Top 5 Bronzers

 

As one of those poor, unfortunate pale folk I rely on a bronzer to give me that gorgeous bronzed glow.  Due to the fact that I am naturally silver skinned I think this is why bronzers are my favourite beauty product and I have an entire drawer dedicated to them.  This will probably be the hardest thing to narrow down to just 5 as I love so many but now as I sit staring at  my drawer of bronzers, there are very few that I view as my die hard, desert island bronzers.  From drug store to high end, read on for my favourite bronzers!

Nars Laguna Bronzing Powder, £29

With the amount of bloggers and celebrities that love this bronzer you can bet your ass this is the first bronzer I ever bought.  It was considerably cheaper when I bought it for the first time, but I’d say I am easily on my 8th or 9th Laguna bronzer.  When I was younger I was obsessed with NARS packaging, I had been so used to drug store packaging and I hadn’t seen anything as sleek and sexy as this.  I then proceeded to buy lots of others shades but I always came back to Laguna.

The bronzer itself gives the perfect summery glow which makes it a necessity for the make up bag for the upcoming months.  Embedded with a golden shimmer it’s definitely a bronzer for someone who wants a stronger finish to give an all over warmth.  The powder is finely milled to give a sheer affect while filling in lines and pores giving an effortlessly smooth finish.  The shimmer is very subtle so nothing like a highlighter, just enough to give your skin a healthy glow.

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The Body Shop Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder, £14

This is the bronzer that I use probably the most often to the day purely because of the price point.  The make up in The Body Shop are probably one of the only items to not have gone up and up in price in recent years.  It gives a very natural finish which is desired for a day time look.  Not only is it beautiful on the face but comes in great shades for the eyes too, making it a perfect addition to your make up collection especially if you bring your bag out and about with you.  I love products that are multi purpose!

The bronzer itself is more on the subtle side so if you are looking for something that will give you a strong colour might I suggest something with a little more pigment, or just build up the colour.  The bronzer is shimmer free, allowing it to be used for contouring also if that takes your fancy.  Not only is the bronzer amazeballs, but it contains Community Trade Honey and comes in 5 shades with a shade light enough for my silvery complexion making it my go to day time bronzer.

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Soleil Tan De Chanel, £40

As I have mentioned I am a pale, silvery skinned gal but when I get my tan on I prefer to wear a little less make up.  When I am in this beautiful, tanned state my go to make up product, never mind bronzer is the Chanel cream gel bronzer.  It is such a gorgeous formula and can be used on it’s own just to enhance the glow or under on on top of makeup.

When I first saved up to buy this foundation I was terrified to use it because I was intimidated by a cream product.  All I had known was powder bronzers and this was a total revelation.  I found it was easier to use when you dab on tiny amounts and blend as you go rather than applying all over and trying to blend it all out.

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Rimmel Natural Bronzer, £5.99

Obviously, a Rimmel product will feature – y’all know I love the smell of these products!  Smell aside, this bronzer never ceases to amaze me at how brilliantly pigmented it is.  It’s called Natural but to be honest I use this as my night out bronzer as the shades are more on the warmer side and give off a lot of pigment.  It’s a waterproof bronzer with velvety soft texture that glides beautifully onto the skin.

There is quick a bit of kick back when I use this product but I don’t really care about that so much as it all stays in the container and can be used again, so not like I am wasting anything – I just always make sure to tap off the excess so as not to cover my whole face in bronzer!  That is not a cute look.

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Make Up For Ever, Pro Bronze Fusion, £28.50

I have spoken about this bronzer already in my Make Up For Ever Favourite Products blog so if you want more details on it you can check it out there.  This is another one of those bronzers similar to The Body Shop’s Honey Bronze that requires building up.  You don’t have to build them up, obviously you can leave them as they are for a fab subtle glow!

Another waterproof wonder from Make Up For Ever makes this another perfect one for your Summer collection.  Not only that, but the Pro Bronze Range caters to those who want matte and/or luminous finish.  The first colour I got was the shade 20M which was a matte finish but I have since updated my collection to include the 35I shade for a far warmer, illuminating finish.

