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We beauty editors will be the first to admit that we love to talk about all things makeup and skin care, both at work and in our personal lives, which is a good thing — because we will also tell you that we are constantly being hit up by our friends, family members, and total social media strangers with beauty question after question. Queries like, "What skin care products are you using right now?" or "What's a good dry shampoo?" and of course, "Are Kylie's Lip Kits really worth it?" The list goes on (and on and on). But when you spend your waking hours testing new products and following the latest trends, you can't help but be a resource for inquiring minds who need some help navigating the sometimes confusing, constantly evolving $445 billion beauty industry.
While we get a variety of different questions, there are definitely some topics that get brought up more than others. Here is the one thing my fellow beauty editors and I get asked about the most.
Sara Tan (@saratan) West Coast Fashion & Beauty Editor, Bustle
"Korean beauty is something I constantly get asked about. Maybe it's because I love it so much or because it's super trendy right now, or a mixture of the two. While it's been a few years since it came onto the American beauty scene, Korean beauty hadn't quite made it onto everyone's radar until more recently.
I've tried a lot of different Korean beauty products over the years and have found my favorites, but like with anything else beauty-related, what works for me might not necessarily work for other people's skin types. Instead of recommending specific products, I like to suggest people do their own research and try out products that they think might work for them and their specific skin goals.
I'll direct them to Korean beauty e-retailers like Glow Recipe, Soko Glam, Peach and Lily, and Memebox, or to visit Sephora or even drugstores like CVS that now carry Korean beauty products. There's no greater feeling, in my opinion, than finding a new product that you absolutely love, and the only way to do that is to try it out for yourself!"
Kara McGrath (@diosmioitskara) Deputy Fashion & Beauty Editor, Bustle
"Natural beauty product recommendations, for sure. Since there's so much to navigate in the world of natural versus organic and a lot of the organic brands are (of course) more expensive, I get friends coming to me all the time asking for my favorite brands that actually work as well as the stuff made with traditional synthetic ingredients.
It's a hard question to answer, since everyone's skin reacts so differently and people are looking for different "levels" of natural! I usually tell people to start at a store like Credo that sells a bunch of different organic and natural products, plus gives out samples, so they can feel of what work best for them."
Essence Gant (@theessenceof_) Beauty Editor, BuzzFeed
"The thing I get asked about the most is hair care. My hair is natural, and I kind of just let it do what it wants. I shampoo with Ouidad Curl Immersion Low-Lather Cleansing Conditioner and condition with their Triple Treat Deep Conditioner. And I usually just add in moisture with a Shea butter and some Julie Hewett Camellia Oil. The simpler, the better!"
Kirbie Johnson (@KirbieJohnson) Host, Senior Beauty Trend Producer & Reporter, POPSUGAR
"I actually have two — it's a tie: 'Does shaving your face make the hair grow back thicker and darker?' and 'How do I get rid of these dark spots on my face?'
I'm very outspoken about the fact that I shave my face and that I have melasma. I assure people that if they don't have dark, coarse hair already, it will not grow back that way — although some hormonal issues can change that. I also try to educate people on what melasma is and how it's caused. It's not just a sun spot. It can commonly be a result of your birth control or the products you use."
Stephanie Montes (@stephanie_montes) Beauty Director, The Zoe Report
"The one question I constantly get asked at drinks with friends, family get-togethers or even by strangers is, 'What do I do with my skin?' First of all, no skin care routine is a one-size-fits-all. I've tried a ton of products and have narrowed down my favorites, but what works for me, won't necessarily work for my cousin's [or my] coworker's friend. However, there is one product that everyone (and their mother) should be using: serum!
While the brand and ingredients take some vetting by each individual beauty junkie, it's one of those products that works for dry, combination, oily, mature, all skin, really. I love My Daily Dose by Skin Inc. and the best part is they can customize a formula for your individual skin type. To this day, I haven't steered anyone wrong — that I know of, at least!"
Beth Wischnia (@bethwischnia) Beauty Editor, Brit + Co.
"It's a tie between 'What's the new hot beauty product?' and 'What's your all time favorite product?' People always want to know about the latest and greatest and I'm happy to talk about what I've discovered. That said, there's always interest in a product deemed the 'GOAT' by an expert, so that can be a topic of discussion, too."
Lexy Lebsack (@lexylebsack) Senior Beauty Editor, Refinery29
"Maybe it's because I'm constantly talking about how infrequently I wash my hair, but the most common question I get tends to be about dry shampoo. I find that friends and colleagues want to know what budget formula is best and how to use it properly.
I have a lot of formulas I love, but my go-to recommendations are Cantu's formula for dry, curly, or textured hair — it really changed the game when it came out this year — as well as Not Your Mother's Clean Freak, which is what I use often and absolutely love for it's efficacy and cheap price tag. I also frequently get questions from people who are confused about why dry shampoo doesn't work for them, for which I say, 'Are you using it right?'
No, you can't just spray at your center part and expect miracles. You must detangle your hair, then part your hair in small sections and spray it near your roots. I find it works best when you let it sit for a few minutes, then massage in with clean, dry hands, then brush out any excess — all before styling. I swear, when I realized that applying dry shampoo should take five minutes, not five seconds, it changed everything."
Marie Lodi (@AgentLover) Beauty Editor, Hello Giggles
"People always ask me about liquid eyeliner because they know I'm such a freak about it! It's also something that I tend to ask other cat-eye aficionados about, whether or not they're in the beauty scene. I'm always excited to learn which liners people swear by, 'cause I want to try them all! Aside from that, I always get asked about skin care products. I never get tired of talking about beauty!"
Jayme Cyk (@jaycyk) Beauty Director, VIOLET GREY
"'What's your all-time favorite product for banishing breakouts and a clear complexion?' I must say that this is a loaded question because not all acne is created equal, but I get this question a lot.
In the last six months, I have been using three serums by Kristina Holey x Marie Veronique that have consistently kept my complexion in check. Here's the spiel: All three formulas (Intensive Repair, Soothing B3, and Barrier Restore — use them in that order) are laser-focused on rebuilding the skin. Marie Veronique told me that barrier function is overlooked in the skin care industry and skin problems usually arise from a deficiency in nutrients and ingredients the skin needs for proper functioning. Ultimately, these serums are key to strengthening your skin so that your anti-aging essentials work that much harder."
Faith Xue (@faith_xue) Editorial Director, Byrdie
"The one thing I get asked about the most as a beauty editor is definitely eyebrow microblading. It's probably because I chose to undergo the procedure myself and agreed to document the process for Byrdie, or maybe it's just a buzzy topic, but either way, people love to ask me about my experience. My answer? It's more painful than you would expect, but if you have thin, sparse, non-existent brows naturally (aka me), it's worth the pain and cost.
It's been a couple of months since I got it done and though the pigment has faded a lot, my brows are still way more noticeable than they were (plus, now I only have to use Benefit's Gimme Brow to accentuate them instead of a pencil, powder, and gel — my brow routine was very high-maintenance).
Just make sure you go to someone good — preferably someone who has multiple before/after photos of their work. I highly recommend Piret Ava, also known as @eyebrowdoctor on Instagram."
Stephanie Saltzman (@stephsaltzman) Beauty Editor, Fashionista
"Without a doubt, the number one thing people have asked me about over the past few years is Glossier. It's millennial catnip. I get texts in the middle of the night asking things like 'Have you tried Glossier's Cloud Paint? Is it worth the hype?' Everyone has been so drawn in by the branding and seen it all over their Instagram feeds, so they want to know if the products are actually legit or if it's all just pretty packaging."