2017 was the year I changed almost every makeup product I use. It was also the year I moved to a less ‘made up’ look, especially for daytime. I tried a lot of products, and I’m sorry to say that quite a few were duds. But there were some amazing standouts. These are the ones I discovered.
New to the UK in 2017 is Glossier. They offer a great range of skincare and natural-looking makeup. Three of their products really stood out for me. I love their Cloud Paint – a cute little tube of creamy colour that works amazingly well as a blusher or eyeshadow. I also use it as a lip colour and, very occasionally, as a contour. I’ve tried all of the colours, and my favourite by a long shot is Dusk – a peachy, pinky, versatile shade.
Another favourite product from Glossier is their Stretch Concealer. It is, by far, the most natural-looking under-eye concealer I’ve ever tried, but the best bit is that it does not crease! Set with a tiny bit of powder, it stays put and hides dark circles. I also use it where I need a little extra coverage on other parts of my face as I’ve become a huge fan of light-coverage foundation.
Generation G is Glossier’s answer to lipstick, and it’s fantastic. It’s a light, sheer matte lip colour that isn’t drying and gives the prettiest wash of colour. My favourite colour is Zip – an easy-to-wear red that never looks ‘done’.
There were no standout foundations for me this year, but I did find a tinted moisturiser that I absolutely love. Origin’s Ginzing SPF 40 is super sheer, but it gives a beautiful fresh, glowy look to the skin. It magically blurs fine lines and other small imperfections while evening out the skin tone. One caveat is that it’s available in one colour, and while it adapts to your skin tone, it probably won’t work for anyone with olive skin or darker. If you are a bit darker, or prefer a more bronzed look, Charlotte Tilbury’s Unisex Healthy Glow does everything the Origin’s product does, but adds a hint of sun-kissed colour. I use this one in summer.
Charlotte Tilbury also introduced the best highlighter I’ve ever tried. The Hollywood Beauty Light Wand is just that – a magic wand which adds beautiful, subtle shimmer to the face. A tiny amount dabbed just under the brow lifts tired eyes, and a small amount, blended onto the tops of the cheeks, gives a true lit-from-within glow. This is a proper grown-up highlighter with no sparkle or glitter. Sometimes I tap a bit onto the middle of my lower lip for the illusion of increased volume.
A companion to the Light Wand is the Hollywood Contour Wand. I’m not a big fan of contouring products and while this one worked well, I don’t use it that way. I have extremely sensitive eyelids, and wearing eyeshadow for more than a few hours leaves them red-raw and irritated, but I have found I can wear this contour as an eyeshadow every single day with no irritation at all. The colour is subtle but buildable, and by adding a touch of the Light Wand, I’m able to convert it from a matte to a shimmer. If you have sensitive eyes, I recommend giving this one a try. It was a huge find for me in 2017.
Speaking of sensitive eyes, I made a mascara change this year. For years I’ve used Eyeko’s Sport Waterproof Mascara. It kept my super-straight eyelashes curled (more on that in a minute) and never, ever smudged or streaked. My only issue with it was that it is incredibly difficult to remove. Because my eyes are sensitive, scrubbing with makeup remover is painful, so I always ended up with dark stains under my eyes. Then I tried La Roche-Posay Respectissme Extension Mascara. It does everything my favourite Eyeko mascara did, but with the added bonus of being easy to remove with an oil-based cleanser. No more panda eyes for me.
This is a bit of a cheat because it’s not makeup, and I have mentioned it before, but the Surratt Relevee lash curler truly is life changing. My eyelashes are board-straight, and every lash curler I’ve ever tried left them looking bent and crimped. The Surratt doesn’t. Instead it gives my lashes the most beautiful fanned and lifted effect – and I might add I’ve never once managed to pinch myself while using it. I can’t say that about any other lash curler.
My last discover of 2017 was released a couple of years before, so I’m a little late to the party. But I wanted to mention Benefit’s Gimme Brow. It’s a brow-building fibre technology that helps volumise, shape, fill, and set your brows. For a long time, I faffed about with powders, pencils, and setting gels, but I find that I can use this product alone for a day look. It does take a bit of patience, because it’s best to build it up in light, thin layers but the reward is worth it – beautiful dark, natural-looking, groomed brows that stay in place all day.
2017 was the year I moved to a much more natural look, and all of these products help me to achieve that. Of course, a natural look requires good skin as a base, so good skincare is a must. Sadly, I didn’t make any spectacular skincare discoveries in 2017, but I do have a tried-and-true system that works well for my 50-year-old complexion. I’ll get a post done on that soon.
Wishing you all a wonderful 2018! xx