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That brings us to the end of my Top 5 Bronzers even though this list could have gone on to include about 15 more.  These however, are truly my everyday go to bronzers that I use all the time.  Let me know if you have used any of these bronzers yourself or if there is a bronzer out there that is your absolute fave – maybe I haven’t tried it yet!

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You can view my other Top 5 Blog Posts HERE

Amy xo

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Top 5 Concealers

Alas, the one beauty item that everyone and I do mean everyone is after.  Much like the perfect foundation it can be extremely hard to find.  What about settling into wrinkles?  What about giving you wrinkles you don’t even have?  What about colour correcting?  What about lighter or darker?

Concealers are the one item that I really do my research on.  I obsess over YouTube videos, Instagram posts and online reviews to determine which one that I go for.  Like my Top 5 Foundations post, I don’t think it’s possible to have just one concealer that works above the rest.  Similar to how I have a few foundations, I have a few concealers that I like for different reasons.  With that in mind, considering I have done a fair bit of research I have compiled a list of my Top 5 Concealer picks.

Mac Cosmetics Pro Longwear, £18.50

One of the first ‘grown up’ products I ever bought was this Pro Longwear Concealer.  At first I hated it.  I actually detested it and £18.50 was a lot of money for me when I was younger to spend on a concealer.  Anyway, it turns out that 3 pumps of a concealer in a shade that was wrongly sold to you makes your under eyes look like that of a wrinkly old lady.  After heading to YouTube to find out how to apply it, aside from being 3 shades too dark, it quickly became my favourite product.

The concealer itself is a fluid consistency, offering medium to full matte coverage for up to 15 hours.  I now apply it with a beauty blender or a small concealer brush, not my old dirty foundation brush.  It applies like a dream, and gives me enough coverage without sitting in any creases under my eyes.  Even though the concealer sets matte, it definitely needs set with a powder.  I haven’t come across a concealer for the under eye that doesn’t need set with a powder.

I keep this for my night out makeups as it’s a little full coverage for every day.  If you’re someone who likes the natural look, then I would stay away from this one but for long lasting, great coverage it’s spot on.

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Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer £19.50

This is a perfectly weightless concealer hides even the most stubborn of flaws meanwhile giving a radiant, luminous, demi-matte finish.  Not as heavy as the Mac Pro Longwear Concealer, this is perfect for those who prefer a slightly lighter finish.  When I wear this concealer it melts effortlessly into any foundation I wear it without lifting on the skin or separating against the foundation.

It works no matter how it’s applied, which makes it a winner in my books.  It also sits beautifully even after hours of wear and comes in 14 shades.  I love the applicator of this concealer as it seems to apply to exactly what you need under the eye without the fear of placing too much.  That being said, even if you do put down too much it blends out beautifully and can be layered for a fuller look if desired.

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Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer, £21.50

This concealer.  Is the DADDY.  You know when your period is attacking you and your face breaks out all over the show and nothing short of a scarf over your face will cover the spots?  Yeah, well now we have this concealer.  It can cover everything and the beauty of it is you need so little of it.  A little really does go a long way.  Aside from all the usual great things about a concealer, this comes in the size 15ml.  Compared to 9ml of Mac Pro Longwear and Urban Decay’s 5ml you’ll find that for the price of this concealer you definitely get more bang for you buck.

Price aside, the foundation is a little on the thicker side but allows for more multi purpose use.  When I want to wear a lighter coverage foundation but it doesn’t cover all the little marks or blemishes I will always go in with Full Cover to give me a flawless look.  I have used it before when on holidays too so is a perfect one to add to the holiday make up bag as is waterproof.

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Maybelline Age Rewind Eye Concealer Nude, £8.99

If you have tired eyes then this is the perfect concealer for you.  This concealer does more than just cover up your eyes because it’s enriched with Goji Berry and the formula cares for the eye area that suffers most from a hectic social life and lack of sleep.  So if your main concerns are fine lines and wrinkles this is spot on however, you are restricted in your shades as there are only two colours.

