It’s been a while since I rounded up some of my favourite beauty buys and thanks to my work at Slapp, I’ve found even more excuse to experiment.
I’ve noticed a real difference in products since I started Blush back in 2010. Formulas have advanced and we’ve picked up a few more skincare steps along the way.
These days we don’t just tone, we tone and exfoliate with AHAs. Our glosses don’t glue our lips together, and highlighters are no longer just glitter sticks from Superdrug. Now we co-wash our hair and know the difference in benefits between Argan and Marula.
It’s crazy to think that 8 years ago we didn’t even know what a Sheet mask was; and here we find ourselves using essences, setting sprays, liquid lipsticks and luxury lip balms. What a time to be alive.
Pat McGRATH – Skin Fetish Highlight Trio
I’ve been following Pat McGRATH since… forever, and I’ve drooled over every launch from the Pat McGrath Labs. Every now and then I’ll go through the motions of ordering online, only to be scared off by the hefty international shipping fee; so when I arrived in New York this Spring, hers was the first counter I found myself at. I searched about 6 different red lipsticks and was eventually satisfied by the Luxe Trance in Sedition.
A few weeks ago Pat launched her Skin Fetish collection and once again I found myself on her site. I wanted it all, so I popped over to Sephora to get my online fix. I bought the Lip Fetish Bronze Astral lip balm, the Sublime Skin Highlighting Trio and the Buffer 003 brush. The lip balm is gorgeous and something I’ve been wearing daily, but what has quickly jumped to the top of my most loved list, is the highlighting trio. The trio comes with: iridescent pink, fine gold and bronze nectar. All three are phenomenal.
This morning I tried the iridescent pink which gives a gorgeous dual chrome effect. Bronze nectar is my everyday hero and fine gold is an unexpected blue to gold beauty, that I like to use on the bridge of my nose. I’ve been using this palette for less than a week and I’m already hooked. The great thing about all three are they are totally build-able, but one swish gives enough colour pay off. These are by no means cheap, but the quality of finish and the quality and clear innovation in these formulas, makes them worth every penny.
Illamasqua – Colour Veil Blusher
I’ve always loved Illamasqua but have strangely never bought anything from them. I love wandering around their Soho flagship and swatching the out of this world highlighters, making a mental note to come back. Luckily they invited me down to the recent press launch of their Colour Veil Blusher. These cute blush pots come in 6 shades, 3 of which work for my skin tone (resultl!) What makes these blushes unique is their gel like formula. Like jelly with memory, once you dab into this blush, it immediately returns to its position in the pot. I’ve been using the coral (Enamour) for summer which is a gorgeous orange peach, packed -but not overloaded- with pigment. I use two dabs on each cheek and blend with their cheek brush, for an effortless finish, with a gorgeous natural glow.
I bought this after years of shaking my fist at this non-inclusive brand. The launch of this 40 shade strong range excited and incensed me enough to write an op-ed on my makeup app Slapp. Nevertheless I was keen to try it and to finally get a foundation from Dior. I ordered via their online store which was super easy to use and within a few days a gorgeous Dior box arrived, filled with samples and my perfect shade in the new Face and Body. The foundation was created by Peter Phillips as part of their backstage makeup offering – but I was most excited to try it as Megan allegedly wore it on her wedding day to Haz. I was initially disappointed by the plastic bottle, but a quick trip away soon quashed my distress.
The foundation is definitely buildable and for an average day’s wear I tend to opt for two layers. This claims to be humidity proof, sweat proof and long lasting; and surprisingly it is all of the above.
Laneige – Water Bank Essence
A result of my Times Square Sephora haul, this essence from laneige is one of my favourite serums and one of the best I’ve tried. I’ve been meaning to get into the Korean beauty trend, but had only managed sheet masks and a double cleanse thus far. I knew that I wanted to try an essence – the post toner step that is often used before Serum – but being the lazy londoner I am, I wanted to find one that could do both. Enter the Laneige water essence – a hydrating milky serum that makes my morning skin look supple and refreshed; plus the bottle is gorge!
Pixi – Lip Icing in Cake
I received this gloss in Pixis supersized blogger collab press pack. It was huge! and whilst not every palette worked for my skin tone, this gold flecked gloss spoke to me and has been in my handbag ever since.
What I love about this gloss – which they have now introduced into the main collection in an array of summer approps shades – is that it looks like a gloss but doesn’t feel or act like one. It glides on without gloop. A lot of brands claim this, but in this case it is true. This is not sticky by any stretch, though I would advise to stick to this formula as their classic gloss is gorgeous but very sticky. One swipe of this gloss will make lips look juicer, fuller and give a gorgeous and super-natural hint of sparkle.
Eyelure – Brow Pencil
I’m yet to find a brow pencil as low key and effective as this. I can’t remember what I used before, because I’ve been using this for over a year – every single day – and have only been through two. I use this to fill in my gaps and then brush through for a more natural finish. I have lost the brush a few times, but luckily Eco Tools stepped in.
YSL – Volume Faux Effect Cils
I bought YSL’s faux cils extreme at JFK, on my way back to London. I was torn between this and the Dior Show (both of which I’ve used before). What sealed the deal, was the gorgeous gold tube the YSL came in. I know it clumps on first use and dries out quicker than any other mascara, but it is still an all time favourite. What i love about this mascara, is that it only takes one coat to make my minuscule lashes no longer obsolete. There’s a reason this is a bestseller- and it’s not just because it’s pretty. Even though it is very pretty.
Pixi – Double Ended liner
I received the Pixi dual liner in another one of their awesome press packs and it has fast become my holy grail. When travelling or frequently on the move, keeping your makeup bag minimal is crucial. This double ended liner is fuss free- thanks to the retractable kohl liner on one end (no sharpener needed) and the liquid felt liner on the other. What makes this product an absolute must is the fact that both liners are awesome. Hurrah!