Now playing: “Gold” by Kiiara (strange, but constantly on repeat)
This month, I’ve been a little trigger-happy (the trigger being my debit card) and bought quite a bit of makeup. It must be the pre-payday anticipation (i.e. I haven’t been paid by either of my jobs yet, but I’ve been reassuring myself that this premature haul is totally okay). Here’s what I’ve been splurging on this month.
MAC: Dusky Rose Times Nine Eyeshadow Palette, £25
Pink/mauve-toned eyeshadows have become my obsession recently. I was given MAC’s Eyes x9: Burgundy Times Nine eyeshadow palette last year, and I’ve been in love in with it ever since.
So, you can understand my excitement when I came across MAC’s newly-released Dusky Rose Times Nine palette. My bank balance was telling me no, my head was telling me no, but my heart was telling me yes. Miraculously (as well as, in my case, shockingly), I found willpower within myself and resisted making the purchase, and it was for the greater good too: a few weeks later, MAC announced that all of their Eyes x9 and Eyes x15 palettes were having a permanent price reduction – £30 became £25 for the Eyes x9s, and £60 became £49.50 for the Eyes x15s. Queue hysteric cries of joy from all MAC lovers.
Dusky Rose Times Nine contains a spectrum of nine cool-toned, dusty eyeshadows, ranging from grey taupes to mocha shimmers to rose pearls. It’s the perfect everyday neutral palette and is a great addition to my collection – one thing I was previously lacking was a variety of go-to cool/grey-toned shadows, so this has completed my makeup needs.
First impression: Out of all six of MAC’s Eyes Times Nine palettes, I’d say that this is one of the most essential. It has everything you need for a day-to-day look, and can easily be amped up for night-time. For anyone struggling to narrow it down to one palette to pack in their suitcase, look no further: Dusky Rose Times Nine is no one-trick pony.
KIKO MILANO: Velvet Passion Matte Lipstick, £10.90, Everlasting Colour Precision Lip Liner, £6.90, & Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter, £8.50
I was glad to discover a KIKO Milano store had recently opened nearby. It would’ve been plain rude not to have bought something, so I went ahead and purchased their Velvet Passion Matte Lipstick in “Chocolate”, an Everlasting Colour Precision Lip Liner in “Brick”, and their Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter in “Gold”.
First impressions: I’m impressed by the fact that the Velvet Passion Matte Lipsticks have corresponding, matching shades in the Everlasting Colour Precision Lip Liners, which saves the hassle of trying to work out the match yourself. So far, so good; the lipstick, whilst not as matte as formulas such as MAC, is still matte, but also creamy at the same time. I’m also impressed by the lip liner, as on one side it has this sort of mini rubber spatula thing that you can use to neaten up edges to ensure you have a really crisp, featherless lip. I’ve found that the Radiant Touch Creamy Stick Highlighter is pretty much a dupe for Benefit’s Watts Up!, so if you’re looking to save some pennies, pick this up.
ANASTASIA BEVERLY HILLS: Modern Renaissance Palette, £41
The emotional baggage you get from following Anastasia Beverly Hills on Instagram inevitably results in a purchase from them. After seeing virtually every beauty influencer on social media raving about the new Modern Renaissance eyeshadow palette, as well as newsletters from Cult Beauty and Beauty Bay announcing its release, which I believe was just last week, I immediately ordered one, almost threatened by the idea of it selling out soon.
First impression: I think this might just be my holy-grail palette. What immediately attracted me to Modern Renaissance was the range of colours, many of which are nothing like what I already own. Shades such as Burnt Orange, which are featured in many a beauty vlogger’s custom ABH palette, are the reason I’ve wanted to branch out towards oranges, pinks and even red-toned eyeshadows. While some of the shades, like Red Ochre, Venetian Red and Loveletter, seem a bit intimidating at first, the overwhelming amount of YouTube tutorials featuring this palette have given me faith that I can totally slay them. I’ve used the palette a couple of times and I have to say, it’s true, ABH eyeshadows are INCREDIBLY pigmented and feel like butter. They say you can’t pick a favourite child (‘child’ being palette), but Modern Renaissance is mine.
PIXI: Glow Tonic, £18
Firstly, how full of coveted cult beauty and skincare brands is the M&S beauty hall full of? I think M&S have done a really good job of recognising the brands that consumers and beauty enthusiasts alike are seeking. They stock a lot of high-demand brands that aren’t really physically stocked anywhere else, such as the ones I’ve bought from in this post. I took the plunge and decided to test the blogger-approved waters of Pixi’s Glow Tonic after deciding that I’m willing to invest in proper skincare products in order to achieve perfect skin.
Glow Tonic claims to exfoliate the skin, removing dead skin cells and revealing healthy new ones that’ll improve the vibrancy of skin. It supposedly smooths, hydrates, firms and tones – basically, a miracle worker.
First impression: I’m sceptical. I’m sceptical because I’ve never spent so much on a single skincare product, and I’ve never really incorporated a toner into my daily skincare routine before. I’ve been using this morning and night for just under a fortnight, and, whilst I haven’t noticed any dramatic, miraculous changes, my skin does appear a little brighter, and feels brilliantly smooth and fresh everyday. This stuff smells fantastic and luxurious, and so it should – I only spent 18 bloody pounds on it. I’m hoping the hype around this product’s true; apparently, Glow Tonic fades scarring and other imperfections, so this stuff will grant me flawless, radiant skin.
STILA: Mile High Lashes Mascara, £16
Another purchase from the M&S beauty hall, I applied this on top of my already mascara-coated lashes and it made them look HUGE. I was in an impulse-buy mood, so I thought I’d give it a chance.
First impression: I’ve used this alone on my lashes only a couple of times so far, and, while I’m pleased with the decent amount of length and volume it’s given me, this leaves hella smudges underneath my eyes after a few hours of wear. Although this happens to literally every mascara I’ve ever tried (even waterproof), I’ve noticed that it happens quicker and more frequently with this Stila one, despite the product description claiming it won’t “smudge, budge, clump or flake”.
Discount alert: Beauty Bay currently have 15% off of Stila products, meaning that you can buy what I just did for less. Yay for you, boo for me!
Do you own any of these goodies? Let me know what you think of them! Also, let me know what products you’ve been buying this month!
The Style Banks x