Best Brand of the Year (High-end)

Tarina Tarantino

With a major repackaging effort, Tarina Tarantino re-launched her beauty range in the back half of 2011. I didn't pay much attention to it when it originally launched, but I sure did when it re-launched—and I'm happy I did. The line is consistently good to great with no real disappointments to speak of. I'm a big fan of the eyeshadow palettes, eyeliners (both pencil and glitters), blushes, and lipsticks.

Past Winners: Urban Decay (2010), Guerlain (2009), MAC (2007, 2008)

Best Brand of the Year (Budget)


Budget brands have been stepping it up in the past couple of years, but Revlon has really gained traction—especially when it comes to producing affordable alternatives in the lip category. If you're looking for a good range of comfortable lip colors, look no further than their ColorBurst range (both the original and newer Lip Butters), along with shimmery glosses in the Super Lustrous formula. For base makeup, the ColorStay range offers foundation that's worth a look.

Past Winners: New category, no previous winners

Best Indie Brand of the Year

Cult Nails

Who doesn't love a great story behind a brand's creation? Cult Nails offers a story we can relate to and fall in love with, but the products they produce are even better. Fun, funky, on-trend shades of polishes with a formula that wears extremely well.

Past Winners: Sugarpill (2010)

Best New Product of 2011 (High-end)

Guerlain Parure de Nuit

Love, love, love. I had physically remove the product from my reach, because I kept wanting to reach for it and forsake testing something new. It delivers a gorgeous, shimmering glow that doesn't emphasize pores. Skin looks soft and luminous, but still natural, and a nice bonus is that you can add a little color if you so choose with the subtle coral shades in it.

Past Winners: Make Up For Ever Aqua Cream (2010), Chanel Rouge Allure Laque (2009), Clarisonic (2008)

Best New Product of 2011 (Budget)

NYX Nail Lacquer

In late 2011, NYX launched a new lacquer formula—their Salon/Professional range—and it's really fun and wears incredibly well. I love that you can find similar shades to often pricey high-end shades (think $15+ plus). My favorite shade is currently Be Jeweled—this shimmering blue-teal.

Past Winners: Wet 'n' Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow (2010) L'Oreal HIP Chrome Eyeliner (2009)

Most Surprisingly Amazing Product (High-end)

Bare Escentuals Ready Eyeshadow

As someone who is, not generally, a fan of loose eye colors, I had low expectations of just how good a pressed eyeshadow could be from a loose eye color giant such as Bare Escentuals. I'm glad I had the opportunity to test out the range in full, because it is easily one of my favorite eyeshadow formulas to use. Soft, buttery, dense, and incredibly pigmented—and you know what? The price point is rather palatable as far as high-end goes, which is just icing on the cake.

Past Winners: ORLY Cosmic FX (2010), Stila All Doll'd Up Palette (2009)

Most Surprisingly Amazing Product (Budget)

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter

The comfortable feel of a lip balm with more than abysmal color payoff that's actually hydrating and doesn't slide off of lips in a half hour? Really? Yes, really, and by Revlon, too. While high-end brands have disappointed me overall with this type of product, Revlon impresses.

Past Winners: Wet 'n' Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow (2010), Aveeno Positively Ageless Warming Scrub (2009)

Best Spring Collection of 2011

Guerlain Serie Noire Collection

It was a short and sweet collection from Guerlain this past spring, but it was gorgeous, well-thought out, and fun to play with. The Rouge Gs were launched in black lacquered cases, which were stunning, while the real star was the Blush G—a dream blush for any coral fiend (such as myself). The pressed Meteorites were also lovely, though perhaps a bit under the radar!

Past Winners: Bobbi Brown Cabana Corals (2010), Guerlain Exotic Paradise (2009)

Best Summer Collection of 2011

MAC Surf Baby Collection

MAC knows how to put together a memorable summer collection. This year's Surf Baby was a real winner all around. There were pretty lipglosses, gorgeous eyeshadows, and beautiful eyeliners.

Past Winners: MAC To the Beach (2010), Dior Cristal (2009)

Best Fall Collection of 2011

Chanel Byzance Collection

Four pieces—that's all it took to make this collection sing. I appreciated the simplicity and elegance of the collection. One of my favorite eyeshadow palettes (which was almost the winner for eyeshadow palette of the year) was Chanel's Topkapi. Beautiful in its presentation, but it was even more gorgeous to wear. The soft, buttery textures and intense color payoff made it a dream to work with.

Past Winners: NARS Fall 2010 (2010), Bobbi Brown Ivy League (2009)

Best Holiday Collection of 2010

Dior Les Rouges Or

This collection was so perfectly holiday-esque. There were shades of red, orange, copper, and golds, but they were well-done. I loved the polishes, lipsticks, and the eyeshadow palette, which were the majority of the products that made up the core color collection for the holidays.

Past Winners: NARS Holiday 2010 (2010), Guerlain Imperiale (2009)

Best Pencil Eyeliner (High-End)

Tarina Tarantino Eye Dream Hyperliner

With true-to-pencil color payoff, a creamy, glide-on texture, and all-day wear, these were a no-brainer. I've loved Urban Decay's pencil eyeliners for years now, but these are just slightly more pigmented and are three dollars cheaper.

Past Winners: Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Pencil (2008, 2009, 2010)

Best Pencil Eyeliner (Budget)

Milani Liquif'Eye

I'm still loving Milani's Liquif'Eye Eyeliners for a go-to recommendation for a more affordable eyeliner that still has a soft, creamy texture with intense color payoff and long-wearing capabilities.

Past Winners: Milani Liquif'Eye Eyeliner (2010), L'Oreal HIP Chrome Eyeliner (2009)

Best Gel Eyeliner (High-End)

MAC Fluidline

Fluidlines have that smooth, rich consistency of gel eyeliner and apply seamlessly. They don't smudge, budge, or fade at all. I love how pigmented they are, because you can do a thick or thin line and always get great, consistent results. There are numerous excellent cream/gel eyeliners on the market (just check out the Readers' Choice short list), but the price point keeps these as my number one—though they better be careful, as the permanent shade range has dwindled, brands like Bobbi Brown (the formula performs the same for me) are starting to look more attractive.

Past Winners: MAC Fluidline (2009, 2010)

Best Gel Eyeliner (Budget)

Wet 'n' Wild MegaEyes Crème Liner

MegaEyes Creme Liners are affordable and apply smoothly with nice color pay off and no dragging or patchiness. I'd love to see the brand expand the shade range.