I normally don’t like spongy applicators as I find them gross but it’s worth it for this product.  I use this concealer the most much like in one of my last posts talking about how I use L’Oreal True Match Foundation as my throw it on foundation, this is my everyday throw it on concealer.  I find that as well as not sitting in my lines it brightens under the eye giving me a more youthful appearance.  If you are looking for something with a little bit of a better shade range then I would suggest Maybelline Fit Me Concealer as there are 6 shades to choose from.

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Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer, £6.49 

If any of you know me then you’ll know that I love the smell of Rimmel products, that may be the reason that I like this concealer so much but hey ho.  Another anti-fatigue concealer similar to Maybelline’s but on the fuller coverage side.  Containing peptides and a vitamin moisturising complex this concealer will hydrate under the eye as well as concealing.

There’s not much to say about this concealer other than if you are shopping on a budget and want excellent quality for money then hello, you found it!  It doesn’t crease, I think that’s down to the consistency of the liquid as it’s on the creamier side.  Not only that, but it brightens under the eyes while hydrating.  On me, it doesn’t all day but gets me through a shift at work which is all that really matters!

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You might be surprised to find that the Tarte’s Shape TapeNars Creamy Concealer and the YSL’s Touch Eclat of the world are not in this list.  The reason they are not in this list is because as nice as they are and as hyped up as they are that’s exactly why they aren’t in this list.  HYPE.  Don’t always just believe what you see on Instagram and YouTube, do your research.  Nars for example, all I read about was that the Creamy Concealer was the best thing ever since sliced bread but in reality I found the concealer was dry, hard to blend and at only 6ml to me, not worth the money.  Don’t get me wrong, it was nice and did the job but didn’t live up to the hype.

So there you have it, my Top 5 Concealers, click the links below to read my other Top 5’s.

Top 5 Foundations

Top 5 Highlighters

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Top 5 Foundations

The perfect foundation?  Does this exist?  I don’t know about you but I have spent years trying to find thee foundation, the one that does it all.  I’m not going to lie to you, I have come very close.  I have a top few foundations that I wouldn’t  go without but none of them I can honestly say are the ONE.

I don’t think it’s possible to have just ONE foundation that’s the one for everyone as everyone’s skin is too different and we have too many different wishes.  For example, not every is oily and dreams of perfect matte skin.  Not everyone is dry and wants luminious skin.  It’s not even that simple, I have dry skin and sometimes my mood will send me towards a matte finish.  Therefore, it’s far too hard to have just one foundation that does it all.  So I have narrowed down my top 5 foundations as it’s not possible to have one!

Yves Saint Laurent All Hours Foundation, £35

An oil free, matte finish foundation that surprisingly does not dry out the skin when worn.  This foundation could cover mistakes of the past, that’s how good the coverage is.  It blends so easily into the skin and you really do need very little.  In fact I find with this foundation it’s best to build it, rather than going in with loads of product.  Using the foundation this way gives an insanely flawless base!  My skin isn’t bad, but is by no means perfect but when I wear this foundation you really wouldn’t know!  I have been wearing this foundation a lot recently and have gotten a lot of  messages on Instagram asking about it because it photographs so well too.

Getting down to the science, the foundation contains a skincare complex and UV filter which is what leaves the skin fresh and smooth.  It contains an SPF 20 and does give a little flashback but what’s a little flashback when your skin looks so fab in real life?

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Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation Stick, £30

You know when you see people walking down the street or even in your magazines and on Instagram and they look fabulously glowy and healthy?  Well, that’s what this foundation will do for you.  I am not even kidding, my skin has literally never looked better than when I wear this foundation.  The texture of the foundation is so creamy that it glides effortlessly onto the skin to conceal any imperfections making it excellent for touch ups also.  As it leaves a satin finish, it’s perfect for my dry skin!

It’s fairly long lasting, for me personally it’s not an all day foundation because it’s creamier it has a tendency to move but so long as you don’t mind setting it with powder it’ll be perfect.  If you love the sound of this foundation but you have oilier skin or want to make sure it stays on all day might I suggest Make Up For Ever Step One Mattifying Primer £25.50 to put underneath.  The foundation itself was created for the latest high definition technologies of the film and TV industry to look invisible on 4K camera and in person so it’s a perfect foundation to add to your collection.

