Arriving in London with a makeup bag that had apparently been packed by a drunk baboon forced me to be a bit creative with my products. I honestly have no idea how I ended up with four bronzers and two foundations but absolutely no brow stuff, no lipstick and only one (quite dark and punchy) eyeshadow.
But here’s what I did with what I had. It’s been a few weeks since the “WTF did I pack?” incident but I’ve actually kept up with the same routine, because I like it, and here’s the video to prove it. I’ve written a description with product links below.
So: in with the Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation. For a full review with before and after photos, please click here. I won’t repeat myself – it’s virtually faultless for a longwear, grown-up face base.
I then used Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze & Glow to contour and bronze myself up, applying far too much and then having to buff it out for approximately twelve minutes. It was the makeup equivalent of making a toddler meal: heat it for two minutes, cool it right down again for ten. Go forwards and then almost right back to the start.
Bronze & Glow is an excellent investment if you can possibly make it. There are many “dupes” but none give quite the instant glam this contour and highlight duo does. You can find it online here at Charlotte Tilbury* – I use shade Light-Medium.
A touch of blush – this one is from Valentino (shade 9, here) and is lovely, but there’s no massive need to spend so much. Just a good flush of something optimistic and pinkish will do!
And then eyes. Here’s where it gets revolutionary. I use the same Tilbury Filmstar palette on my eyes – the contour to, er, contour and the highlighter to gild the lids. It works so well! It really helps to shape the eye, subtly, and the highlighter gives lift and brightness to the eye area. I’m so impressed with this and I like that it keeps all of the tones on my face very uniform and tied together.
I then stuck a Vieve Eye Wand in Coffee* into the corners of my eyes and dragged it up towards the eyebrow end a little bit, to give myself the customary “eye lift”. If you’ve never done this before then you’re in for a treat. It’s not necessary to put the product into your eye socket in the way I do, which is borderline violent, but the Vieve Eye Wand is chunky and soft and just seems to lend itself to fitting right in the outer corner. It’s very malleable and blendable so I use a small amount, I don’t apply to the upper lid, but I take a small smudge brush and blend the little line of product out so that it’s soft and hazy and what leftovers I have I smudge into the lower and upper lashline, just at the outer edge of the eye.
Rather than me explain it in a thousand words, it’s probably better to take a look at the video, if you’ve never seen me do my little eye lifting trick. It properly, properly works – you just have to make sure you follow the curve of your lower lashline to get the flick in the right direction!
The mascara I use here is the faithful L’Oreal Telescopic, which I just think is one of the best mascaras you can buy, regardless of price. I rate the one in the dull gold tube and it’s usually about eight quid when you catch it on offer, which is almost always and it has a fine, narrow comb that’s flexible and mess-free. You can wiggle right to the base of the lashes and then pull through to coat each one and they are left looking chic and separated. I very rarely deposit product onto my lids (happens with just about every other mascara) and I don’t get fallout or smudging. I buy this mascara constantly – usually from Amazon Prime, see here*, but you can get it in Boots and Superdrug and it’s always in stock.
I use hairspray and a brow brush for my brows because I’ve misplaced all of my brow products (I sorted every single one of them into a small bag and then promptly lost it within the office avalanche) and I do my lips with a simple lipliner outline (Rare Beauty liner in Creative, see here*) patted in and topped with lip balm.
And that’s it. It’s quite a pared-down routine, product-wise: I wish I had a fancy little picture of the products but I don’t, and anyway the Tilbury palette is almost finished so it’s not looking its photogenic best. I’ll finish with a few extra links for bits and bobs featured in the video, including the skincare prep and the blouse I’m wearing. I say, what a lovely blouse!
Olay Retinol Eye Cream is currently 60% off here*
Aveeno Calm and Restore Serum is here*
Skin Rocks The Moisturiser is online here
The Francine Floral Blouse I’m wearing is from Wyse London here
I was slightly nervous about the fact that the epic Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear foundation had been reformulated. And I say epic with not even a hint of irony because it was just that: very few high coverage, ultra longwear foundations came close to it in terms of the quality of finish, ease of application, shade range and longevity. The original Teint Idole covered every blemish and imperfection – no concealer needed – but it somehow managed to not obliterate all of the life from your skin at the same time. It looked flexible, comfortable, slightly juicy, but also gave that perfect, flawless, airbrushed sort of finish that completely removes redness, dark circles, areas of pigmentation. And it had a subtle glow, an expensive luminescence, yet the finish was velvety-matte.
And the feel! Oh the feel of the thing. It was cushiony, it didn’t settle into lines, it moved with your skin…if ever there was a full coverage foundation for grown-ups then this was it. And so: my nervousness over the reformulation. What would Lancome tweak? What aspect of the original formula would us diehard fans sob over? How could Lancome improve upon perfection and a face base that had been around – successfully – for decades?
Well, let me tell you; they have. Lancome have taken their Teint Idole Ultra Wear foundation and made it just as comprehensive in coverage, just as cushiony to apply and just as long in wear-time, and they’ve somehow added a load of skincare ingredients into the mix along the way. And do you know what? You can actually feel the difference.