Past Winners: Wet 'n' Wild MegaEyes Crème Liner (2010), Sonia Kashuk Gel Eyeliner (2009)

Best Liquid Eyeliner (High-End)

Make Up For Ever Aqua Liner

New in 2011, Make Up For Ever rolled out a wide range of colors in their new liquid eyeliner format, which comes with a precision brush in a pen-like format. That applicator is what made their eyeliner standout among a sea of new liquid eyeliner formulas in 2011.

Past Winners: MAC Superslick Liquid Eyeliner (2010), MAC Penultimate (2009)

Best Liquid Eyeliner (Budget)

L'Oreal Lineur Intense

With a felt-tip applicator, this pen gives precision results in an affordable package. Rich, intense color glides along effortlessly and stays on all day.

Past Winners: Revlon ColorStay Liquid Eyeliner (2010), Wet 'n' Wild MegaEyes Liquid Liner (2009)

Best Mascara (High-end)

Hourglass Film Noir Mascara

I've worn this more times than I could count this past year. When I need a mascara, this has become my go-to, because it gives me rich, inky black lashes while providing longer, thicker, and fuller lashes (my lashes need a lot of help!).

Past Winners: Chanel Exceptionnel (2009, 2010), MAC Plushlash (2008)

Best Mascara (Budget)

Maybelline Full 'n Soft

This is one of my all-time favorite mascaras, because it consistently delivers soft, plush lashes with length and volume. Not the most dramatic mascara but a beautiful one nonetheless.

Past Winners: Maybelline Full 'n Soft (2009, 2010)

Best Natural Mascara (High-end)

Bobbi Brown Everything Mascara

For soft, natural lashes, Bobbi Brown Everything makes it easy to achieve. I know that there are almost-no-makeup days where more intense mascara would look out of place, so I opt for softer mascaras like this one.

Past Winners: Kiehl's Marvelous Mineral Mascara (2010)

Best Natural Mascara (Budget)

Maybelline Full 'n Soft

This is one of my all-time favorite mascaras, because it consistently delivers soft, plush lashes with length and volume. For that soft look that's still emphasizing and lengthening, this is my go-to.

Past Winners: Maybelline Full 'n Soft (2010)

Best Lengthening Mascara (High-end)

Bare Escentuals Buxom Lash

I've used Buxom Lash many times over the past several months, and I like it, but I never fall in love – why? Because it just delivers length and I always seek more in my mascara (which is why mascara can be so personal!). It is amazing for length, though; mile-high lashes, none of the clumping, and excellent separation, too.

Past Winners: Bare Escentuals Buxom Lash Mascara (2010)

Best Lengthening Mascara (Budget)

CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara

CoverGirl's LashBlast–the original–is a good multi-tasking mascara, but it is particularly good at length (surprisingly better at it than its LashBlast Length sister!).

Past Winners: CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara (2010)

Best Dramatic Mascara (High-end)

Hourglass Film Noir Mascara

I've worn this more times than I could count this past year. When I need a mascara, this has become my go-to, because it gives me rich, inky black lashes while providing longer, thicker, and fuller lashes (my lashes need a lot of help!).

Past Winners: Chanel Exceptionnel Mascara (2010)

Best Dramatic Mascara (Budget)

L'Oreal Telescopic

Telescopic delivers a nice amount of length, along with a little thickening and an excellent blackness in the color.

Past Winners: L'Oreal Telescopic Mascara (2010)

Best False Eyelashes (High-end)

Urban Decay False Eyelashes

Urban Decay's False Eyelashes still came in as the best for high-end eyelashes in terms of range, feel, and application. Urban Decay's False Eyelashes have a nice variety available in a nice flexible band, transparent glue, and they're fairly easy to apply (even for the false eyelash-challenged, like myself). I really like that they include glue with each pair, and the lashes have this lightness to them that is not always found in other false eyelashes.

Past Winners: Urban Decay (2010), shu uemura (2009)

Best False Eyelashes (Budget)

Revlon False Eyelashes

I like the variety in Revlon's False Eyelashes line, and I also love that they have self-adhesive lashes, too (which I tried per readers' recommendations last year!)–they're even easier to apply than Revlon's regular False Eyelashes. They're good for multiple uses, too.

Past Winners: Revlon (2009, 2010)

Best Eyeshadow Base (High-end)

NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base

It's been two years, and it's still my go-to! It's nearly transparent when applied and light-as-air. I love that it helps my eyeshadow stay on all day without creasing but doesn't mute the vibrancy, either. The matte finish also allows me to wear matte eyeshadows without changing the texture.

Past Winners: NARS Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base (2010), MAC Paint Pot (2009), MAC Mixing Medium (2007, 2008)

Best Eyeshadow Base (Budget)

NYX Eyeshadow Base

NYX Eyeshadow Base is a short and sweet product in three different shades (White, Pearl, and Skin Tone). I find Pearl is nice under more shimmery shades, but Skin Tone is good in a variety of situations, so it's more versatile. It does a good job of extending the wear of your eyeshadow and giving you a base for the color to grab onto and look true to form.

Past Winners: NYX Eyeshadow Base (2009, 2010)

Best Eyeshadow (High-end)

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Intense Eyeshadow

The range, color depth, texture, wear, and versatility of these made them a must-pick for this year's awards. This product impressed me from the first shade I tried. There are some basic, less nuanced shades within the permanent range, but there are several truly stunning, incomparable hues as well.

Past Winners: Hourglass Visionaire Eyeshadow (2010), MAC Eyeshadow (2009)

Best Eyeshadow (Budget)

Wet 'n' Wild Color Icon Eyeshadow

Wet 'n' Wild hit a home run with their new Color Icon Eyeshadow formula–it's soft, smooth, and nicely pigmented and won't empty your wallet either. With singles, trios, and palettes, you may find yourself with a whole new stash for under $20.

Past Winners: Sonia Kashuk Eyeshadow (2009)

Best Loose Eyeshadow (High-end)

Illamasqua Pigment

Illamasqua's Pure Pigment continues to win me over with their impressive range of unique colors. They have always had a beautiful texture–so finely milled and pigmented. The packaging does drive me nuts, though.

Past Winners: Illamasqua Pigment (2010)

Best Loose Eyeshadow (Budget)

Sugarpill Chromalust

Like Illamasqua, Sugarpill's Chromalusts are very finely milled and come in a variety of shades–lots of different and unique shades with varying textures.

