Wednesday 24 January 2018

Summer sizzlers

The sun mightn't shine, says our beauty expert, but here are our top five to turn up the cosmetic heat

Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Eyeshadow Palette in Tenant
Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Eyeshadow Palette in Tenant
L.O.V The Delightful Bronzing & Illuminating Powder
Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Coquillage
Lancome Monsieur Big Marker
Max Factor Honey Lacquer in Indulgent Coral

Sarah Caden

Sometimes, you have to make your own summer. When the weather doesn't deliver blue skies and searing temperatures, you have to bring the sunshine yourself, with a splash of bright colour. It's a sort of summery defiance, like leaving your coat at home even though it's a bit chilly, and refusing to pack wellies for your staycation. If it's officially August, then who really cares what the thermometer says? We're getting sunny, with pops of pigment to cut through the clouds.

You can sunny-up to whatever degree you like - from just a hint of hot colour on your toenails or a slash of sunburst on your lips, to hot eye make-up or sun-kissed and gleaming cheeks. Turn up the temperature, either in keeping with the weather or in reaction against it, and feel the heat.

Best Cheeky Number

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L.O.V The Delightful Bronzing & Illuminating Powder
 

L.O.V The Delightful Bronzing & Illuminating Powder, €10.95, selected pharmacies nationwide

If you like the idea of contouring but the reality leaves you looking grubby-faced, this is a nice summery option. It has light and bright strips of highlighting blush, alternating with strips of golden bronzer. You can use them separately to contour and highlight, or blend them for a summer-bright look. The blush is a really fresh colour that's a change from conventional pinks, and the bronze is satisfyingly deep but not dirty. "This refreshed my cheek look," a panellist said. "It's peachy-bronzey and nicely summery."

Best Overall

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Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Eyeshadow Palette in Tenant
 

Urban Decay Jean-Michel Basquiat Eyeshadow Palette in Tenant, €42, Urban Decay, 50-51 Grafton St, D2; House of Fraser, Dundrum Town Centre, D16; Debenhams

An edgy offering from Urban Decay, inspired by the late Neo-Expressionist Jean-Michel Basquiat, with

each product encased in his artwork and inspired by his colours. The collection includes a blush palette, some daring lip colours, a relatively tame bronze-gold eyeshadow palette, and this eight-shade hyper-colourful selection. "These are boundary-pushing colours that break the rules, but work beautifully," said a panellist.

Best Nailed It

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Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Coquillage
 

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Coquillage, €25, Chanel counters nationwide

This limited-edition polish is part of the Chanel summer collection, and it looks as good with a tan as it does with pale skin that hasn't seen the sun. It's a bit like peach ice cream seen in a magical Italian gelato shop. The bright pastel peachy-pink is properly opaque once two coats have been applied, and it's impressively long-wearing. "I worried that this would be a bit Tippex-ish and blobby," said one panellist, "but in reality, it's actually more creamy and deliciously tropical-looking."

Best Lively Lips

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Max Factor Honey Lacquer in Indulgent Coral
 

Max Factor Honey Lacquer in Indulgent Coral, €13.99, available nationwide

This new range of shiny lip products boasts no less than three selling points. Each of the eight shades has the comfortable feel of a balm, the high shine of a gloss and the full-on colour of a lipstick. Sure what more could you ask for? It feels nicely light on the lips, for that summery, less-made-up look, but the bright red is really vibrant and this vivid coral is a seasonal antidote to pink. "I have an aversion to sticky glosses, but this straddles the lip-product genres very satisfyingly," said a panellist. "Lots of impact and no tackiness."

Best Eye Impact

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Lancome Monsieur Big Marker
 

Lancome Monsieur Big Marker, €26, Lancome counters nationwide

This is a pure black eyeliner, so it hardly passes as a pop of colour, but it is another way to add impact to your summer look. Inspired by felt-tip markers, the nib is fat and angled and spongy, although not so soft that it smudges. The angled nib also means you can draw your line thick or thin, and attain impressive wings with the greatest of ease. "I really love a dramatic eyeliner," said a panellist, "and in summer, with just a light lip colour and no eyeshadow, this is ideal."

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