After a week of daily testing, with the old formula on one half of my face and the new formula on the other (how I suffer for my art) I can categorically tell you that the new side of my face feels continuously hydrated throughout the day. More plumptious. The other side doesn’t feel dry, as such, it just feels…normal. There’s a definite difference. I was sceptical beyond all polite reason about the hydrating skincare element of the relaunched formula but it’s there. And it works. My new face side is juicier and more springy to the touch but with the same amount of coverage on the skin.
I really don’t think that many (if any) Teint Idole users will be disappointed with the new version. It’s the same marvellous foundation, plus a (very) slightly more hydrating feel. I personally welcome the additional plumptiousness because I still get the same coverage but now it feels even more comfortable and flexible on the skin.
This newly reformulated Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear is not to be confused with the new Teint Idole Ultra Wear Care & Glow. It’s incredibly confusing and I wish that Care & Glow was just a totally different product line, in a way – it’s less coverage, more dew – but you can easily tell the two foundations apart by looking at the lids. White for the lighter coverage Care & Glow* and black for the higher coverage Idole*.
Interestingly, I prefer the feeling of the high coverage Idole on my skin to the Care & Glow. But Care & Glow does give an exemplary level of high-wattage luminosity – it’s the sort of glow level where I personally feel I don’t need a highlighter. (Though as a disclaimer, I do feel as though highlighter is one of the most overused and misused products in the entire makeup world. Looks great for the gram but honestly, in real life, some people look absolutely wild. Like robots. At the very least it just looks incredibly unnatural, which is surely the opposite of the desired effect.)
I should add, because it’s pretty important, that I use very little product when I’m applying Teint Idole. It really doesn’t need to be trowelled on and I think it looks best when it’s applied very lightly, from the centre of the face, and built up only if needed. One light coat is enough to knock back most blemishes, dark circles and areas of redness – take a look at the before and after photos:
The single layer of foundation, applied very wispily with a small powder brush and not a flat-topped foundation brush, even part-conceals the glasses marks on my nose. Those are always a nightmare to disguise, when I’m filming, because they are red and indented and just a general pain in the arse to deal with. No problem for the Teint Idole. And if I’d gone back over with another little light coating then I’d have obliterated them completely.
The photos do a pretty good job of showing the finish too: it looks quite velvety-matt but there’s a real luminescence that isn’t glittery or shiny but just…expensive looking. It’s the kind of base that really is a base, coming into its own as the bronzer goes on, then the blusher… it’s the perfect starting canvas, flawless and smooth.
You can find new Teint Idole Ultra Wear online at Lancome here*, LookFantastic here* and Selfridges here*. There’s a whopping range of 45 shades and Lancome have also improved on the pigments to create tones that are always flattering and enhancing on the skin. No ashy undertones. I use shade 220C – I used to use 02 in the old formula which was ever so slightly warmer in tone. I’ll do some experimenting next time I’m near to a counter!
It suits all skin types and doesn’t slide from oily patches or settle in fine lines. Here’s a little quickfire video if you’d like to see application:
The post New Lancome Teint Idole Ultra Wear Foundation Review appeared first on Ruth Crilly.
I’ve made some little tweaks to my makeup routine and committed them to video: one of the changes involves my eyebrows, and you might already know about that one, but the other four are relatively new and snazzy. I know that the suspense will be killing you, so let’s get cracking.
My first makeup tweak is so puny and weird that I’m almost embarrassed to be writing about it, but seeing as though social media’s USP is people sharing things so mundane it makes you want to lobotomise yourself with a corkscrew, I’m going to go right ahead. The makeup update, if you could even call it that, is that I’ve only been putting foundation or tinted moisturiser on the centre of my face rather than all over it.
See, I told you it was fascinating.
It’s more of a convenience than a tweak and it has evolved from my habitual wearing of roll-neck or high-necked jumpers. For who wants foundation all the way down their neck when their neck is going to be smothered in wool? Equally, who even wants foundation on their chin, when their chin is permanently rubbing on the woollen roll-neck? Not I.
So I use the face base sparingly and lightly and only in the central part of the face rather than right up to the edges which, in truth, is the only place that tends to need foundation anyway. Facial perimeters rarely have a lot of bothersome bits going on.
This approach to skin-perfecting is best done with a sheerer foundation or tinted moisturiser, something forgiving and ultra-blendable. If you try to do it with a longwear opaque base then you’ll probably run into trouble. My tint of current choice? Still ILIA Skin Tint (I use shade ST7) with it’s mega-glow. You can find it here online*.
My next little fancy twist to the makeup tale is using blusher on my eyes. I know! What’s come over me? I saw Katie-Jane Hughes (amazing makeup artist) do it on Instagram to tie her eyes in with the blush and it was just so easy and fun and fresh, and the pink isn’t actually directly around the eyes so you don’t look like a rabbit from Watership Down… It’s just a quick bosh with the brush at the outer edges and then blend – watch the video below to see this in action.
You can use whatever’s left on the brush from doing cheeks. Doesn’t matter particularly whether it’s a cream or powder blush but I used the amazing Freshfaced Cream Blush from Beauty Pie here*. (Remember to use RUTHSENTME if you’re a new customer signing up and you’ll get a bit off the membership.)
