21 Ulta Beauty Obsessions We're Trying To Cop This Fall
This article is in partnership with Ulta Beauty.
When it comes to beauty, Ulta Beauty has become synonmous as a one-stop shopping experience for makeup and skincare lovers alike. From in-store beauty services to their must-shop event 21 Days Of Beauty, Ulta Beauty has more than established themselves as that store. Recently, Ulta Beauty came through with the come through by unvieling the newness products we didn't know we needed. And we are so here for it!
The fall season is all about being out with the old and in with the new, and while the world very much feels out of our control, it feels great to find comfort and solace in the things you can control. That goes double for investing in yourself and your glow-up. Adding elements to your day like doing your makeup even if it's just for Zoom meetings, virtual Happy Hour with the ladies and treating yourself to a pamper session by adding a few more steps to your skincare routine are such a good reminder of how transformative your glow-up can be. Quarantine or not, it's important to gravitate towards things that build your self-confidence ad nurture your spirit.
For me, investing in myself looks like pampering my skin with products that speak to my needs, especially products that help with dark spots and hyperpigmentation. I'm currently eyeing the release of Dermalogica Hydro Masque Exfoliant, Mario Badescu Hyaluronic Dew Drops, and Peter Thomas Roth Potent-C Power Scrub. My pores are ready to preserve this glow, honey, rea-dy. Remember ladies, black joy is an act of resistance.
Ulta Beauty is giving us a multitude of ways to shop these all-new launches. You can order online, shop in-store or in-app, or even pull up to do curbside pickup. Get into the 21 Ulta Beauty newness products that our editors are currently eyeing and prepare to shop 'til you drop!
NARS Climax Extreme Mascara takes lashes to new heights by turning things up to the extreme, thanks to its buildable volume. With an innovative formula that is as intense as it is flexible, the mascara is giving a whole new meaning to peak lashes, emphasis on the va-va-voom. And it manages to do so without the dreaded clumps or smudging that can come with other mascara formulas.
Who says you need to go out for an excuse to get glam? The Urban Decay Stoned Vibes Eyeshadow Palette is filled with tantalizing foiled shades and pressed glitters, reminding you of how fun it is to tap into your black girl magic. What's even better is that this palette consists of an innovative powder to cream formula that provides you with some melt-into-the-skin action. The end result? An enviable radiating finish, ensuring your glow is on go, whether you're getting your virtual happy hour on with friends or a quick socially-distanced date night in. We're just saying.
There's nothing more indulgent than ending your day (or starting it) with a face mask. And Dermalogica knew exactly what they were doing with their Hydro Masque Exfoliant. The masque (that's masque with a 'que') packs a one-two punch thanks to its hydrating and exfoliating properties. This five-minute mask exfoliates with bamboo, while locking in moisture for smooth, renewed, and luminous skin. Yaaasss, glow!
Mario Badescu is that skincare brand. From oily to dry to acne-prone, they seem to offer a range of products that offer the gamut. With their Hyaluronic Dew Drops, they are once again flexing their muscles of why they're everyone's skincare favorite. With its ability to deliver botanical-infused hydration to your skin, this product also offers resurfacing, clarifying benefits that improve the quality of your skin. The end result is a dewy, ultra-hydrated complexion, taking your glow to even higher levels.
If we want to get into achieving a signature glow, Tula is where to begin. Tula Signature Glow Refreshing & Brightening Face Mist does exactly what their name suggests, all while protecting your skin from environmental damage. All-new to Ulta Beauty, the "highlighter in a bottle" is perfect for putting on as a primer before makeup, after makeup, or just to refresh and rehydrate your skin throughout the day. Either way, it allows you to pamper thyself while providing it with the moisture and protection it craves.
With its natural radiant finish coupled with its light-medium coverage formula, IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better Foundation might be the simple, lightweight foundation you've been looking for. In addition to giving you coverage without a cakey finish or the feel of a full-coverage formula, this foundation comes in 24 shades and provides you with 24 hours of hydration, giving you a bright and even skin tone without sacrificing your desire for a more natural go-to makeup look.
Clinique Even Better All-Over Concealer + Eraser is serving up 'your skin, but better' realness with the debut of this incredible product. This concealer visibly treats dark circles and reduces the look of puffiness all day and overtime while providing you with the coverage you so desire. Available in 30 shades, the caffeine-, Vitamin C-, and hyaluronic acid-enriched product proves to be makeup that covers up while improving your skin underneath. Plus, with its 12-hour wear and 24-hour hydration, Clinique shows beauty-lovers everywhere why this concealer is a must-have.