Past Winners: Sugarpill Chromalust (2010)

Best Cream Eyeshadow (High-end)

Chanel Illusion d'Ombre

These were a real hit in the beauty community when they debuted in 2011. The texture is interesting—almost like a sponge, but not quite—but they work exceptionally well. They shimmer and sparkle, and they wear beautifully on their own or alongside your favorite eyeshadows.

Past Winners: Benefit Creaseless Cream Shadow/Liner (2009, 2010)

Best Cream Eyeshadow (Budget)

Maybelline Color Tattoo 24 Hour Color Eyeshadow

They come in cute jars but are filled with a long-wearing, creamy, buildable product that really outdoes the majority of cream eyeshadows found among budget-friendly brands.

Past Winners: L'Oreal HIP Cream Shadow Paint (2010), Wet 'n' Wild MegaEyes Cream Eyeshadow (2009)

Best Eyeshadow Palette (High-end)

theBalm Cast Your Shadow Palette

Richly pigmented, buttery, dense eyeshadows plus wearable and workable lip and cheek products? Yes, please! theBalm knocked it out of the park with this palette! If you weren't able to grab one, keep your eyes out for theBalm and the Beautiful palette, which has the same shades in different packaging.

Past Winners: Chanel Kaska Beige Eyeshadow Quad (2010), Urban Decay Eyeshadow Palettes (2009)

Best Eyeshadow Palette (Budget)

Wet 'n' Wild Comfort Zone Eyeshadow Palette

If you love earthy neutrals, you're sure to love this pigment-packed palette filled with high-performing eyeshadows.

Past Winners: NYX Nude on Nude Eyeshadow Palette (2010), NYX Eyeshadow Palettes (2009)

Best Eyelash Curler (High-end)

shu uemura Eyelash Curler

shu uemura Eyelash Curler is easily my favorite curler, and it has been since I first had it. I used to have a Revlon one, and I didn't even realize that an eyelash curler could really have levels of quality. Shu's is easy to use, works well, and it lasts awhile. It sucks that you can only buy it online now, though!

Past Winners: shu uemura Eyelash Curler (2009, 2010)

Best Eyelash Curler (Budget)

NYC Eyelash Curler

For a few bucks (possibly less!), you can get an eyelash curler that gives your eyes a soft curl without crimping either your lashes or your skin while using it.

Past Winners: e.l.f. Mechanical Eyelash Curler (2009, 2010)

Best Tweezers

Slice Slanted Tip

I love the rubberized materials used so that gripping these tweezers is easy and comfortable. The ergonomics are really good, too, and the precision of these helps me get to even the hairs that are barely visible.

Past Winners: Tweezerman Slanted Tip Tweezers (2009, 2010)

Best Cheek/Face Highlighter (High-end)

Guerlain Parure de Nuit / Guerlain Highlighters

Guerlain knows how to create a highlighter. Whether it's the limited edition Parure de Nuit (which I expounded on earlier) or their permanent Meteorites, they are always at the top of my list.

Past Winners: Guerlain Meteorites (2010), Dior DiorSkin Shimmer (2009)

Best Cheek/Face Highlighter (Budget)

Physicians Formula Mineral Glow Pearls

If you're a fan of Guerlain's pressed Meteorites, these will seem a little familiar. They're a little frostier, but they still add a nice glow to the cheeks without being too heavy.

Past Winners: NYX Highlighter Mosaic Powder (2010), Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips (2009)

Best Everyday Blush (High-end)

Korres #15 Natural Blush

This past year, I've reached for Korres Natural blush whenever I need something soft, natural, but still enough to help pull together a look. It works with natural looks as well as bolder, more dramatic ones.

Past Winners: Benefit Sugarbomb (2009, 2010)

Best Everyday Blush (Budget)

Rimmel Santa Rose Blush

Santa Rose is this darkened brownish pink–think MAC Blushbaby but pinker–that works well to give a hint of color without going overboard.

Past Winners: Rimmel Santa Rose Blush (2010), Milani Luminous Blush (2009)

Best Cream Blush (High-end)

Make Up For Ever HD Blush

The HD Blush line has enough shade variation to give you natural colors plus some revved up shades, but the formula is really fantastic. Richly pigmented, creamy, and they dry down quickly (but not too quickly) so they don't leave behind any tackiness. They're blendable and a little goes a long way!

Past Winners: Make Up For Ever HD Blush (2010), MAC Blushcreme (2009)

Best Cream Blush (Budget)

Revlon Cream Blush

Revlon Cream Blushes are easy-to-use creamy, smooth blushes that add just a subtle hint of color to cheeks. The end result is very natural, yet you'll notice you have more color on your cheeks. The compact is kind of cute, with a little pop-out mirror for on-the-go application. (Personally, I use a stippling brush with creamy blushes, so it's not actually so practical for me!) One piece of advice, though, what you see in the pan is not quite what you get — so don't let the color in the pan intimidate you!

Past Winners: Revlon Cream Blush (2009, 2010)

Best Powder Blush (High-end)

Benefit Boxed Powder

Many of my favorite, go-to blushes are from Benefit: Bella Bamba, CORALista, Hervana, and Sugarbomb are all shades that work well on many skin tones and with a variety of looks. Benefit has a way with creating just the right amount of shimmer and sheen with their Boxed Powders.

Past Winners: Rock & Republic Blush (2010), Guerlain Blush 4 Eclat (2009)

Best Powder Blush (Budget)

Rimmel Blush

Rimmel's Blushes come in flattering, rather universally-appealing shades with a soft powder texture and nice pigmentation. The finishes are nice without being too much.

Past Winners: Rimmel Blush (2010), CoverGirl Cheekers (2009)

Best Bronzer (High-end)

Guerlain Terracotta Bronzing Powder

Such a subtle but noticeable way to bronze–soft, silky smooth finely-milled powder that applies delicately and naturally.

Past Winners: Guerlain Terracotta Bronzing Powder (2010), Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel (2009)

Best Bronzer (Budget)

NYC Smooth Skin Bronzing Powder

Soft, natural-looking matte bronzer that adds a little color without going orange or turning ruddy. The packaging is a little flimsy, but the product is thankfully much better!

Past Winners: Rimmel Natural Bronzer (2009, 2010)

Best Face Primer

Hourglass Mineral Veil

It's been some time since I've started testing out a few more primers (because in the past, I've been more sensitive to silicone-heavy products, which most primers are), but I've been trialing this recently and have really enjoyed the lightweight texture that creates a really smooth canvas (and hasn't broken me out). Everything looks a little better over this, plus it does prolong the wear of whatever I wear on top of it by a couple of hours.