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Rimmel London Lasting Finish Breathable Foundation, £8.99

I first tried this foundation a few months ago when Rimmel very kindly sent me a little parcel and I filmed a first impressions video which can be found here.

So if you want an in depth review on this foundation then you can watch that but this is my favourite drug store ‘affordable’ foundation.  A light to medium coverage foundation which similar to YSL’s All hours is extremely buildable.  The foundation claims to moisturise for up to 25 hours and to be honest, this could be true but I haven’t had to wear a foundation for that long.  If I did I would probably have to claw it off by the 25 hour mark.  Anyway, this is my go to foundation for something to throw on daytime or when I want a little bit less coverage!

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Estée Lauder Re Nutriv Ultra Radiance Makeup SPF15, £76

Every now and then, just like any gal I want a little luxury in my life.  That for me, comes in the form of this Estée Lauder foundation.  A gloriously smooth foundation, this gives flawless radiance to the wearer and a fabulous medium to full coverage.  It glides on effortlessly and feels amazing on the skin.  It coats over all my texture and leaves my skin glowing.  In fact, I normally use this foundation mixing it into the others that I have mentioned to add a little fabulousness to my face.  On it’s own however, it is a stunning foundation.

Seriously luxurious it contains precious micro-fine gems for a flawless finish and jewel-like radiance.  It contains benefits from the Re Nutriv Skincare range by Estee Lauder itself, it reduces appearance of fine lines and imperfections,  enveloping skin in comfort and care.

I’m aware it’s on the pricier side so if you want something similar but not just as expensive then might I suggest Estée Lauder Perfectionist Foundation £41 but trust me, you’ll not regret the Re Nutriv!

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 L’Oreal Paris True Match Super Blendable Foundation, £9.99

I found it pretty hard to pick the last one to complete my Top 5 so I went upstairs and due to the fact that I have two bottles of this foundation on the go at once and a further 3 in the drawer as a back up that this one has made the list.  Without realising it, this foundation is probably my most used.  I love how lightweight it is and it’s another great one to mix into other foundations to lighter/darken.  It’s honestly just a nice foundation for every day.  I use it more as the throw it on, heading into town, going to the shops kind of foundation.  I don’t really use it for nights out as it doesn’t pass the long lasting test for me but is great to throw on to save wasting those that are a little on the pricier side – see Estée Lauder!

The foundation has an impressive 28 shades so there will be something to suit pretty much everyone!

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Top 5 Highlighters

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Top 5 Highlighters

Whether you like your glow subtle and daytime appropriate or whether you like your glow to be seen from the International Space Station then you have come to the right place.  Highlighters are probably the item of makeup that I have tried and tested the most considering it’s the most requested item when working on clients.  Dewy, wet, beaming, luminous, radiant, glowing and gleaming are the words people want to hear when someone is talking about their skin and that’s arguably all down to highlighter.  You might love it or hate it but there is no doubt that adding a little pop of highlight can make all the difference.

Of course, highlighting in the make up industry has been around for decades upon decades and this glow hasn’t only come around in recent years.  However, as everyone is now a mooah all the tricks and tips of the trade have leaked out for anyone and everyone to use.

With so many highlighters available from so many different brands it can be hard to truly find the best one for you.  With that in mind I have compiled a list of my personal Top 5 Highlighters so if you are in highlighter limbo and have no idea which highlighter to go for, or you simply want to add another to your collection then scroll down for more!

  1. Mac Cosmetics Extra Dimension Skinfinish £25.50
    More specifically the shade Oh, Darling.  If you are a regular viewer on my Instagram or even on my YouTube channel you might know that this highlighter is probably my most used item, let alone highlighter.  I get carried away and honestly out it everywhere.  The highlighter itself is one of the most stunning sights.  I myself prefer anything warm toned so that’s why I tend to reach for this baby a lot considering the gorgeous, golden glow it leaves on your skin.  If you are after that perfectly wet, sexy sweaty skin then this is the highlighter for you.  I do find that the brush you use is important for this one as it is such a strong colour I find it best using a fan brush like the Make Up For Ever Fan Brush 120 (£21.50) as it doesn’t apply too much product causing the tin man look.

