I’ve read a lot of beauty blogs recently. While I would never claim to be an expert on beauty matters, I thought I could share my top ten favourite products. Some are cosmetic and some are skin care but they all make me feel good! So, in no particular order we have:
I don’t remember exactly when I discovered Origins but I know I’ve been using and recommending their products for over 20 years (!) The company is owned by Estee Lauder so there’s some heavyweight backing behind the range. Anyway, I have combination skin (oily T zone and drier cheeks) and somehow this magical face wash manages to cleanse thoroughly without ever leaving it tight and sore, or exacerbating oil reproduction. The ingredients list reads like a recipe (Broad Leaf Kelp Extract, Wheat Protein and Tourmaline, Bergamot, Spearmint and Lavender) but it smells lovely, feels wonderful and works! My hero.
Another Origins product. You’re supposed to use it twice a week at bedtime, but I use a thin layer every night before bed (as skin renewal works hardest while you sleep). I used to apply Night-a-Mins but as I’ve got older those essential oils seem to aggravate my skin so I switched to Drink Up. Again, it smells gorgeous (Avocado and Apricot) and amazingly my skin looks bright and plumped up in the morning. Tip: I’ve found it especially useful on holiday too, after a day in the sun.
Whenever I’ve worn foundations (I’ve tried budget as well as posh) I can always feel them on my skin. Plus, I find foundation always looks like I’m wearing it. Then I was given a Bare Minerals sample in Natural 05 two years ago and I’ve not looked back. It’s a gel cream combining the best of a BB, a CC, and a tinted moisturiser – glow in a tube in fact. It doesn’t give you heavy coverage, it just makes you look better: healthier, brighter and with your imperfections blurred rather than caked over so you can still see your skin. You can choose from 16 shades to suit your skin tone.
I was introduced to these silky powders after my first eyebrow threading. They’re available in three shades and I use Vamp (!) The palette comes with a double ended brush which makes the powders really easy to apply. You don’t have to sculpt a Kardashian brow, you can apply lightly for a more subtle look. I use the highlighter under my brow bone and the two browns on my brows – the powder stays all day so I never bother with the setting wax. Tip: I also use the black power along my lash line as an eye liner so I get double value from the kit.
I love these Stila smudge stick eyeliners. They glide on, never dragging or scratching and they really do stay on, even after swimming. They come in 17 gorgeous high pigmented shades and my favourites are Stingray (black) and Purple Tang (which really makes my brown eyes pop). And they are twist-propelling so you don’t need to sharpen them.
I’ve tried lots of mascara over the years and this one is really in a league of its own. The specially shaped brush seems to find every tiny lash and coats it with mascara. My lashes do look lifted, volumised and, best of all, not clumped together. A fab product. Tip: if you really want maximum impact then applying They’re Real to lashes after a LVL lashes treatment is the icing on the cake.
My first brush with this was a freebie with a magazine. Rather pricey (compared to a Chapstick), it apparently harnesses stem cell technology, essential oils and fatty acids, and has SPF15 protection. Be that as it may, it’s quite simply the best lip balm I’ve ever tried. It smells and tastes lovely, a little goes a really long way, and it’s absolutely gorgeous.
I’ve been using OPI nail polishes for years. I do stray to other cheaper brands from time to time but I always come back to OPI. I think the colours and staying power are second to none. When I apply OPI to my toes pre-holiday (base coat + two coats of colour + top coat), the colour is still there six weeks later, albeit half way up my nails as it grows out! Cha-Ching Cherry is my all-time favourite shade, a gorgeous pink/red colour that goes perfectly with whatever I decide to wear.
My third favourite Origins product and always my hand cream of choice. Another list of exciting ingredients (Rose of Jericho, Trehalose and Sea Haricots, Oceanic Flora, Scutellaria and Meadowfoam) that you’ve probably never heard of! But it’s lightly scented, very hydrating and not at all greasy. It really does live up to its name, you can see a difference in skin tone and texture after a couple of applications – even my husband likes this one.
I’m not sure I can really call this a beauty product but I wouldn’t be without it. It’s basically a waxy-type lipstick for your hair, you apply it on your grey bits to extend the time between hair colourings. It comes in a range of colours and is much easier to use than hair mascara or powder. It lasts until your next shampoo and fits in your handbag for touch ups. Tip: wash it out before colouring your hair as otherwise the dye won’t take.
These are my top ten faves. What do you think, do you use any of them? What are your go-to hero products?