Kiko is a mysterious brand, new to the scene and unknown to those not indoctrinated in the world of makeup. This is a good thing, because it tricks me into feeling very cool about using it. But aside from this cool-ness, they have some seriously stellar products, performing at a professional level for around the price of the “drugstore.”
Two cult classics from the up-and-coming Italian brand are the Water Eyeshadows in shades 200 (Champagne) and 208 (Light Gold). Asking about these in stores is met with a revered hush and a warning to snatch them up as they’re rarely seen in the wild.
Online, they’re near permanently out of stock. And with good reason. These two so-called “eyeshadows” are the most amazingly intense, wet-look facial highlights I’ve ever seen. Applied very precisely, to only the highest points of the face, gives the face a spot-lit, star-of-the-show quality. Subtle, they are not. Glorious, they most certainly are.
Once the thrill of the chase dies down, the thrill of the face (good writing at its finest) begins. 200 Champagne is a warm silvery sheen, while 208 Light Gold is (no shit, Sherlock) a light gold. If you’re not borderline psychotic about makeup like me, you probably only truly need one: 200 if you’re cool toned and 208 if you’re warm. They can be used as eyeshadows, of course, and they’re pretty stunning in that capacity as well. They have a really appealing surface designed for wet use, to intensify what is already intense beyond measure.
More pros. The packaging is sleek, has a mirror, doesn’t fly open with gay abandon, doesn’t look heinous and isn’t any larger than it needs to be. The shadow is finely milled, silky smooth and somehow, for something so brilliantly light reflecting, doesn’t contain any big pieces of glitter. And if you’re only interested in the eyeshadow capacities of these little delights, they come in loads of cool colours: a bunch of browns, but also reds, blues, greens, the works. My next hope is for one which is starkly white, to highlight oneself into an ice queen oblivion.
These Water Eyeshadows exemplify lots of things I love about makeup. The discovery of an unknown, hidden treasure. The hunt for the product which plays hard to get. And, of course, highlighting my face until I can, realistically, be spotted from across the room. While sometimes available in London stores (I got 200 in Westfield White City, heads up), online is probably your best bet, and I believe they ship worldwide. They are absolutely delightful and bring me genuine joy, in the way only a pressed pan of actual sunlight could.
Kiko, Water Eyeshadows, £8.90, Kiko Milano