I’ve done several of these current favourite beauty product posts in the past, but considering it’s been 2 years since I’ve updated this series of posts I think it’s time to look at my favourite products for every part of my makeup application. Let’s slap a full face on and get specific!
Eyeshadows: I like single shadow pans I can build my own personalised palette with, and Makeup Geek’s Signature Eyeshadow pans ($6), Coastal Scents Shadow Pots (£3) and ColourPop’s Pressed Powder singles ($4.50) are all my favourites for good colour pay-off without a hefty price-tag.
Inner Corner highlight: Revolution’s Cut Crease Canvas in Halo (£6) set with Coastal Scents’ super pigmented Cloud White shadow pan (£3). I love a matte white inner corner to really make my eyes pop and this is my holy-grail combo.
Eye liner: Revolution Renaissance Flick liner (£5) has a felt-pen applicator but a liquid liner formula, so you get full black-black pigmentation with the control of a felt applicator.
Mascara: Maybelline’s Waterproof Lash Sensational Mascara (£8.99) is the best way for me to achieve voluminous, long lashes from my stick-thin, fine lashes. If you find your lashes won’t hold a curl and you don’t already wear waterproof mascara, make the switch. NO standard mascara can help my lashes hold a curl, it has to be waterproof.
False Eye lashes: Faux Mink Eyelashes 5 pack # G802 (£2.99) I used to wear more subtle demi-wispies but the thicker I wear my liner, the more dramatic I like my lashes these days. This budget-friendly pack lasts me ages.
Lash Glue: Revlon Precision Lash Glue in Dark (£5.29) is my holy-grail glue. It’s black so you do have to be careful when applying your lashes so you don’t make a mess, but it dries black so there’s no need to apply liner over that blue-white glue that ‘clear’ glue leaves. The precision brush means you won’t overapply the glue onto the lash band, or if you’re very careful you can use it to thinly apply your glue straight to your lash line, which makes for a much easier strip lash application, especially since it dries much faster this way.
Eye Primer: Urban Decay Primer Potion (£17.50) has been the eye shadow primer I’ve come back to over and over again ever since I began wearing makeup. The Wet ‘n’ Wild Photo Focus comes in a close second at only £5, so it’s worth a try if the UD is just totally out of your budget, but the UD is the only primer that never fails my oily lids.
Pore filling face primer: Revolution Pro Pore Primer (£7) blurs pores easily, so if, like me, you were cursed with huge pores, this baby is a budget-friendly must have even on concealer-only days to get a smoother looking finish.
Best All-Round Face Primer: Beauty Pie Pore-Minimizing Primer (£3.79) is excellent at blurring pores but also helps control shine, making it a great all-in-one primer for those of us who enjoy the dual problems of oily skin and large pores.
Best beauty blender: The Sunday Ivy Big Fuzz Velvet beauty blender really does what it claims to do, which is apply your liquid face products smoothly without absorbing half the product. The velvety coating means that when you wash your sponge it really does come up entirely clean, unlike every other Beauty Blender I’ve tried which always holds onto some of my foundation.
Budget beauty blender: If you like the real Beauty Blender but just can’t keep dropping £20 to replace it, the ALDI Lacura Makeup Sponge is £1.49 a pop and the closest I’ve ever found to the softness and performance of the real thing. I still prefer my velvet sponge from above but having a couple of these as back-ups in my arsenal is useful.
Eye shadow blending brush: Revolution Metals Ultra Eyeshadow Brush (£3) is a super soft blending brush that is great for crease blending, and sure looks pretty in my brush holder, thanks to its rose gold handle.
Angled Brow Brush: ColourPop Angled Eye Brush ($6) narrow and sturdy, this brush allows you to get super precise with your brow application, whether that’s to achieve thin hair-like strokes or a sharp brow tail.
Budge-proof brows: The Revolution Brow Tint (£5) applies as a thick gel by brush before peeling away 20 minutes later (or more if you want) to reveal a stain that will last you 2-3 days depending on your make-up removing and face cleansing routine. Use Micellar water to clean up any mistakes during application, or to tone down the colour afterwards if you want a more subtle look. I use the shade Taupe, which weirdly is more of a warm brown, and use it on the days I know I might be getting a bit sweaty or physical, to remove the risk of absentmindedly smudging part of my brow.
Subtle Brow Days: For light make-up days I use the Revolution Pro Volume & Sculpt Gel in Warm Brown (£7). If I apply it with a light hand to just my brow hairs it produces a subtle layer of pigment on my natural brows, perfect for ‘no makeup’ makeup days. I can also brush the skin below my brow hairs with the spooly for a heavier application and actually achieve a full brow look with less effort than using pomade and an angled brush.
Sculpted brows: When I’m doing a full face of makeup (my vintage look) and I’m not worried about hot weather or excessive physical activity, I use Colour Pop’s Brow Pot in Redhead. I stocked up on this a long time ago so this exact product doesn’t technically exist but it’s newer iteration the Precision Brow Colour ($6) is now a waterproof formula and Audacious Auburn or Bangin’ Brunette look like they would be good shade options for us red heads.
