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Powder Diaries
How good are the high street makeup ranges?
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If there’s one thing the British do well, other than tea and cake in a crisis, Harry Potter and a humorous dose of sarcasm, it’s the British High Street. And for any Brit girl who considers it a home away from home, over the last few years it's been impossible to ignore that many of our favourite shops have branched out from vest tops, jeans and coats and launched their very own beauty and make up lines. Whilst lots of people have been a bit dubious, refusing to give up their designer or established brands, we decided to test them all out to see whether their low costs mean low quality. To you doubters, we were pleasantly surprised.
Mascara, £7.99

A new favourite of ours. The comb brush coats every single lash so defines your lashes brilliantly and doesn’t clump. However it doesn’t give volume, so if you like big dramatic lashes then this might not be the one.
Blusher, £6.99

While we fell in love with the mascara, the blusher felt a little bit plasticy and cheap. Whilst it gave a nice dust of colour, it didn’t last like it ought to. If you like a punchy bright cheek then this probably won’t be your cup of tea.
Red lipstick
, £7.99

This creamy lippie is super moisturising, looks super spenny (thanks to the gold and cream packaging) and smells delicious too. It’s really pigmented as well, so if you don’t want to go outright red, put a little on and buff it in. Massive thumbs up.


& Other Stories
Mascara, £15

& Other Stories is for the cooler crowd and it's slick, no nonsense packaging is as winning as expected (black and white. Tres chic). This one coats well and it gives a good deep colour.
Blusher, £12

The blend of the two colours is cracking – combine the two for warmth, or contour slightly with each individually. Warning, there is shimmer in it, which wont be to everyone’s taste.

Red lipstick, £12.99

You can be super precise with this little beauty, because it’s a pencil (bit different and we like) and you can get right into the corners of your mouth and trace the outline of your lips. A classic red and lasts hours before needing a top up, even after a cappuccino. Handy.

Rosie for Autograph Make-up
Mascara, £15

It’s called Dream Big Lashes and that’s in no way misleading. DREAM. BIG. LADIES. This is a bloody good mascara.
Blush, £14

This creamy blush feels like velvet and when you pop it onto your cheeks, it blurs everything out and even looks like velvet. There are only two colours, but somehow that doesn’t matter. Both colours work on all skin tones – one’s more pinky and the other a touch of apricot.
Red Lipstick, £12

This feels much more expensive than it’s £14. The bullet and the packaging are heavy to hold (in our opinion this indicates dollar, dollar bills) and the colour is that perfect red you always spot on French women in pictures.
Mascara, from £2

Amazing.  Amazing. Amazing. And so so cheap. We were a little reluctant to include Primark, as we were worried the quality wouldn’t be top notch enough. But boy, we stand corrected. We tried two different types of mascaras and loved both of them. Jet black, coats every lash and no dropping onto face.
Blush, £1.50

Is it a cream blush, is it a powder? Who actually cares? It has great staying power, blends like a dream and costs under £2. Boom.
Red Lipstick, from 80p

Ladies, we tested four of Primark’s red lipsticks. Can we just take a moment to say ‘THEY WERE INCREDIBLE.’ Their Velvet Matte Lipstick Crayon is so super red it’s ridiculous and another steal at £2. There’s another pigment-heavy bullet in matte (equally wonderful and cheap), a super shiny balm like option with Argan Oil and an SPF of 25…FOR £1.50! And finally, an easy to wear, proper red lippie that lasts for ages and COSTS 80P! We apologise for all the shouting, but we actually can’t get over it.

New Look
Mascara, £5.99

It’s got a funny wand, this one. It’s curved with different size bristles that are meant to volumize and create big impact. You kind of need to practice applying it, and if you don’t nail the technique, you can end up with mascara all over your face. Get it right and it does the job.
Blush, £7.99

This one blends beautifully and the colour is so warm it could actually work as a bronzer, as well as a blusher. It’s got a bit of sheen to it, so won’t be one for those who like a matte look. It’s really finely milled and could rival any pricey version from the Beauty Hall.
Red Lipstick, £3.99

This is the type of lipstick that you would buy four or five of and keep them in different places so you are never caught without it. Your car, your desk at work, two different handbags and in your bathroom cabinet. It’s the ideal pillbox red and goes on smoothly, but like so many good things, won’t last long.
Mascara, £10

Love a smoky eye? This is the type of mascara that gives you the ‘Kate Moss’ morning after’ look. It’s a bit smudgey, but that’s kind of the whole point, no?
Blush, £7

This is ideal for so many reasons: good for your handbag for touch-ups on the go, amazing for a Winter skin pep-up, or a post beach session when your skin is warm and bronzed. Oh and it costs 7 quid. Do we need to go on?
Red Lipstick, £8

Rio Rio is a great orangey red and just happens to be one of Alexa Chung’s favourites. It’s matte, but not too matte, and it’s creamy, but not so creamy that it comes off within the hour.


After countless layers of lipstick and umpteen coats of mascara, we have come to the conclusion that the Rosie for Autograph Make-up is the reigning champ of high street beauty. Bravo, take a bow.

What are you waiting for? Find my red lipstick

Beauty Notes

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Ignore all the rest

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Make-Up Notes

Moisturising ahoy!