On Monday morning I have a very delicious appointment. I’m going to meet myself in Selfridges beauty hall – one of my favourite places on the planet – and do a make-up bag re-stock. All at once I’ve run out of several of my key items and I can’t function without them.
Here’s my shopping list – and why, plus number of times I’ve bought each product.
Clinique Chubby Stick in Bountiful Blush
Chubby Sticks are the greatest thing to happen to lips since kissing. They give your smooch just enough colour to look dressed, but it slicks on like a lip balm, leaving no hard lines, so you don’t need to use a mirror to reapply. I have three shades, but this is my everyday Chubby, which I never leave the house without.
Purchase number: 4
Chantecaille cream blush in Shy
I love cream blush. It gives a much more attractive glow than powdery old powder. This colour is a perfect natural bloom and goes on very lightly for easy blending without skin dragging. I also like the way you buy the outer compact – called ‘The Pebble’ – the first time and then just replace the disc of colour.
Purchase number: 3
(Actually I’ve just remembered they don’t stock this brand in Selfridges, so I’ll have to go to my very favourite store, Fenwick, a very dangerous place for me to enter, particularly if I go near the costume jewellery area…)
Francois Nars Larger than Life Long-Wear eyeliner in Madison Avenue
Isn’t it funny to think that a few years ago none of us ever wore eyeliner? I’ve always had a liquid liner in my make up drawer for special effects, but it was Amy Winehouse who brought it back for every day wear.
As I said in an earlier post about Mary Berry’s brilliant eye make up, I think it does particular favours for the older, more hooded eye and I never leave the house without it now, in various degrees, from the subtle definition to the full Elvis-era Priscilla Presley. For special occasions I have a Guerlain gold eyeliner which gives a fabulous effect.
I have liquids, gels and various kinds of pencil, but this soft push up crayon in slate grey is my go-to favourite. You can control the thickness and intensity of the line with no dragging of the delicate-eye-area and the grey gives a much more subtle effect than black.
I don’t do brown make up in any context.
Purchase number: 2
Bare Minerals, mineral make up in Medium Beige in the big 18g pot with a nice gold lid
This powder foundation actually changed my life. I still don’t quite understand how, but it completely covers my raised and blotchy rosacea skin without making me look and feel like I’m wearing some kind of suffocating mask.
It also acts as a non-chemical sunscreen, which is great as nothing makes my skin flare up more badly than the chemical kind (in fact, I think wearing that on my face every day for years was what caused it, but that’s just my theory).
I have lost track of how many of these I’ve bought, but this will be my second of the lovely big pots which look so glam on the dressing table.
Purchase number: 10? 12?
Clinique Naturally Glossy Mascara in Jet Black
I’m so bewildered by the constant barrage of claims made by beauty companies about mascara, I made a mascara launch part of the plot in my last novel Everything Changes But You (the heroine is a beauty editor…)
In my experience every volumising, length-doubling, thickening, luxuriating wonder mascara does the same thing: makes my eyelashes go into big ugly clumps like tarantula legs. Then it fills my eyes with lots of gritty little filaments.
I do have a Francois Nars Larger Than Life Lengthening Mascara which I use for big special-occasion make-up looks, but for every day I just want one which will coat my lashes with black and make them look more distinct. Clinique’s Naturally Glossy is that mascara.
Purchase number: 20? Lost count years ago.
There’s one other thing I’m going to treat myself to on my beauty spree, which is a new product: Charlotte Tilbury’s ‘Kate’ lipstick. A make up artist used this on me recently and I really loved the effect. I have quite a small mouth and this colour made it look much more voluptuous and I felt quite the (ageing disgracefully…) rock chick babe.
Here’s a link how to get this look.
Now tell me, what are your beauty repeat buys?
PS If you love the make up bag at the top – you can buy one here. Although after planning to buy them (she does other great slogans too, such as ‘New York is my boyfriend’) for all my girlfriends, I decided the postage cost is a bit steep.