Past Winners: Korres Silicone-Free Primer (2009, 2010)

Best Concealer (High-end)

Cle de Peau Concealer

I really didn't want to be the person who fell in love with this. I was secretly hoping to test it out and find it lacking, but it is devastatingly good. If you have drier skin around your eyes, this helps provides additional moisture, so it doesn't look caked or dried around the eyes. It lasts ten hours or longer on me without creasing or settling into fine lines. The coverage is buildable but more medium to full if you use it directly from the tube. Worth the hype!

Past Winners: Eve Pearl Salmon Concealer (2009, 2010)

Best Concealer (Budget)

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Double Face Perfector

This is a double-ended product for highlighting and concealing, but the concealer does a really nice job providing enough opacity to cover darker under eye circles. It has a nice creamy consistency that makes it easy to blend out the color.

Past Winners: Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Double Face Perfector (2010), L'Oreal Visible Lift Under Eye (2009)

Best Liquid Foundation (High-end)

Guerlain Parure Gold

This is still my go-to foundation for any special occasion or photograph. When I want to look my absolute best, this is always on hand. Guerlain Parure Gold Fluid Foundation is an excellent lightweight, medium-coverage liquid foundation that makes skin look smoother, softer, and very natural. It has a subtle dewiness to it, but trust me, that's not code for oiliness. It's so comfortable to wear; you don't feel it on at all.

Past Winners: Guerlain Parure Gold (2009, 2010)

Best Liquid Foundation (Budget)

Revlon ColorStay

Revlon ColorStay Liquid Foundation is a natural-looking liquid foundation that feels lightweight and provides medium coverage. It looks really good on, but there are a few areas where it could be improved (primarily, scent — has kind of a cheap, chemical scent). It's one of the better drugstore foundations I've tried in the past few years, though, because ultimately, it looks natural and gives good coverage without being too heavy and lasts for hours!

Past Winners: Revlon ColorStay Foundation (2009, 2010)

Best Powder Foundation (High-end)

Clinique Almost Makeup Powder

What I love about Clinique's Almost Makeup Powder is that it doesn't feel or look like you're wearing powder foundation. It's soft, lightweight, and provides light to medium coverage without looking caked on.

Past Winners: Clinique Almost Makeup Powder (2010)

Best Powder Foundation (Budget)

Milani Minerals Compact Makeup

If you're in the market for a powder-based foundation that yields natural-looking finish that's light-to-medium in coverage, this is something worth checking out to keep your budget in check. It is finely-milled, soft to the touch, and easy to apply.

Past Winners: Maybelline PureStay Foundation (2010)

Best Cream Foundation (High-end)

Eve Pearl Dual HD Foundation

When I have a lot of breakouts or areas that need covering up, this is the foundation I usually opt for. It provides medium to full coverage, and I love that there is a lighter and darker side, because it allows for really great color matching.

Past Winners: Eve Pearl HD Dual Foundation (2010)

Best Cream Foundation (Budget)

Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse

It's a very emollient, creamy foundation that gives medium coverage. A little goes a long way, so I recommend going for less at first, to ensure you don't over-apply!

Past Winners: Maybelline Dream Smooth Mousse (2010)

Best Setting Powder (High-end)

Guerlain Les Voilettes Mineral Powder

If you've been reading through my makeup breakdowns, you'll no doubt see me using this a lot, especially in the past year. It's a loose, finely-milled powder that is flesh-toned, but the coverage it provides on its own is sheer to light (not something I'd use so much as a foundation unless you have good skin). It sets makeup well and prolongs the look of my foundation by keeping it from looking oily over time. It never looks powdery, and it softens the look of my skin.

Past Winners: Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder (2009, 2010)

Best Setting Powder (Budget)

NYC Smooth Skin Loose Powder

I prefer the Translucent shade, since you don't have to worry about color-matching. It's a loose powder with a really soft, silky feel that really blends and presses easily against the skin without looking powdery. The packaging could use some help, so I recommend taping over some of the holes so that you don't get too much excess powder over time, but the interior product is great.

Past Winners: Neutrogena Healthy Skin Loose Powder (2009, 2010)

Best Tinted Moisturizer (High-end)

Kiehl's Tinted Moisturizer

Still love it—I actually have to mix both Light and Medium to get the right match most of the time (so I do wish their shade range would expand), but I recently repurchased bottles of both shades, because I know I'm getting low! Kiehl's Tinted Moisturizer provides light-to-medium coverage, a slightly dewy finish, and a very spreadable base. It will take about five minutes to dry down, but it really does moisturize as well as even out the skin tone. I reach for this all the time.

Past Winners: Kiehl's Tinted Moisturizer (2010), Korres Watermelon Lightweight Tinted Moisturizer (2009)

Best Tinted Moisturizer (Budget)

Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer Tinted Moisturizer

Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer Tinted Moisturizer is an affordable tinted moisturizer that holds up well during the summer and leaves skin looking naturally dewy. It also contains SPF 20, which is a nice bonus. I know it also has "retinol treatment" in it, but I couldn't tell you if it's effective or not.

Past Winners: Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer Tinted Moisturizer (2009, 2010)

Best Lipgloss (High-end)

Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lipgloss

I have worn this gloss so much in the past three months! I find it outperforms a lot of similar glosses (sheer to semi-sheer in color with lots and lots of sparkle/shimmer), because it's moisturizing, long-wearing, non-sticky, and comes with a healthy amount of product in the tube to boot.

Past Winners: Le Metier de Beaute Lip Crème (2010), Guerlain KissKiss Gloss (2009), Calvin Klein Light Glistening Lipgloss (2008)

Best Lipgloss (Budget)

Revlon Super Lustrous Lipgloss

Sheer, lightweight glosses with lots of dazzling shimmer with little to no scent (some smell synthetically sweet but subtly so while others have had no scent). It is non-sticky and lasts three to four hours on me.

Past Winners: Revlon Super Lustrous Lipgloss (2010), NYX MegaShine Lipgloss (2009)

Best Lipstick (High-end)

Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick

From low to luxury, Guerlain's Rouge G is still the best overall lipstick. The color range is what makes it standout to me most, because the colors are nuanced and just seem to work. The formula itself is excellent—opaque color coverage, hydrating, long-wearing, and comfortable to wear.

Past Winners: Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick (2010), Chanel Rouge Allure Laque (2009)

Best Lipstick (Budget)

Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter

The best characteristic of Revlon's Lip Butters is how comfortable they feel when they're applied; they're creamy enough to glide on like a slick lip balm, but they don't slip around so much that they're gone in a half hour. They actually deliver real color coverage, too, and they're not just a wash of color.