The StriVectin Super-C Retinol is the Vitamin C product of the gawds. Vitamin C is a highly regarded skincare ingredient because it helps to brighten the skin, reducing the appearance of dark spots and hyperpigmentation over time. This product in particular couples Vitamin C with retinol, creating a winning combination of brightening and protection that will help you achieve flawless skin in no time.
Peach & Lily is a Korean skincare brand that offers an array of products catering to skincare needs. With the Peach & Lily Cold Brew Eye Recovery Stick, say goodbye to whatever bags your eyes may be carrying. This eye cream helps eliminate the appearance of undereye circles and puffiness by tightening and hydrating that area of your skin.
The Benefit Cosmetics Brow Microfilling Pen helps you achieve the perfect brow one stroke at a time. Get the coveted microbladed effect at a fraction of the price or the effort with the help of this miracle product. With a staying power of up to 24 hours, this microfilling pen is the one product your brow needs.
One of the best times to really pour into your skin routine is at night. This is because your skin is given the opportunity to repair itself during the hours you've closed your eyes to sleep. That being said, what you apply to your skin at night could be the difference between meh skin and skin that is absolutely radiant. Case in point, Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Synchronized Multi-Recovery Complex puts in work by reducing visible signs of aging and evening your skin tone. Problem skin, be damned.
Issa brightening facial scrub! We live for all things brightening, especially where vitamin C is involved. Peter Thomas Roth Potent-C Power Scrub is a powerful vitamin C product, given its inclusion of its mega-potent THD Ascorbate that takes the traditional vitamin C ingredient to new levels. This scrub polishes and brightens the skin's overall appearance, aiding in creating an even skin tone and diminishing the appearance of hyperpigmentation over time.
Our skin encounters much more harm throughout our day-to-day than you might think. Between enduring indoor and outdoor air pollution, UV rays, and sweat amid other environmental damage, your skin goes through it. Ursa Major Golden Hour Recovery Cream just might be the remedy. This gluten-free, vegan, and cruelty-free product is a blend of spicy sandalwood, sweet neroli, and sour rose that provides nourishment and deep hydration to replenish your skin. Better yet, you can use it daily or nightly to truly treat yo' self.
Vegan and cruelty-free, Filth & Root Calming Facial Moisturizer is a CBD facial moisturizer that feels like therapeutic luxury in the palm of your hands. Rich in Terpenes and Adaptogens, this moisturizer fights inflammation and hydrates. Keep your breakouts at bay and your skin quenched with this CBD beauty find.
First Aid Beauty FAB Pharma Arnica Relief & Rescue Mask is a product featured among First Aid Beauty's particular array of pharmacy-inspired skincare and targeted treatments. This mask is self-care reinvented and its rich and creamy texture will have you feeling like you're lounging in a lap of luxury from the comfort of your home. The mask soothes and relieves stressed, irritated, and dehydrated skin. As you pour into yourself, you
Sometimes our lips are an aspect that we neglect in our skincare routines, despite them being such a focal point. Keep your lips hydrated and smooth by investing in a go-to lip mask like this one by Becca. Wear your lip mask at night to restore moisture into your pout, wake up and wash away the dead skin for a smooth and hydrated reveal. Your lips will thank you for it.
Probiotics does more than just wonders for your gut health. Now, with the help of Beekman 1802 Milk Drops Probiotic Ceramide Serum, your skin gets to reap some of those benefits too! Beekman 1802's revolutionary goat milk skincare skystem is the gift that keeps giving with the arrival of its power-packed serum that leaves your skin smooth, radiant, and even-toned. In just one drop, you get a serum that contains hella squalane, essential ceramides, plant enzymes, and hyaluronic acid. Discoloration and dull skin, be gone!
The most popular way to fill in sparse brows is by creating hair-like strokes with your brow pencil or pomade of choice. In case you didn't know, Anastasia Beverly Hills has a Brow Pen that promises to give you those hair-like strokes for a natural-looking brow with a fraction of the effort. The brand who is known for their prowess over the brow sector knew what they were doing when they created this long-wearing pen.