Not even a tweak, so I’m starting to feel as though this entire exercise is a lie, but I’ll plough on. It’s just a clumsy, crayon-y splodge of dark eye colour at the outer corners in an upwards-facing wedge, blended in, to lift the eyes and make them look less tired. All this does (and again, you need to watch the video for the how-to) is bend the lashline upwards so that the outer corners look as though they sit a few mm higher than they did before. Tiny, subtle change but it’s vastly effective. If you want a stronger optical illusion then do it with a solid line of eyeliner but it’s trickier to get right than the splodge-of-wedge-and-blend-it method. I used the excellent suit-all Vieve Eye Wand in Coffee, here*.
I genuinely can’t even remember what this was and have to go back and watch the video. Please hold. I only had five bloody things to remember! I’d be rubbish at Kim’s Game now. Used to be almost champion-level.
OK the fourth tweak is the gluing of the eyebrows using Brow Freeze. You know about this already, if you’ve read the previous makeup post but you must watch them being laminated and waxed and glued into place in the video. This Brow Freeze stuff is amazing – my eyebrows end up about half an inch further up my face! Some might think this is a bad thing, I quite like it for a change. It’s a bit like when you move your bed to a different wall and it’s as though you don’t even know who you are anymore. But reordering your facial features instead. Facial Feng Shui.
You can find Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Freeze here* – I would, and I surprise myself here, recommend getting the dedicated applicator that you have to purchase separately. Because my way of dunking the brow brush at an awkward angle is not massively convenient.
The gloss in a stick. Apparently these Revlon Super Lustrous Glass Shine lipsticks have gone viral on Tiktok. If I could use Tiktok without crashing Tiktok, having to log out of Tiktok and having to then reset my Tiktok password each and every time, then I’d spend a lot more time on Tiktok, but as it stands I just don’t have the energy for it. I’m constantly told I need to use it and upload videos there but it’s just so…chaotic. And noisy. Everyone is pointing at things on the screen, or talking loudly, or dancing. It feels like being stuck in an arcade game.
So I’ll take everyone’s word for it that these lipsticks are the new craze – it also makes sense, because they really are excellent. As glossy as a gloss but without the stickiness, they actually do properly plump and shine the lips without any effort whatsoever. And they’re moisturising. Genuinely. I felt the effects long after the colour had slinked away.
My favourite shade is the Strawberry one – find it at LookFantastic here* and just about nowhere else because everywhere seems to be out of stock!
Marvellous, we raced through those tweaks didn’t we? Now you just have the video to watch. Get to it…
I have my hair cut and coloured at The Suite in Bath (not an ad, I have always paid, just like to give them a shout-out and I always get asked!).
My pink jumper was a kind present from my friends at Scamp & Dude
First post of 2023 and it’s straight in with my current makeup routine and some incredible new makeup discoveries. I don’t use the word incredible lightly, either: some of these products have completely changed my makeup routine and had my husband asking questions such as “what have you done to your eyebrows? I mean, why are they pointing upwards like that? Like bird’s feathers stuck on?”
“It’s the fashion,” I replied.
And it is. Or was, at least. Feathery eyebrows: I have grown to like them. Just in time for them to seemingly slide back out of fashion in favour of the nineties groomed-and-narrow brow. I like that the featheriness takes the weight out of the brow and lifts my eye area but equally I can see why that’s not for everyone. But that is the beauty of makeup – you can simply change your mind and do something different the next day.
New discoveries then – and do watch the video at the bottom of the page to see these in action. Very briefly.
I don’t think I’ve ever had so many compliments on my skin since using this tinted moisturiser (for that is what it is). It has such a heft of illuminator in it that you cannot fail to glow. The coverage is light but capable, making skintone look more even and the finish is dewy and feels comfortable and flexible on the skin.
The ILIA skin tint is massively hydrating and I apply straight over serum (ironically, because this is also called a serum) for a one-stop daytime low-key look. A bit of cream bronzer and blush over the top and a lick of mascara and I’m good to go, if I’m after the bare minimum. The skin tint really does give a superstar sort of finish that looks perfect, but real, but glowier than real, but also undone, but still polished. I suppose what I’m saying is that it looks effortless but is actually working really hard on the light-reflecting front.
If you have lots of fine lines or quite crepey skin then be aware that illuminating products tend to also illuminate lines (usually not so much of a problem with dedicated highlighters as you would apply them both sparingly and in targeted areas) but I’ve found that a bit of pore-filling primer on the forehead and around the eye area does wonders. (Benefit Porefessional is always a good one.)
This Skin Tint sits at a premium price-point – it’s £46 at Sephora here* – but I’d say that you’re absolutely getting a premium product. This is the sort of face base you can rely on to always look good and make you look fresher and perkier. I’d say it’s slightly better for drier skin rather than oily as it doesn’t set completely and I do get a little movement in the t-zone if I don’t powder but you could always use a primer, as mentioned.
If I had to compare it to another product then I’d say that it’s quite similar to NARS Tinted Moisturiser with perhaps less coverage and more glow. I’m not mad-keen on the pipette dispenser but it’s so good that I forgive that.
Find ILIA Skin Tint here* – there are 30 blendable shades (this isn’t the sort of face product that requires an identical tone match) and I wear ST7.
Let’s return to the feathery brows and this, the Anastasia Brow Freeze, is the ultimate product to make them with. It’s a wax but also a gel – sort of like one of those eighties hair gels that came in the big sticky pot – and it coats the brow hairs so that they are instantly shapeable and moveable. If Dali had seen this stuff he’d have been in his element – God only knows what his tache would have looked like. He’d probably have been able to shape whole words out of it. Sentences!
