drugstore

Today is a bit of a preview to my absolute favourite drugstore products which I will share with you tomorrow but I thought I would quickly go through the UK drugstore brands, what products I like and which I love. I’m hoping it might help anyone that is a little scared of drugstore, looking for great affordable products or someone coming to the UK and looking to get a few products which you might not be able to get in other countries.

B. (available here)
My top pick: Brush Cleanser
Available exclusively in Superdrugs B. is quite a new brand and I haven’t tried too much from them, their brushes are quite nice but their brush cleanser is my favourite!

Barry M (available here)
My top pick: Nail Paints
One of the best brands to pick up whilst in the UK as it still isn’t too widely available everywhere else, their Dazzle Dust are quite underrated if you love shimmery shadow but their nail paints are a must try and very affordable. They offer everything from nail care to glitter and gel effect polishes.

Bourjois (available here)
My top pick: Healthy Balance Powder
Available quite readily in Europe Bourjois has really high quality products at great prices. Although their foundations break me out I think they are a great drugstore option for anyone that doesn’t have sensitive skin. Their blushers are some of my absolute favourites but their concealers and lipsticks are also worth a look.

Collection (available here)
My top pick: Lasting Perfection Concealer
Very affordable drugstore brand, I personally find the Lasting Perfection Concealer a little drying but it’s very affordable and highly rated by so many people that it’s a must try.

Gosh (available here)
My top pick: Velvet Touch Liners
Surprisingly this was the hardest brand for me to pick a top product from, everything is nice but there isn’t really anything I can’t live without. Other than the Velvet liners, the lipsticks and blushers are also both really nice.

L’Oreal (available here)
My top pick: True Match Foundation
L’Oreal True Match foundation is an absolute must have with a nice colour selection but the liners, neutral eyeshadow palettes and lipsticks are also worth picking up.

Makeup Revolution (available here)
My top pick: Eyeshadow Palettes
Known for offering affordable alternative to cult beauty products, their palettes and lipsticks are great alternatives to highend brands.

MaxFactor (available here)
My top pick: Mascaras
Although I love the whole range, no other drugstore brand offers better volumising mascaras than MaxFactor, I don’t have a particular favourite but all the ones I have tried have been great.

Maybelline (available here)
My top pick: Instant Eye Eraser Concealer
Great all round brand but the Instant Eye Eraser is a great alternative to highend concealers and I would quite happily swap my usual cocnealer for it. I also really like Dream Flawless Nude Foundation, Brow Satin Eye Pencil and their Color Sensational Lipsticks.

Models Own (available here)
My top pick: Nail Polishes
Models Own started by offering nail polishes and I still think it’s what they do best. My favourite colours are Beach Bag and Utopia although their Hypergel and glitters are generally great ranges.

MUA (available here)
My top pick: Luxe Velvet Lipsticks
Anther super inexpensive UK beauty brand, their eyeshadow palettes are also great value for money!

Real Techniques (available here)
My top pick: Core Collection brushes
Probably my favourite brush brand, their original collection is still by far my favourite along with their sponge, I would personally skip the bold metals collection (although they look beautiful) as they’re pricier and not as soft.

Revlon (available here)
My top pick: Colorstay Foundation (particularly for oily skins)
Revlon is a great brand for almost everything and it has quite a makeup artist feel to it. If you like lip crayons then Revlon do the best affordable ones.

Rimmel (available here)
My top pick: Exaggerate Lipliner in Eastend Snob
Theres so many great items from Rimmel, the whole Exaggerate range is excellent, I love their lipsticks and I reach for their foundations and concealers regularly.

Sleek Makeup (available here)
My top pick: Contour Kit
Has a special place in my heart as I use to blog about Sleek endlessly when I first started blogging. Palettes, blushers and Matte Me in Birthday Suit are all well loved in my collection.

Soap & Glory (available here)
My top pick: Kick Ass Concealer
Slightly higher price point in comparison for drugstore products but I adore their body products. Other great product include Brow Archery, Supercat liner and Thick & Fast Mascara

Topshop (available here)
My top pick: Lipsticks
Not strictly drugstore as it’s available only in Topshop stores but a great price point. All the lip products, blushers, bronzers and nail polishes I have tried have been fab but the glow highlighter has to be the best cream affordable one I own.

Would love to hear your drugstore recommendation in the comments, are there any drugstore secrets I am missing?