As more of us spend more time working from home and being immersed in blue light, gravitating towards products that can help improve your skin while protecting you against potential damage. In addition to protecting you, it also neutralizes dark circles and hydrates the undereye area.
One word: brightening. This correcting peel by Exuviance is an intensive retinol correcting peel that improves the look and feel of your skin's texture over time. With consistent weekly use, the peel makes dark spots caused by aging, scarring, or sun damage less visible on the surface of the skin. Your skin will be lifted, firmer, and more flawless in no time.
Say hello to what's new in French skincare. L'Occitaine wants us to feel as pampered as possible in our showers by dipping our toes into a pool of this lavishness. The L'Occitaine Almond Shower Oil is 'hydration' in a bottle, as the two-in-one shower oil offers duality in its benefits. While most cleansers can be rather stripping to the body, especially coupled with the stripping aspects of warmer water in our showers, this product moisturizes the skin, and can even be used to replenish moisture on even the driest skin type.
Featured image by Shutterstock
When Megan Thee Stallion dropped “Hiss,” a shift happened. From the audacious lyrics to the striking visuals, there was no doubt that the song and video would go viral. The opening of the video shows the H-town hottie rocking a barely there Shibari red dress, showing off her voluptuous frame. It was a sexy moment created by Timeekah Murphy of Alani Taylor. The designer exclusively tells us how the opportunity came about and what it was like seeing her design on Megan for the first time.
xoNecole: How did the opportunity to create such an iconic look for Megan Thee Stallion's "Hiss" video come about?
Timeekah Murphy: The opportunity came from a DM from celebrity stylist Zerina Akers. She asked for a unique Shibari piece for Megan, and I needed to get it done in two days. So, of course, I did everything in my power to make it happen. I've always wanted to design for Megan, so this was an awesome opportunity for me.
xoN: What was that initial feeling of seeing the dress on her for the first time?
TM: I was shocked because, at first, I thought it hadn't been used. I saw Megan's last video and thought, damn, maybe it didn't fit. So, to see it on such an amazing video was breathtaking. I was beyond excited to finally say I designed for her.
xoN: Did you meet her? If so, how was that moment?
TM: I didn't meet Megan during the shoot, but during my time in LA, I got the opportunity to meet her at LA Pride with Tiffany Haddish, Common, and EJ King (stylist). Megan is such an amazing person, so it made it even better to know that my designs were going to be worn by her. I was shocked because, at first, I thought it hadn't been used. I saw Megan's last video and thought, damn, maybe it didn't fit. So, to see it on such an amazing video was breathtaking. I was beyond excited to finally say I designed for her.
"I was shocked because, at first, I thought it hadn't been used. I saw Megan's last video and thought, damn, maybe it didn't fit. So, to see it on such an amazing video was breathtaking. I was beyond excited to finally say I designed for her."
xoN: Walk us through the creation of the dress. How did you come up with the look, and how long did it take to make it?
TM: I was the co-designer for a brand called Deviant in 2018-2020, and we used to make custom Shibari pieces. That's how Zerina knew me. So I'm very familiar with making these types of pieces. We made plenty for Beyoncé, Cardi B, Tiffany Haddish, Tyra Banks, and so many others. So Zerina knew exactly what she wanted.
To get it done, it took me a day and a half. It's very intricate and time-consuming, so I spent about six hours making it then I sent an image of it to Zerina, and she didn't approve the first one, so I had to start from scratch again after getting my guidance and understanding of what was needed. The next day, I went to The Lab and created another version, and she approved it. I had to get it shipped overnight so that she would get it in time and fast forward to seeing it on the big screen.
xoN: What's next for you?
TM: Everything. The sky is not my limit, so the Alani Taylor brand is expanding into so many different avenues. We are getting involved in the community more, offering sewing classes to the youth. I've opened up a store for my brand in Atlanta and now preparing for fall/winter Fashion Week.
Megan Thee Stallion "Hiss" video/ YouTube
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Whoever coined the phrase, “If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it,” certainly was not referring to the state of our dating scene. Whether online or in real life, you don't have to go far to hear the grievances of singles calling for the immediate repair of all leaks, cracks, and fractures in the dating pool.
No matter the state you live in, your age, how much you earn for a living, or if you’re a chronic app dater, there’s a general consensus that something (anything) must be done to restore the hope of singles looking for long-term, fulfilling relationships. And as many of us hold on to the hope for an unexpected cross-encounter with our next love story, others are leaning on the side of giving up completely. But before throwing in the towel, it might be time to make a few adjustments.