Setting Powders and Sprays
Setting Spray: Maybelline Lasting Fix setting spray (£9.99) Matte finish, with up to 16-hr wear, it claims to be touch-proof…and it actually is! I have a sinus issue that means I blow my nose constantly throughout the day, so asking a setting spray to lock in foundation for 16 hours is asking too much, but this genuinely did withstand all touching and nose blowing on a hot, humid day for several hours. By comparison Urban Decay’s infamous sprays can’t lock down my makeup for even one nose blow!
Mattifying Translucent Powder: E.L.F Make Me Matte! Foundation Adjuster (£8) can be dusted across your face like any setting powder (which is how I use it on my forehead to help keep away shine) or mixed into your foundation before application to achieve full coverage from a foundation that doesn’t offer it. Useful versatility from a budget friendly powder!
Pore Blurring Powder: Wunder2 HD Perfect Selfie powder (£19.95) works great for blurring pores, but since it’s expensive I only use it for special occasions to get that little bit of extra smoothness on my cheeks around my nose.
Full Coverage: Revolution Pro Creaseproof Concealer (£7) Super-pigmented, this concealer works great in tandem with a full coverage foundation for a full-faced look, but needs a bit of blending work to be worn on an otherwise naked face.
Natural, light coverage: Revolution Fast Base Concealer (£3) is my go-to on the average workday when I just want to even out the skin tone on my cheeks and brighten up my under eyes.
Full Coverage: Makeup Academy Pro/Base (£5) #102 is full coverage, matte, easy to blend and wears beautifully.
Lighter coverage: I actually just use concealer where needed on lighter makeup days rather than applying an all-over sheerer foundation, but when I do want to use a foundation all over that isn’t full super coverage to achieve a more uniform skintone I like the P.S MY Perfect Colour moistusing foundation stick (£5) from Primark. It blends out nicely
Budge-proof liquid lip: Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink (£9.99) My all-time favourite lipstick, it can survive eating a burger, is transfer-proof, budget-friendly and comes in 31 shades. (Full past review here.)
Lightweight liquid lip: L’Oreal Signature Rouge Lipstick (£9.99) wears well, with a bit of a staining aspect that makes the red and bright pink colours last longer. Feels super comfortable. (Full past review here.)
Budget long-wearing liquid lip: ColourPop Ultra Mattes ($7) are released regularly in new colours, comfortable to wear although on the drier side. Lasts better through eating than a standard creamy bullet lipstick. (Full past review here.)
Long-wearing crayon: Maybelline Superstay Crayons (£9.99) are long-wearing, lightweight and comfortable. They aren’t as impervious as their liquid lipstick Superstay sister but they’re a better option for ladies who can’t stand liquid lipstick. (Full past review here.)
Lip Balm: Pure Papaya Lip Ointment (£5.50) helps keep my lips hydrated and smooth after wearing long-lasting lipsticks.
Contour: Both of my favourite contours (Makeup Geek’s Break Up pan and ColourPop’s Contour Stick in Dove) are discontinued, so while I still use them I can’t technically recommend them to you to go buy yourself. A still available product I do love is the crazy-affordable Makeup Academy Bronzed #110 (£2.50), for a subtle, matte contour for us pale babes.
Bronzer: ALDI Lacura Aloha Bronzer (£5.99) is clearly meant to be a Hoola dupe. I use it on non-vintage makeup days when I want more of a bronzed look rather than contoured.
Blusher: Makeup Academy Blusher single in Cupcake (£1) I only wear a very specific light, warm pink as blusher, and this budget option works perfectly.
Highlight: I don’t like a glaringly obvious highlight, so for a long time my go-to was the Freedom ProStudio Strobe Cream but that seems to be discontinued. I recently picked up the P.S. Nudes Glow Jelly Highlight from Primark (£3 or 4 I think?) and it’s gorgeous; subtle shimmer with a pink sheen.
Phew, that’s it! So what do you think, are any of these products also your favourite? Do you have any recommendations you think I’ll love?
What do I think? I think I have some shopping to do!! ❤ Gorgeous, as always Miss Amy.
What a phenomenal post, thank you so much for taking the time to write something so thorough!
I think I need to try the setting spray, matte foundation and liquid liner you recommend: I love the fact you shop at Superdrug and use so many easily accessible, affordable brands, and you’ve already revolutionised my makeup routine with the Maybelline liquid lipstick you recommended on other posts (I work in a bloke-heavy workplace so although I am lucky enough to be able to wear repro styles to work and be ‘quirky’ it would be super notable and weird to be popping to the ladies for touchups of lippie after every coffee, so I used to just skip lippie… with the Superstay inks I can shove a bright lip on in the morning and trust it to last the day – yay!)
Thank you again 🙂
Yay! I’m so glad this post was useful for you. Makeup posts like these tend not to get much feedback for me which can be a bit disheartening since they always take much longer to put together than I estimate, but I usually think at least the people who read it might get some suggestions to try—you did! And that’s great. I hope you love those items as much as I do 💕