You’re supposed to use a special applicator but I don’t have that and I don’t feel I need it. The wax does clog up all of my brow brushes but a quick wash in boiling water melts it off and leaves them as-new. Ish. Maybe I should get the applicator!
I haven’t found another brow product that can shape and hold like this one; it’s like using glue, but a friendly one that won’t make your brows clump together and then fall off. On my very fair brows it gives them massive definition without needing to add any colour and I love the way I can feather the hairs upwards so effectively – I’m a big promotor of using hairspray on brows for a quick fix and I stand behind that tip… but honestly, Brow Freeze takes things to a new dimension.
You can find Brow Freeze online here* – it’s £23.
Every time I mention the Kajal eyeliners from Victoria Beckham I get asked if there are dupes. And understandably, because the price is pretty punchy for an eyeliner. (£26 at VBB here.) Yes there are other soft liners that hold fast (one of the best is the Avon one in my opinion, Gel Paint Eyeliner here*) but if you’re after the on-trend shades that VBB brings out then it’s more difficult to find them on the high street, especially with the right texture and staying power.
I’m using Copper in the video below and I think that it’s a really lovely alternative to plain brown if you want to add some sparkle and zing. I don’t think that it looks over the top as a daytime effect, either. The Kajal is really soft and so you get enough time to blend the lines out if you want a smokier effect, but it’s not out-of-control smudgey and it sets fast without budging until it’s time to remove it. The Olive shade is also marvellous and slightly more unusual, FYI.
New from the ever-expanding Tilbury makeup empire: Pop Shots. These are more about the glimmer than imparting lots of colour – think of the glittery “top coat” you get in her eye quads that you press onto the lids as a final light-reflecting hit. That’s what these are, but without the rest of the quad. I use Sunlit Diamond which is a very warm, coppery gold and slightly more modern than the classic yellow version. I thought that these would have limited appeal after the festive season was finished (and they are limited edition) but I’ve been enjoying adding something fun and frivolous to my makeup routine. You have to get your kicks where you can in January.
Find Hypnotising Pop Shots online here*.
Final new find: Ruby Hammer’s Lip Serum Balms. They’re utterly beautiful. Buttery soft and spreadable and comfortable and you feel the effects even when the colour has disappeared. Possibly Red isn’t the wisest choice for a soft and buttery balm – it can be a disaster on the teeth! – but I couldn’t resist this one. It’s glossy and rich and such a true, true red – you wouldn’t want to wear it for kissing under the mistletoe as it would be everywhere but you’ve missed that boat anyway. And for all other situations, it’s just cheery and great. You can blot it down to a more muted lip stain if you like, but it’s just such a good shade I think it’s a shame to clip its wings.
Ruby Hammer Lip Serum Balm is £18 at Sephora here*.
Right, here’s the vid (if you can’t see it then you’ve managed to land on this page whilst it’s uploading!). I also used Charlotte Tilbury Cream Bronzer in Shade 1 (here*) and Beauty Pie brown mascara and red lipliner (here*). The cream roll-neck jumper is Wyse London but seems to have sold out!
At the very real risk of boring myself to death with the same makeup look over and over again I thought I had better jiggle things up a bit. There’s nothing wrong with “sticking to what suits you” when it comes to putting your maquillage on but sometimes there’s a better face-improving tip or trick just around the corner and if you don’t experiment then you’ll never, er…see around the corner.
(Don’t judge my writing skills today, please, I have terrible PMT and as well as wanting to set fire to the fridge because it beeps too much I’m finding it difficult to string words together in an entertaining manner.)
So: three little changes that have updated my makeup routine. I go as far as to say three little makeup improvements. They might just work for you, too – see what you think.
The Eyeliner Replacement
I’ve been using an angled brush (handily, there’s one on the other end of my Benefit brow brush*) with a very dark brown shadow (from this excellent Lancome palette*) to very gently press shadow into the “lashline” at the inner corners and then to form a short flick at the outer. Because the brush is so fine and the shadow isn’t quite as punchy as a liner the effect is every so slightly softer. I’ve been finding that sometimes eyeliner can make me look very tired and my eyes very small if I don’t handle it carefully – this angled brush technique seems to be slightly more subtle and foolproof.
Perhaps it’s because I rarely sharpen my eyeliner pencils to the recommended needle-like point!
The All-Over Glow
The next tweak is that I’ve been giving my skin a bit of a once-over with a glowy powder for a mega-watt all-over sheen rather than confining it to the tradition highlighter zones. Amazingly, it doesn’t look greasy or weird and I don’t end up like the Tin Man from Oz. I think it’s because the powders I use (Ambient Lighting from Hourglass* – unbeatable in my opinion and worth the investment if you can make that sort of investment) are so clever and non-glittery and fine. I use the slightly darker shades in this Hourglass palette on the cheeks and where I’d normally bronze for a bit of extra (glowing) depth and the paler shade over the t-zone. It has the added bonus of setting makeup in place for the long haul.
My actual Hourglass palette was in the car but it was a good excuse to photograph the beautiful new Unlocked limited edition ones – the Elephant version is the closest to the one I use already (find it here*.) The powders are smaller – much smaller – but you get the additional colours so it’s sort of an all-in-one blush, setting powder, complexion enhancer kit.