Past Winners: Maybelline ColorSensational (2009, 2010)

Best Liquid Lipstick (High-end)

Chanel Rouge Allure Laque

While Chanel has, inexplicably, discontinued many shades in this formula, they haven't yet discontinued the formula itself, so I'll continue to hold this as the winner. (Discontinued products are ineligible for future awards.) Rouge Allure Laques are long-wearing, moisturizing, opaque in color, and feel great on.

Past Winners: Chanel Rouge Allure Laque (2009, 2010)

Best Liquid Lipstick (Budget)

NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream

These provide semi-matte, mostly opaque color coverage to lips. It's a softer matte look, so it's not as drying as full-on mattes can be, and the liquid application allows for a creamier, more even application. Sometimes with a matte finish, it will drag across the lips and apply in patches, but these apply even without trouble.

Past Winners: NYC Liquid Lipstick (2010)

Best Lip Scrub/Treatment (High-end)

Sara Happ The Lip Scrub

Sara Happ The Lip Scrub is a deliciously scented sugar-based lip scrub that exfoliates well without tearing. It always leaves my lips smooth and soft — totally necessary when you take way zoomed in photos of your lips on the regular!

Past Winners: Sara Happ The Lip Scrub (2009, 2010)

Best Lip Scrub/Treatment (Budget)

Jojoba oil + sugar

If you're on a budget, picking up a bottle of jojoba oil and mixing it with a little sugar (or brown sugar) works a treat to give lips a smoother, healthier appearance.

Past Winners: Jojoba Oil + Sugar (2009)

Best Lip Balm (High-end)

Jack Black Intense Lip Therapy Lip Balm

Many Jack Black Lip Balms later, and these are still my favorite, which I have repurchased countless times at this point! I always have five or more stashed away, and I keep a tube at my desk, purse, nightstand, and even in my pocket when I go out. These lip balms moisturize so, so well, and they last for hours on the lips. I put it on before bed and I can still feel some of it left when I wake up eight hours later.

Past Winners: Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm (2010), Philosophy Kiss Me Intense Lip Therapy (2009)

Best Lip Balm (Budget)

EOS Smoothing Sphere Lip Balm

It comes in cute spherical packaging, and on the inside, there is a hydrating ball of goodness. It's the best lip balm I've tried that comes in at a budget-friendly price tag. The packaging isn't as convenient as some traditional lip balms, since it can't easily fit into your pocket.

Past Winners: Palmers Cocoa Butter Stick (2010), Yes to Carrots Lip Butter (2009)

Best Nail Lacquer

China Glaze

China Glaze's Nail Lacquers wear a week on me without chipping (just minor tip wear), come in a slew of shades, and always have something new on the horizon. The price point, shade variety, and wear make China Glaze my favorite for polish!

Past Winners: China Glaze (2009, 2010)

Best Top Coat

Seche Vite

If you want ultra-shine, Seche Vite is perfect. It gives nails a beautiful, fresh, and shiny look.

Past Winners: Seche Vite (2009, 2010)

Best Base Coat

Zoya Anchor

I'm a big fan of Zoya's Color Lock System, and I really love Anchor, which helps to keep my polish on for a week at a time.

Past Winners: Zoya Anchor (2009, 2010)

Best Fast-Drying Top Coat

Sally Hansen Insta-Dri

This is a really nice quick-drying coat that cuts the drying time down infinitely while also providing the added benefit of chip-resistance!

Past Winners: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri (2010)

Best Makeup Brushes (High-end)

MAC Cosmetics

MAC Brushes are soft, durable, and well-made. I love that MAC has a huge variety of brushes to choose from with different shapes, sizes, and materials. (See my eye brush reviews here, face brush reviews here.) The range is the most attractive feature of MAC brushes.

Past Winners: MAC Brushes (2009, 2010)

Best Makeup Brushes (Budget)

Sonia Kashuk

Sonia Kashuk Brushes are a great budget-friendly alternative for quality brushes. She always has sets available, sometimes in ultra-cute pouches and bags, which are even more cost-effective. They're soft, shaped well, and there is a good variety of tools available.

Past Winners: Sonia Kashuk Brushes (2009, 2010)

Best Beauty Tool (High-end)

Miss Oops Rescue Sponge

Perhaps it's not technically a beauty tool at first glance, but if you've ever gotten makeup on your shirt because you've done a last-minute clothing change or your loose powder went kablooey! all over you… it is. It really does "erase" any of those incidents right off the material. It also works tremendously well for removing deodorant, too.

Past Winners: Clarisonic MIA (2010), Clarisonic (2009)

Best Beauty Tool (Budget)

Salux Beauty Cloth

Since Temptalia readers recommended this product to the tech guy to try out, I've been using it, too—and I really love it. If you want a really vigorous scrub down, this is the product to use (with your favorite body wash or shower gel). We use it with Philosophy's 3-in-1 Shower Gels and the dragon scales on my legs has really improved over time with regular exfoliation.

Past Winners: Eve Pearl Travel Razor (2010), Tweezerman Slanted Tip Tweezers (2009)

Best Facial Cleanser (High-end)

Bobbi Brown Hydrating Rich Cream Cleanser

This rich, creamy cleanser applies and glides over skin easily while dissolving makeup (except really, really long-wearing eyeliner). It rinses off quickly without leaving any residue behind, and after the skin dries, it doesn't feel tight or stripped.

Past Winners: Kate Somerville Gentle Daily Wash (2010), Chanel Exfoliating Mousse (2009)

Best Facial Cleanser (Budget)

Cetaphil Daily Cleanser

Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser is the world's best cleanser to go to whenever my skin is out of whack. Whenever I feel like nothing's working, I turn back to Cetaphil. It's gentle, soothing, and great for my skin, even when it's sensitive.

Past Winners: Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser (2009, 2010)

Best Daily Facial Exfoliator (High-end)

Kiehl's Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser

When I ran out of daily cleansers, this is the product I repurchased and we're just finishing up the second tube now. Kiehl's Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser is a gentle cleanser that softly exfoliates and can be used on a daily basis. I love the lightness of this cleanser. It's almost like a milky cleanser, because even though it lathers up, it's not a traditional foaming lather.

Past Winners: Kiehl's Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser (2009, 2010)

Best Daily Facial Exfoliator (Budget)

Aveeno Skin Brightening Daily Scrub

This is really nice in the morning, because it leaves skin feeling soft and ready to take on the day without feeling dry or tight. It's not too harsh, so it can be used more often (if you have really sensitive skin, you may have to ease off, though).

