived.

3: Benefit Cosmetics, Goof Proof Eye Pencil ($24)

benefit goof proof brow pencil
Image via Pinterest.

Benefit’s Goof Proof Eye Pencil has single handedly ended my patchy eyebrow woes. The slightly thicker, angular applicator is better for evenly distributing product compared to the pointy ends of other brow pencils (the ones you’d use to get that ombre look — out with the old, in with the new). The result are brows that look full, hairy, & natural. The double-ended product comes with a spoolie eyebrow brush, which has become my preferred tool for blending.


Recommended Video: HOW TO: Natural Bushy Eyebrows by Desi Perkins.

4: NYX Tinted Brow Mascara ($7)

This brow product is perfect for tinting brows lighter or darker. It comes packaged like a masacara, with a spoolie dipped into the product, which makes it easy to apply, & keeps my brows looking full & bushy all day. It’s a versatile product that I love to throw on for a low maintenance look, or to lock a glamorous feather brow in place. NYX also makes a clear brow gel which is great for an even more natural look.


The Glow Up

sleek solstice highlighting palette
Image via The Beauty Assistant.

2017 was the year of dew, of shimmer, of sparkle. Nothing screams beauty like skin with a glowy finish; mine just happens to be store bought. The persistent popularity of highlighters continue to be the sign of our time, even as natural make-up trends of the late 90’s & early 20’s are making a comeback.


 5: Sleek Highlighting Palette in Solstice ($15)

This 4-tone palette is perfect for warming & brightening up the high points of the face. It includes both cream & powder, as well as shades ranging from cream to pink & copper. The formula is highly pigmented — a little bit goes a long way! I always dust highlighter on with a fan brush to make sure product is evenly distributed. Try dusting it on the highest points of your cheekbones, forehead, cupid’s bow & chin.

estee lauder double wear foundation in sand
Image via A Lovely Allure.

Flawless Skin

I have my fair share of skin concerns. To make things a little more complicated, I prefer medium to light coverage when it comes to foundations. So I need my products that really make my skin look better, not just cover it up. Thankfully, 2017 blessed me with some new products that have helped me get a healthy, natural glow.

6. Milk Makeup Blur Stick ($14)

milk make-up blur stick
Image via Pinterest.

The most important part of having a glowy finish begins with the base: the products on which we build the rest of our look. If you have sensitive skin like me, your base is a product that creates a protective barrier. Because it is silicone free, the Blur Stick is pore filling but not pore-clogging. This is the only primer I use — it’s my holy grail for making my skin look as flawless as possible.

7. Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Makeup ($42)

Living in Miami, it’s been extremely difficult to find foundations that will stay on my sweaty face. The Estée Lauder Double Wear has become my go-to because of its staying powder, & also because it gives a flawless, even finish. I also like this product because less is more; I apply a small amount with a wet pebble blender & slowly build overage.

8. Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray ($15)

Because of my problem skin, I need to set my makeup to make it look matte without looking cakey or drying. The All Nighter Setting Spray is a godsend, which is why it’s one of the most popular products Urban Decay sells. Its matte finish minimizes pores (something I’ve rarely found in other matte products). It keeps my makeup vibrant & on my face, even on my sweatiest days.

Recommended Video: How to get Long Lasting & Flawless Makeup All Day Long! by NikkieTutorials.

gudetama blusher
Image via Peach & Lilly.

9. Gudetama Lazy & Easy Jelly Dough Blusher in Grapefruit ($13)

I found my Gudetama blusher in Little Osaka & I’m so glad I took it home with me! This blush is not only freaking adorable, but also some of the easiest to apply. The product has a creamy formula that makes it easy to apply with your fingers or a brush (I use the e.l.f. angled blush brush). It has great color payoff with a light pink that practically melts into the cheeks.

Leave me a comment & let me know all about your eye make-up journeys of 2017!

Glossy Lips

lipsmackers capture
Image via Makeup Alley.

2017 saw the decline of matte liquid lips & the rise of glossy, wet finishes. I’m stoked on the resurgence of lip gloss for two reasons: 1) application is practically impossible to mess up, 2) lip gloss will always have an air of whimsical nostalgia to it for me–I grew up coveting Bonnie Bell Lip Smackers & remember sparkly, numbing jelly formulas as a trend in the late 90’s.

10. NYX Butter Gloss in Apple Strudle ($5)

NYX has continually put out high quality products at competitive prices & remain one of my favorite brands, but if I had to choose just 1 product, it’d be this Butter Gloss for sure. It has a bright, Barbie pink color to it that brightens & softens the lips. The finished look is natural but fun. For an easy daily look, I like to line my lips with NYX’s retractable lip liner in nude pink & apply the gloss on top; the result is an effortlessly plump & shiny lip!

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