Also of note in this category is the new Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Brightening Powder*. Gee whizz this is a strong one. I would treat it with slightly more caution than the Hourglass palette. I wore it all over my face as a setting powder for a red carpet event and my face was basically a beacon. It’s amazing stuff but I’d be tempted to use it on cheekbones and around the traditionally “non sweaty” areas and then her equally good non-bright powder on the t-zone.
The Darker Brow
You can’t really see this in all of its glory on the video because I filmed on my iPhone and the front-facing camera is rubbish and pales everything out so that it all becomes a featureless sea of cream and sepia. Yes I can mess about with levels in post-production but I didn’t here – see aforementioned PMT.
I’ll film another makeup routine video showing what a difference it makes – the darker eyebrow, simply taken down a shade using a slightly darker brow gel, looks fresh and youthful and, if done right, very chic. We’re not talking about drawn-on comedy brows, just a smidgen deeper for those of you (me included) who usually err on the safe side when it comes to doing your eyebrows. My default is a bit of Elnett brushed through in an upwards direction and so adding a brow gel that’s fractionally more dramatic is big news. Still no pencil, still no drawing-in (this just spells trouble for me), just a simple swipe through with the tinted brow gel. I’ve been using the one in Light Brown from Authored, here.
Here’s an unhelpful video that doesn’t really show what the makeup changes do but does demonstrate the final effect. I didn’t think it through enough.
It’s “neutrals with a hint of pink time”! Yes, that’s right: whilst the whole world of social media experiments with the mandatory seasonal shades of russet and bronze, I’m still stuck in bronzer mode with a little bit of pretty pink to eradicate signs of tiredness and add a bit of youthful flush into the mix.
Here’s what I’m using on my face at the moment; the hero products are the recently rediscovered Dior Forever Skin Glow foundation and the liquid blush from Rare Beauty, which seems to be totally sold out. Some potential alternatives listed below.
Let’s get cracking – if you’d like to watch all of the products in action (and full technicolour) then scroll to the bottom of the page and click play on the video screen.
Dior Forever Skin Glow Foundation
They’ve relaunched this foundation a few different times since I first reviewed it here in May 2013. It started off as a velvet finish face base and then it became two different foundations altogether, one with a matte finish and one with a glowier finish. The matte (simply called Forever) is absolutely brilliant for staying power and a massively perfected finish, the sort that looks airbrushed. The Skin Glow looks slightly more natural and real. Flexible.
I use shade 2N but actually it looks better on me mixed with a bit of 2.5N to warm things up. In the depths of winter I’ll probably be 2N proper.
I feel as though you have to work quite quickly with this foundation, it sets fast and then sticks around until you have a proper cleanse with a flannel. The coverage is medium-to-full and it’s easily buildable – I can go in with another little tapped-on layer under the eyes and around the nose and it looks seamless.
Find Dior Forever Skin Glow here* – at Escentual it always seems to be a load cheaper than elsewhere. There’s a reason for this and I can’t remember it, but whatever: it makes it just a little more appealing, price-wise, when it’s £38.25 rather than £45.
Armani Power Fabric Concealer
This concealer deserves its own post; I use it constantly and it’s my default option. It gives a really natural, lightweight look, as though the product melds with the skin and moves with it, but the coverage is still very good. It’s a clever product in that it disguises and detracts without forming a thick, opaque layer.
You still see some of the skin beneath but it makes everything vastly improved. If you tend to wear lighter, sheerer bases and a heavy concealer on top looks odd then this is the product for you. If you can stretch to it. I’d say it’s a good investment if you struggle with concealers that sit in fine lines or look cakey – this blends in quickly and stays looking fresh all day.
You can find Power Fabric online here* – I use shade 5, for reference.
Charlotte Tilbury Cream Bronzer
Is actually called Beautiful Skin Bronzer but I’m lazy. This is very similar to Chanel’s big cream bronzer in the flat jar but comes in more shades and is marginally less orange-toned so slightly more foolproof. By buffing this into freshly-applied foundation you can create a sunkissed look that’s very believable and subtle or build up the colour for a more dramatic look.
It’s excellent stuff. Priced to reflect that. I’ve just realised that this video is erring on the side of pure luxury which wasn’t intentional! Find the cream bronzer here*, I use shade 1.
Rare Beauty Liquid Blush
This is sold out everywhere by the looks of it, but give this link* a try anyway in case you’re reading in a time of good stock! I use Hope, a lovely pink shade and you can see from the video that the amount you need to use each time is minuscule. Truly. I doubt I’ll ever use this up, unless I live to one hundred and twenty.
Good alternatives, though they’re cream rather than liquid; the cream blush from Rare Beauty (same brand, different texture) and also the cream blushes from Trinny London and Beauty Pie. They are all delicious – I apply with a brush for these, too, for a really flawless sort of effect.