2. Sleek Solstice Palette, £9.99

Before I even begin – this is the BEST highlighter for the price of it.  So if you are someone on a budget and looking a little more bang for your buck I am telling you look no further.  Congratulations, you have found the perfect highlighter.  My jaw hit the floor the very first time I used this palette, I couldn’t believe a highlighter that cost me less than £10 was this good.  Price aside, the highlighter itself is unbelievable.  Now, inside this palette there are 3 powder shades (two baked and one shimmer) and one cream shade.  I’ll be honest when I say that I have never touched the cream one, only by accident when I have been getting ready in a rush but I use the powder shades nearly every day.  It’s an extremely strong palette so it’s not for the faint hearted!  If you only like a light bit of highlighter please do just take a small amount as I have known myself on occasion to go totally overboard.  There are not many drugstore products other than foundations that I repurchase because there are so many out there to try, but I am on my fourth solstice palette.  I also love the packaging – that’s what sold it to me in the first place!

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3. Estée Lauder Victoria Beckham Modern Mercury, £55

I may be being biased considering my love for former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham and her outstanding line with Estée Lauder but this highlighter certainly had to appear i my Top 5.  The second I got it I ripped through the packaging and I nearly wept and how beautiful it was, I was almost scared to ruin the beauty of it.  I got over myself pretty quickly, grabbed my Illamasqua Highlighter Buffing Brush (£26) and delicately placed this beautiful creamy powder on my cheekbones.  It was love at first sight!  I keep this highlighter for when I don’t want my cheeks to be so wet looking, it’s is perfect for those of you who like to keep it a little more on the ‘natural’ side while still looking gorgeously glowy.  As I wrote this I got so excited about it that I ran upstairs just to check on it, make sure it was safe, swatched it and came back down… obsessed much?

4. Iconic London Illuminator Shine, £30

I used to hate cream or liquid illuminators.  Ladies and Gents, that was before Iconic launched their illuminators.  I’ll be honest, I haven’t quite nailed the application like some of the beauty gurus on Instagram and YouTube – how to they look so attractive dripping it down their face?! – but, I am quite happy throwing it all over my face any way I want.  I love this product for two reasons… it is fantastic as a primer underneath your foundation as it creates a serious glorious shine through your foundation.  Not only that, but it’s beautiful on top of your foundation – even over powder.  It’s the only liquid highlighter I have come across that does not lift or disturb ANY foundation that lies underneath.  There’s nothing worse than spending ages bouncing your foundation in to your skin to then use something that lifts your hard earned work.  It comes in a few shades, I use ‘Original‘ and have ‘Glow‘ if I am using it to darken foundation or use as a bronzer.  When adding on top of your foundation, might I suggest using a beauty blender if you have one as it sits beautifully on the skin.  I use the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Make Up Sponge (£5.99).

5. Make Up For Ever Artist Face Color H102/H106, £18

The thing I like about these highlighters more than anything are their compactibility and ease of use.  The Artist Face Color collection are magnetic and so can be swapped and changed into different pans and carriers, as a Make Up Artist this is extremely handy for heading to and from events, clients, etc.  Not only are they then refillable but the product itself is beautiful!  They have a vast range of highlighters, matte and shimmery to blushers and bronzers and contour shades that can be placed and made into a palette of their own.  Focusing on just the highlighters, they are extremely buttery and so blendable that it doesn’t require a lot of work.  My favourite colour is H106, again a warm golden colour,  and it’s the only highlighter I have that looks like skin.  All the others have that obvious highlighter look but this one in daylight looks like it could really be my skin that’s glowing.  Even the Victoria Beckham highlighter has that hint of glitter that lets slide that it’s a highlighter whereas the Make Up For Ever is so smooth that it looks like skin.

The list could go on however, these are the highlighters that I use on a near daily basis and are worth bringing into your own make up bag.  If you have any other highlighters that you think I might not have tried please send me a message as of course, I would love to try them!  If you have used any of the highlighters I have mentioned send me a message as well and let me know what you think!

Til next time,

Amy xo