Past Winners: Dove Gentle Exfoliating Daily Facial (2010)

Best Foaming Facial Cleanser (High-end)

Bare Escentuals Deep Cleansing Foam

It's a rich, foaming cleanser that is activated by applying a pearl-sized amount onto wet skin. One thing I love about this product is just how little you need–seriously, a pea-sized amount is more than you really need.

Past Winners: Fresh Soy Face Cleanser (2010), Philosophy Purity Made Simple (2009)

Best Foaming Facial Cleanser (Budget)

Olay Foaming Face Wash

Olay's Foaming Face Wash leaves skin feeling refreshed and clean but never tight. It foams up quickly and is easy to work into the skin, but it doesn't leave skin feeling dry afterward.

Past Winners: Olay Foaming Face Wash (2010), Aveeno Ultra-Calming Foaming Cleanser (2009)

Best Gel Cleanser (High-end)

Renee Rouleau AHA/BHA Cleansing Gel

I'm back to loving this one just a wee bit more than Renee Rouleau's Luxe Mint Cleansing Gel, because this one helps me (personally) combat some troublesome acne that crops up now and again (and again). I love that it doesn't leave the skin feeling dry or stripped.

Past Winners: Renee Rouleau Luxe Mint Cleansing Gel (2010), Renee Rouleau AHA/BHA Cleansing Gel (2009)

Best Gel Cleanser (Budget)

Mario Badescu Enzyme Cleansing Gel

It's non-foaming, but it glides on easily and you don't have to use too much product to cleanse the entire face. It rinses off easily and washes off most makeup (except longer-wearing products, like eyeliner or mascara), but it doesn't create dryness or tightness post-rinse.

Past Winners: L'Oreal HydraFresh Deep Cleanser Gel, L'Oreal Skin Genesis Pore Minimizing Gel Cleanser (2009)

Best Makeup Remover (High-end)

Lancome Bi-Facil

Lancome Bi-Facil is an eye makeup remover that is absolutely phenomenal at removing even the most stubborn, long-wearing makeup. This is a popular pick for makeup removers, and I have to agree with the majority on this one. It really works, and one bottle will last you ages.

Past Winners: Lancome Bi-Facil (2009, 2010)

Best Makeup Remover (Budget)

Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover

Neutrogena Oil Free Eye Makeup Remover is a great oil-free makeup remover that gets rid of even stubborn waterproof mascara and long-wearing eyeliner. One bottle will last you quite a while, so there's no need to worry about going through this stuff. Sometimes I'll use this as a spot cleaner for brushes between uses as well. Since it is oil-free, you don't have to worry about any oily residue either.

Past Winners: Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover (2009, 2010)

Best Makeup Removing Wipes (High-end)

MAC Cleansing Wipes

MAC Cleansing Wipes are, surprisingly, a really good deal when bought in bulk and work well to remove makeup from your face, lips, and arms (if you're a beauty blogger… you know what I mean!). These are just so excellent at removing makeup from skin, I always have a few packs under the sink. I've used many other removers, but for swatching, I'm always going through these because they never leave my skin feeling dry or raw.

Past Winners: MAC Cleansing Wipes (2009, 2010)

Best Makeup Removing Wipes (Budget)

Neutrogena Makeup Removing Cleansing Towelettes

Neutrogena Make-up Remover Cleansing Towelettes are easy-to-use makeup wipes that quickly remove dirt and makeup and leave you feeling clean. I like that this doesn't leave behind any greasy residue, and I love that it can be used around the eyes, too (on me, I have to do so sparingly, just 'cause of how sensitive my eyes are in particular).

Past Winners: Neutrogena Makeup Removing Cleansing Towelettes (2009, 2010)

Best Facial Exfoliator (High-end)

Kate Somerville ExfoliKate

Kate Somerville ExfoliKate is an incredibly pricey but effective exfoliator. It really does impart this glow after you use it. For me, the regular version is just fine–never makes my face red–but if you have more sensitive skin, you may want to opt for the Sensitive version. I keep repurchasing this, and I'll soon be on my third tube (it seems like one tube lasts me at least a year, depending on how loyal I stay to this product).

Past Winners: Kate Somerville ExfoliKate (2009, 2010)

Best Facial Exfoliator (Budget)

Olay Regenerist Daily Thermal Mini-Peel

If you've ever tried one of the kinds of masks that applies and then heats up, you'll love this. It's effective and fun to wear. It warms up (though only for a few seconds) when it comes into contact with water. It's a great exfoliator for periodic use, though it could be used more often.

Past Winners: Queen Helene Oatmeal 'n' Honey Natural Facial Scrub (2010), Biore Pore Minimizing Refining Exfoliator (2009)

Best Cleansing Oil (High-end)

shu uemura Cleansing Oil

shu uemura High Performance Balancing Cleansing Oil does an amazing job at removing my makeup, including long-wearing eyeliner and mascara. It doesn't feel greasy or heavy, and it keeps my skin hydrated and never stripped.

Past Winners: shu uemura Cleansing Oil (2009, 2010)

Best Cleansing Oil (Budget)

Jojoba oil

Jojoba oil is one my favorite multitasking at-home solutions. I like jojoba oil for how effective it is at cleansing and removing both dirt and makeup, but it also leaves my skin feeling very soft and smooth. I haven't found any commercial cleansing oil at a budget-friendly price tag yet, other than just plain ol' jojoba oil.

Past Winners: Jojoba Oil (2009, 2010)

Best Toner (High-end)

NARS Hydrating Freshening Lotion

NARS Hydrating Freshening Lotion made me a believer on the magic of toners. I seriously never understood why toners were a must or why I should bother at all with one. I love, love, LOVE this product. NARS has a surprisingly strong line of skincare, actually, with Hydrating Freshening Lotion being one of my favorites.

Past Winners: NARS Hydrating Freshening Lotion (2009, 2010)

Best Toner (Budget)

LUSH Tea Tree Water

LUSH's Tea Tree Water comes in a convenient spray bottle and smells like, well, tea tree oil–but not quite as rich as pure tea tree oil. Alcohol-free, so it does not leave skin feeling dry.

Past Winners: Mario Badescu Aloe Vera Lotion (2009, 2010)

Best Hand Cream (High-end)

Jack Black Industrial Strength Hand Healer

Over the past year, I've been alternating between this and last year's winner, and Hand Healer has been working just marginally better for me over the long-term. It has a less refined feel to it, but it keeps my hands and elbows from getting too dry even if I forget to use this for a few days.