If you’re lucky enough to get hold of the liquid blush I use in the video then just dap a dot on each cheek and blend lightly with a fluffy brush rather than a firmer, kabuki one. You don’t want to upset all the makeup beneath the blush, things can get alarmingly patchy very quickly…
NARS Voyageur Palette
This is one of my most-used eye palettes. Possibly the most-used if you exclude the Becca one that’s now discontinued. As in the entire brand, not just the palette. NARS Voyageur in Suede has precisely the shades I want to use on a daily basis and nothing else at all. It’s small and compact and I can bung it in a handbag if I need to an it even slides into one of those stupid small purse-on-a-string bags that are all the rage for people who seemingly never need to cart about an emergency Tampax, car keys or, I don’t know, money.
Find the palatte here* – and if you tap “Voyageur” into the search box then you’ll see plenty of videos where I’m using it. The big fat brush I use to apply the shimmery peach-beige shadow is the Bobbi Brown Blender, here* and the flatter, rounded one for the “fake eyeliner” trick that I do is a Sigma E55 brush, here*.
Brows and Lashes
Nearly there! Brows are groomed and thickened with the perennial favourite, Benefit’s Gimme Brow in shade 1, here*. Lashes are lengthened and volumised with L’Oreal’s Telescopic False Lash mascara (here*) which is as good as any of the luxury offerings out there. If you have fine, flat lashes and big brushes do you no favours then honestly, get involved with the Telescopic. I prefer the one in the matte gold tube (currently seven-ish quid here*) for everyday use but it was in my car and couldn’t be bothered to go and get it.
Clinique Lip Pop
Clinique’s lipsticks are genuinely some of the very best out there. They combine a lip primer to smooth and fill with a beautiful, punchy dose of colour and you can get matte finishes or shinier ones. Peony is, in my opinion, the perfect pretty pink. At time of writing Clinique have these lipsticks for sale at around £17 – find them here*. I doubt anyone would regret the purchase of one of these – they feel like a luxury buy but don’t have the luxury price tag.L’Oreal Telescopic Mascara*: https://amzn.to/3LzaLFW
Here’s my current makeup routine, including a rediscovered foundation that’s perfect for the summer months (ultra-glowy but lightweight and non-greasy) and what is possibly my all-time favourite mascara. I’m going to break it down into steps for you, but please do watch the video further on down the page if you’d like to see any of the products in action.
For skin prep in this video I used some products that had been left in my room at High Road House, which is a Soho House hotel in Chiswick. This is the third time I’ve had a little set of these Soho Skin products left in my room and so I can only conclude they are trying the brand out on guests before they are put on sale. They are perfectly pitched for the seasoned traveller who likes a spot of luxury and the textures are great; not too rich but with enough hydration to see you through the night. In the video I use the eye cream, serum and lip balm.
Because I was going to Wimbledon for the day I applied Anthelios UVMune 400 SPF50 in copious amounts – I was a guest of La Roche-Posay and so my choice of sunscreen seemed very appropriate. Helps that it’s one of my favourites anyway – this fluid SPF is so lightweight and now contains an incredibly effective UV filter offering really high protection. (You can find the new formula here* online.)
I have been using Charlotte Tilbury’s Light Wonder Foundation* loads recently. It’s a lightweight fluid with a sheer-side-of-medium coverage that feels very hydrating and gives a gorgeous sheen. Convenient packaging makes it easy to travel with or stick in your handbag and the finish is just beautiful. I use shade 5 – the ahde range in this particular product is much narrower than in the other Tilbury foundations but the sheerness makes it more flexible, so you don’t need an exact “match”. You can find it online here*.
I have been setting my foundation with powder, which I virtually never do, but I have been in the city quite a bit and I feel as though it makes things hold against the heat that bit better. It’s not a matte powdered look, either, I use the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette (Space NK here*) which is a huge investment, makeup-wise, but unparalleled in terms of getting a very grown-up “lit from within” finish to the skin. It’s so good: no glitter or glimmer and doesn’t actually look like a powder at all once it touches your face. Easy to apply, foolproof, I use the two darker colours to create a sort of base to my bronzer.
I’ve just seen that they do this palette in other shade combinations – where have I been? Volume II looks very summery. I may have to invest.
Bronzer and Blush
I’ve been bronzing with the cult contouring product Filmstar Bronze and Glow from Tilbury* but also the new cream bronzer that’s been launched. I didn’t have that on me, I’ll have to do a separate post. It’s lovely, definitely on a par with the Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel, if that’s what it’s called. (Is that what it’s called? Surely not! Hold on…. No, it’s now Les Beiges Bronzing Cream, find it here*.)
I use the Filmstar bronzer just beneath my cheekbones and then blend it out well. I don’t like this thing for harsh contour lines, I find it a bit draining and ageing on my own face and think it looks very artificial on even really young faces. So, not my bag, baby. But well buffed-in, it adds some shapely glamour and a hint of bronze and if you add the sparkle from the palette (which often I don’t) to the tops of the cheekbones it really is a red carpet sort of effect.
The blush is a Gen Nude blush from Bare Minerals, but it looks as though they are discontinuing it – it’s here* online. Any pretty pink would do for this – it needed to be pink because I was using quite a pretty pink lipstick and sometimes I think it looks slightly weird if they’re not in the same tonal ballpark…
This is where you really need to watch the video! I’ve used two cream shadow sticks and blended them – the first is By Terry Ombre Blackstar in Shade 6 (“Frozen Quartz”, online here*) all over the lids, blended in, and then Vieve Eye Wand in Mahogany* blended in at the corners.
