Favourites – February 2017

My first monthly favourites post! I’ve been trying to find the motivation to do one of these for a while now, and I feel like the past month has been so full of beauty experimentation – so, it’s a perfect opportunity to get into the habit. Still transitioning from the winter season, I’ve been keeping things matte and a little on the heavy side, but (hopefully) this will start to change over the coming months…

Below is a selection of my favourite makeup items this month – they all happen to be drugstore, although in the future I’ll definitely include more high-end and skincare products.

MUA Set and Reflect Finishing Kit in White Gold

There are some real gems to be found in the likes of MUA and other super-affordable brands – this little compact is one of them. This handy product serves as the finishing touch to a look, with a pan of highlighter on the top and a translucent setting powder underneath (and a mirror!). The highlighter has a mosaic-like appearance, with white and gold shimmery pigments pressed together. It’s not the best highlighter at the drugstore – the glitter is on the chunky side, and it will emphasize skin texture – but for the price, the effect is quite pretty.

I mainly bought this for the setting powder, which is in the second layer. It’s finely milled, and pressed for ease of use – I use it with my Real Techniques Setting Brush to keep under-eye concealer in place, and it does the job really well. Again, it’s not the best powder out there, but I haven’t yet come across any truly translucent powders at the drugstore. The little compact is perfect for travelling, and is reasonably sturdy, although the reflective lid gets grubby (and doesn’t photograph well – sorry!). Available from Superdrug for only £5, this is worth checking out, especially if you’re after a neat little powder compact.

New Look No Shine Mattifying Foundation in Porcelain

The struggle for pale foundation continues – my similarly-porcelain-toned friend Lizzie (@elizabbath) suggested this one to me. I’m generally apprehensive about the makeup sold in clothing stores (although H&M’s revamped beauty range is AWESOME), so this foundation really surprised me – the frosted glass bottle looks chic and expensive, however this 30ml will only set you back £7.99. I chose their lightest shade, Porcelain, and it was an almost spot-on match, if a tad on the yellow side. The coverage is also surprisingly good, with a medium-high opacity and a buildable satin-matte finish that doesn’t catch too badly on dry patches and feels comfortable. If you struggle with large pores and texture, I’d definitely suggest using a primer with this, but on its own the wear time is impressive (I set it with a little powder and only had to blot and re-powder once, after about 7 hours). If you’re a fellow ivory-skinned person seeking a more heavy-duty foundation, this is one to check out.

Real Techniques Deluxe Crease Brush

I bought this set – one of RT’s two core sets – about a year ago, after their redesign and update. It’s an incredibly useful and versatile set, but I barely used the Deluxe Crease Brush until recently. The brush head is domed, with densely packed bristles – while I usually prefer fluffy blending brushes, I’ve been loving this one for working with cream and liquid eyeshadow formulas. While it is still flexible, the bristles are stiff enough to push crayon eyeshadow pigments around (my favourites are the Kiko Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadows) and softly blend them out for a diffused finish.

This brush – and the others in the set – is also excellent quality, as I’ve come to expect from Real Techniques products. It hasn’t shed any bristles yet, and washes easily, retaining its shape. I’d definitely recommend buying this set if you want to expand your brush collection and add more eye brushes – the brushes can be found at Boots, Superdrug and Amazon (where it’s often on sale) for £21.99.

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara in Black

This is one of Maybelline’s top mascaras, and I was lured into buying it by various recommendations on YouTube. The brush is plastic and spiky, rather than bristly, with a concave shape – the spikes on the outer edge are longer, giving you two different surfaces to work with. There isn’t much that I don’t love about this mascara – the brush catches every lash and helps to curl it while separating them out for a fluttery effect. The formula is quite wet (I have accidentally wiped it in my eyebrow before), and takes a little longer to dry down, but it’s buildable and incredibly long-lasting. I never experience any flaking off during the day when I wear this, and it’s surprisingly easy to remove, too. Turns out all those recommendations weren’t unfounded, as I’ve reached for this nearly every day in the past month. It’s a total steal at £7.99, and one tube will last you a good few months without drying up.

Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lipcolor in Devotion

I spoke about my love for these lip creams in my recent Revlon haul, after buying the shade Seduction. I’ve had this tube for a while (hence the mucky packaging), in the colour Devotion – a lovely muted pink that’s universally flattering and perfect for everyday wear. Something about the applicator is really awesome too – I can apply this in about two seconds flat (usually on the way to work), and it always looks plump and soft. While they don’t dry down completely matte, these lip colours are highly comfortable to wear, and last longer than you might initially think – when they do fade, they fade evenly without leaving that awful line around your lips. They also smell incredible – with a sweet vanilla-mango scent that isn’t too perfume-y. Available for £8.99 from Boots and Superdrug, this has been something I’ve turned to most days for a subtle but very pretty lip look.

Tanya Burr Lipstick in Pink Cocoa

My other most-worn lip product this month comes from vlogger Tanya Burr’s cosmetics range (available in Superdrug). I’m apprehensive about most celebrity beauty ranges, but I’ve had a handful of things from Tanya’s range and they’ve all been really good for the price. I saw her wear this particular shade, Pink Cocoa, in a video after it was launched and I’ve been coveting it ever since then. It was out of stock in every Superdrug I went into, but I eventually managed to order it from the website (shout out to Superdrug’s free delivery for Health & Beautycard holders!). Like with the Revlon lip, it’s not a matte formula, but has a creamy and hydrating finish that applies so fast. The colour is the perfect pinky-brown, making the 90’s supermodel lip trend wearable and flattering for my skin tone and colouring. The mirrored-gold packing looks cute too, although it gets dirty (like the MUA compact). This lippy is £6.99, sold here (there’s sometimes multibuy offers on her range, too).

LA Girl PRO.conceal HD in Porcelain

Another product that I’ve recently reviewed on my blog is this bargain concealer from US brand LA Girl (sold here on Beauty Bay). While the applicator isn’t the best – squeezy tube, built in brush – the product is a really good match for me shade-wise, and it blends out like a dream both under the eyes and on top of blemishes. I use this every day, though not as much currently, since my skin has cleared up loads (HALLELUJAH), so it’s become a firm favourite in my everyday makeup collection. This concealer retails for £4.99 here, and comes in a huge shade range, so there should be something for everyone.

So that’s my first monthly favourites! Hopefully I can get off my ass next month and put one together a bit earlier (probably not though). I’ll no doubt be trying out a ton of stuff in March, so keep a look out for more reviews and hauls – and pray for my bank account.

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