Dating Apps Are In Their Flop Era, Making Connections IRL Is Where It's At
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Many singles agree that spending their leisure time swiping through dating apps is out. What’s in is stepping out of one's comfort zone to make connections in the real world. Scary. We know. But unless you were one of the lucky few to find love on dating apps before its flop era or made a love connection from home during the pandemic, going about your dating life the same way is bound to render the same results: being single with a headache. And we want better for you.
It’s safe to say that constantly meeting strangers off the internet for a chance to find love has lost its charm, leaving singles open to the train, farmer’s market, the gym, or a friend’s house party to be prime real estate for matching up with potential partners.
This shift, as Marissa Nelson, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and BLK’s Relationship and Intimacy Expert tells xoNecole, is due in part to a growing concern about the authenticity of online profiles — in other words: is what you’re seeing, in fact, what you’re getting? “From their profile picture, what they say they do, the height they say they are; it’s this fear of, ‘Am I really talking to who I think I'm speaking to?'” she explains.
On our journey to finding “the one” out in the real world, a common question is, “Where do you find the available singles?” The short answer is, everywhere. The long answer is at the grocery store, on a plane, during happy hours, at work, at a conference, on a solo vacation, or, as Nelson puts it, anywhere you are showing up as your most open and vulnerable self.
“You never know where the connection is going to come from, which is why it's even more important to be receptive, to stay open, be curious, and lean into your vulnerability,” she says. In fact, Nelson encourages singles to release themselves of the rigidity around finding the perfect person at the “perfect” place, because, in essence, there isn’t one. “We have to let go of the constraints that we can only go to singles events to meet people,” she says. “We have to be open to however love shows up.”
"We have to let go of the constraints that we can only go to singles events to meet people. We have to be open to however love shows up."
We all can relate to the fact that the idea of shooting our shot in real life is a lot more exciting than the actual act. The relationship expert explains that one of the greatest hesitations to us putting ourselves out there and taking a chance on love is rooted in the fear of rejection. However, it’s important to keep in mind that “we’ve all been hurt” and most importantly, “we’re all afraid of rejection.”
That’s why Nelson suggests the following strategies to make the first move and find love in your everyday life.
1. Don't close yourself off.
“When you relax your expectations, you start to meet really cool people. Some of those cool people became friends and that makes your life richer because now, you have new friends and great people to hang out with. Even if it wasn't a love match, it can become a significant or meaningful friendship.”
2. Don't let your "type" hold you back.
“We all have a type. And a lot of women will say, ‘I like them tall. I like them like this or that.’ When we’re rigid about who we believe we ought to be with versus being open to people who might be more aligned with our values, we close ourselves off. Sure, you're not going to date somebody that you are absolutely not attracted to. But people have a lot of unwritten rules around who they will allow themselves to get to know, and I challenge people to challenge their rules because that can hold you back from expansive experiences.”
3. Make the first move.
“I think that if we can be bold, be brave, and if there's somebody that's good-looking, catches your eye, or just seems like they have a good vibe, we can approach them with curiosity. Ask them how they're doing. Introduce yourself. It doesn't have to lead to all these things; you can just have chemistry and flow from there.”
4. Ask better questions.
“When you meet someone for the first time, asking them ‘What do you do?’ is not the best first question because that only tells you what they do for money, not necessarily what they're passionate about. To get insight into who that person truly is, ask: What are you passionate about in your life right now? What lights you up? What excites you? What are you working towards?”
5. Shift your mindset.
“We've all been hurt. And we can be guarded because we don't want to get hurt again. The brain is a very complex and brilliant system designed to keep us safe, and emotional survival is a real thing. We become super protective, and in that, we come up with a lot of different rules, paradigms, [and] belief systems. The biggest mindset shift is: how can we do our own work to know and believe that we are worthy and deserving of love.”
Whether you’re on a dating app or roaming your local Trader Joe’s, love is everywhere — and the abundance of love is available to us once we remove limiting beliefs that make it feel scarce and out of reach. Vulnerability, shedding our walls, and openness just might be the tweaks we need to snitch up the dating streets and watch it heal for the better.
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Featured image by LeoPatrizi/Getty Images