I blend outwards and upwards towards the end tip of the eyebrow to give myself a natural little lift in the tired eye department – watch the video for a demo. Can’t really stress enough how much you need to watch this video. Just skip to the eye bit!
Mascara is the Telescopic from L’Oreal which is one of my all-time favourites and costs just over eight quid (find it here*). The fine comb really gets into the base of my lashes without spreading mascara all over my lids and then it’s easy to draw it through to the ends of the lashes to get maximum volume. It’s not one of these mega-wow mascaras (though the False Lash one is equally great and gives more volume, here*) it just leaves them longer, blacker and more separated. It’s really excellent stuff if you have fine, flat lashes that don’t do well with bigger and messier brushes.
Brows are groomed and set into place (with a bit of extra colour and oomph thanks to the fibres) with Gimme Brow from Benefit. Another all-time favourite, I use shade 1 in this and you can find it online here*. You just brush it on, brushing brows upwards (there’s a theme emerging!) and it adds some fullness and sets them into place. Wipe off the excess from the brush into the neck of the bottle before you start otherwise trouble awaits.
I have been quite enamoured with a Nip+Fab lipliner in shade 03, Caramel, but it doesn’t seem to exist online.
Neither does the lipstick, Almost Pink by Bobbi Brown, so I’m not doing very well here. I need to do a big old lipstick clear-out and see what’s new out there on the beauty counters. I’ve been sent so many lip oils, glosses and tinted balms but good old solid lipsticks don’t seem to be de rigueur at the moment. I like a tinted balm, but sometimes you want a bit more of a definite colour, don’t you? And don’t get me started on glosses… They are usually the work of the devil.
I always forget to mention brushes and so here we are: large powder brush is the Chantecaille Face Brush, smaller powder one is a Bobbi Brown Face Blender. I applied my foundation with a Real Techniques 200 and blended with fingertips, too, off-camera, because it sort of melts the foundation in at the end and I like the finish.
On my eyes, a fluffier brush to blend the By Terry shadow – My KitCo 127 – and then two little Zoeva brushes for working in the lashline and at the corners. The Luxe Pencil Brush 2020 is great for corners and under the eyes, but the 226 Smudger is invaluable for blending out liner into a softer haze!
Right, that’s the whole face. My dress at the end is from Me+Em – find it here* online, I wear a UK10 – and if I’ve forgotten any other details then just drop me a comment below!
I think that this may be my most pared-back What’s In My Makeup Bag video ever: really just the very bare minimum, with the few products I did use tested to the absolute nth degree. I filmed it quite a few weeks ago now and I still hadn’t really unpacked (catch up on house news here) and so I had been using the same makeup bits over and over again. I can’t actually believe that any of them are still going, but there’s loads left in my Chanel foundation and I barely made a dent in the Trinny cream shadows!
Anyway, this is one to watch rather than read about so that you can see the products in action. I’ve done a full review on both the Chanel Les Beiges foundation (here) and Trinny London’s cream shadows (here) if you fancy a more in-depth read on those. The Victoria Beckham lipstick is a new discovery in just the right shade of bright peachy-neutral for me and I’ll be back with a post on that when I’ve done a bit more playing around. The texture is superb!
Chanel Les Beiges Foundation in B30*: https://bit.ly/3i9DjqN
L’Oreal Back to Bronze, shade 2*: https://amzn.to/3p9Q9bk
Beauty Pie One Powder Wonder*: https://bit.ly/397PuBC
Jillian Dempsey Cream Blush in Bloom: http://www.jilliandempsey.com/shop/cheek-tints
Trinny Cream Shadows in Virtue and Fortune*: https://bit.ly/2XO41we
Chanel Mascara in Ecorces*: https://bit.ly/2KDfGdU
Victoria Beckham Lipstick in Pout: https://www.victoriabeckhambeauty.com/products/posh-lipstick
Vieve Lipliner in Brat*: https://bit.ly/3pObxn2
Gimme Brow Shade 2*: https://bit.ly/355fXxQ
You might well point out that I’m a bit late to the party with this particular seasonal makeup update, but apparently we’re in for a little heatwave next week, here in the UK. So there. I refuse to let go of summer! At any rate, why be so rigid about the seasons? I don’t consider it to be Autumn Proper until at least October.
(The meteorological calendar has yesterday, 1st September, down as the start of Autumn, but what does Mr Meteorology know? Although I do prefer that version of events, because if you go by the astronomical calendar then autumn doesn’t end until two days before Christmas. And that just won’t do. The run-up to Christmas must be wintery – Home Alone and frosted windows, not pumpkins and falling leaves!)
Anyway, I’m a spring-summer person through and through and (barely) tolerate the colder half of the year through gritted teeth and about seven layers of knitwear. I basically go into a mild form of hibernation from October until May, where my brain works at half speed and my body stores an inordinate amount of fat.
So what’s in my makeup bag? Here’s a rundown and it’s pretty pared down and straightforward; one of the best tinted moisturisers ever made followed by a couple of insta-glam base products and a slick of something sexy on the eyes.
NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturiser (here*) has been around for years and, unlike the Laura Mercier classic, hasn’t been tampered with. It’s really very hydrating and has surprisingly full coverage for a tinted moisturiser – watch the video below to see it going on. It’s light and fresh to apply but robust in terms of finish and longevity.
