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Here at Powder, we're constantly asked questions about beauty products ("Which red lipstick is the best for yellow undertones?" "Which cream blusher lasts the longest?" "What's the best foundation for oily skin?"), which is why we set up Powder. We wanted to help you find the right products for you. (Incidentally, click on the above questions to find out the answers.) The one question we get asked the most, however is 'what products do you have in your makeup bags?" Well, here we are - here are each member of Team Powder's top five makeup products. Now, stop asking!
Bethany Ostacchini – Publisher & Editorial Director
I’ve cheated on this foundation several times, but I always come back running because, ladies, it’s the foundation to end all foundations. As it says on the tin, it gives a luminous finish and decent coverage that doesn’t look too cakey. You can dispense with half pumps too, so you never fall into the trap of getting too trigger-happy. This line has the perfect shade for medium depth of colour, but that also works for a more yellow undertone (shade 6 if you’re interested!).
Maybe I did something wrong to the eye pencil god in a former life, but pretty much all of the ones I’ve ever tried have ended up half way down my face AND congregated in the corners of my eyes. But this guy… stays put, glides on smoothly, smudges like a dream and comes in a nice variety of shades with fancy names like Veruschka Mink. Fancy as it sounds.
Even if you’re a bronzer-phobe, try this and you’ll never look back. Yes it’s a bit punchy in the price department, but it’s a giant pot that lasts forever (cost per wear and all that). The texture is creamy and it subtly melts into foundation or sits naturally on fresh skin. There’s only one shade but it gives all skin tones a good lift, without looking like you’ve been tango’ed. I’ve spied this in so many pro make-up bags. Get one in yours!
YSL Rouge Pur Couture in No. 52 Rosy Coral, £27
Never underestimate the pep-up power of the right shade of lipstick. For me, this one is it. I happened upon it via a very nice counter girl who preyed upon my indecisiveness and really came up with the goods. Randomly it's a massive hit in Asia (never underestimate the power of Korea) and as a result can be hard to lay your hands on - it was constantly sold out for months last year. If you get one, keep it safe and use sparingly.
Ever the mascara junkie, I get through lots of the stuff. I don’t always believe you need to spend a fortune to get great results, and often opt for something a little cheaper, like Maxfactor, but this one for me is worth the price. Get length and volume without the clumps and crucially a finish that doesn't crumble as the day goes by. It’s iconic brush (sort of swan like in shape) is angled so that you can get right in to the lash line for a good old swoop.
Katie Thomas – Beauty Editor
Thanks to my darling family, I have inherited the worst under eyes bags this side of the Atlantic. I also happen to have annoyingly dry skin meaning that most concealers gather in the cracks of my skin. It’s in no way attractive. This one on the other hand, is the perfect mixture of high coverage and hydration. Nothing will ever rid me of my dreaded dark circles, but this keeps them disguised.
Mascara is all about the wand. Yes the colour is important and the formula essential, but when choosing a mascara we bet you twist the cap off to take a peek at what type of bristles it’s got. You’re either a comb convert, approve of plastic or love the denseness of a brush. Me, I’m the latter and this Lauder mascara is everything I could ever dream of. It coats each lash, meaning I look like me, just better. Every single time I wear it, I get a compliment from someone telling me that I have the most incredible lashes. Every. Single. Time.
I don’t really wear foundation. I don’t like to lie to the world. I don’t like everyone to think I look better than I do. ‘Take me as I am!’ I feel I shout every morning when I decide to opt for this Bare Minerals instead. The thing I love about it is that not only does it quench my skin’s thirst, but it also gives it a stunning natural glow. Ideal.
Oh my goodness life hasn’t been the same since I found this eyeliner. I’m crap at feline flicks, so never touch liquid liner; I hate a creamy texture, because it ends up down my cheeks by noon. This is the perfect black that smudges to create a soft line and sticks around, even if I’m out late.
MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour, £17.50
I can't remeber life before MAC Retro Matte. It can't be worth rememebering. If you don’t know about MAC’s Retro Matte lip colours, then you haven’t lived. It’s the perfect matte finish – honestly, there is zero shine to this bad boy – and it doesn’t budge. I have to apply it with precision because once it’s on; it’s on (I have to use an oil-based cleanser to get it off). Plus, it’s the only lipstick that I can wear to kiss my boyfriend in.
Alix Davies – Beauty Editor
I actually panic when I run out of this; I rely on it that much. Creamy enough for under-eyes - but also covers spots and dark circles super easily too.
Quite frankly my life was a better place when I found this lip oil. I always have dry lips and balms just didn’t cut it, so I’d end up using a really rubbish cherry flavoured horror. This has brains and beauty.
Imagine your ideal perfect skin for a second – this gives you that. Which is why I won’t use any other foundation. It’s airy light, oil infused and a total skin perfector. It stays put and for something so luminous, it never looks shiny.
H&M Mascara, £7.99
A very recent addition to my make-up bag, thanks to our High Street Makeup trial. I’m always on the hunt for a natural-look mascara – this (very surprisingly) ticked all the boxes - rubber wand, defined lashes, added length and only costs £7.99.
As I’m not a tanner, nor do I wear blusher, this super light powder nails the tricky balance of giving a natural flush to my cheeks (thanks to the mosaic of colours), without looking fake.
Eleanor Vousden – Junior Beauty Editor
My trusty eyeliner that stays put all day. This eyeliner pen has a great nib that deposits just the right amount of product evenly and precisely. And it's blacker than black too.
Essential to keep my make-up staying put all day (I'm VERY oily, so it's quite a feat) and works really well to freshen up make-up during the day, or diffusing a heavy-handed application of loose powder. Although this one is labeled 'matte' it doesn't flatten the look of my luminous foundation finish that I prefer.
Morphe 35O Eyeshadow Palette, £23.50
I finally got my hands on this (it's always sold out) and it has the best neutral shades in matte, satin and shimmer finishes. It's got just about every neutral-toned colour you could ever need - from vanilla and pink hues through to every kind of brown under the sun - plus a few gold and coppers thrown in too. All 35 shadows blend brilliantly and for £23.50, it's a steal.
The chic white and gold compact is enough to make you buy it alone, but the matte formula is great for sculpting and contouring. It has absolutely no sparkle and blends beautifully. There are three great shades to choose from too.
A new addition to my make-up bag that’s now a must-have. It's highly pigmented (great at covering angry blemishes) but blends seamlessly into skin.
Amy McKean – Commercial Director
If I had to leave the house with only one beauty product… this would be it. It hydrates my dry skin, whilst giving me a flawless finish at the same time. I worried at first that a BB cream wouldn’t cover any niggles that cropped up, but I needn’t have worried - it covers redness and evens out skin tone.
This high street mascara is enriched with avocado oil to help penetrate and plump every lash. It doesn’t smudge, clump or flake. Plus it makes them look longer, thicker and fuller. For £4 it is a steal and rivals some of the £20+ mascaras.
Whenever I wear this, I always get comments on my glow. I love how it’s not cakey like a powder; the gel texture makes my skin look fresh and dewy. I apply it with a bronzing brush along my cheekbones, forehead, and bridge of the nose and over eyelids. It lasts all day so no need for regular reapplication.
I call this magic in a stick. As I’m not a fan of powder, it’s no surprise I like this creamy finish. It gives a beautiful soft focus sheen to my skin. I pop this under the outer area of eyes, cupid’s bow and chin then smudge in with the buffer on the end of the stick.
Clarins Crayon Kohl, £17.50
To make my big brown peepers pop, I like using a kohl liner. I’ve tried so many over the years, but this one glides on and is perfect for tight lining your upper lid and creating a sharp line on your lower lash line. Plus the handy smudge brush on the end helps with a smokey look. Plus it comes with a pencil sharper – I’m never stuck with a blunt pencil.