Our beauty expert’s guide to the latest products that will give your face and body a lift
I’m going to be honest with you. My makeup collection is, frankly, ludicrous. I own too many products for one person to ever use, and despite frequently gifting and donating them, it is growing all the time. This is partially because I receive products from brands for review, and partially because I simply can’t stop myself from trying new things as they arrive on the market.
I have an insatiable appetite for makeup, and it doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. Having said that, there are definitely some products which don’t excite me as much anymore. Primers and setting sprays are unlikely to get me excited. Highlighter though? I will always want to try a new highlighter, and lately there have been lots of exciting offerings around.
Vieve, the brand of makeup artist and beauty influencer Jamie Genevieve, arrived on our shores with the opening of Brown Thomas’ Dundrum store. I was delighted to get my hands on the bestselling Skin Dew (€25 via brownthomas.com) at the time, and I have not stopped using it since. This liquid highlighter is designed to be used on face or body (it’s gorgeous on the collarbone or shoulders), and provides a glossy sheen which, despite golden undertones, looks natural and seems to suit everyone. A little of this goes a long way, and I find the fingertips are the perfect way to apply it.
Rare Beauty is also relatively new to our shores — the beauty line of actress and singer Selena Gomez launched in Space NK in February of this year. The entire range is excellent, and I say that as someone with a healthy dose of scepticism when it comes to celebrity beauty lines. I particularly like the brand’s liquid blush and Positive Light Liquid Luminizer (€31.50 via Space NK). The bad news is that these can’t be shipped to Ireland from the Space NK website for some reason, so your only option is to head to the store on Grafton Street in Dublin. It’s worth noting that thanks to Gomez’s own experience with lupus, Rare Beauty’s packaging is designed to be easily used by people with joint issues like arthritis.
Next up is a product that’s more new to me than new, but it would be remiss of me not to mention it. Stila’s Heaven’s Hue Highlighter range (€34.99 via cloud10beauty.com) is technically a powder product, but it feels bouncy to the touch and can absolutely be applied with the fingers. The shade Transcendence works beautifully on very pale or porcelain skin, while Kitten has a soft golden undertone and works well on most others.
I’ve also been loving (4) Mac’s Mineralize Blush in New Romance (€32 via boots.ie), which is a soft coral blush with a beautiful pearlescent shimmer. It’s not technically a highlighter, more a blush with highlighting qualities, but given the trend to wear blush higher on the cheekbone, it works beautifully.
Highlighter can be tricky for people who are concerned about the texture of their skin, as any kind of shine can emphasise it. If you’re worried about this, be careful to use a small brush. I like Rebeluna’s R06 Precision Powder/Highlight Brush (€10 via rebeluna.com) to be sure the product goes where you want it, making it easier to avoid patches of uneven texture.
A more subtle and less metallic highlighter will probably be most flattering for you too. (5) Hourglass’ Ambient Lighting Powder (€52 via arnotts.ie) is very subtle and blurs imperfections while providing a subtle, almost filter-like, glow.
He-Shi was the first tanning brand in Ireland, founded in 2004 by mother-daughter duo Hilary and Shelley. As salon owners, they had encountered countless tanning disasters and set out to develop a product that worked well and delivered on skincare benefits. He-Shi’s latest launch is the Hydra Luxe Lotion ultra hydrating self-tanner for face and body (€24.99 via he-shi.eu). This product’s emphasis is on hydration and nourishment to fight dryness and dehydration, meaning your tan is long-lasting and fades naturally.
Mac’s Extended Play Lash Mascara (€21 via boots.ie) has been a staple of many a makeup bag for years. It comes with a very small brush, making it ideal for lower lashes, but it can do so much more. A shimmy of the brush through the upper lashes will ensure each lash is coated, and it builds well, meaning you can work to the volume you prefer. Really, what this delivers on, though, is definition. This formula rarely clumps, meaning you get fanned-out, beautifully defined and lifted lashes.
It takes a lot to get me excited about a new mascara. They are launched so regularly, and so often fail to deliver, that I struggle to find the enthusiasm. When a good one lands, though, it is thrilling. When a good one lands at a good price, it’s a really big deal. Rimmel’s Wonder Volume Thrill Seeker (€14.99 via boots.ie) is one such mascara. Despite the name, the volume this mascara provides is not what I’m impressed by. Instead, it’s the lift and length. While one coat won’t do much, in my opinion, it builds beautifully, and a few layers really lift the lashes and add length without clumping at all. The result is lashes that are lifted, lengthened and separated, creating a fluttery fan of dreams. It doesn’t feel heavy, is comfortable to wear, and won’t break the bank.