Just when you think that the beauty industry couldn’t get more saturated with brands and products, more pop up. Even though I love and revel in the excitement of the community ever expanding, I can also see how it’s overwhelming and confusing for customers, especially when every advert under the sun is claiming that their product is THE BEST. A lot of the time, because of the sheer volume of lipsticks, highlighters, eyeshadow palettes, and the rest being available, many amazing, top-quality products go unnoticed and under-appreciated.
KYLIE COSMETICS SHIMMER EYE GLAZE (‘MORE PIE PLEASE’)
In winter, I find that a lot of people wear heavier, more glamorous makeup, especially around Christmas and New Year. For me, I love wearing shimmery glitter on my eyes all year round, but at this time of year I have a great excuse to amp it up even more. I own a variety of potted glitter eyeshadows, and my favourite has to be one that also happens to be grossly underrated – in fact, I can only remember Nikkie Tutorials talking about them – and that was a couple of weeks ago! The Shimmer Eye Glazes by Kylie Cosmetics are phenomenal, and the quality of both the product and the packaging is top class and, in my opinion, easily beats more expensive versions such as the Scattered Lights range by Hourglass (and that’s saying something). They can be worn with full intensity or lightly tapped all over the lid for a more gentle sparkly sheen. My favourite colour is ‘More Pie Please‘, which is a cool rose-gold with the most beautiful silver sparkle that is perfect for winter. This eyeshadow really packs a punch and deserves to be recognised as an industry leader.
MAC POWDER KISS LIPSTICK (‘SHOCKING REVELATION’)
I’ve mentioned before a few times that my favourite, go-to red lipstick is ‘Shocking Revelation‘, a Powder Kiss lipstick by MAC, which is a part of their newly-expanded Power Kiss range. I’m really excited to eventually try more products from this collection, including the new matte eyeshadows and liquid lipsticks, but for now, I want to bring your attention to the traditional-style bullet lipsticks, which have the most unusual powder-like feel that provides you with a comfort matte feel like no other product I know.
With every lipstick on the market, whether it wears well and looks good largely depends on how you prep your lips and how much, or how little, lip balm you apply underneath. Matte lipsticks require a thorough lip scrub and hydration product before they can be applied. By removing any peeling, your matte lipstick will look beautiful, however, it’s important that you get the balance of lip balm correct – too much, and your lipstick will catch the balm and drag it around, and this can create a patchy mess; too little, and you’ll find it difficult to apply the lipstick with ease and your lips will feel dry and tight. A lip liner will help your lipstick’s longevity – I wore Shocking Revelation with Charlotte Tilbury’s Walk Of No Shame lip liner underneath for a friend’s 21st back in February and it didn’t budge one bit.
The reason I love the Power Kiss formula is because they allow your lips to largely maintain their natural texture. As they’re so lightweight, they not only feel effortless to apply but also to wear. Many of the nude colours are on the sheer side, whereas the darker colours are extremely pigmented and long-wearing. Besides Shocking Revelation, I really love ‘My Tweedy‘, a neutral beige nude, ‘Mull It Over‘, a pinky peach nude, and ‘Sultriness‘, which is slightly more pink than my natural lip colour. The only colour I’ve tried and had some trouble with and wouldn’t recommend is ’Sweet, No Sugar’, purely because it has a white base – this makes product settling in fine lines in your lips obvious, and it also makes any catching on texture or dryness to stand out – and due to this, this shade, despite it being a really pretty colour, has a tendency to look messy.
NARS AFTERGLOW LIP BALMS
Next, I want to talk about a product that I believe is potentially the best lip product on the market. The NARS Afterglow Lip Balms are my secret weapon, and while these silky and moisturising balms can be worn sheerly with a quick swipe of product, the colours can be built up with shocking ease. It’s extremely rare for me to come across a lip product that just works, and I couldn’t recommend these balms enough. My favourite, go-to shade for everyday wear has to be ‘Fast Lane‘ – even though it looks very purple in the tube, it applies as a stunning and natural pinky-mauve that truly gives you a your-lips-but-better look. There’s even a red – ‘Turbo‘ – and if you want a glossy-looking red that’s easy to apply and re-apply, this will be your best friend. Of course, the shade ‘Orgasm‘ is a classic and works beautifully with the matching blush, and ‘Dolce Vita‘, a muted, mid-tone rosy peachy nude, is a perfect partner for warm tone eyeshadow looks – and, again, there’s a matching blush. These lippies go with me everywhere.
HOURGLASS CAUTION EXTREME LASH MASCARA
The Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash mascara has been a recent find of mine. For years I’ve been hooked on the Lancôme Drama mascara, but since I’m writing reviews all the time, I decided it was probably a good idea to venture out and try out new mascaras every now and then to see if I like the differences, and to be able to recommend alternative products to you guys. More often than not I love thick, volumised lashes, however, sometimes I want something more toned down and natural. Often I find that more ‘natural’ mascaras lack substance or the wands aren’t designed particularly well for separation and lengthening.
The Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash mascara, even though it is loved by many, isn’t spoken about that often, and, until recently, I’d never heard of it, and I can’t get my head around why there isn’t more noise surrounding this mascara. The formula and brush is perfect for someone who wants their lashes to be defined, lengthened and separated, with a bit of volume, but who still wants to maintain a natural, more toned down look. Plus, I’ve found that it’s almost effortless to apply – it just looks great! When I first tried this, I hadn’t worn any makeup in a while, and so initially I believed it was more intense than it actually is. When I tried the NARS Climax Extreme mascara on one eye and Hourglass Caution on the other, you can see a clear difference in the level of volume the two mascaras bring, and that the Hourglass one is much more natural – yet, it’s still effective with substance, and is both elegant and beautiful.
I think it’s such a shame that so many brilliant, beautifully formulated makeup products go under the radar, with many never fully getting the recognition they deserve. In the day and age of social media marketing, it’s easy to see how some brands have naturally fallen behind against others in the race to be no. 1. However, that makes my job even more fun – by hunting out and trying new products, I can find hidden gems that may brighten up your makeup bag and inspire you to try something different.
What are your favourite makeup products that you believe are underrated?
As always, love, T x