Past Winners: Ellen Sirot Hand Perfection Complete Day Cream (2009, 2010)

Best Hand Cream (Budget)

Eucerin PLUS Intensive Repair Hand Cream

Fragrance-free, non-greasy, and quick to absorb, Eucerin has a no-frills hand cream that will keep cracked and dried skin at bay.

Past Winners: Nivea Smooth Indulgence Hand Cream (2009, 2010)

Best Daytime Moisturizer (High-end)

Clinique Moisture Surge

What I really love about Moisture Surge as a daytime moisturizer is that it absorbs quickly without leaving any greasiness behind, so it's perfect to apply before makeup—especially if you don't have a lot of time to get ready in the morning. It also moisturizes incredibly well and feels comfortable on.

Past Winners: Kate Somerville Oil-Free Moisturizer (2009, 2010)

Best Daytime Moisturizer (Budget)

Olay Complete All Day UV Defense Moisture Lotion

Olay Complete All Day UV Defense Moisture Lotion is an old favorite. I used to use it before I ventured into higher-end skincare, but it's something I continuously recommend to those on tighter budgets or don't want fussy skincare. It has SPF 15 in it, which is a nice touch in a daily moisturizer, too (though you'll need better protection if you're out all day). It hydrates without feeling greasy and can be worn easily under makeup!

Past Winners: Olay Complete All Day UV Defense Moisture Lotion (2009, 2010)

Best Evening Moisturizer (High-end)

Bare Escentuals Purely Nourishing Cream

It's thick and creamy, feels rich without being heavy, but absorbs quickly and doesn't leave any greasy feel behind. My skin felt hydrated and lush; like it had a little extra spring in it because it was fully moisturized.

Past Winners: Bobbi Brown Hydrating Gel Cream (2010), Origins Make a Difference Ultra-Rich Rejuvenating Cream (2009)

Best Evening Moisturizer (Budget)

Olay Night of Olay Firming Cream

This is a thick cream with a lighter feel, so it tends to feel a bit more luxurious to me, and it's one I'd only reserve for evening wear (which the product name certainly suggests). What's nice about this is despite its thickness, it has more of a matte finish, even while it's drying.

Past Winners: Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Night Cream (2009, 2010)

Best Sunscreen (High-end)

Clarins UV Plus Day Screen High Protection SPF 40

This is a great mineral-based sunscreen (which means it doesn't use chemical sunscreens for sun protection) that absorbs quickly, doesn't leave a white cast, and is non-greasy.

Past Winners: Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion for Face PA+++ (2009, 2010)

Best Sunscreen (Budget)

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch

Neutrogena Sunblock, Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch SPF 55 is a nice, lightweight sunscreen for the face that never irritated me or made me feel greasy. It's also available in SPF 30, SPF 45, SPF 70, and SPF 85.

Past Winners: Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch (2009, 2010)

Best Facial Mask (High-end)

Renee Rouleau Triple Berry Smoothing Peel

My skin always feels ridiculously soft–almost so soft that it has a plumper feel to it–after I rinse off the peel with water. It's honestly like a super skin treat each month when I use it. I've had a couple of facials, which are always enjoyable, but this is the next best thing for those of us who don't have a budget that allows for regular facials.

Past Winners: Kate Somerville Clearing Mask (2010), Prescriptives Instant Gratification (2009)

Best Facial Mask (Budget)

LUSH Fresh Face Masks

LUSH Fresh Face Masks are really relaxing, soothing products. They have several different face masks to choose from, and they're only available in-store (at least for U.S. customers). My personal favorites are A Crash Course in Skincare and Cupcake, but I do like Catastrophe Cosmetic and Brazened Honey. I kind of like to vary it up, because I have a soft spot for all of them.

Past Winners: LUSH Fresh Face Masks (2009, 2010)

Best Body Scrub (High-end)

Clinique Sparkle Skin Body Exfoliator

This is a very fine scrub, so it doesn't have a really heavy grit that might be too much for some. It's thick, almost creamy, and applies easily over damp skin. It leaves my skin feeling super smooth and ready for moisturizer. It's a very no-frills kind of product!

Past Winners: Kiehl's Gentle Exfoliating Body Scrub (2009, 2010)

Best Body Scrub (Budget)

LUSH Buffy the Backside Slayer

When you need a really tough scrub, Buffy's got your back (ha, ha). If you need something gentler, you might consider the high-end scrubs recommended, but this will really get you exfoliated and scrubbed to perfection. An added bonus is that it is also moisturizing, so if you make this your last step in the shower, you might be able to skip the lotion!

Past Winners: Lush Ocean Salt (2010), Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub (2009)

Best Body Wash (High-end)

Philosophy 3-in-1 Shower Gel

These are my not-so-secret obsession. I have a total "gotta try 'em all" mentality with these, because they're constantly coming out with new, limited scents. I find that one big 16 oz. bottles lasts two people (me and my boyfriend) over a month, and let me tell you, the boyfriend has no concept of skimping whatsoever! I just love how often they hit the nail on the head with the scents. Pumpkin Spice for the win!

Past Winners: Philosophy 3-in-1 Shower Gel (2009, 2010)

Best Body Wash (Budget)

Dove Deep Moisture Body Wash

Dove Deep Moisture Body Wash is an affordable option for getting your body clean with lots of lather and a pleasant clean scent. I love the way my skin feels clean but not stripped after using this.

Past Winners: Dove Deep Moisture Body Wash (2009, 2010)

Best Body Moisturizer (High-end)

Kiehl's Crème de Corps

I think what makes Crème de Corps so remarkable is how lightweight and lotion-like the texture is when it delivers heavy duty hydration; the effect it has on my dragon scaled legs is what I see with a body butter or cream. The hydration continues all day long, and it doesn't feel greasy or oily. It's scent-free (smells like lotion but no added scent I could detect), which is a big bonus if you love to wear perfume (or don't want any scents at all!).

Past Winners: Jo Malone Body Crème (2010), Crabtree & Evelyn Soothing Body Lotion (2009)

Best Body Moisturizer (Budget)

Lubiderm Advanced Therapy Triple Smoothing Body Lotion

Lubriderm Advanced Therapy Triple Smoothing Body Lotion is a great three-in-one kind of product. It contains AHAs which help with skin renewal by removing dead skin cells, but it also keeps skin super moisturized and therefore smooth. I like that it does live-up to its three-in-one claims. I love this as a gentle but effective moisturizer.

