I love experimenting with makeup but let’s face it, the chance would be a fine thing these days! A year ago I went to Canada and invested in a brand new makeup collection, most of which is available here now. I got to test lots of products, which we don’t really get to do in the UK as many brands such as Anastasia Beverly Hills aren’t stocked in store so you just have to order online and hope for the best. However, saying that, Harrods now stocks Huda Beauty and Debenhams exclusively stocks Kat Von D!

….10 products later (all listed below)

If I’m going out for the day and I want to get glammed up quickly (and by quickly I mean in 15 mins) I use the following products, which is what I’ve used to create the look above.

FACE

  1. Primer

A good primer is everything. It creates the perfect base for applying your foundation and prevents your makeup from forming creases. I have combination skin and find Mac Prep + Prime (Natural Radiance Base Lumiere) amazing for me. It helps to prevent my foundation from becoming dull and lifeless as well.

2.    Foundation

It’s never easy finding the right foundation. I think it takes lots of trips to various beauty counters and lots of testing. I always struggled to find the right shade for my skin, which I know is a problem for many, particularly Asian and darker skinned people. But my top tip would be to take your time and test as many as you can, ideally on your whole face (or at least half). I find patch testing useless as you may have areas of hyperpigmentation (dark patches) and an uneven skin tone,  and you want something that will look good all over, not just in one little area. The only way you will know if it’s right is by applying it over a good area of your face. If you think you’ve found the perfect shade at a counter then great, but still I would strongly recommend leaving it on and taking a walk around for a couple of hours to see how it feels on your skin and to see how it looks in different lighting, before purchasing it.

I can recall countless times that I thought I’d found “the one” and thankfully didn’t buy in haste and left it on for a few hours, only to realise it looked completely different in the natural light and some even greyed my skin out! I have finally found my perfect foundation at the age of 30 and that’s Mac Studio Fix Fluid in NC40. My next task is to find the right shade for the Summer as my skin tans loads and this is definitely not the right shade for me!

3.   Contour

Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit (Medium to Tan)

We are now all contour crazy and with all the products out there, from liquid to cream to powder contours, it’s hard to know what to go for. I use a liquid and then powder contour if I’m going all out but for a basic look, like the one above, I just use my powder palette, which is Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit (Medium to Tan). I haven’t quite figured the whole palette out yet, but I use the darker contour powder and the golden highlight powder (top left), the rest is still a mystery to me at the moment! When people say build up the colour it means use a little at a time as it’s very pigmented and no one wants harsh lines. Take your time, less is more!

4.   Highlight

Natural lighting….no filter

As already mentioned I use a little bit of the highlight from the Anastasia Contour Palette but tend to top it up with Mac Soft & Gentle. I’ve had this for a few years now and absolutely love it. In fact I love it so much that I haven’t been tempted enough to buy any of the other highlight palettes out there. I think that if you have a good, versatile product then you don’t need to replace it with anything else. I also hate the idea of cluttering up my makeup case with lots and lots of products that I won’t necessarily use. I’d rather have a few good quality ones.

5.   Blush

It’s all about Mac! My two faves are Warm Soul Mineralise Blush and Margin Frost Powder Blush (which is the one I’ve used above). Again, a little goes a long way so layer rather than cake!

EYES

6.   Eyeshadow

Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance palette

Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance palette all the way! I absolutely love this. All the shades are amazing and they are highly pigmented, which means your palette will last a long time. This is literally my dream palette and all the other ones I own are now packed away in a makeup case I never even open. You can create an array of looks as it’s so versatile. For a simple every day look I tend to use a combination of Golden Ochre, Raw Sienna, Burnt Orange and finish off with a little bit of Tempera on my brow bone. If you want to add a little sparkle then Primavera looks great with the shades already mentioned but my top tip would be to apply the shimmer shades using your finger and not a brush. It gives a completely different look!

7.   Eyebrows

I use Anastasia Beverly Hills Dipbrow Pomade in Chocolate. The Dipbrow itself is great and you don’t need to use much at all. The hardest part is finding the right shade for you. I looked at Dark Brown but it had slightly green undertones, which really put me off. Although some people love it. Eyebrow pencils are also a good option, especially if you can’t be bothered with faffing around with a brush. Just find one you like and test before you buy if you can. If you do opt for the Dipbrow then just note that it doesn’t come with a brush so you’d need to buy one separately.

8.   Eyelashes

There was once a time that I loved wearing a pair of lashes but after my most recent encounter of frustration applying my expensive Huda lashes, resulting in not only a ruined pair of lashes but also completely ruining my eye makeup, I now prefer applying some mascara. I don’t really think it makes much difference as to which brand you use but then again I have relatively long lashes anyway. I tend to use Maybelline The Colossal Volume Express.

LIPS

9.   Liner/Lipstick

My four favourite brands for lip products are Mac, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Huda and Kat Von D. I really think using a good lip liner as a base is key here. Defining your lips before applying the actual lipstick gives a smooth finish and also helps the lip product to stay on for longer. Also, you can get lots of different shades out of a single lipstick by using different lip liners as a base. So if I want a nude look, I tend to use Mac Spice Lip Pencil, whereas if I want a more intense look I may use Beet. Above I used Mac Vino Lip Pencil (as it’s the one that came to hand first) very sparingly as it’s so intense and rich in colour and then applied Anastasia Beverly Hills Ashton Liquid Lipstick on top.

So there you have it, with just 10 products you can create a fab look with great coverage and post your pics without the need for a single filter! Get testing guys!