College Beauty Awards: Meet the 11 Beauty Products Most Beloved by College Students

What makes a holy-grail beauty product can be incredibly subjective. For the College Beauty Awards, we knew that we’d need a little (okay, a lot) of help from our friends to vote in the winners that should sit in the no-budge spot in medicine cabinets.

In case you didn’t know, the Her Campus community is kind of a huge deal. We have chapter members, national writers, influencers, trendsetters and more working together on a daily basis to create the best content every day. And when we announced the College Beauty Awards, this small army of students wrote back to us and shared intel on the beauty products they universally agree on. These are bestsellers, with a huge buzz from students everywhere, and they’ve been given the highest stamp of approval in a survey we sent to our college readers and communities. So sit back, relax, and take a real look into the makeup bags of college women.

  1. 1. Hydro Boost Water Gel

    Neutrogena,, $24; shop now

    College women shop at a lot of different beauty retailers, but one commonality is that they can't resist picking up a pot of this moisturing gel wherever they go. It's voted in by students with everything from normal to combination skin, and the hydration makes your face feel sooo bouncy and supple. 

  2. 2. Original Astringent

    Thayers,, $9; shop now

    This witch hazel toner is a staple because of its ability to cleanse skin, tighten pores, and manage texture all in one. It doesn't feel harsh when you wipe it across your face, but it does make your pores feel immediately tighter. Honestly, we're using it twice a day. 

  3. 3. Glow Tonic

    Pixi,, $22; shop now

    This exfoliating toner seems to generate more and more buzz each week. It's one of the most referred products by college women, which is deserved once you see the toner's miracle results. It completely smoothes skin and wipes away dead cells, so you're left with an even glow. 

  4. 4. Classic Face Sunscreen

    Coola,, $32; shop now

    SPF is trending right now, and college women have been scouring beauty aisles for the best sunscreen. This formula was voted in the top slot because it doubles as an everyday moisturizer, and it's not too greasy if you have oily skin (which we do, let's be real). 

  5. 5. Translucent Loose Setting Powder

    Laura Mercier,, $39; shop now

    When you first enter the world of beauty, there are a few best-selling products everyone learns about first. Obviously this setting powder is one of them, but its top ratings are deserved. It's silky and finely-milled, and it reduces shine. We love the powder both to set makeup and also worn on a foundationless face. 

  6. 6. CC+ Cream with SPF 50+

    IT Cosmetics,, $39; shop now

    Hellooo to one of the most powerful foundations in our beauty arsenal. The formula is full-coverage, so you can use it as a color corrector or concealer on top of everyday wear. It really looks like your skin, but better

  7. 7. Radiant Creamy Concealer

    Nars,, $30; shop now

    Ask for a concealer recommendation and college women can't say "Radiant Creamy Concealer" fast enough. First off, this tube lasts almost a full school year, which is a requirement. Too, it's so natural looking whether you're covering up dark circles, acne or uneven skin tone. 

  8. 8. Better Than Sex Mascara

    Too Faced,, $25; shop now

    Break up with your mascara if it's not Too Faced. Without fail, it makes your lashes look longer, curled, dark and multiplied. Would college women sell their souls for it? Yes, and with no regrets. 

  9. 9. Boy Brow

    Glossier,, $16; shop now

    Boy Brow changed the world. We grew up plucking our brows into barely-there lines, but then this gel came around and taught us that fluffy brows are to be celebrated. It has an acute brush head to fluff and shape brows with precision, and you can easily layer the gel on for a subtle tint or heavier look. 

  10. 10. Perk Up Dry Shampoo

    Amika,, $25; shop now

    Dry shampoo can be hit or miss, but this formula from Amika is regularly hit. Not only does it combat grease build-up in unwashed hair, it also refreshes the density of your strands —so it looks like you've got a full, fresh mane minutes after your spray it in. Catch us regularly cashing in our Sephora points to get even more sample sizes of this dry shampoo. 

  11. 11. Foaming Shave Gel

    Flamingo,, $5; shop now

    Our current shower lineup features this shave gel that takes luxurious to a whole new level. It actually stays on your legs while shaving, while other brands have just melted off in the shower. Plus, a little goes a long way, which means this gel lasts well into the semester. 

The Her Campus National Editors write about products we love and think you'll love too. Her Campus has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.