Past Winners: Lubiderm Advanced Therapy Triple Smoothing Body Lotion (2009, 2010)

Best Shampoo (High-end)

Redken All Soft

I loved how soft this made my hair feel while giving my hair a good cleansing; it didn't feel stripped or dried afterward (and for a few weeks, I only used the shampoo with nothing else—no conditioner). I do like it best when used in conjunction with the conditioner, but it works well on its own for my hair type.

Past Winners: LiQWD Volumizing Shampoo (2009, 2010)

Best Shampoo (Budget)

Aussie Moist Shampoo

Aussie Moist Shampoo helps keep my hair from getting dried out and looking very healthy. My hair always feels really soft and smooth after using this!

Past Winners: Aussie Moist Shampoo (2009, 2010)

Best Clarifying Shampoo

Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo

Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo for Normal to Oily Hair is a must in any household, because it's great for ensuring you get all the bits of residue left behind by styling products. I don't use too many styling products, so I don't always need a clarifying shampoo, which is why I love how affordable this one is. Even though Suave calls it "Daily," I'd recommend it more for once a week or less usage. There's no high-end/budget here — only one winner. I haven't found a high-end product that does as good of a job removing build-up as this that's worth an award.

Past Winners: Suave Daily Clarifying Shampoo (2009, 2010)

Best Conditioner (High-end)

Redken All Soft

For super soft, lustrous locks, Redken has been keeping my hair at its healthiest without weighing it down! I have really thick, heavy hair to begin with, so any additional weight is extremely unwelcome—the softness almost makes me feel like my hair is lighter!

Past Winners: Oscar Blandi Pronto Wet Instant Volumizing Conditioner (2009, 2010)

Best Conditioner (Budget)

Aussie 3 Minute Miracle

This is an excellent conditioner if you suffer from drier hair, because it is so hydrating and always helps my hair feel better if I've used a lot of styling tools on it. It is coconut-scented, though, which may not be everyone's favorite scent.

Past Winners: Aussie 3 Minute Miracle (2010), Neutrogena Triple Moisture Daily Conditioner (2009)

Best Dry Shampoo

T3 Refresh Volumizing Dry Shampoo

When I'm too lazy (let's call it "busy") to wash my hair or on vacation with a lot of outdoor activities, T3's Dry Shampoo is my savior. It looks like it's getting harder and harder to find, which is a real bummer, because it's really one of my favorite dry shampoos.

Past Winners: T3 Refresh Volumizing Dry Shampoo (2009)

Best Dry Shampoo Budget

Batiste Dry Shampoo

Batiste Dry Shampoo works really well at soaking up any residual oils in the hair and helps give my hair some life in-between washes. Even on my dark black-brown hair, the powder absorbs and doesn't look like dandruff later on!

Past Winners:

Best Hair Dryer (High-end)

T3 Bespoke Labs Evolution Dryer

T3 Bespoke Labs Evolution Dryer opened my eyes to a hair miracle. A HAIR MIRACLE! I seriously never knew that you could dry long hair in less than ten minutes. I thought those of with long hair were meant to suffer through hour-long, arm-killing sessions of blow drying. I was totally and utterly wrong (thank goodness!). I can dry my thick, long hair in under ten minutes with the T3. I have both the Featherweight and the Evolution, and I like all the extra settings on the Evolution. If you're on a budget, though, the Featherweight will still get the job done!

Past Winners: T3 Bespoke Labs Evolution Dryer (2009, 2010)

Best Hair Dryer (Budget)

Revlon Tourmaline Ionic Lightweight Dryer

These days, finding a good hair dryer is a lot less difficult! Revlon has done a good job with creating a high powered dryer that gets the job done in a fraction of the time the hair dryers of yesteryear did.

Past Winners: Infiniti by Conair Professional Tourmaline Ionic Styler (2009, 2010)

Best Flat Iron (High-end)

ghd IV styler

ghd IV styler is kind of my gold standard for flat irons. It's easy to use, very comfortable to hold, heats up quickly, and gets my hair straightened with no qualms. My hair isn't that curly to begin with, though, so I must at least disclose that bit to you that I may not be the most strenuous tester of flat irons.

Past Winners: ghd IV styler (2009, 2010)

Best Flat Iron (Budget)

Remington Shine Therapy Flat Iron

Remington Shine Therapy Flat Iron is an effective flat iron that straightens hair quickly (heats up in about thirty seconds), but it also has this cool thing–a lil' gimmicky, but whatever–where it has avocado oil "infused" into the pads that give your hair a little added moisture and shine.

Past Winners: Remington Shine Therapy Flat Iron (2009, 2010)

Best Curling Iron (High-end)

Sedu Revolution Clipless Curling Iron

At first, it puzzled at me, but after a few uses, I understood—I love that it has no clip, so there's never a worry about getting a crease in your curl! It's lightweight, and I don't burn myself (which I've done far too often with curling and flat irons, mostly because I'm clumsy).

Past Winners: T3 PRO EverTwirl Curling Iron 1 1/4 Inch Barrel (2009, 2010)

Best Curling Iron (Budget)

Hot Tools CeramicTI Tourmaline Curling Iron

The Ceramic series is slightly more user-friendly than the regular line-up. I just like that I don't have to be as careful maneuvering around the heated parts of the iron compared to the Professional series!

Past Winners: Hot Tools Professional Spring Curling Iron (2009, 2010)

Best Hair Spray (High-end)

Bumble & Bumble Spray de Mode

Excellent hair spray that provides hold while still providing flexibility, softness, and keeps the hold going all day (and night!) long.

Past Winners: Bumble & Bumble Spray de Mode (2010)

Best Hair Spray (Budget)

TRESemme Extra Hold Hair Spray

I've used this numerous times when I've curled my hair, and it always keeps the curls defined without making them too crunchy or sticky. The scent isn't lovely but doesn't last too long.

Past Winners: Tresemme Extra Hold Hair Spray (2010)

Heat Protectant (High-end)

Paul Mitchell Hot Off the Press

This is a total must-have if you use a lot of hot styling tools on your hair, because it really helps to fortify the hair and keep the strands from drying out or breaking–it also seems to combat frizz.

Past Winners: Paul Mitchell Hot Off the Press (2010)

Heat Protectant (Budget)

TRESemme Hair Tamer Protective Spray

TRESemme's Hair Tamer helps hair to retain its softness after blow drying or styling with a curling or flat iron–my hair always seems to have a bit more bounce after using this product.

Past Winners: Tresemme Hair Tamer Protective Spray (2010)