Brows are often forgotten about when it comes to makeup. We all pluck, wax, thread and trim but forget to define them with a little brow powder or pencil. Defining brows can really help you appear younger and just generally better the shape your eyebrows. Although it’s particularly important if you are blonde it can also make a huge difference on brunettes, like myself. 

Tweezerman Tweezers, £20.95
I wasn’t sure if I would actually love these but after having them for only about 2/3 weeks I can already confirm that I would replace them if I did lose them. Tweezing can be such a chore but since these always grab the hair it makes it so much easier and even less painful. They may seem a little expensive but if you think about it as an investment, it’s very unlikely you’ll need to replace them anytime soon.

Liz Earle Brow and Liner Brush, £12.50
I’ve spoken about this brush lots recently but it’s the perfect (two) brow brush and is fairly affordable. It’s got a perfect Spoolie and angled brush especially as I love to use powder products in my brows.

Soap & Glory Archery Brow Pencil, £10
If I am in a rush I always reach for this brow pen/pencil as it’s pretty fool-proof, last all day and very natural. The pen side is my favourite and the easiest to use, I fill in just the front of my brows with small brush strokes and it makes it look fuller but still very natural. The pencil is a little softer and therefore I am a little more careful but once I brush it all out it also remains very natural.

Benefit Gimme Brow £17.50
Although I have fairly thick brows they are a little sparse at the beginning which is why this product is great. It adds fibres to existing eyebrow hair to make them appear thicker whilst remaining still quite natural and water resistant. If you are simply looking for a brow gel to hold brows in place rather than plump them out a little I would recommend Eyeko Brow Gel which I have been using for over a year now.

MUA Pro Brow, £3.50
This product has seen so much love as you can tell by the fact that the lid can be removed (I broke that), the brushes are missing (I lost those) and the brow gel has lots of powder in it. Years ago I use to use the HD Brows palette but I’ve now moved on to this as I like it just as much even thought it’s far more affordable. I mix the two darkest colours and although I don’t use the wax I love to use the three powders on my eyes too for a very natural but contoured eye. I have seen some reviews say that this doesn’t last that long but since I have fairly thick brows and don’t have any problems with the longevity. I’d really recommend this if you are looking for brows on a budget, it’s the product I reach for daily.

What are your favourite eyebrow products?
Check out my guide to in-salon brows

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This month I feel like I have rediscovered oranges and corals probably because I have change my hair colour and its finally a little warmer. The stand out product of the month would have to be Model Own Beach Bag nail polish, I can’t see anything being any better than it this year. It is a great, bright colour and enhances my skin tone, what else colour I ask for? To go along with my newly found coral love Benefit Coralista Blush is a recent rediscovery and probably my favourite Benefit blusher, it adds a beautiful glow and hint of coral.

I’ve also been loving Clarins Rouge Eclat Sweet Rose as my everyday lipstick and I have found the MUA Eye Brow Kit to be a great stable eyebrow and eyeshadow palette.

Skincare wist the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish LE has once again become a stable and even my boyfriend has been enjoying the mens version and seeing a nice difference in his skin. The Jurlique Rose Water Balancing Mist is a great addition for my skin that has been feeling a little dehydrated recently.

Antipodes Delight Hand & Body Cream is the best hand bag product I have come across in ages!

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 I have no idea how it is April however I have been trying some great products last month which I thought I would share.

Skincare wise I have been loving the Sarah Chapman range, the Ultimate cleanser is hands down my favourite, there is something beautifully luxurious about it which makes it perfect for days when you may be a little more tired and need some pampering. The Dynamic Defence Day cream is also one of my favourites as it hydrates the skin without leaving the skin feeling greasy as it sinks in so well and the SPF 15is a huge plus now spring is here. (Full review here)

A product I never thought I would like, let alone love, is the Bourjois CC Cream. I can achieve just the right amount of coverage for everyday without looking like I am wearing much makeup at all (Review here). I’ve also discovered the Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes which has become my everyday mascara, it is very black and gives great volume with little effort (Review here).

On my cheeks I have been alternating between MAC Well Dressed and the Clinique Cheek Pop in 03. Berry Pop. Both are an easy to wear pink that go with most makeup looks, they have a slight sheen which is very flattering. MAC Well Dressed it a little lighter whereas the Clinique one does require a light hand (Review here). I will undoubtedly be using these non-stop this month too. I have also discovered this Illamasqua Sculpting Powder Duo which is great for on the go but also houses the most perfect contour shade. To apply it I have been using the double ended Precision Cheek & Eye brush from Bare Mineral as the size makes it ideal for contouring and applying blush to the apples of the cheek.

