10 December 2009


I've been hanging out for the 2009 Best of Sephora list for some time now, and it just doesn't seem to be surfacing. So, in the tradition of last year, I'm going to put forward my new and improved recommendations.

Here goes...

Complexion: Foundation, Tinted Moisturiser, Primer, Powder, Concealer
Foundation: This honour still belongs to Clinique Superbalanced Makeup. For most of this year, I've been using its closely related cousin, Clinique Even Better Makeup, but Superbalanced is perfecto. Other close calls: Napoleon Perdis China Doll, DiorSkin Sculpt.

Tinted Moisturiser: I take back my last year's comment that tinted moisturiser should be illegal. It was before I discovered MAC Studio Moisture Tint. If you're going for the fresh-faced, "I'm not wearing makeup, I just look fantastic at the gym" look (which I spent several months trying to perfect), Moisture Tint is your new best friend.

Primer: You guessed it: Benefit That Gal. I just can't let this one go. It's like my love affair with Donny, except That Gal treats me well and loves me in return. Other faves: MAC Prep + Prime Skin, Revlon Beyond Natural Smoothing Primer.

Powder: Don't even get me started. Chanel Luminous Matte Powder Makeup is THE greatest product of any sort, ever. I am obsessed. I am just not going to bother recommended anything else. It's not worth it.

Concealer: I'm sticking with my The Body Shop Concealer Pencil. I no longer advocate using the fingers to apply it, however: get yourself a concealer brush (a small, synthetic eyeshadow brush, provided you use it solely for concealer, will work a treat). If there's one brush you absolutely must keep scrupulously clean at all times, it's your concealer brush. No excuses.

Skincare: Face Cleanser, Face Moisturiser, Eye Treatment, Skin Treatment
Cleanser: This year, more than any other year, I've come to realise that happiness prevails over any cleanser for a perfect complexion. If you're stressed, tired, sad, borderline alcoholic, or having a quarter-life crisis, your skin is going to reflect it. Get your life sorted, and your skin will follow. My favourite cleanser this year was YSL Toning and Cleansing Water, but I'm not going to pretend it's something I can afford the upkeep of. For the most part, I get by on Neutrogena Foaming Scrub, and that suits me just fine.

Moisturiser: I need to take a bit of a break here to allow my racing heart to settle down. Again, Chanel comes up trumps. Never in my life have I experienced anything as beautiful and amazing as Chanel Hydramax + Active Serum and its accompanying Active Moisture Cream. It is THE must-have for your "I'm going to take better care of my skin" new year's resolution. It makes sense to invest in the best moisturiser you can - after all, it stays on your skin round the clock.

Eye Treatment: Hmm, well I hate to sound like a broken record but... Chanel Ultra Corrective Eye will actually change your life. Or at the very least, the skin around your eyes. Grace was horrified to find her party-hard lifestyle was catching up with her earlier this year, so she started using samples of this cream from her work, and we were both very pleased with the results. Many makeup artists will tell you that eye cream is unnecessary, but when you see what we do to peoples' eyes for a living, you've got to wonder what these artists are thinking. I'm a convert, and while it's an expensive habit, you can get by on a sample for a surprising amount of time. Use sparingly and reap the results. Trust me.

Skin Treatment: Whatever you do, don't use a cloth mask. Those things are the devil. Dermalogica is the most outrageously priced skincare line on the market, but with good reason. I love their Multivitamin Power Recovery Masque, but I'm equally partial to an inhouse treatment. If you really need, you should splurge. It's not like anyone else is going to do it for you.

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