Charlotte Tilbury’s Filmstar Bronze & Glow Palette (here*) is another cult classic – a sculpting duo that has instant impact, creating razor-sharp cheekbones where before there were none. Even if the whole contouring thing isn’t quite your bag, a light touch with the bronzing shade will give a proper grown-up finish to your face. A hint of chisel. Which sounds a lot less glamorous than intended.
I often skip concealer, but not if my base is sheerer than usual – my current concealer squeeze is the Vanish Airbrush from Hourglass, online here*. It’s creamy and easy to pat in but sticks fast and is virtually opaque, though never cakey or heavy looking. Again, watch the video for a little demo – Hourglass make such brilliant base products, whether you’re after full coverage foundation or lightest touch skin finishing powders.
And now for the off-piste part: lipstick as blush. With the benefit of hindsight perhaps this wasn’t the best lipstick to use as a blusher – it has far too much sheen – but it gives you an idea of how easy it is to finish off a makeup look by matching cheeks to lips. Obviously if you’re going in hard with the lip colour, like a neon orange or something, then perhaps don’t get carried away with the matchy-matchy, but if it’s a neutral with a peach or pink lean, or even a brighter red or purple, just pat a small amount of it onto the cheeks and blend for an instant flush. Most creamier, traditional lipsticks in a bullet will work nicely, just tread carefully with the bright shades.
I used L’Oreal’s Color Riche Shine in 658 (here*) which is a light, warm beige with the most beautiful juicy finish. As I said, not ideal as a blush, but if you’re looking for something wearable and foolproof that sits between a pigmented lipstick and a sheer tinted lip balm, the Color Riche Shine will definitely float your boat. It’s basically YSL’s Volupté Shine but without the fancy golden packaging and the fancy pricetag.
What next? Eyes! Some Trinny Eye2Eye Shadow on the lids (Truth, here*) and then I used my summertime barely-there mascara for low-key lashes, the Suqqu Natural Curl (was here*). It’s very good, but actually it’s been replaced with the Eyelash mascara*, which also seems to be very good. I shall report back with a better review, because that was very lame and noncommittal wasn’t it?
Brows have been shaped all summer long with either Gimme Brow from Benefit (here*) or Glossier’s Boy Brow (here*): I’ve compared these dozens of times in videos and posts and so you’ll probably be able to trot out my line that the Boy Brow is waxier but the Gimme Brow is easier to handle. Both are just excellent and well worth every penny for brows that are just a bit fuller and more shapely – this is about as easy as “doing your brows” gets.
Right. You’ve read my words, now see it all in action. Any questions, leave them in the comments box below.
*UPDATE: If you’re reading this on the 2nd September and considering buying the NARS Tinted Moisturiser, Hourglass Concealer and/or the Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Palette, know that Space NK have a mega gift with purchase* running for those spending £175 or over. It’s worth over £250 and includes a full sized Sunday Riley Ceramide Cream, which is one of the richest and buttery moisturiser launches of the year. You can find more info on the gift here*.
I’ve just been scrolling back through all of my previous What’s In My Makeup Bag posts and I stumbled across this particular beauty: the Summer 2018 edition. If you don’t want to click through and read it then here’s the gist of the matter, in image form:
Isn’t it nice? Such a lovely lipstick! So cheery and optimistic. I shall have to dig that particular lipstick out – I’ve been wearing my pink-tinged beiges for far too many months. Perhaps it’s time for a coral lipstick favourites video, to lead us into summer?
But for now, we’re still on neutrals and beiges with a hint of rosiness on the cheeks. Low-key springtime, nothing fancy, mainly because most of us are still on lockdown and those who aren’t probably don’t feel very celebratory or adventurous. The focus (for me, at least) is on good skin and trying to look as healthy and fresh as possible – bronzer that disappears into the base, a dusting of sunshine over the top and a dewy finish to lids and lips.
Lids and lips. For some reason saying that makes me feel slightly queasy – I’m not sure whether it’s the lazy, tabloid-style alliteration or the gynaecological implications. Although what would “lids” be, in the lady department? A lash-fringed flap of skin. Hmm. I’ll have to think carefully about that one.
GOD! Can someone please keep me on the straight and narrow? Perhaps I need an editor. To check my behaviour and act as the filter I don’t seem to possess.
“Hello darling. Ok, I’ve just read your latest piece…and…how can I put this? It’s rather crude. I mean, darling, is it quite sensible to talk about the time you slipped in the shower and narrowly missed being penetrated by the mixer tap?”
I like to think that the editor would be called Nigel. No particular reason. But he must chain-smoke French cigarettes and have an office on the Tottenham Court Road and wear a silk kimono. I have it all planned out.
But back to spring makeup. There’s a video and really it’s mandatory you watch it, this time, because I’ve used up all of my word count on pointless drivel so there’s no space to talk about lipstick shades. It’s all covered on film and if you want a cheat’s spoiler list then just scroll down the page a bit.
Take particular note of the double-bronzing manoeuvre; as a first step the cream bronze buffs effortlessly into the foundation, creating a sort of warm, duo-toned base, and then the powder bronzer sits lightly on top looking all dusty and beautiful. I’m doing this a lot at the moment and I like the effect.
I’m wearing the Emanuelle Dress, bought from Hush here*