In both my eyebrows and on my eyes I have been using this MUA Pro Brow palette. In my eyebrows I use the lighter brown which is great as it adds definition without making them darker which isn’t what I want. As eyeshadows I think the whole palette is great especially as the shades are matte and very natural, you can achieve a perfect understand but still quite smokey eye.

I’ve also been burning this Thalgo Candle in Polynesia as it has a soothing Vanilla Scent.

 For more info check out the video below and don’t forget to subscribe

What were your favourite products for the month of March?
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When Sarah offered to share her favourite blushers with my readers and I, I simply couldn’t say no. I think blushers and lipsticks are by far the most exciting makeup items and my own collection is a little over the top but I am always looking to add to it. Don’t forget to follow Simply Woman Mag on Twitter as well as check out the website.
Outlining my humble little collection
of blushers
 I’m Sarah from Simply Woman Magazine  – we are
busy writing and editing on a wide range of topics (including beauty) on a
daily basis so it’s nice to take time out and add our thoughts to this great
blog! I chose blusher to talk about as it really is pretty essential to any
makeup look unless you are going totally barefaced – we’ve all got more than
one blusher lurking around and I’m always on the hunt to discover new
applications, colours and finishes.  I’ve been in and out of love with
various blushes over the years but currently got a good thing going with a
certain plummy shade!

 The dainty pinks
The perfect flush for light to medium
skin tones, a dainty pink brings freshness and youth to my cheeks which is why
for years it has been my go to colour.  Unlike the “Raisin-y”
shades, it’s hard to overdo, easy to blend and looks natural so I tend to hoard
these sorts of colours.  From barely there baby pink through to darker
rose (and raspberry in the cream blush) there will always be a predominance of
pinks in my collection!

The “not quite blush, not quite bronze” shades

The Chanel one is ancient, I mean 10
or so years old.  I can’t bear to part with it – as you can see from the
swatch, it still works!  I like these shades as if I’m feeling lazy I can
use as a blush/bronze to bring sun to my face but also a little of the blush.
 I bought the NYX one as a NARS Doucuer dupe although I’ve not had a
chance to compare it to the real thing.  They require a bit of technique
to get them right – I don’t use them very often 🙁
The cream blushes

For years I wore the Raspberry cream
blush, it’s such an easy shade to flush gently on the apples as it looks like
you have healthy rosy cheeks.  I tried the MUA one, the pigmentation and
creaminess isn’t as good as the Liz Earle or Clarins one but the price
difference is huge! If you are new to cream blush then MUA would be a good
place to start before investing in a pricier but better one  I find these
are best applied with a stippling brush, when I used my fingers it looked like
a 5 year old had applied it.  The Liz Earle one is the only coral in my
collection which I am hoping to rectify during my next visit to MAC!  


The multi-purpose hybrids

These little compacts are a
collection of colours, tones and shimmers designed to be applied with a big ol’
kabuki brush to wash the cheeks with colour.  The Rituals one is for
“cheek and eye” and is definitely more peachy than in the photograph.
Because each square of colour can be applied separately it’s almost a
highlighter, eyeshadow, blush and bronze in one compact.  The New Cid one
is more of a bronzer but there are subtle pink lifts in it that allows it to be
a hybrid.  Cargo’s Echo Beach all swirled together is sometimes all you
need on warm sunny day!  It lifts the whole complexion and is probably my
favourite of the three.

The blush I can’t do without

Until now I just bought blushers on a
whim…I didn’t have a brand, colour strategy or finish in mind.  Until
this absolute gem landed in my lap.  I’m not sure what made me go for a
plummy colour but the sheer finish put me at ease – I actually asked a 59 year
old man to buy this from the states duty free for me.  So it was a gamble
but it paid off!  This is the most beautiful wash of colour, subtle, sexy,
pretty – I cannot say enough good things about it.  Having dark hair and
eyes I think (other than coral) it’s probably the most flattering piece of
makeup I own.  I can’t wait to go back to MAC and see what other colours
they have and experiment with more plums!

Next on my
blush hitlist;

A NARS blush – I have a mini of
Orgasm but would like to investigate further
A Tarte Amazonian Clay blush – I see
a beauty swap coming on!
A Stila Convertible – Lilium is
looking like a strong contender
A powder coral – probably from MAC
and similar to the Liz Earle one
A NARS Multiple.  Excited to
create some new looks with this
Can you recommend any blushers I
should try?

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