Our Favorite Products: December 2019 Edition


Welcome to Our Favorite Products, a monthly feature in which ITG's editors discuss our favorite products. They're the best things we've tried all month long, reviewed and anthropomorphized before we have the opportunity to get sick of them and move on to something new. This month we’re wrapping up the decade as one should—in the coziest, most effective products we can get our hands on.

The Derm-Recommended Pimple Gel

"The first time I got antibiotics for my skin I was a teenager—the dermatologist took one look at my face, wrote the prescription, and I was out the door in a minute flat. So you can imagine why I was a little skeptical when Dr. Claire Chang at Union Square Dermatologist sent me on my way with a prescription for Aczone after my first visit. I actually resisted filling the ‘scrip for a month, and might have never picked it up except out of sheer desperation. Here’s why: I was seeing Dr. Chang for a series of Fraxel laser treatments, and because the laser was so intense, I wouldn’t be able to use acids (you know, the acids that KEPT MY BREAKOUTS IN CHECK) while we were doing them. Predictably, three weeks after my first treatment, my face started freaking out. I literally had no idea what to do—I panicked and went to get the prescription at, no exaggeration, 10PM. Thank God and Dr. Chang, I’ve maybe had two little pimples since. I can’t use Aczone forever, but if you can’t use acids and are breaking out, you might want to consider it for a little while. Carly Cardellino uses it, too." —Ali Oshinsky

The Coziest Two-Piece

"I love everything about pajamas and what they stand for. If you are wearing them you are either: sleeping, about to go to sleep, or being real cozy and not leaving your couch (all ideal states!). I love spending a whole day in PJs, but to do that without feeling like a total waste I've found it helps to wear nice, matching pajamas. It makes me feel pulled together during a day of letting it all go. Desmond and Dempsey is a British husband and wife company that makes classic pajama sets based on men's shirting but in wildly fun animal prints for men, women, and kids. And since I had a daughter, I have learned that nothing is more fun than wearing matching pajamas together. It's the cheesiest and I love it." —Leah Chernikoff

A Workhorse Body Lotion

"You could say I’m obsessed with aging, but not in the way you might think. It’s less ‘oh no, how do I make it stop?’ and more ‘wow, this body I’ve had all my life is doing what now?’ More of a fascination, less of a fear. But I observe, nonetheless. The latest trick I’ve seen my body pull is that it gets dry more easily than ever. As someone with oily to balanced skin for most of her life, this is a new and interesting development. Last winter I had to course correct mid-season with loads of body oil, but this winter I’m trying to get ahead of the game with an egregious amount of creams. Ren’s AHA Body Serum followed by Sangre de Fruta or Kate McCleod’s Daily Stone for the weekends and the occasional night shower (I do those now!), and AmLactin’s Rapid Relief for day-to-day. The latter lacks all the things that make a moisturizer bad—it’s not too light, but it’s not so heavy that it coats instead of sinking in. Chalk it up to a one-two punch of lactic acid that makes my skin smooth and a robust amount of moisturizers (glycerin, vitamin E, cholesterol). A trio of ceramides also moisturize while creating a comfortable barrier that prevents all those moisturizers from drying out too quickly. The texture is goop-ier than fluffy lotions and the smell is the smell… A small price to pay for the hardest-working daily lotion I’ve ever tried."
—Ashley Weatherford

Your Next Favorite Lipstick

"This is not your ol’ run of the mill lipstick situation, and if you’re used to swiping on with reckless abandon you might be like, ‘You want me to buy a palette of four colors that may or may not look good on me and apply them with my fingers?!’ Please suspend your skepticism for a minute, because this palette is truly perfect. You get four colors, yes, but they’re neutral and flattering and mixable for quick on-the-go color customizing. You really get every shade in between, too. The finger application process means a perfectly wearable blotted lip is inevitable, and the weighty gold compact looks so pretty that you’ll want to touch up constantly. It’s a little old school, but also feels different and special… Basically, it’s lipstick Goldilocks: just right. (And I highly suggest watching how Jeanne uses hers for inspiration.)" —AO

A Moisturizing...Stick?

"Ashley handed me this Tatcha serum stick right before the holiday break with a shrug. She said something like, 'Sure, try it if you think you need to reapply moisture to your face throughout the day.' Well, my face is dry all the time and a virtual desert during the winter. It feels tight and a little itchy and I would apply moisturizer multiple times a day if I had the wherewithal to remember to bring it with me and do it. In stick form, however, it's suddenly so simple. It's easy to keep in my bag along with lip balm and I slather it all over my face the same way I reapply balm to my lips throughout the day. Fucking Tatcha." —LC

An Antidote To Holiday Puffiness

"Because I practically live in elastic waistbands already, I don’t mind a holiday belly. It’s the puffy face I find annoying. I could cut back on the salt and wine, but that’s boring—I live for drama and indulgence! So lately I’ve been whipping out Joanna Czech’s Facial Massager with greater frequency. I think it’s the best of its kind because the rollers aren’t perfectly round—they’re slightly oblong, which seems to hug the contours of my face with more precision. They really get in there, so much that after I’m done rolling I have to open my mouth wide for a bit to re-adjust (imagine you’re trying to force yourself to yawn on an airplane to pop your ears—that’s what I look like). A year ago I would have laughed this off, I mean, it’s just a roller! But you know how you look after a facial? That tight, smoothed over, definitely not puffy look? A testament to the quality of products for sure, but also the application. This guy will get you there, or at the very least close to it." —AW

Photo via ITG.